How did Cassie lose her eyesight in ‘Madame Web’ and is she blind for good?

Warning: This article contains full spoilers for Madame Web.

Now that the Spider-Man offshoot Madame Web has made its cinematic debut, a lot of people have questions about the ending. Well, not just the ending but the story as a whole. Questions like, “Why wasn’t Spider-Man in the movie?” and “Why did Sony make this and not Marvel?” (A: Sony owns Spider-Man, not Marvel). Another question: how did Cassie lose her eyesight and is she blind forever now?

For those unfamiliar with the character in the comic books, Madame Web is a minor character in the Spider-Man universe who uses her psychic powers to help Spider-Man in his crime-fighting. She first appeared in the comics in 1980, and in the comics, she’s depicted as an old lady with a disorder called myasthenia gravis who is hooked up to a life support system that looks like a spiderweb.

She is paralyzed, blind, telepathic, has visions of the future, and can see things in ways other people can’t. She can also project a form of her body to use as a distraction. Her life-support chair takes care of all her bodily functions.

But Sony presents Madame Web’s story very differently

Dakota Johnson's Cassandra Webb looks through a spider's web in Madame Web.
Photo via Sony Pictures

In the movie, which is an origin story for the character, Madame Web is named Cassandra Webb and played by Dakota Johnson, a paramedic. Her mother was part of a research team in Peru that discovered a rare spider with healing powers, but a fellow researcher named Ezekiel Sims wanted the spider’s powers for himself, so he took the spider and left Cassandra’s mother Constance to die.

A local tribe tried to save Constance with a bite from the spider, but that didn’t work and she died right after giving birth to Constance. Fast forward to 2003, and “Cassie” lives in Queens and after a near-death experience realizes she can see into the future.

She realizes that Ezekiel is trying to kill three young women and uses her powers to save them. We don’t get much more to the “why” besides his visions of them murdering him. Eventually, she and the girls have a final showdown with Ezekiel at night on a roof while fireworks are going off around them.

They battle on the catwalk of a Pepsi billboard and using her powers, Cassandra sets a final trap for Ezekiel and the sign comes down on him, crushing him. While that happens, Cassie is hit in the face with a firework, which blinds her, and is also subsequently crushed by the falling debris.

When she wakes up in the hospital, she realizes she is both blind and paralyzed from the waist down, and while she can’t see from her eyes, her psychic powers make this a non-issue. In the final scene, she’s in a wheelchair in her superhero outfit wearing shades and she tells the girls, “I can see you.”

Is Cassandra blind for good? Yes, but because of her powers, it being a lifetime ailment won’t hinder her path. If Sony does decide to traumatize us further, Cassie’s visions of the future clearly establish that while her body might be restricted to the wheelchair, her mind definitely isn’t.

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