If you were to use the words ‘comic’, ‘hero’, ‘dark’, ‘city’ and ‘tragedy’ to describe a character the answer you get would be Batman and for good reason, but I posit the theory that those terms are as apt to Spidey as they are Bruce Wayne and this picture all but proves it. There is a scene part way through in which Spiderman sits perched in shadow atop a New York skyscraper, he looks over the ridged brow of the granite gargoyle before him and out at the midnight lights of the city, his city. His body is still but beneath the suit and skin his heart is surely beating against his chest; a heart now driven by death and despair.
If his suit weren’t quite so gaudy you could have spliced the scene into a Batman movie without anyone noticing the difference. Don’t you ‘darker’ haters despair though, because for every scene like this there is another that wouldn’t have felt out of place in 500 Days of Summer or an animated kids cartoon and although this should make for a tonal disaster of a movie, amazingly this Spiderman pulls the double act off with aplomb: hybridizing the heart, humor and horror that the character has come to be known for over the past fifty years. This Spidey’s not so afraid to take of his mask, to mix work and pleasure and that makes the movie so much more of the latter.