'Canon events': How TikTok is using the Spider-Verse to make sense of life

Life imitates art, as they say, but in this case, TikTok imitates Spider-Man.

The movie Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse, released last month, focuses on ‘canon events’.

These are the crucial, shared moments that bind the Spider-verse together – ones that even a non-Marvel fan will know, e.g. being bitten by a radioactive spider, and the death of his parents.

Whether you’re watching Andrew Garfield or Tom Holland don that red and blue suit, you know these events have to happen: they shape who each Spider-Man is, and their very identity (and not to mention, you know, the actual film).

Still with us? Well now, TikTok has taken this idea and run with it.

Videos have been popping up of creators sharing canon events for their own pasts. For example: meeting your university flat mates who became your best friends, working in a toxic environment, or finding out your partner cheated.

you’re coming out of that experience a changed person

These are things that supposedly have to happen in our lives to get us to where we are today.

If you’re still not quite getting it, let us hand you over to the TikTok itself. As one creator wrote: ‘Canon event = something that is going to happen regardless of space, time and dimension in order to keep the balance. It’s basically fate.’

There’s also clips of people detailing how they’ve observed other people going through canon events, but can’t interfere, presumably because it would have a knock on effect for the rest of their lives.

For example, the all too relatable: ‘Watching a people pleasure girl get into her first relationship with an “I don’t know what you want me to say” boy that’s not over his ex.”

Some are also finding that the concept of canon events helps them get through a bad day. One video bears the captions: ‘Me experiencing the most traumatic, heartbreaking, soul destroying day of my entire life… *knowing it was a canon event*.’

Perhaps not the healthiest coping mechanism though.

Whether you believe in fate or not, at least know you’ll understand those videos that keep popping up on your fyp.

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