Posted - August 31, 2013 | Updated : August 27, 2015

The Rhino In Amazing Spider-Man 2


Amazing Spider-Man 2 just wrapped up production and is scheduled to hit theatres next year. The exact date being banded about is May 2, 2014.

What's Amazing Spider-Man 2 going to be like? The big deal seems to be Jamie Foxx as Electro. We'll also have the introduction, for this trilogy, of Norman Osborn. Mary Jane Watson was also supposed to appear but the four scenes actress Shailene Woodley was in were cut from the film. Word is Mary Jane is set to debut in 'Amazing Spider-Man 3'. Last, but not least is the appearance of another classic Spider-Man villain, the Rhino - to be played by veteran actor Paul Giamatti.

Rhino fans like me have cause for excitement, but not too much. It's clear that the key villain of Amazing Spider-Man 2 is Electro, with the Rhino reportedly only making an appearance during the early part of the film. Director Marc Webb did say that the Rhino scenes were "meant to be played more for fun". Okay, we'll take what we can get.

Movie's don't usually cleave exactly to the comics, so in the world of Amazing Spider-Man 2, Aleksei Sytsevitch's metamorphosis into the Rhino is a result of Oscorp - not Russian mafia technology as in the comics.

Giamatti is shown early on furiously driving a truck, apparently trying to run Spidey over. He has this wicked forehead tattoo but Sytsevich appears all too human, and, for a while, a rumor circulated that the costumed Rhino won't be making an appearance. What a disaster. But then this production pic popped up.


What a relief. That's Paul Giamatti filming an Amazing Spider-Man 2 segment in New York. He's wearing this weird bulked up harness which could only mean one thing: They're going to apply special effects over this shot and we are going to see the Rhino in all his gigantic glory. No shots of that have been released but it could look like this.


The Rhino's appearance in Amazing Spider-Man 2 could just be a preview of things to come. Rumor has it that 'Amazing Spider-Man 4' will feature the Sinister Six - a collection of villains of which the Rhino is a member. Here's hoping that the rumors are true.

For those of you who are unfamiliar with the Rhino, the comics are a great resource for the character. Here's a wonderful rendition of the Rhino from the Marvel Comics Database.


In the comics, the Rhino was subjected to radiation and chemicals not once but three times. Each time made him stronger. The Rhino form was chosen because the Rhinoceros is "the result of countless generations of evolution towards the ultimate form of armored assault" - this from the Marvel Wiki. The character has been around since 1966 and can be considered not only a classic Spider-Man villain but a classic Hulk villain as well - it would be a great treat to see the Rhino in one of the Hulk movies.

I've also pulled the Rhino's Powergrid stats from Marvel.


Looking at the blue Official Ratings, we see that Sytsevich isn't very bright - reportedly one of the criteria of the mobsters who created the Rhino, to insure loyalty (it didn't work). Strength and Speed are way up and so is Durability. The comicbook Rhino can lift 75 tons and can achieve speeds up to 100 mph when charging. Aleksei has a removable suit of armor that has two formidable horns that can punch through steel plate. The Rhino is so tough he can survive anti-tank weaponry and explosions packing the force of a ton of TNT. A key weakness would be the Rhino's inability to change direction when charging at full bore. The low IQ doesn't help either.

Having been around since the mid-60s, the Rhino has made an appearance in countless comics but there are two I'd like to recommend in particular : The Amazing Spider-Man #617 and #625.

amazing spider-man cover amazing spider-man cover

In Amazing Spider-Man 617, Aleksei Sytsevitch has retired from being the Rhino. He's done time, fallen in love and now works as a bouncer in a casino. Unfortunately, there's a new Rhino wannabe in town who feels that in order to fully become the legendary Rhino he has to kill Aleksei. Here is the newcomer confronting Sytsevitch in Aleksei's place of employment.


Systsevitch stands at 6'5" and his dense musculature has him weighing in at 710 lbs, so you can just imagine how big this newcomer is. The new Rhino is also mechanical; unlike the "organic" original Rhino. In spite of all the goading, Aleksei simply won't go back to his old ways. It's up to Spider-Man to come in and get physical with the newcomer. The issue ends leaving me very impressed with Aleksei's commitment to his new life.

Seven issues separate Amazing Spider-Man 216 and Amazing Spider-Man 225 but they are both part of the same storyline. In issue 625, Aleksei's girl, Oksana, gets killed by the new Rhino. The buildup to this romance has been ongoing from 617, so Oksana's death really packs a strong emotional wallop and leads up to the battle of the Rhinos.


Aleksei is on the left, and yes, he does come out on top in this battle. The newcomer finds out just how powerful the original Rhino is - too bad he won't live to tell about it.

Someone once said of this album , "if you don't like it you won't like jazz". Well, if you don't like the Rhino in Amazing Spider-Man 617 and 625, you'll never like him. These two issues shows up Aleksei Sytsevitch, the man, and the Rhino, the powerhouse, in such an artfully effective way that he's become one of my favorite Marvel characters - at this point I don't think the designation 'villain' fits the Rhino anymore.

Well, before we end this focus on the Rhino, lets take a peek at Amazon and see what Rhino items they have available.


This is a five inch tall lead figurine of the Rhino. Look at that amazing detail.


This is part of the Rogues Gallery Bust series from Diamond Select. It depicts the Rhino charging through a wall. Only 3,000 of these figurines have been released worldwide.


Of the three statues here this one appears to have the correct shade of gray for the Rhino. It's 6 inches tall and is based on a design from legendary Spider-Man artist John Romita, Sr.

As you can see, the Rhino isn't exactly aesthetically pleasing; he's more a totem for brute power and toughness.