67 Thoughts I Had Watching ‘Spider-Man’ for the First Time in Almost 20 Years

HELLO PARTY PEOPLE. Molly here. And today…we have to talk about something VERY important…



No, not that Spider-Man…



That’s right — today I am watching Spider-Man, the OG with Tobey Maguire for the first time in almost 20 years. “WHY???” You ask?

Well only because now I am passionate and devoted Marvel fan, which means I have to prepare myself for Spider-Man: No Way Home. They have been dropping MEGA hints (and literal-in-your-face images) that former Spider-mans and villains will make an appearance in the upcoming film, so I gotta study up!

I haven’t seen this film since it was in theaters in 2002, and I don’t think I even wanted to, having not been into Marvel at the time. Pretty sure it was because all my friends wanted to see it, and when you’re 13 you just feel so cool going to the movies alone you don’t really care what you’re seeing.

I remember very little about this movie (except the ICONIC upside-down kiss, and even then that’s mostly because they mimicked it on The O.C.) so I am curious to dig back in and see how I feel. I’m also very excited to FINALLY contribute to the “who is the best Spider-Man” conversation because I have to watch all of the pre-MCU ones over the next few weeks to be ready for the theater!

SO without further ado, let’s let those spidey senses tingle!

SPOILER WARNING: Wait….do I even need to put a spoiler warning on a 19-year-old movie? Sorry….I’m used to being caught up and reporting on new movies like Shang-Chi and the Eternals now.




2. Whenever I read Willem Dafoe I think of how it sounds like a frog’s noise. And yes that is a direct “How I Met Your Mother” reference.

Quote by Zoolander. Also Spider-man. (Paramount Pictures)


4. Kirsten Dunst!! I haven’t thought about you in forever!! And OMG IS THAT JOE MANGANIELLO?!!? We’re really supposed to believe he’s in high school!?  *googles how old was Joe Manganiello in 2002* Yeah, ok he was 26. 😒

5. A quick Google search has revealed that Tobey is actually OLDER than Joe which is shocking.

6. JAMES FRANCO! I forget how he’s involved but I for sure remember Willem Dafoe is the villain.


7. NANOTECH!!!!! Wow, this universe is so layered.

8. Tobey telling James Franco fun facts about spiders is me any chance I get to tell people fun facts about sharks,


10. The spider bit Tobey.

11. This feels like Dr. Stromm is getting gaslit and the terrible side-effects he’s describing are foreshadowing.

12. Aunt May is a lot younger in the Tom Holland movies…but wow these two are sweet angels who must be protected at all costs.


13. OOO snazzy early 2000s graphics.

14. So THIS is how Willem Dafoe becomes the villain.

15. Remember when I said that the terrible side-effects were foreshadowing? Shorter shadow than I predicted but here we are,

16. Peter is jacked now but I did prefer the Captain American muscles transformation…just saying.


18. This movie is really an exhibition in 2000s fashion and movie effects.

19. FLASH? His name is Flash? No.

20. I gotta say he’s a lot braver than me just believing he can climb walls and jump over stuff no worries.



22. Peter you JERK. Forgetting to paint with sweet angel Uncle Ben?!!

23. This feels wayyyyy more like a teen drama film than any other Marvel movie. It’s like the O.C. meets the MCU.

24. Cue the artistic montage of designing the suit….

25. Oh we love a mysterious cackle…



27. Peter don’t yell at sweet angel Uncle Ben!!!!!!!!

28. Something bad’s gonna happen now isn’t it?


30. I don’t know how I feel about Spider-man’s name stemming from a C-league wrestling match.

31. Not loving the joke Peter’s made 😬


33. Vigilante justice!!!


34. I knew it but I didn’t want to believe it.

35. Do we wanna bet that Willem Dafoe’s alter-ego is there?

36. “What the hell is that?” THAT’S WILLEM DAFOE.

