Madame Web ending explained: All your questions about the Marvel movie, answered

Dakota Johnson and Sydney Sweeney in Madame Web
(Image credit: Sony/Marvel)

Sony's Marvel universe, which consists of Spider-Man, Morbius, Venom, has officially expanded now that Madame Web is finally in cinemas. While it's loosely linked to the aforementioned friendly neighborhood web-slinger, which we dive into below, the new movie introduces an all-new character to the series: Cassie Webb.

Directed by Jessica Jones' S. J. Clarkson, the flick centers on a New York-based 30-something paramedic (Dakota Johnson), who inexplicably finds herself with clairvoyant abilities following a near-death experience. Onboard a train one evening, she sees a horrifying vision of a man murdering three young women and saves them all by intervening, thrusting the foursome into a dangerous game of cat and mouse with the would-be killer – setting her on a path to become the psychic superhero Madame Web.

Now, it should go without saying that the following article is crawling with major spoilers so if you've yet to watch Madame Web, or seen it against your will in a vision, and don't want to know how it ends, we suggest you turn back now. With that out of the way, let's get into it...

Madame Web ending recap

Dakota Johnson as Cassie in Madame Web

(Image credit: Sony/Marvel)

Having travelled to Peru to find out more about her late mother, and why she was out there looking for spiders in the jungle whilst heavily pregnant, Cassie discovers through a Las Arañas elder that her mum Constance went searching for the creature – rumored to have incredible healing abilities – after learning that unborn Cassie had a rare neurological condition. It's also revealed that she was fatally betrayed by her Amazon guide, the movie's villain, Ezekiel Sims (Tahar Rahim). 

Turns out, Ezekiel needed Constance's spider expertise to track the elusive arachnid down and once she'd found one, he killed her team and then shot her (we, the audience, knew this part from the opening scene but it was new information to Cassie). The elder then helps Cassie unlock her powers' true potential, suggesting that, "When you take on the responsibility, great power will come."

Back in New York City, Ben's expectant sister Mary's water breaks, so he bundles the girls, Julia Cornwall (Sydney Sweeney), Mattie (Celeste O'Connor), and Anya (Isabela Merced), into the car and rushes them all to the hospital. Unfortunately, though, Ezekiel's tech whizz (Zosia Mamet) spots Mattie through a surveillance camera during the car ride, and sends Ezekiel to intercept them. It's as this point that Cassie rocks up to Ben's house, spots the water on the floor and the carless drive, and immediately takes off.

As Ezekiel catches up to Ben's car, Cassie has a vision, and uses it to save her pals in the nick of time. She launches the ambulance she stole from the two colleagues of hers that were outside Ben's through a building and lands it right on top of Ezekiel. She tells Ben to get Mary to safety and bundles the girls into the ambulance; a high-speed chase through Manhattan ensues.

Eventually, they lure Ezekiel to a disused building, which Cassie learned in an earlier scene is a bit of a deathtrap. Inspired by one of her visions, the quartet rig the place with explosives that injure Ezekiel in his pursuit. They all end up on the factory's roof, where Cassie lures Ezekiel underneath a sign she knows is going to fall. Before that, though, Julia, Mattie, and Anya each try to lay a blow on Ezekiel, which leaves each of them in precarious positions on the scaffolding.

"You can't save them all!" Ezekiel growls, before Cassie remembers that the elder taught her how to be in multiple different places at once. Using her mind, Cassie splits herself between the trio of teens, rescuing them before setting her sights on finishing off Ezekiel. Just as she predicted, the sign ends up falling and pinning the baddie, but Cassie gets knocked into the river below as a consequence. In the water, she's blinded and paralyzed by a falling bit of debris.

Julia swims done to pull an unconscious Cassie from the river. Back on land, the girls take turns doing compressions on her until she wakes up and gasps, revealing her now-white eyes. Madame Web ends with Julia, Mattie, and Anya living with Cassie, who now moves around in a high-tech chair and is in full control of her abilities. She even says 'bless you' to Anya before she sneezes...

How did Cassie get her powers?

Dakota Johnson as Cassie in Madame Web

(Image credit: Sony/Marvel)

Cassie finds herself with psychic powers after falling into a river while trying to save a man from an overturned car on one of New York City's bridges. After freeing the man, with Ben pulling him out, Cassie's weight knocks the car into the water and she passes out. While submerged, she has a trippy Doctor Strange-esque, out-of-body experience and sees all sorts of visions, including different versions of herself. 

She awakens with a dripping wet Ben leaning over her, and asks whether she died. Ben tells her she was out for a few minutes and welcomes her "back to the land of the living". It's after that accident that she starts suffering from random, increasingly disorientating flashforwards; at Mary's baby shower, while making popcorn in her apartment, and while on her job, too.

What was Ezekiel Sims' plan?

