Tobey Maguire, Andrew Garfield, and Tom Holland’s Peter Parker “science” it up in Spider-Man: No Way Home, but who is the smartest? Any representation of Peter Parker is destined to be brilliant; it’s part of what has made him Peter Parker in the first place. Typically, Peter is represented as a chemical and technology wiz with a dash of physics thrown in for good measure.
Of course, this is only part of the picture; Spider-Man is the other side of this question. In action, Maguire, Garfield, and Holland all use their intelligence in comparable ways. When it comes to making decisions on the run, helping bystanders, and battling criminals, they’re all able to be flexible. Spider-Man: No Way Home emphasized the collective intelligence of the three Spider-Men before returning them to their homeworlds.
However, among Maguire, Garfield, and Holland, Holland is the most astute Spider-Man. There are numerous fundamental reasons why Holland’s Spider-Man is the most intelligent of the three. The first is that Holland’s Spider-Man is a mathematical prodigy in addition to chemistry, engineering, and physics. Granted, this was only properly addressed in Spider-Man: Homecoming, but it had previously been alluded to in Holland’s earlier flicks. Holland’s ability to recognize mathematical structures in Doctor Strange’s mirror realm as geometry was undoubtedly game-changing, especially given that Strange is intended to have complete control over this plane. Holland’s Parker is intellectually equivalent to Downey’s Iron-Man. His ability to use Stark technology flawlessly in his quest to aid Spider-Man villains from other realities demonstrates a degree of engineering not seen in Maguire or Garfield’s Spider-Men. In comparison to Holland’s flexibility, Maguire and Garfield’s Spider-Men are more chemists and physicists, with a little engineering on their side.
Another thing that distinguishes Holland from Maguire and Garfield is that he is the perfect combination of action and wisecracks while in combat. One of Spider-most Man’s powerful talents is his ability to make jokes in the middle of a battle, which he frequently uses to tease his opponents. The more irritated an opponent gets, the more likely he or she is to make the wrong decision. Maguire was a more serious Spider-Man with fewer quips. Garfield, on the other hand, was a totally different type of Spider-Man, hurling joke after joke at his adversaries. Holland, like his comic book beginnings, is the ideal blend of strength and wit.
Finally, Holland is the only Spider-Man who has previous teamwork experience. Being a part of the MCU has its benefits, one of which being the hero team-ups that serve as the franchise’s backbone. Teamwork necessitates a high level of intellect and agility, especially in the heat of combat. Since his debut appearance in the MCU in Captain America: Civil War, Holland’s Spider-Man has been a part of a team. By the end of Spider-Man: No Way Home, Maguire, and Garfield’s Spider-Men don’t have any special teamwork abilities. Only with some coaching from Holland’s Spider-Man were the three able to work together effectively and provide the type of fan service shown in No Way Home.
When compared to Maguire and Garfield, Holland is unquestionably the smarter Spider-Man. That isn’t to suggest that Maguire and Garfield’s Spider-Men aren’t smart. They have significantly greater emotional intelligence than Holland’s Parker, which serves as a major story aspect in assisting Holland’s Spider-Man in his grief over Aunt May’s death. Without the cameos of Maguire and Garfield in Spider-Man: No Way Home, Holland’s Spider-Man would never have completely grasped the significance of “with great power, comes great responsibility.”