Spider-Man has always played a massive part in comic book culture and, more recently, the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU). With the creation of the MCU’s on-screen multiverse, especially thanks to the end of Loki Season 1, Spider-Man is even more vital to the ethos. The latest trailer for Spider-Man: No Way Home (2021) is exciting for both what it showed and also what it left out. Mere minutes after the trailer debuted (embedded below), the internet was abuzz with fan theories and what many believe to be confirmation of the villains of the latest movie: The Sinister Six.
Led by Doctor Octopus, The Sinister Six are a group of villains who get together with a single goal in mind: to kill the Spider-Man. The first appearance of this clan of destruction was in The Amazing Spider-Man, dating back to January 1964. While Spider-Man: No Way Home will be the first time The Sinister Six feature in the MCU, we have seen most of the members separately in the Spider-Man movies of the past. With that said, let us take a look at the suspected members of The Sinister Six and how they came to be.
The Sinister Six could not exist or be included in Spider-Man: No Way Home without their leader, who is perhaps Spider-Man’s most iconic villain: Dr Otto Gunther Octavius (better known as Doc Ock).
With the utterance of a single “Hello, Peter.”, the inclusion of Doc Ock in Spider-Man: No Way Home is undisputed. As seen in Marvel’s Spider-Man, Spider-Man 2, and Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse (2018); Doc Ock is a classic mad scientist who is as intelligent as he is vengeful. When a tragic lab accident leads to the mechanical harness of his own creation becoming permanently fused to his body, Doc Ock turns to a life of crime and rediscovers meaning in life. In so doing, he makes it his aim to kill Spider-Man.
Growing up, Otto Gunther Octavius had an upbringing that could only be referred to as ‘turbulent’. The only child to Mary and Torbert, Otto was often the target of his fathers’ rage and ire. Due to encouragement from his mother, Otto spent his time throwing himself into his schooling and was regularly top of his class. After being awarded a full university scholarship, he would become a highly respected nuclear physicist. His magnum opus would be a set of mechanical arms that could be controlled entirely with ones mind. These arms were capable of great strength and were also resistant to radiation, which meant they could be used to work safely with hazardous chemicals. During Ottos time developing this mechanical harness, his co-workers would start calling him “Doctor Octopus”, a name that would eventually become his identity.
The next member of The Sinister Six spotted by fans and predicted to feature in Spider-Man: No Way Home (2021) is the infamous Norman Osborn, otherwise known as Green Goblin.
While watching the Spider-Man: No Way Home trailer, there is a scene where a Pumpkin Bomb (Green Goblin’s weapon of choice) can be seen rolling down a street to the sound of his iconic laughter. As seen previously in Spider-Man 1-3, The Amazing Spider-Man 2, and Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse (2018); Green Goblin is one of Spider-Man’s most featured on-screen foes. He is also one of the most unhinged members of The Sinister Six.
When Green Goblin was first introduced in the comics, he came across as pretty normal with his ‘power’ coming from using various gadgets. Over time, however, Green Goblin would be shown to have a plethora of superhuman abilities. In particular, Norman is said to have superhuman strength, super speed, increased healing, and the power to regenerate tissue and even organs. During this time his powers were explained as being a chemical he splashed onto his face; which he would later refine into something he could drink whenever he wanted to channel “The Green Goblin“. This chemical also had the ability to boost his intellect to genius levels. Alas, he would pay the price for all these powers and abilities through the loss of his sanity – something he never quite regains.
Electro (Maxwell “Max” Dillon) is the third member of The Sinister Six spotted in the Spider-Man: No Way Home trailer; and was the main protagonist in Spider-Man 2 (2014).
During the Spider-Man: No Way Home trailer, there is a shot where a police car is blown up by what appears to be Electro’s distinctive lightning bolt. In the comics, Electro is well known as being a foe to both Spider-Man and Daredevil; and is also one of the founding members of The Sinister Six. As such, it is not a stretch to see him included in the upcoming film.
