As reported by MTV Splashpage yesterday, it looks like our 'Amazing Spider-Man 2: Amaze Harder' villain is none other than Electro... And Electro is going to be played by the star of the upcoming Django Unchained, Jamie Foxx!
So yeah, kind of left field casting, but looking back through the comic books there’s a certain kind of sense to it - and certainly a number of different ways Director Marc Webb could go with the classic villain:
Max Dillon was a regular old electrical engineer when all of a sudden, he was struck by lightning and gained electrical powers. Turning almost immediately to a life of crime, he tried to rob Tony Stark - also known as Iron Man - and then the Baxter Building, home of the Fantastic Four. But each time he was stopped... And over and over again, mostly by Spider-Man.
Over time, his powers grew from simply discharging electricity, to being able to absorb it and charge up. Eventually, he was even able to control electricity in other people’s bodies, or manipulate it through power lines without even touching them.
More recently, Electro got a makeover - and if we were betting men and women, this is probably the key storyline we’d look at for ASM2. In the “Power to the People” story arc by writer Mark Waid and artist Paul Azaceta, Electro got a new look more in line with his Ultimate Comics version (more on that in a second), taking off his goofy, giant yellow mask, and instead scarring his face with lightning bolts. He also was going increasingly insane, as he was now able to kill people with a single touch... And couldn’t turn it off.
In a surprising twist, Dillon became a hero... Sort of. At the height of the Occupy movement, Dillon remade himself as a domestic terrorist and protestor, attacking Wall Street for its excess, and literally sucking the power away from the power brokers. He went a little more insane than necessary though, and Spider-Man had to put him down... But given the real world settings of the first Amazing Spider-Man, this seems like it would fit nicely, right?
Okay, we mentioned the Ultimate Spider-Man version, and here’s where some more possible details emerged. Unlike the Silver Age origins of regular old Max Dillon, Ultimate Electro was the result of genetic tampering, and became living electricity, able to travel through power lines, and blow stuff up real good. Other than that, there’s not a lot of difference, though the Ultimate version is far more powerful - and unkillable - than the 616 version.
One last little bit to address is that end credits scene in Amazing Spider-Man. In it, a mysterious man approaches Curt Connors - the Lizard - and talks to him about Peter Parker. Lightning flashes, and then the man disappears. Sounds like that should fuel Electro speculation, right? And sure, that’s possible, but we’ve got an alternate, crazy theory... Particularly as the heavyset man in a hat with shaggy hair looks - and sounds - nothing like Jamie Foxx.
In the “Power to the People” story, Electro’s powers are amped up by a surprising source, a villain never seen on screen before: The Mad Thinker. He has an agenda of his own, but the takeaway is that Dr. Jose Santini is an insane genius who would work perfectly for the movie series’ reimagined Norman Osborn... And he looks just like that guy in the last scene.
So is Electro working for someone else? Will we see The Mad Thinker - and more importantly, Awesome Andy his android helper - on the big screen? If so, we won’t be too shocked ELECTRICITY PUN YES NAILED IT.