There have been a metric tonne of articles on other websites looking at all the references to other Spider-Man movies in Spider-Man: No Way Home. Some of them are very, very obvious like, Norman Osborn's "I'm something of a scientist myself", Otto Octavius' repeatly holding the power of the sun in the palm of his hand, the falling MJ/falling Gwen "you're okay" and so much more. But there was one that I didn't see mentioned – not even in The Hollywood Reporter's Definitive List – and yet it was the one that grabbed me most seeing the movie in IMAX last week. That showed how people had changed, that time had passed, but how we all remain the same people we were.
The first time Peter Parker met Doctor Otto Octavius in Spider-Man 2 (and didn't laugh at his name). Otto knew the name and said "You're Conner's student. He tells me you're brilliant. He also tells me you're lazy." Peter Parker replied "Trying to do better".
In Spider-Man: No Way Home, a reformed Otto Octavius sees his Spider-Man for the first time in the movie. "You're all grown up. How are you?" And his Peter Parker replies again "Trying to do better". He really is.
Any way, thought it was worth mentioning as most other folk seem to have brushed over that one a bit and I thought it was worth a headline. Hope you don't mind. You can now get back to other articles looking into what issues of Spider-Man the number plates of the cars on the bridge referred to. And I am sure someone, somewhere is going to write a scene by scene comparison of Spider-Man: No Way Home to Doctor Who: The Three Doctors but it won't be me. I've got Christmas cards to make…