Aaron Davis (Prowler)

Of course, while we go on with everything else, Spider-Man: Homecoming has been released, and we can now see together the many cameos and appearances from the movie. Let’s start with Aaron Davis, portrayed by Donald Glover. In the film, Davis is a petty criminal who tries to buy some high-tech weapons from Herman Schultz  and Jackson Brice, before being interrupted by Spider-Man. He later has a change of heart and helps the hero locate the arms dealers. What made him change his mind in the film is the fact that he doesn’t want such dangerous weapons on the streets, as his nephew lives in town…and his nephew isn’t exactly an unknown character to the readers… Let’s see together (warning: Davis’ life isn’t set on regular Earth-616, but on Earth-1610, aka the Ultimate Universe).

Aaron Davis was born in New York City, from an unknown but poor family. Since he was born, the one and only wealth in Aaron’s life was represented by his brother, Jefferson, his inseparable friend and companion. Two poor black kids in New York, the Davis brothers soon became petty thieves, operating mostly in the area of Brooklyn. They became increasingly good in their job, until they became skilled burglars and got quite rich thanks to it. While Jefferson wanted to stop, as they had achieved what they wanted, Aaron became greedy, and always looked for something more. Clearly, expanding his activity meant for Aaron to step on other criminals’ feet, and so he did with a local boss, Turk Barrett: during a meeting gone terribly wrong with Turk and his men, the Davis brothers took care of the goons without any problem, but then the police arrived. Jefferson was arrested, and he later became a mole for Nick Fury, he reformed and he married a good woman, Rio Morales, even becoming a police officer himself. Aaron, on the oppposite, evaded police and remained faithful to his old ways, honing his skills and becoming quite an expert burglar (not wanting to challenge bosses like Turk Barrett or Wilson Fisk anymore). The relationship between the two siblings became increasingly tenser, and when Jefferson had a son from Rio, Miles, he forbid his brother to ever have any contact with him. The two were now on opposite sides of the law, divided by radically different life choices: Aaron never forgave his brother for his “treason”, and the two parted ways, with the petty thief slowly becoming an international burglar hired for important and challenging heists.

Despite his father forbidding it, however, Miles liked his adventurer uncle, and he secretly visited him to have him tell his adventures and to receive gifts from the many places he visited for “work”. While acting the good uncle part, Aaron had become renowned as Prowler, one of the most required thieves around, and he helped his athletic skills with high-tech gadgetry provided to him by Elijah Stern, aka the Tinkerer. One night, he was hired by Phillip R. Roxxon to infiltrate into an OsCorp abandoned lab to steal whatever formula and machinery Norman Osborn had left behind; without his knowledge, a spider genetically enhanced with the Oz Formula entered his backpack. When Miles came visiting his uncle as usual, the spider sneaked out of the bag and bit the boy’s hand: Miles had some sort of allergic reaction, and he fainted…thus forcing Aaron to call for his brother, who wasn’t happy at all in realising his son had been seeing his criminal brother behind his back. Aaron and Jefferson had yet another fight, and the latter got out of his sibling’s apartment with his son, telling the boy the whole story for the first time, and forbidding him from ever seeing Uncle Aaron again. After that episode, Prowler travelled to Mexico for another job, but in here he entered in conflict with another crime boss, Maximus “Scorpion” Gargan: albeit he managed to dispose of Scorpion’s men with ease, he was severely beaten by Gargan himself, and was arrested by Mexican authorities. After escaping from jail, he came back to New York and confronted the Tinkerer about what he believed to be a flawed equipment. During the discussion between the two, Stern mentioned Peter Parker, the deceased Spider-Man, and speaking about his origins Prowler realised Miles had been bitten by the same kind of spider that had made Parker what he was. To protect his nephew’s secret, Aaron killed the Tinkerer, and later stole all his equipment. He would have ended his war with the Scorpion with his new toys and, in case of failure, he knew he had a super-powered nephew to count on for help…

Aaron Davis is a greedy and unscrupolous man, who devoted his entire life to crime and who values profit only. As Prowler, he’s an expert thief and burglar, a master martial artist, an olympic-level athlete and acrobat, and a skilled marksman; he possesses a variety of gadgets either bought or stolen from the Tinkerer, including a harness that allows him to fly and Vibro-Shock Gauntlets that release a powerful sonic wave. Despite he truly loves his nephew Miles, Prowler thinks in terms of loss and gain, and if anyone, even his beloved nephew, ever goes into the “loss list”, he’ll be swift and accurate in eliminating him.