Tahar Rahim in Madame Web

(Image credit: Sony Pictures)

The film never really delves into why Ezekiel is so desperate to obtain a Peruvian spider for himself, other than to make him powerful and rich – though it doesn't really explain how he makes money from it, either. His murderous vendetta against Julia, Mattie, and Anya is quite straightforward, though...

Ever since he stole the spider from Constance, he's been plagued by nightmares of three spider-women murdering him and taking the spider for themselves in the future. He then uses de-aging technology and government intelligence to work out what the trio looks like as teenagers, and subsequently, who they are. With that, he makes it his mission to track them down utilizing the city's cameras and dispatch them before they grow up, get their powers, and take him out.

Is Ezekiel Sims really dead?

Tahar Rahim as Ezekiel Sims in Madame Web

(Image credit: Sony/Marvel Entertainment)

Is anyone ever truly dead in a superhero movie? Yes, we saw the giant 'S' from the Pepsi Cola sign pin him to the ground, but we never actually see what happens to his body and with that, we can assume that anything's possible when it comes to a potential return for the villain.

It's worth noting, too, that Sims had special powers including a poisonous touch, super-strength, and spider-like agility, which means he may very well have survived the events of Madame Web's conclusion.

Why was Cassie in a wheelchair?

Dakota Johnson as Cassie in Madame Web

(Image credit: Sony/Marvel Entertainment)

During her final confrontation with Ezekiel Sims, Cassie finds herself knocked unconscious and plunged into a river. Under the surface, she gets hit by a piece of falling debris, which blinds her and presumably severely injures her body too.

In Madame Web's final scene, she's seen sporting a very snazzy pair of sunglasses, as she wheels about in a high-tech chair due to this; which brings her much closer to the comics' version of Cassandra Webb. In the source material, the character was traditionally depicted as an older woman who's permanently rigged up to a life support system due to a degenerative neurological condition. While the movie nodded to this in the flashbacks regarding her mother, Cassie's start in life was very different after the Las Arañas had the healing spider bite her mother in childbirth.

How did Julia, Mattie, and Anya get their spider powers?

Isabel Merced, Dakota Johnson, Sydney Sweeney and Celeste O'Connor in Madame Web

(Image credit: Sony/Marvel Entertainment)

Unfortunately, we can't offer up much in the way of an answer here, as the film doesn't see Julia, Mattie, and Anya actually get their powers. In Ezekiel's flashforward dream, the girls are fully in control of their unique abilities, so we can only hope that a sequel showcases how they went from ordinary teens to superheroes.

In the comics, Julia gets her powers after she's convinced by her college pal, The Uncanny X-Men's Val Cooper, to take part in an "athletic study" and is "accidentally" injected with a mix of spider venom and exotic plant extracts. Mattie got hers when she was given the gift of "Power" in the Gathering of Five ceremony, and Anya got hers through a life-saving, magical spider tattoo after a potentially fatal encounter with the Sisterhood of the Wasp. 

Who was the baby in Madame Web?

Spider-Man 4

(Image credit: Sony)

Okay, so we're being a bit facetious with this one, but yes, we can assume the baby born at the end of Madame Web is none other than Spider-Man himself, Peter Parker. That being said, the timelines don't really add up...

In Sony's Spider-Man: Homecoming, which is set between September and October 2017, Tom Holland's Peter is believed to be around 15 or 16. Madame Web is set in 2003, which doesn't really work if his mother Mary, played by American Horror Story's Emma Roberts, is supposed to be welcoming the little tot in the universe's latest?

Back in January, it was reported that Madame Web underwent extensive reshoots when its creatives realized that its planned Spider-Man references wouldn't track continuity wise. According to industry insider Jeff Sneider on The Hot Mic (via X), Sony had initially wanted Andrew Garfield's webslinger to appear in the movie but the team pivoted to Tom Holland's. Sneider went on to claim that all mentions of either Spider-Man were then removed in the reshoots. Well... While they don't explicitly say the baby is Peter, Parker has never had any siblings on screen. In the comics, he has a younger sister, who would've canonically been born later, presumably, so we figure it can't be her, either.

Will there be a Madame Web 2?

Madame Web

(Image credit: Sony Pictures)

For now, Sony and Marvel have made no official announcement when it comes to a Madame Web sequel, though the film itself certainly leaves things open for one.

"If they want me to come back then I definitely will," Johnson recently told GamesRadar+ and the Inside Total Film podcast, before adding: "I have no idea what's in store." We'll be sure to let you know if Sony and Marvel greenlights a follow-up...

Madame Web is in theaters now. For more, check out our guide to the Madame Web post-credits scene, the Madame Web Easter eggs and our best guess at when Madame Web is coming to streaming.

Amy West

I am an Entertainment Writer here at GamesRadar+, covering all things TV and film across our Total Film and SFX sections. Elsewhere, my words have been published by the likes of Digital Spy, SciFiNow, PinkNews, FANDOM, Radio Times, and Total Film magazine.