Miles Morales THWAAAK-ing the Green Goblin.
Image: Sony (Entertainment Weekly)

While Sony’s Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse is a fully computer-animated film, it cleverly incorporates a number of moments that have a drastically different style reminiscent of comic books. Our first good look at the Green Goblin is no exception.

Some things, like the floating editor’s notes bubbles that represent Miles Morales’ thoughts, are easy enough to see clearly in Into the Spider-Verse’s calmer moments. But in action sequences when the Spider-crew are flinging themselves about through the air and fighting baddies, the comic book artistic breaks can get lost or muddled.

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Today, Sony dropped a new still image from a fight between Miles and Into the Spider-Verse’s Green Goblin—a hulking dragon of a monster—and what’s impressive about it is just how goddamned detailed it is.

Speaking to Entertainment Weekly, co-director Phil Lord emphasized how important it was to co-director Chris Miller and himself to ensure that Into the Spider-Verse’s aesthetics were immediately arresting:

“We were just really intrigued with the possibility of making an animated movie in a completely different way with a completely different set of characters that didn’t have to abide by the normal rules.

A big franchise can either back you into safe choices or it can give you the opportunity to take huge risks. And that risk version was what was intriguing to us.”

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The full image.
Image: Sony (Entertainment Weekly)

In those moments where the 3D contours of the movie might look like they’ve simply been flattened to mimic reading a page, what you’re actually looking at are fully-animated two-dimensional illustrations that would look stellar in any comic book.

When you consider that the moment this still comes from goes by in a flash, it’s amazing to think that Sony went out of its way to make sure that it was fully realized—down to minute details like the Ben-Day dots accenting the backgrounds and the shadows on the Green Goblin’s scales.

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Based on looks alone, Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse is already a shoo-in to be one of the most gorgeous movies of the year. We’ll find out whether the rest of it holds up when the movie drops on December 14.