Spider-Man fans have seen a lot of iterations of Peter Parker over the years, both in live-action and animated form, but the new Disney XD series Marvel’s Spider-Man aims to deliver something fresh and new. Leading that effort is Peter Parker himself, voiced by Robbie Daymond. I got to speak with him ahead of the series’ hour-long premiere that airs on Saturday, August 19th at 7:00 am ET/PT on Disney XD (and on the Disney XD App and VOD).
A big fan of the Spider-Man comics, Daymond was drawn to this new series’ take on Peter Parker as a teenage science enthusiast (genius, really) who’s struggling to balance being a superhero with being a student. It keeps the spider-powered hero grounded and keeps him relatable to audiences, whether this is their first time watching Spider-Man’s animated adventures or just the latest in a long line of stories. We got into what makes Marvel’s Spider-Man different, how science plays into the equation, what sort of relationships viewers will get to experience, and appearances by heroes and villains alike down the road. (Some spoilers follow!)
For many of us, the Marvel comics were our first introductions to Spider-Man. It’s the same for Daymond, but the particular story he gravitated to might surprise you:
Robbie Daymond: When I transferred schools when I was really young in middle school, I was an outsider, I didn’t have any friends from elementary, or anything like that. My parents got me into comics and that was a way for me to trade comic book cards with friends in the schoolyard. I started reading the “Maximum Carnage” series. That just really hooked me as an 11 or 12-year-old boy. Spider-Man quickly became my favorite superhero. That was my introduction into it.
That’s a strong story to start your Spider-Man fandom with! (Don’t expect Cletus Kasady to show up anytime soon.) But it’s that bold kind of storytelling from the comics that Daymond is most excited to bring to the small screen:
Daymond: I’ve always wanted big, sweeping story arcs for Spider-Man and that hasn’t been around as much in the animated stuff. There are some good examples, but I feel like a really exciting thing about this show is the relationships and what’s going on in Peter’s life. I think that’s always been the greatest thing about the character. He’s not Bruce Wayne, he doesn’t have unlimited resources. He’s not Clark Kent, he’s not super-powered and godlike. He’s a regular guy with some powers trying to do the right thing, and I think they do a really good job in this series about, how does Peter pay his tuition to go to Horizon? How does he make sure there’s not too much pressure on Aunt May to facilitate the life that he wants to live? How does he become self-sufficient?
I think that’s one of the coolest parts about the dynamic between Peter and his life as Spider-Man. The show does a great job of focusing on that. A lot of the writers, producers, and character designers really have a deep understanding of Spider-Man’s history and pedigree. They really know the sweet spots and tone that they want to hit and they do a great job of bringing that to the surface in a new and exciting way.