Miami High's Free News Network Run by Students

Miami High News

Miami High's Free News Network Run by Students

Miami High News

Miami High's Free News Network Run by Students

Miami High News

Miami High’s Wrestling Team
Boys Basketball 2023-2024
Romari Robinson Heading for Success!
Girls Volleyball Team
View All

Character Misconceptions in Across The Spiderverse

Art by Nahomy Vega (left to right: Pavitr, Jess, Gwen, Miguel)



     Any entertainment franchise you can think of has its own fan base, no matter how big or small it is. In most instances, these fanbases show their love for the story and its characters through opinions, art, theories, and much more. 

     But due to some fans being close-minded and not looking into the characters deeply enough, these characters can easily be seen in a completely different perspective that is far from positive. In Across the Spiderverse (ATSV), a bunch of characters suffer from this issue, fans painting them as traitors or infantilizing them because of simple flaws seen in the characters. And of course, fans have spoken up about these issues. 


Gwen Stacy: Undermining her Emotions, Painted as a Villain 

     Gwen, also known as Spider-woman or Spider-Gwen, works as one of the most important characters in the Spiderverse franchise. She made her first appearance in Into the Spiderverse (ITSV), the prequel to Across the Spiderverse. Her role plays a big part in the development of the franchise’s main protagonist, Miles Morales. This includes Gwen becoming his potential love interest.  

     The opening sequence of ATSV consisted of an insight into Gwen’s mind three years after the events of ITSV. She still lives a double life as Spider-woman, which was the cause of the drift between her and her father’s relationship. The scene depicted her emotions in a rather intense and overwhelming manner and basically puts us in her shoes, which brings us to fans and their view on Gwen. 

     These so called “fans” tend to see past Gwen’s struggles, and instead paint her as something completely negative. They believe the relationship between her and Miles should not blossom the way it is currently and that they don’t belong together due to her not being open about her emotions. 

     In addition, Gwen is significantly villainized by fans due to her betrayal of Miles. However, the act of betrayal itself involved multiple parties. The emotional suffering put on Miles due to the betrayal is blamed on Gwen even though Miguel and Peter B. Parker played a part in it. A possible reason for this is misogyny and pretty privilege. 


Miguel O’Hara: Antagonist vs. Villain 

     The introduction of Miguel, aka Spiderman 2099,  in Across the Spiderverse caused all sorts of uproar in the fanbase. This includes his role of being against Miles’s way of thinking. Miguel was first depicted as being an ally; however, later in the film, it’s the contrary. 

     This is where the argument of an antagonist and a fully villainous character comes in. According to, an antagonist is “one that contends with or opposes another.” This doesn’t mean that the character is fully evil or malicious but is basically the opposite of the main protagonist and goes against their ideals and works as their obstacle; Miguel is an example of a well-written antagonist.  

     Villains also go against the protagonist, yet have motives that are cruel or malicious. ATSV’s villain is Spot, who grows resentful of Miles and vows to prove himself as a worthy villain. The fanbase paints Miguel as a villain because of his treatment of Miles but then completely dismisses the fact that Spot is resorting to drastic measures to induce fear and turmoil to prove himself. 


Jessica Drew: Critical and Unnecessarily Misogynistic Views 

       Fans view Jess as a bad mentor for Gwen. In the beginning of the film, she takes Gwen in as her student after witnessing the drift between Gwen and her father. This assumption is yet another instance of fans not seeing the full picture.  

     Jess gives Gwen multiple opportunities to prove herself and her abilities as a student and as Spiderwoman. When actually paying attention to Jess’s behavior, viewers can see how it changes throughout the duration of the film. Many have speculated this is because of the possible loss of Jess’s husband. For example, during the climax of the film where Miguel sends off the entirety of the Spider Society Headquarters to chase after Miles, Jess advises Gwen to use her head instead of her gut, since she tends to rely on her emotions. These assumptions of course must circle back to possible misogyny among the fanbase.  


Pavitr Prabhakar: Infantilization 

     Pavitr made his first appearance in ATSV , but is a minor character. Personality-wise, he’s considered an enthusiastic and happy-go-lucky person who’s carefree and friendly overall. The fanbase takes these traits and gives him a more infantilized personality. This is not limited to Pavitr himself, but other fanbases for other entertainment media have the habit of “dumbing down” optimistic characters and treating them like children. 

     The film makes it obvious Pavitr is capable of a lot being a Spiderman variant. He can hold an entire bus full of people with his strength alone and is naturally buff, most likely because of his spider DNA. Fanart tends to soften his character and appearance by a lot, which takes away a lot from Pavitr.  


The Brighter Side 

     As much as we think about the cons of fanbases, the Spiderverse franchise holds fans that create and contribute a lot to their passion for it. They let their ideas blossom around the plots and characters, which makes it enjoyable for me and many other people in fanbases. This has been going on for years, both the good and bad, but the balance is what makes fandoms, fandoms. 

Leave a Comment
More to Discover

Comments (0)

What did you think of this story? Would you like to see more stories like this? Tell us what you think in the comments below!
All Miami High News Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *