Does 'Morbius' Connect To The Marvel Cinematic Universe, 'Venom', Or Sam Raimi's Spider-Man Universe?

The first trailer for Morbius arrived today, teasing a character from Marvel Comics who typically has connections to our friendly neighborhood Spider-Man. Since it was announced, the film has always been considered a Spider-Man spin-off like Venom, but the first footage revealed today paints a confusing picture as to whether or not this movie connects to the Marvel Cinematic Universe, or if it will take place in the universe established by Venom where there seems to be no Spider-Man. In fact, there's even one detail that appears to reference the version of Spider-Man from Sam Raimi's trilogy of films.

The Marvel Cinematic Universe Connection

At the end of the Morbius trailer, we get the shot seen above of Michael Keaton playfully taunting the title character. Standing next to a police vehicle of some kind, Keaton says, "Michael Morbius, got tired of doing the whole good guy thing, huh?" And then as Morbius passes him, he says, "What's up, doc?"

In Spider-Man: Homecoming, Michael Keaton played Adrian Toomes, aka the villain known as Vulture. Though not mentioned by name, the use of Michael Keaton in this quick bumper after the title reveal would seem to indicate that this is a tease of a connection to the MCU.

However, a connection like that raises more questions than answers about this spin-off. If it takes place in the MCU, when do these events unfolds? Is it before Toomes becomes a villain? Is it after Homecoming and Toomes has broken out of prison? Keaton appears as if he could be wearing a doctor's lab coat, which seems odd, unless this is a different version of the character. Speaking of which...

The (Possible) Venom Connection

There don't seem to be any direct references to Venom in this trailer, other than mentioning it's from the same studio that brought you that movie and the two Spider-Man titles in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. But what if this movie takes place in some kind of alternate universe that Spider-Man isn't part of yet, the same world the Venom occupies?

When Sony and Marvel rekindled a deal to share Spider-Man for one more movie in the webslinger's franchise, it also included an appearance in another unnamed movie in the MCU. What if that movie is Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness and it somehow allows for Tom Holland's Spider-Man to leave the MCU and enter this alternate universe that needs Spider-Man? After all, his life is in danger now that his secret identity was revealed in the credits of Spider-Man: Far From Home, so maybe he needs to escape elsewhere.

If that's the came, that could pave the wave for an alternate version of Adrian Toomes. In fact, there's an Ultimate Marvel version of Toomes in the comics where he's a doctor working for Bolivar Trask (the creator of the Sentinels that hunt X-Men), and they try to extract the Venom symbiote from Eddie Brock. That would make for an interesting development, and would allow for a tease of the X-Men entering the MCU. But that would mean Venom would need to be part of the MCU too, which could end up happening anyway. Honestly, Sony has made everything far more complicated than it needs to be, so who knows.

The Sam Raimi Spider-Man Connection

Here's something that we weren't expecting at all: an appearance by Sam Raimi's version of Spider-Man played by Tobey Maguire.

No, Tobey Maguire doesn't appear in this trailer, and neither does the actual Spider-Man. But if you look closely at the shot above which features an image of Spider-Man tagged with graffiti saying "murderer," you'll see that's not an image of Tom Holland's Spider-Man from the MCU. But instead, that's an image of Sam Raimi's Spider-Man. Check out the images side-by-side:

What's weirder is that shot of Sam Raimi's Spider-Man seems to be a promotional image that was released to promote the arrival of that particular suit as a wearable item in the Spider-Man video game for PlayStation 4. But perhaps that's where our explanation lies for this image appearing in the trailer.

More than likely, this is a placeholder image of Spider-Man that was used until Sony gets full approval from Marvel Studios to use an image of Spider-Man from the MCU. That might not be the exact issue, but it probably has something to do with image rights and the deal to share Spider-Man between Marvel and Sony. And since that image of Spider-Man is one that is owned outright by Sony Pictures, they used it in this shot and didn't think anyone would notice.

The only other explanation is that Morbius somehow takes place in Sam Raimi's Spider-Man franchise. And while that's an enticing prospect, it's extremely unlikely. After all, the graffiti on Spider-Man's image says murderer, which would possibly imply a link to Spider-Man: Far From Home, since he's been accused of killing Mysterio by J. Jonah Jameson, even though J.K. Simmons playing that character again creates yet another connection to Sam Raimi's Spider-Man. What's going on?!


No matter how this movie connects to other Marvel characters on the big screen, that first trailer wasn't all that promising of a glimpse at Morbius. But then again, many thought the same thing about Venom, and that turned out to be a huge hit. So maybe Morbius will only be sucking blood instead of just plain sucking.