It’s been a long, delay-heavy road for Morbius, which releases this week. Sony’s been trying their best to build Jared Leto’s tragic-ish vampire as another big part of their Spider-Man adjacent cinematic universe that so far has only led to Venom and whatever the heck that Kraven the Hunter movie is going to be. But whereas Venom saved its larger Spidey connections for the recent Let There Be Carnage, Morbius just right out the gate decided to build up connections by featuring Michael Keaton’s Vulture from Spider-Man Homecoming in its trailer.
Since then, there’s been plenty of speculation about what universe Morbius is set in, owed additionally to the mention of a namedrop in a trailer about an “incident” in San Francisco and Morbius walking through an alleyway that features a poster of Spider-Man with “MURDERER” scrawled across it. In a Q&A interview on Twitter with CinemaBlend, director Daniel Espinosa confirmed that his vampire “lives in the same universe” as Tom Hardy’s Lethal Protector. “ It’s the same universe we saw Venom exit at the end of Let There Be Carnage, and return to at the end of Spider-Man: No Way Home,” he said. Immediately after, he was asked if there was a Spider-Man in this universe, and of course there is. Whichever Spider-Man it is, Espinosa said that audiences would “soon,” or at least he believed they would.
"Morbius lives in the same universe as Venom. This is the universe we saw Venom exit at the end of VENOM: LET THERE BE CARNAGE and return to at the end of SPIDER-MAN: NO WAY HOME." -DE pic.twitter.com/m6qe6gofYf— CinemaBlend (@CinemaBlend) March 25, 2022
Espinsoa also talked about the film’s post-credits scene, and it’s…well, it’s something. If you care, don’t go any further than this.
Keaton’s Adrian Toomes is indeed the same one we last saw in Homecoming. Citing both Carnage and No Way Home, Espinosa explained how there are characters who can now apparently just bounce between universes somehow after No Way Home’s end. Venom and Vulture are both capable of doing this, and the director teased that “others” can as well, though he was naturally cagey about those other dimensional travellers.
"… The events of NO WAY HOME had the effect of transferring Venom and Vulture (and maybe others ) back and forth between the MCU and the Venom Universe." – DE— CinemaBlend (@CinemaBlend) March 25, 2022
The logistics aren’t terribly clear, but what it means for Vulture is that he’s in a new world and city where he can pull off crimes, and the post-credits scene shows him preparing to do that with an upgraded suit. With how the film’s marketing has put much stock into Toomes telling Morbius to embrace his inner bad guy, you wouldn’t be wrong in thinking that we’re inching towards a movie featuring six sinister baddies. All Espinosa would say is that Vulture’s putting out job offers and “has enticed one already. So it sure looks like a start.”
It’s worth remembering how Sony’s been very determined to make the Sinister Six a thing for nearly a decade — the lineup was revealed in the post-credits scene of Amazing Spider-Man 2, and Insomniac’s 2018 game had their own take on the Six. Additionally, the ending of Homecoming saw an imprisoned Toomes be asked by Michael Mando’s Mac Gargan (aka Scorpion) if he wanted to help form a crew to go after Spider-Man, but Toomes did Peter Parker a solid and refused.
After managing to lock down five villains for No Way Home, which made a stupid amount of money, it looks like Sony wants to take a second stab at bringing some bad guys together. But whether they can pull it off, and with what Spider-Man for them to tangle with, will have to wait to be seen.
Morbius releases in theatres on March 31. Look for our review soon.