Spider-Man: Homecoming has a great cast and Marisa Tomei is among them. While I thought her Aunt May was very genuine, I wish I’d learned more about her. Turns out, we could have.

I really enjoyed Spider-Man: Homecoming! You can check out more of my thoughts on that, and how it stood out against the drama-filled Marvel Cinematic Universe, in my latest piece for The Hollywood Reporter. While it was a lot of fun there were two things nagged at me after the fact. One is a spoiler, which I’ve posted in the comments of my open thread here, the other was the lack of character development for Aunt May.

It’s a minor quibble in an otherwise fantastic film that also happened to feature several different female characters. Aunt May is a motherly figure and truly supportive of Peter but all the men who interact with her are doing so through the “hot” framework. I wanted to know more. As Kaila Hale-Stern writes at The Mary Sue, “We have no idea what May does with her time when she’s not looking after Peter. What is her job? Does she have friends? Perhaps a female friend that she could speak to about the difficulties of life as a widow and single guardian?”

I’m keeping my fingers crossed that Aunt May is bisexual and gets a girlfriend in the next film. But until then, let’s discuss something that could have been in this film. Speaking to Huffington Post, the Academy Award-winning actor shared some info on a scene that was cut which would have been absolutely incredible to see.

‘There was something going on in the neighborhood, and there was a little girl in distress, and I saved her, and Peter saw me save her, so you kind of saw that he got part of his ethics from her,’ she said.

Tomei continued, ‘Then I come home, and I don’t even tell him that that’s what happened, and, of course, there’s all this stuff that he’s not telling me. So he’s like, “How was your day?” And I’m like, “It was fine,” but really I was shaking inside because of this whole crisis that had happened in the city. I’m kind of fibbing to him, and he’s fibbing to me, and we’re living in this house together, and it was a very interesting setup. I was quite disappointed that wasn’t in there.’


What a powerful message for the audience to see and get something really important across in such a brief way. Not only are regular people heroes too but your authority figure gives you the encouragement to help others without even knowing it. But wait, as if this knowledge wasn’t enough to make you a bit bummed, there’s also this:

The wardrobe was a big key to figuring out again how to balance the maternal with the sexual in the part itself, and also I was jealous because I wanted to be a superhero. I wanted to have a costume that had very clean lines and would be iconic shapes in its own right, even though she was an ordinary person, so the colors and the way the lines are, there’s an imprint [of] who that person is. It’s not Bohemian with a lot of flounces … there’s an energy that’s strong and definitive and that’s really a lot because of the wardrobe and hair.

SHE WANTED TO BE A SUPERHERO. Don’t forget Robert Downey Jr. and Tomei are the same age. Don’t forget Aunt May was the Herald of Galactus once. Anything is possible, Marvel.

(via TMS)


  1. Steven Moye says:

    Only just now getting to it cause I saw it last week, but that would’ve been a welcome addition for sure.

  2. Adrian says:

    Now, I’m mad. >:

  3. Jeyl says:

    I guess they cut it out of the movie because it conflicted with the scene where Peter tells Tony that he wants to be like him. When it comes to sources of inspiration, Marvel apparently dictated that he can only have one. They picked Tony.

    Unfortunate. This would have been a more appropriate attempt at making Aunt May’s character unique from other depictions. A heck of a lot more than having May know that Peter is Spider-Man. And that sadly was played for laughs.