37. I know you like Peter but your son is RIGHT there.

38. Where did Peter get this suit?!!?!?

39. A YOUNG JK SIMMONS!!!!!! (whoa that’s why the ending of Far From Home mattered)

40. Is that….ELIZABETH BANKS??

41. Harry toats broke the bro code.

42. Honestly, I miss Tom Holland.


43. Lemme guess, Willem Dafoe will get revenge at the Unity Day Festival.

44. Macy Gray performing is peak 2002. As is the Cingular Wireless ad.

45. STAN LEE!!!!!

46. This doesn’t make a TON of sense — Willem Dafoe was mad at the board but now his nemesis is Spider-man just cause he was there?

47. So this REALLY doesn’t make any sense. Willem Dafoe seems to know when he’s going to become the Green Goblin (his face was very telling when the board fired him) but then every time he acts like he partied too hard the night before and someone is showing him photos of embarrassing stuff he did?! Does he know he’s the Green Goblin or NOT?? (edit: he knows now.)

48. Wow ok this movie has been pretty terrible acting-wise thus far but I am pretty impressed by this Willem Dafoe/Green Goblin back and forth.


49. Willem Dafoe is a great villain but Green Goblin is pretty cheesy thus far right?

50. UPSIDE DOWN KISS IN THE RAIN!!!!!!! I am suddenly 13 again!!!!


51. Is the woman screaming the Green Goblin??? (Yes.)

52. WORK WAS MURDER. Good one.

53. Don’t you look at Aunt May like that you monster.

54. Wow the Osbourne men are 0-2 at this Thanksgiving.

55. LEAVE AUNT MAY ALONE. (Wow this scene is so cheesy.)

56. She’s in LOVE with someone else? This movie is SO CHEESY.

57. Oh now Willem Dafoe has TWO reasons to hate Peter.

58. Oh it’s the Trolley Car problem for Spider-man.

59. I realize he dropped a wall on him but there’s no way Green Goblin is dead….yeah he wasn’t.


60. WHY does he think Peter would save him? This movie is trying to be very layered but it’s….not.

61. BEN PARKER!!!! (also wasn’t Luke Skywalker’s uncle named ben?? Bad luck for Uncle Bens everywhere.)

62. Did the Green Goblin die??? How is he coming back then???

63. So we’re setting up Harry as the next villain I take it.

64. Kirsten Dunst and Tobey Maguire got NOTHING on Zendaya and Tom Holland in the chemistry department.

65. “I’m Spider-man” probably slapped harder in 2002 when no one had heard “I am Iron Man” yet.


*credits roll*

66. Oh wow I forgot Nickelback did the song…

67. So the end credits scene is an MCU thing, huh?


So that movie was…something. I feel like seeing this in theaters in 2002 was exactly why I didn’t see any of the Marvel movies until 2020. I thought they’d all be like this…and I am SO GLAD they aren’t.

Listen if you’re a die-hard Spider-Man fan, I’m sure this was very exciting and cutting edge in 2002! I also totally see why people are excited for the return of Willem Dafoe’s Green Goblin, as he’s clearly the best part of this movie. But I missed the humor and depth of the MCU films. (And Tom Holland.) I do not need to ever watch this film again, which is NOT how I feel about most movies in the MCU. (In fact, I’ve watched most of them again. Some of them many times.)

I give this movie a 5/10. 


Next-up: Spider-Man 2!


Have you seen Spider-Man? Share your thoughts in the comments!



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Molly is a lifelong Disney enthusiast, and former Walt Disney World Guest Relations Cast Member and tour guide. Her Walt Disney World favorites include Festival of the Lion King, Big Thunder Mountain Railroad, Fantasmic!, Mickey-shaped pretzels and rice krispie treats, and anything with Buzz Lightyear! She lives in Orlando with her husband (who she met in Guest Relations) and their two rescue dogs, Kronk and Cruella de Vil (Ella for short!)

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