Peter Parker and Eddie Brock Jr: the Demonic Suit and the Bells of Conscience
February 3, 2009 Leave a comment
In the cathedral scene of Spiderman 3, two persons are juxtaposed: Peter Parker and Eddie Brock Jr.
Eddie Brock Jr. (a catholic in the comics) went into the front pews, knelt, and prayed:
It’s Brock sir, Edward Brock Jr. I’m here humbled and humiliated to ask you for one thing… I want you to kill Peter Parker. (About.com quotations)
This scene is opposite to that of the taxcollector in Jesus’s story who went to the backseat and prayed: “O God, be merciful to me a sinner.” Concerning anger and death wish, the Catechism says:
If anger reaches to the point of a deliberate desire to kill or seriously would a neighbor, it is gravely against charity; it is a mortal sin. (Catechism Art. 2302)
Above Eddie Brock Jr., at the bell tower, is Peter Parker as Spiderman in black alien suit. This suit is a symbiote which amplifies not only its hosts powers like strength and agility but also his sins like pride and anger. So we may say that the suit is a material form of demon or a devil. The Devil tempted Christ: “All these things I will give you if you come and worship me.” Such an offer Peter Parker could not resist. In his pride, he spurned the help of his girlfriend who told him, “Everyone needs help, even Spiderman.” And in his anger, he used his enhanced powers to try to kill Flint Marko who killed his uncle.
But deep inside, Peter Parker believes that he is a good man, and he cannot understand how he transformed from the city’s best loved hero into a monstrous villain. There is something wrong with the suit, as his scientist friend told him, and he tried to remove it. When the church bell tolled, the alien suit could not withstand the high frequency sounds. Call it divine grace. Or conscience–the bells of conscience. According to the Catechism,
Deep within his conscience man discovers a law which he has not laid upon himself but which he must obey. Its voice, ever calling him to love and to do what is good and to avoid evil, sounds in his heart at the right moment . . . . For a man has in his heart a law inscribed by God . . . . His conscience is man’s most secret core and his sanctuary. There he is alone with God whose voice echoes in his depths. (Catechism Art. 1776)
Peter Parker finally got rid of the demonic entity and it slithered down to the praying Eddie Brock. Eddie had just committed mortal sin by asking God to kill Peter. Deprived of sanctifying grace which he received during his Baptism and last Confession, Eddie became a new home of the demon. This is what Christ said in one of his parables:
When an unclean spirit has gone out of a person, it wanders through waterless regions looking for a resting place, but it finds none. Then it says, ‘I will return to my house from which I came.’ When it comes, it finds it empty, swept, and put in order then it goes and brings along seven other spirits more evil than itself, and they enter and live there; and the last state of that person is worse than the first. (Mt 12:43-45)