Jacob Batalon plays Ned Leeds in the MCU’s Spider-Man films and the actor has recently been hinting his character could follow in his comic counterpart’s footsteps by becoming the Hobgoblin.
Spider-Man fans have been theorizing on a potential Hobgoblin appearance ever since Jacob Batalon’s Ned Leeds first appeared in 2017’s Spider-Man: Homecoming. The character has had a complex relationship with the Hobgoblin identity in Marvel’s comics. While Ned Leeds was originally revealed to have been brainwashed into acting as the supervillain as a scapegoat for the true Hobgoblin, Roderick Kingsley, this story has recently been retconned with Ned revealed to have been a willing Hobgoblin.
Given Ned Leeds’ prevalence in the current Spider-Man films, fans have wondered whether the MCU’s iteration of the character could also adopt the Hobgoblin identity – and Jacob Batalon appears to be all too happy to indulge these theories.
Jacob Batalon Meets The Hobgoblin
In Spider-Man: No Way Home, Jacob Batalon’s Ned Leeds was revealed to have a flair for magical abilities akin to those of Doctor Strange. While the Hobgoblin has not traditionally been a magically powered villain, it was the first hint of a superhuman quality to the character and could feed into the MCU’s own version of Hobgoblin.
Taking to Instagram to dangle the possibility of a Hobgoblin transformation before fans’ eyes, Jacob Batalon shared an image on his Story of himself with a Hobgoblin action figure. The actor can be seen shrugging as if to say “Maybe…?”. The image has since been shared on Reddit by user u/Own-Recognition5707. Check out Batalon’s post below:
It’s not yet clear what direction the fourth MCU Spider-Man movie may take, though Ned Leeds no longer remembers his former best friend, Peter Parker, thanks to a spell cast by Doctor Strange. If Ned were to see through the spell though and realize Peter had meddled with his memories, it could well be enough to send the character down a dark spiral.
Jacob Batalon most recently appeared as Ned Leeds in Spider-Man: No Way Home. Here’s the synopsis:
For the first time in the cinematic history of Spider-Man, our friendly neighborhood hero’s identity is revealed, bringing his Super Hero responsibilities into conflict with his normal life and putting those he cares about most at risk. When he enlists Doctor Strange’s help to restore his secret, the spell tears a hole in their world, releasing the most powerful villains who’ve ever fought a Spider-Man in any universe. Now, Peter will have to overcome his greatest challenge yet, which will not only forever alter his own future but the future of the Multiverse.
Directed by Jon Watts from a script written by Chris McKenna and Erik Sommers, No Way Home stars Tom Holland, Zendaya, Benedict Cumberbatch, Jacob Batalon, Jon Favreau, Jamie Foxx, Willem Dafoe, Alfred Molina, Benedict Wong, Tony Revolori, Marisa Tomei, Andrew Garfield, and Tobey Maguire.
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