There are many versions of Electro’s origin story. However, in the original incarnation, Maxwell works for an electric company as a lineman before tragically getting struck by lightning while working on a power line. After this accident, Maxwell turns to a life of crime when his work lets him go. He then discovers that he underwent a mutagenic change when he was shocked, and now has the innate ability to control electricity. As Electro, Maxwell can absorb electricity and use it to make himself more powerful by giving himself the ability to fly, be super fast, have superhuman strength and generate lightning.
William Baker or Flint Marko, better known as Sandman, is the fourth member of The Sinister Six to be spotted in the Spider-Man: No Way Home trailer.
In the teaser, there is a moment where a creature resembling Sandman can be seen. Viewers might remember Sandman from his appearances in both Spider-Man 3 and as one of Mysterio’s projections in Spider-Man: Far From Home (2019). Considering how Sandman is a core member of The Sinister Six and he has appeared in several films, it is not hard to imagine this shapeshifter being a part of the upcoming movie.
In comic book lore, Sandman was one of the founding members of The Sinister Six and also an enemy of the Fantastic Four. Before being known as Sandman, William Baker was just a kid who, after being abandoned by his father, would spend a lot of time at the beach with his mother, making sand sculptures. In school, William was severely bullied, and by the time he entered high school, he joined the football team to channel his anger. During this time, he starts going by the name “Flint”. When William/Flint ends up fixing one of the games to help a friend settle a gambling debt, he is kicked off the team and expelled from school; leading to his life as a criminal and slowly turning him into a bitter and violent person. He eventually comes into contact with some strange sand in a nuclear testing site during his life of crime. Before he knows what is happening, his molecular structure begins to change. It transforms him into the inevitable Sandman, allowing him to start a new life path of crime as a shapeshifter.
The final member of The Sinister Six to have been spotted – more accurately heard – during the Spider-Man: No Way Home trailer is Dr Curtis “Curt” Connors; who is more commonly known as the Lizard.
During the trailer, there is a moment where fans swear they can hear the Lizard in the background (roughly the 02:30 mark). Dr Curtis “Curt” Connors should be familiar to fans of Spider-Man as he has had appearances in Spider-Man 2 (2004), Spider-Man 3 (2007), The Amazing Spider-Man (2012), and in Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse (2018).
In the original version of Curt Connors’ origin story, he is introduced as a prominent geneticist who lost his arm serving in the army. He then ends up doing his best to figure out the science behind how reptiles have the ability to regrow limbs. Before long, Connors developed a serum based on Lizard DNA, which he hoped would give humans the same regenerative ability as the reptiles he studied. Before revealing his serum to the world, Connors decided to test the serum on himself. Instead of creating history by regrowing his missing arm, Conners transformed into a larger-than-life version of a Lizard. Even later, when the transformation was undone, the Lizard never truly left Connor, instead forever remaining imprinted on his subconscious, just waiting to come out.
Although this post is clearly about The Sinister Six, eagled eyed readers will note how there are only five in this post. This is intentional, as even the trailer leaves it up to fans to guess who the sixth member might be.
There have been countless versions of The Sinister Six in the comics, comprising of countless combinations of villains. However, the original version of The Sinister Six consisted of Doctor Octopus, Vulture, Electro, Mysterio, Sandman, and Kraven the Hunter. Considering this, the most likely of the villains to step into the remaining spot on The Sinister Six would be either Mysterio or Vulture. Both of these characters have already had their on-screen debut, but other likely options are Kraven the Hunter and even Venom.
The decision to bring The Sinister Six into the MCU is exciting for many reasons. Not only is it a well-orchestrated and straightforward way to bring together multiple well-known foes, but it is also a way to justify bringing together the different versions of Spider-Man. The Sinister Six is more than just a group of villains, they are also a segway into the future of the MCU and the ever confusing and expansive ‘Multiverse’.
Who do you think the final member of The Sinister Six will be and why? Let us know in the comment section down below!