Now that the Spiderman triology is complete, I’ve noticed a common theme. None of the villains in the Spiderman movies is really evil. They all have evil thrust upon them, either by some potion, invention, dysfunctional relationship, or an accidental gun-shot. Additionally, in the last two movies, the villains have good motives–Dr. Octupus is seeking the advancement of science and Sandman is trying to save his sick daughter. The third movie introduces a black blob which causes people to become wicked, but it only magnifies their latent wickedness. It’s hard to actually blame those overcome by the black blob.
Since the third movie highlighted the problem of evil (in the form of the black blob), it had to deal with forgiveness. I was hopeful when Peter’s Aunt gave a little sermon about revenge and forgiveness, but I should have known better. Her advice culminated in: “forgive yourself.” Um, okay … Perhaps that’s why the movie ended with meaninful looks rather than an actual apology from Peter. The only real apology came from the Sandman, but that was an apology for an accident.
So, once again, Hollywood skirts around the problem of evil and teaches our children that evil isn’t really their problem. They aren’t really to blame for their actions–they just need to put on a new suit. Of course, that’s part of the answer–we need to put on the righteous robes of Jesus (or, rather, He needs to put them on us). But, we won’t realize the need for a new suit unless we realize the depth of our own sin. Nor can we take off the black suit, even if we’re in a church bell tower–God Himself is the only one who can take it off.