Jake Gyllenhaal as Mysterio Creates Even More Questions for 'Spider-Man'

One of Spider-Man’s lesser-known enemies is hitting the big screen, which is actually kind of a problem. In Spider-Man: Far From Home, we’ll again see Tom Holland as the hero, forced to team up with Jake Gyllenhaal’s Mysterio, who audiences got their first glimpse of in a trailer released on Tuesday. Because of Mysterio’s mastery over illusions, potentially anything in the trailer could be called into question. Even returning characters like Nick Fury.

Spider-Man: Far From Home, which will hit theaters in July, is apparently set after whatever happens in Avengers: Endgame that undoes the traumatic ending of Infinity War. Peter Parker embarks on a trip to Europe with his friends where he’s recruited by Nick Fury for a special mission.

That mission: Stop the Elementals, powerful beings who control, what else, the elements. Mysterio is inexplicably supposed to team up with Spider-Man for reasons the trailer does not make clear at all.

A lot of web-heads are having a ball seeing Gyllenhaal play Mysterio, a C-list but fan favorite Spider-Man villain who could have been relegated to a Bruce Campbell cameo in Sam Raimi’s scrapped Spider-Man 4, including illustrated storyboards and acknowledgement by Campbell himself.

Now, Gyllenhaal, once a frontrunner for Batman not too long ago, is donning the cape and fishbowl helmet of Mysterio. But his presence in the film means audiences should anticipate another devastating twist to the story.

Spider-Man Far From Home Jake Gyllenhaal
Jake Gyllenhaal, as "Mysterio" in 'Spider-Man: Far From Home.'

As fans, we love a good old-fashioned team up, but why does Nick Fury need Mysterio? How on Earth does a failed movie special effects wizard become a hero called upon by S.H.I.E.L.D.? (I’m not even going to try to parse out whether that organization still exists in the MCU.)

Perhaps because Mysterio is lying to us. Which isn’t that much of a surprise because he’s really, you know, a bad guy.

As one of Spidey’s earliest villains, Mysterio does not have powers. Instead, he’s skilled at illusions, and in the comics, Mysterio is a special effects master who tried (and failed) to become an actor. Disgruntled over his inferiority, he used his skills to become a criminal mastermind, adopting the name “Mysterio” and hiding behind a reflective fishbowl. This cinematic version of Mysterio could very well be using his powers to fool Peter Parker.

Mysterio Spider-Man
Cover of 'Amazing Spider-Man' #13, featuring the debut of Mysterio.

Mysterio may be responsible for the Elementals, fooling everyone to set himself up as a hero. Or, depending on the sophistication of his illusions, Mysterio could have created Nick Fury as a figment of Peter’s imagination. After all, we really don’t know what’s going to happen in Avengers: Endgame and Nick Fury could still be “dead.”

It would be a devastating twist if all of Far From Home isn’t even real, but an illusion of Peter Parker that he made up himself, a story he invented in his head in the last moments of his disintegration on Titan. Or, somewhat less dramatically, simply a massive illusion orchestrated by Mysterio.

After all, it’s pretty bold to release a fun-filled trailer like Spider-Man: Far From Home when we still don’t know how Marvel plans to bring back all the heroes it killed in Infinity War (assuming they come back at all). But what if Marvel isn’t spoiling anything, instead simply setting us up for another twist of the knife? That might just be the greatest trick Mysterio will ever pull off.

Spider-Man: Far From Home swings into theaters on July 5.you

Media via Sony Pictures, Marvel Entertainment