Ever since everyone got a good a look at Jacob Batalon as Peter Parker's best friend Ned Leeds in Spider-Man: Homecoming, based on set photos and especially the trailers, Spidey fans have pointed out how similar Ned is to Miles Morales's best bud, Ganke Lee.
They share physical similarities, as both are plump and of Asian descent — although Ganke is Korean-American and the 20-year-old actor portraying Ned is Filipino-American. Both act as confidants, allowing their superhero friends to trust them with private matters. Furthermore, they both are incredibly geeky, have an affinity for superheroes, and are equipped with an unwavering optimism.
During a recent interview, Brian Michael Bendis — who co-created Ganke with Sara Pichelli — was asked to comment on the similarities between the characters.
"I'll be very honest right now. I have not talked about this publicly, but it feels very bizarre," Bendis told the Ultimate Spin podcast (via CBR). "Most of the time the characters that I've had a hand in creating that have made it to the screen, from Jessica [Jones] all the way to Maria Hill and Quake, the level of quality of the adaptation and care in which they bring the character forward past the adaptation into its new life has been uniformly amazing — my luck in this area has been second to none.
"I've not seen Spider-Man: Homecoming, so I'm gonna wait until we see what we see," he continued. "But, yeah, it was bizarre and flattering. I don't even know if Ganke was the inspiration, or they just got to their own place with a character like this on their own. I don't know. It does seem like it might have been, but no one's told me either way. There's so much else in that trailer that's from Ultimate Spider-Man that I would assume that, yes, it is… It's weird only because Ganke wasn't part of Peter's story — he was part of Miles's story."
A young Peter Parker/Spider-Man (Tom Holland), who made his sensational debut in Captain America: Civil War, begins to navigate his newfound identity as the web-slinging super hero in Spider-Man: Homecoming. Thrilled by his experience with the Avengers, Peter returns home, where he lives with his Aunt May (Marisa Tomei), under the watchful eye of his new mentor Tony Stark (Robert Downey, Jr.). Peter tries to fall back into his normal daily routine – distracted by thoughts of proving himself to be more than just your friendly neighborhood Spider-Man – but when the Vulture (Michael Keaton) emerges as a new villain, everything that Peter holds most important will be threatened.
The cast features Tom Holland, Michael Keaton, Robert Downey Jr., Zendaya, Donald Glover, Jacob Batalon, Laura Harrier, Tony Revolori, Tyne Daly, Bokeem Woodbine, Logan Marshall-Green, and Marisa Tomei.
The film is being directed by Jon Watts (Cop Car), based on a screenplay by Jonathan Goldstein & John Francis Daley (Vacation reboot) and Jon Watts & Christopher Ford and Chris McKenna & Erik Sommers.
Spider-Man: Homecoming will be released on July 7, 2017.
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