Those Nonsensical Morbius Post-Credits Scenes, Explained
The following story contains spoilers for Morbius.
For most of Morbius, the latest entry in “Sony’s Spider-Man Universe” that also includes Venom and Venom: Let There Be Carnage, it’s just a regular bad movie. In the moment of watching in the theater, things happen on screen and you sort of take them in and just think in your head “OK.”
The biggest offense of the movie—before the third act, when clunky writing, bad effects/make-up, and dumb plotting take over—is that it’s just kind of boring; we’ve seen this sort of origin story many times before. The one thing that could save the movie, much in the way that Tom Hardy saved those Venom movies, is a big, fun lead performance; Morbius instead chooses for its star, Jared Leto, to play the titular character, for some reason, as quiet and reserved. If you’ve seen Leto in basically anything before (including his current excellent turn in Apple TV+’s WeCrashed or his supporting role in last year’s House of Gucci) you certainly know that “quiet and reserved” is not his standard setting.
But then the movie ends, and the credits scenes make things much worse. The Marvel Cinematic Universe has made the post-credits stinger/teaser a mainstream device in serialized franchise storytelling, and so it makes sense that Sony would give it a shot in Morbius. But the scenes in this movie, to put it bluntly, make no sense. They exist solely in an attempt to build up…something that will happen in the future, and in the process are wholly unrelated to the movie we just watched and are inconsistent with two characters we now know. It’s a mess.
Not to mention these scenes just look and feel cheap and like they were put together at the very last minute—and we have decent reason to believe that was basically the case. Anyway, here’s what we can make of the Morbius credits scenes, and what we can expect in the future—if there is one from here.
Credits Scene 1: Prison Break, But Not Really
The first Morbius credits scene picks up at some undisclosed time after the events of the film. A version of the cracked purple sky from the end of Spider-Man: No Way Home appears, and we then see Michael Keaton transported into a prison cell. This is Adrian Toomes, also known as the Vulture, the villain audiences first met in 2017’s Spider-Man: Homecoming. A news report then tells us that he’s mysteriously appeared in a cell in this new universe, and, as there’s no record of his crimes, he’s set to be released from prison immediately. The scene is not subtly written.
Big takeaway: Michael Keaton’s Vulture has been taken out of the MCU, snatched back by Sony. Lame!
Credits Scene 2: A Team Up, But Make It Pointless
The second credits scene shows Dr. Michael Morbius driving out to a distant field (why is he driving when he can just fly?) and checking his monitor, presumably seeing how much time he’s got until he either needs to feed on blood again or go feral and murder a bunch of people.
He stops his car out in the field, and Vulture—behind the mask, voiceover only, meaning Michael Keaton clearly just wasn’t available to shoot this scene—appears. He talks to Morbius, and says that he’s still figuring this new universe out, and that he’s heard Spider-Man has something to do with it. He offers Morbius the opportunity to team-up and take on the webslinger—and Dr. Mike says he’s interested.
What the hell is going on with these Morbius credits scenes?
Let’s be real for a moment here, folks. These credits scenes are bad on multiple levels. First and foremost, they’re just bad on a filmmaking level. They’re sloppily written, on-the-nose a point that it’s hard to suspend any disbelief. They’re poorly made—Keaton’s absence in the second one is obvious. And even in the context of this movie they don’t make any sense. Why would Morbius want to team up with a criminal to fight Spider-Man? This movie doesn’t even paint him as a villain. He does nothing to indicate he’d want to take on a hero.
Quite frankly, it’s an insult to the intelligence of anyone who’s actually been watching these movies and waiting to see what would happen; keeping Vulture alive at the end of Spider-Man: Homecoming was a deliberate choice, and one that felt like payoff was eventually coming for sooner or later. Inserting the character into this story—away from the world where we got to really know and understand him as one of that franchise’s best villains—feels like a slap in the face.
Mike Ryan asked director Daniel Espinosa about this in an interview for Uproxx, and he basically said that there are blanks that will be filled in in a future movie, in a scene that we haven’t yet seen. Sometimes this answer is fine, but in this case it’s not particularly convincing. He also said that the movie basically had to redo these scenes (a different Michael Keaton moment appeared in the first trailer) to fit with what happened in No Way Home. “The first thing that happened was that we had Michael Keaton because we were planning on doing this,” Espinosa said. “But then when Spider-Man: No Way Home came out, it said, “This is how the visual effects are.” And then the idea of having him just encountering him in that universe seemed too complicated, and then we put it in the end.” Does not make it better, but explains why it feels so clunky and looks so bad.
Then, there’s also the fact that the Morbius credits scenes basically undo any character development that happened over the course of Adrian Toomes/Vulture’s arc in Spider-Man: No Way Home. By the end of the movie, Vulture, in prison, is asked by Mac Gargan/Scorpion to sell out Spider-Man’s identity; he doesn’t, because he now respects Peter after Peter saved his life. I suppose Doctor Strange’s spell in No Way Home may have erased his memory of Peter, but there’s still basically zero reason for the Vulture to want to take on Spider-Man.
Sony has long wanted to put together their own villain team-up movie around the Sinister Six, and they seem to once again be angling toward that. And it seems like Morbius, Venom, and a stolen Vulture from the MCU are the first three. Aaron Taylor-Johnson is going to star in a Kraven the Hunter movie within this universe, so he’ll be in the mix too.
But wait…is Andrew Garfield in Morbius?
Nope! There is no Spider-Man in Morbius, nor is he even tangentially referenced, making the credits scenes even more bizarre. We have absolutely zero set-up for what we are eventually given.
But since it does seem inevitable that they’re building toward…something, it’s reasonable to wonder which Spider-Man these villains face off against (if Sony really, truly insists). Maybe Sony brings Tom Holland across in a Keaton-esque way, as clunky as it might be. Could they bring back Andrew Garfield? Maybe, but why would an actor currently operating at the peak of his powers—with an Oscar nomination, a prestige TV limited series on the horizon, and a widely-lauded surprise supporting appearance—want anything to do with this disorganized mess of a franchise?
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