Spider-Man, Spider-Man… does whatever a spider can. He also has a lot of films.

But which Spider-Man movies are connected and what is the best order to watch them in?

Hopefully I can answer those questions today, with a rundown of all the Spider-Man movies (live-action and animated).

Here goes…

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Viewing Order One – The TV movies

Image: ©Columbia Pictures Television

Way back during the 1970s, when budgets were low and superheroes were largely laughed off the screen, Spider-Man was given his own, short-lived show. The Amazing Spider-Man starred Nicholas Hammond as Peter Parker/Spider-Man and was… well, it was pretty bad.

But what has this got to do with movies?

Well, while the show aired on CBS in the US, overseas (including in the UK) a number of episodes of Spider-Man were edited together and released as feature length films. So, yeah, technically this TV show was responsible for three movies!

The viewing order for these films is as follows:

  • Spider-Man (1977)
  • Spider-Man Strikes Back (1978)
  • Spider-Man: The Dragon’s Challenge (1981)

As an added extra (while we are firmly in TV-to-movie territory), a 1978 Japanese Spider-Man television series (Supaidāman) also produced a Spider-Man ‘movie’. The film – which runs approximately 24 minutes – was released theatrically in Japan.

This film is:

  • Spider-Man (1978)

This Japanese film isn’t connected to the three movies above, but can be categorised as ‘low budget’ film fare.

Are any of these films worth watching?

No.

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Viewing Order Two – The Sam Raimi timeline

Image: ©Sony/Columbia Pictures/Marvel

If you don’t quite remember the ’70s-era of Spider-Man, then chances are you’re more familiar with the ’00s-era of Spider-Man – aka the Spider-Man Trilogy. Directed by Sam Raimi, the movies starred Tobey Maguire as Spidey/Peter Parker and featured the villains the Green Goblin, Doctor Octopus, Sandman, Venom and Green Goblin II (aka the new Green Goblin).

The viewing order for these films is as follows:

  • Spider-Man (2002)
  • Spider-Man 2 (2004)
  • Spider-Man 3 (2007)

These films are good.

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Viewing Order Three – The Marc Webb timeline

Image: ©Sony/Columbia Pictures/Marvel

When plans for a fourth Spider-Man movie from Sam Raimi fell through, Sony Pictures decided to press the reset button, ushering in a new era for Spidey. That era was short-lived, but did provide the world with two new super hero movies starring Andrew Garfield as Peter Parker/Spider-Man.

These films were directed by Marc Webb and retold Spider-Man’s origins while introducing the Lizard, Electro and the Green Goblin (again).

The viewing order for these films is as follows:

  • The Amazing Spider-Man (2012)
  • The Amazing Spider-Man 2 (2014)

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Viewing Order Four – The MCU timeline

Image: ©Sony/Columbia Pictures/Marvel Studios

The ‘Amazing‘ series of Spidey movies was not quite the success Sony Pictures had hoped for, so the reset button was clicked once again. However, this time the studio teamed up with Marvel Studios in order to include Spider-Man in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

Tom Holland took on the role of Spider-Man/Peter Parker, making his debut in Captain America: Civil War (2016), before landing his own solo movie in Spider-Man: Homecoming (2017).

Here is the viewing order for this series of films:

  • Captain America: Civil War (2016)
  • Spider-Man: Homecoming (2017)
  • Avengers: Infinity War (2018)
  • Avengers: Endgame (2019)
  • Spider-Man: Far From Home (2019)

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Viewing Order Five – Lego Spider-Man movies

Image: ©Lego/Marvel

Since the mid-2010s, Lego has produced a number of animated ‘short’ movies based around Marvel Comics characters, including Spider-Man. The first Lego ‘movie’ to feature Spidey was Lego Marvel Super Heroes: Maximum Overload (2013).

In 2015, Spider-Man had a brief cameo in Lego Marvel Super Heroes: Avengers Reassembled!, before getting a larger role in Lego Marvel Spider-Man: Vexed by Venom (2019).

The viewing order is as follows:

  • Lego Marvel Super Heroes: Maximum Overload (2013)
  • Lego Marvel Super Heroes: Avengers Reassembled! (2015)
  • Lego Marvel Spider-Man: Vexed by Venom (2019)

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Viewing Order Six – The multiverse

Image: ©Sony/Columbia Pictures/Marvel

With Tom Holland taking on the role of Spidey for Sony/Marvel Pictures’ Spider-Man films, Sony was keen to push forward with other Spidey-related projects – namely spin-off films that largely focus on characters who aren’t Peter Parker. Two of these pictures have been released so far (more are on the way).

The first film was Venom (2018) – a movie about Spider-Man’s nemesis. Spider-Man doesn’t appear in this movie and at first appearance it doesn’t seem to have anything to do with Spidey at all, but stick with me and this WILL make sense in a moment.

The second movie was the animated feature, Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse (2018) – a film which focused on the character of Miles Morales. And here’s where things get interesting.

Into the Spider-Verse introduced the idea that there are various different Spider-Men (Spider-Women and Spider-pigs) existing in a multiverse. I.e. there are various universes out there, all with their own version of Spider-Man and all are as valid as the next.

EVERY Spider-Man comic, TV show, movie and spin-off is connected. That means Venom exists in one of those universes, the ’70s Spider-Man films exist in another, and so on and so on.

What does this mean?

Well, if you are happy to accept that there are multiple iterations of Spider-Man out there, then you can watch all of the Spider-Man films as one long series!

The viewing order is as follows:

  • Spider-Man (1977)
  • Spider-Man Strikes Back (1978)
  • Spider-Man (1978) – The Japanese ‘movie’
  • Spider-Man: The Dragon’s Challenge (1981)
  • Spider-Man (2002)
  • Spider-Man 2 (2004)
  • Spider-Man 3 (2007)
  • The Amazing Spider-Man (2012)
  • Lego Marvel Super Heroes: Maximum Overload (2013)
  • The Amazing Spider-Man 2 (2014)
  • Lego Marvel Super Heroes: Avengers Reassembled! (2015)
  • Captain America: Civil War (2016)
  • Spider-Man: Homecoming (2017)
  • Avengers: Infinity War (2018)
  • Venom (2018)
  • Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse (2018)
  • Avengers: Endgame (2019)
  • Spider-Man: Far From Home (2019)
  • Lego Marvel Spider-Man: Vexed by Venom (2019)
  • Morbius (2020)

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Viewing Order Seven – The production order

Image: ©Sony/Columbia Pictures/Marvel

And finally, should you want to watch the movies in production order…

…oh wait, this category is redundant.

If you watch the multiverse viewing order then you are also watching the production order!

If you want to catch up on some or all of these movies, the majority are available on digital and Blu-ray/DVD, including a collection of five of the movies – The Spider-Man Complete Five Film Collection Blu-ray. The collection is available from Amazon UK and Amazon US and includes the three Sam Raimi/Tobey Maguire movies, plus the two Marc Webb/Andrew Garfield films.

To the best of my knowledge, Sony has not released a boxset with all the Spider-Man movies, but you can pick them up individually. I doubt there will ever be a boxset of every Spider-Man movie, as it’s unlikely you’ll see the ’70s Spidey in a collection alongside Tom Holland’s Spider-Man.

Anyway, now you know.

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If you want more information about the Spider-Man movie series, then please head on over to Don’t Tell Harry – my blog all about the Spidey films. Here you will find lots of details about the films that appear in this post.

Until next time, happy web-swinging!

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