Andrew Garfield points fingers at the person responsible for the "Spider-Men pointing meme" in Spider-Man: No Way Home — himself! In a new interview with Josh Horowitz on the Happy, Sad, Confused Podcast, Garfield reveals the origins of the live-action version of the meme inspired by the "Double Identity" episode of the classic 1967 Spider-Man animated series. Previously played as a gag in a post-credits scene ending the animated Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse, the meme appears in the Marvel Cinematic Universe when the three Peter Parkers — played by Tom Holland, Tobey Maguire, and Garfield — point at each other upon hearing their name called by Ned (Jacob Batalon).
"We were trying to figure out the pointing thing, like, 'How are we going to do the pointing thing in a way that [makes sense]?' It took us a while," Garfield said on the Happy, Sad, Confused Podcast. "It kind of happened naturally while we're on that scaffolding deciding, 'Peter #1, Peter #2, Peter #3.' But actually, I remember having a lightning bolt and then running into set and telling Jon [Watts, director]: 'I've got it, I've got it, I've got it!'"
The meme moment first happens when the three Peters work together in a science lab to "cure" the multiversal villains trespassing in the MCU, the result of a Doctor Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch) spell gone wrong: Green Goblin (Spider-Man's Willem Dafoe), Doctor Octopus (Spider-Man 2's Alfred Molina), Sandman (Spider-Man 3's Thomas Haden Church), Lizard (The Amazing Spider-Man's Rhys Ifans), and Electro (The Amazing Spider-Man 2's Jamie Foxx).
"There's this moment where Jacob [Ned] is like, 'Hey, Peter!' And we all go, 'Yeah?' But in the script, it was like that was that," Garfield said. "We all go 'yeah,' and then my Peter says, 'This isn't going to get old at all.' Something kind of sardonic, which felt a little undercutting, and not quite right for the moment, because it's cute. It's actually kind of cute. So I remember thinking, I can say, 'This is adorable. We're so adorable.'"
The actor eventually realized "this is the moment where we get to go, '[pointing] Did you mean me, or did you mean the other [Peters]?'" he said. "And Jon was like, 'That's it! That's it! Done.' I was so happy that that worked. It was so playful and creative and free."
Garfield, who played the wall-crawler in 2012's The Amazing Spider-Man and its 2014 sequel, previously revealed he improvised a heartwarming moment between his Peter and his two "brothers" played by Holland and Maguire.