Andrew Garfield on Spider-Man as Metaphor for Internet Trolling
Obviously Peter Parker is going to behave differently as Spider-Man than he will in his nerdy, unmasked idiom, but the Amazing Spider-Man sizzle previewed for the press last month featured a wall-crawler whose behavior went beyond the typical boundaries of vigilante bravado; something I described as “epic spider trolling.” I was referencing a scene that’s since surfaced of Spider-Man giving some foolish criminal a bit of the business, but a new interview with Amazing star Andrew Garfield confirms that the darker(/funnier) nature of internet anonymity is something he built into his performance as Spider-Man.
Read the actor’s remarks below, where you’ll also find a new high-resolution image of Hollywood’s latest Spider-Man.On sale now, the latest issue of SFX features expansive coverage of the new Mark Webb film based on the Marvel Comics superhero created by Steve Ditko and Stan Lee. Besides an interview with Amazing Spider-Man producer Matt Tolmach on the Lizard villain’s dramatic role in the story, the feature also includes a chat with star Andrew Garfield about his work on the film. As excerpted on the SFX website, Garfield compares the change Peter Parker experiences when he puts on his mask to the “power” of message board anonymity.
You feel the power of it, the power of not being seen, the power of the mask. Peter becomes witty when he’s got that protective layer. It’s like he’s on a message board. He’s got the anonymity of the Internet within that suit, and he can say whatever the hell he likes, and he can get away with anything. He can f**k with people and there’s no consequences because nobody knows who the hell he is. We all know how powerful and potentially dangerous that anonymity is.
Garfield is likely speaking to something more dramatic and complex than the surface-level dickery that amused me about this comically juvenile scene — and I truly hope his remarks spark some debate in the comments below about the tyranny of nonanonymity (which is something I feared and hated until I started writing things that anonymous people disagreed with) — but hey, let’s watch it again anyway.
“Oh, it’s so simple.”
And here’s a new high resolution image, courtesy of Comic Book Movie. Click to enlarge.
The Amazing Spider-Man opens July 3.