The story has been told many times over: Peter Parker sees his Uncle Ben die, carries the baggage with him, and is motivated to be a great super hero and stop criminals. It has happened in comics. It has happened in video games. It has happened in movies. While Uncle Ben suffered the same fate in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, it was never shown on screen, but Iron Man himself Tony Stark has now stepped into a similar role for Spider-Man on the big screen. Following Tony's fate in Avengers: Endgame, Spider-Man: Far From Home director Jon Watts admits that Tony is essentially the Marvel Cinematic Universe's Uncle Ben.
"Yeah. What I would say is that loss is such a big part of who Peter Parker is in the comics, whether it be Gwen Stacy or Uncle Ben, he has to deal with loss so often," Watts told ComicBook.com when asked if Tony is taking that role. It's part of the DNA of what makes Spider-Man, Spider-Man. "In a way, I felt like this fit in very naturally and allowed me to tell the kind of Spider-Man stories that I think people want to see. So yeah, I think even if it's not a direct comp for Uncle Ben, it definitely allows me to explore some of the similar themes."
After passing on the Uncle Ben story being shown on screen in Spider-Man: Homecoming, Watts did the same with Far From Home. "I didn't feel like I needed to in this movie, because we already have a lot to deal with with the loss of Tony," Watts explained. "We have Uncle Ben's suitcase though. Did you notice that?"
Watts is referring to Peter's suitcase which contains all of his belongings for a school trip to Europe. On it is a "BFP" engraving, a dark metaphor for Peter's tragic past. "BFP," Watts said. "So, Peter's literally carrying the baggage of whatever happened to Uncle Ben with him everywhere he goes."
That's where the remixing of characters seen both in comics and movies comes into play as a means of keeping things fresh. "I think that they're the great thing about what Stan and Steve did, is that they are characters that can be reinterpreted," Spider-Man: Far From Home producer Amy Pascal said. "It's 1962, it's a long time for something to remain fresh, and yet it's been able to. I think that's because just like all of the artist who did all of the various spectacular, amazing, ultimate, everything have been able to reinterpret these kind of classical characters. We're able to do that, too."
Spider-Man: Far From Home opens in theaters on July 2.