Or – “Because YOU Demanded It. Repeatedly…

spiderman24picon.jpg

Alright! I give up! I have finally reached the point where I can no longer make excuses not to cover Marvel’s heaviest hitter. I tried to argue that there was too much backstory to recap, but then I keep reading Captain America. I tried to argue that the timeframes were too convoluted, but I keep reading Avengers, Mighty Avengers and Avengers: The Initiative. I tried to fight my own best judgment, but the ‘One More Day’ storyline claims to be the biggest thing to happen to Spider-Man since non-bunching spandex, and it’s drawn by the freakin’ editor-in-chief! I give, already… It’s time to welcome Spidey to our midst. Peter Parker? Meet the Spoilerites. Spoilerites? This is Mr. Parker. His life sucks.

Previously, on Friendly Neighborhood Spider-Man: Peter Parker was finally getting it right. A high-profile PAYING gig with the Avengers. A job teaching school at his old alma mater. A happy family, with both Aunt May and Mary Jane aware of and FNSM1.jpgsupporting his secondary identity. Things were really looking up for the Web-Head, and of course, that means that the REAL suffering was just around the corner. At the behest of Iron Man, he gave up his secret identity on national television, then realized that he was on the WRONG side of the fight and crossed the proverbial picket lines. After nearly getting killed by a coalition of his old enemies, he (along with the other anti-registration members of the New Avengers) went underground. About the same time, Wilson Fisk put out a hit on Pete and his family, but his hired sniper only got Aunt May. Pete has shuttled her from hospital to hospital for care, burning up his entire savings, and still found no help. Last issue, he confronted his former friend Anthony Stark, asking him to help May. Tony initially said no, tried to take Spider-Man into custody, but Spidey surprised himself by taking the big man out with enough webbing to choke Godzilla. Peter got away, and Tony showed rare class in sending his majordomo, Jarvis to pay for May’s hospital. With her condition stabilized, Spidey has eschewed MEDICAL assistance for the help of a DIFFERENT doctor.

Of course, Stephen Strange felt Peter’s presence long before he arrives, and responds to his friend with hospitality…  Peter explains the situation, and entreats the Sorcerer Supreme for assistance. Doctor Strange explains that even the Sorcerer Supreme has his limits, that sometimes things happen for a greater purpose. Spider-Man won’t accept that rationale, and Doctor Strange remarks that May IS, after all an old woman, and that people die all the time… What makes this different, asks the Doc, than if she died in her sleep? “IT’S DIFFERENT BECAUSE IT WON’T BE MY FAULT!” screams Parker, and Doc agrees to help him… sort of.

He can’t heal her, but he can use some of his mystic artifacts to let Peter go find help on his own. The Hands of the Dead allow Spider-Man to travel through space and time, literally being in more than one place at the same time (I’d wager Spidey’s been using them since roughly 1987) and beg literally EVERYONE for help. Reed Richards, Curt Connors, Black Panther, Michael Morbius, Yellowjacket, Night Nurse, Hank McCoy, Dead Girl, even DOCTOR DOOM cannot (or will not) help him.

When the Doc leaves the room to get Peter a drink after his harrowing journey, Spidey repeats the incantation himself, throwing himself back in time to try and save her from the sniper’s bullet, but he cannot save her, and ends up being forced to watch the shooting AGAIN from a different angle. Worse than that, he ends up being nearly torn apart by ‘Nightwalkers,’ guardians of the timestream. Doc has to come back and help him, and is forced to travel even further back in time (for some reason) to heal Spider-Man’s astral form before they can return to their bodies. In so doing, they apparently cross over into an issue of Amazing Spider-Man from several years ago. (I think during the series where he was fighting that gang-banger who had magic powers… His name was something like Wraith, I think.)

Once home, Doc tells Peter the most important bit. May is dying, yes, but she is NOT dead, and every moment that he’s gone is one more chance that she may pass away without him being able to hold her hand and say goodbye. With that thought pounding in his head, Spider-Man races back towards home, only to hear a voice speaking to him. “He was right. You cannot change that.” A pretty young red-haired girl about ten or so waves up at him. “But I… can.”

Who is she? I have ABSOLUTELY NO IDEA. Maybe some of our Spider-lovin’ Spoilerites can enlighten me? Either way, I have to tell you, I’m not that impressed with this story so far. Last issue had the interestingly awesome moment of Spider-Man finally cutting loose with his webbing and entrapping Iron Man (and about a block and a half worth of alleyway) in webs. This issue has mostly whining. I know what they were trying for, but here’s my problem: Doctor Strange SHOULD be able to help. He has more power than he knows what to do with, and has used his abilities in the past to do things MUCH more difficult than repair a bullet wound in a 900-year-old woman. The whole “Some Things Are Meant To Happen” argument holds no water for me, either, as he healed the entire team of New Avengers a couple of months ago after being chopped up by ninja skrulls. I guess it just “Wasn’t Their Time.”

Straczynski does the best he can with these story point, but Strange’s reticence comes across less as a real limitation than as a plot device. Add to that the annoying tendency that Quesada has to give Spider-Man’s mask facial expressions, changing the size and shape of the eyes to suit his mood, and the whole issue just comes across as annoying. The current rumors (which may or may not be at all true, I might add) indicate that this series is shipping late NOT because Quesada’s art is taking too long, but because the leaked ending we’ve all heard about involving Mephisto WAS for real, but is now being retooled. If this is the case, then I applaud Marvel for taking the initiative (no pun intended) but I can’t give this middle-of-the-road offering more than 2.5 stars out of 5.

25stars.jpg

The Author

Matthew Peterson

Matthew Peterson

Once upon a time, there was a young nerd from the Midwest, who loved Matter-Eater Lad and the McKenzie Brothers... If pop culture were a maze, Matthew would be the Minotaur at its center. Were it a mall, he'd be the Food Court. Were it a parking lot, he’d be the distant Cart Corral where the weird kids gather to smoke, but that’s not important right now... Matthew enjoys body surfing (so long as the bodies are fresh), writing in the third person, and dark-eyed women. Amongst his weaponry are such diverse elements as: Fear! Surprise! Ruthless efficiency! An almost fanatical devotion to pop culture!

And a nice red uniform.

Previous post

The Flash #233 - The Wild Wests: Fleeting Lives

Next post

Green Lantern Gets Director

33 Comments

  1. mosdef
    October 28, 2007 at 10:40 pm — Reply

    WHOOOOOHOOO!!!! AHAHAHAHAAH!!!! I KNEW MY BITCHING WOULD GET TO YOU ONE DAY MATT, I WISH U COULD SEE ME NOW, IM DOIN MY HAPPY DANCE. AHAHAHAHAHAHHAHA!!! THIS IS AN AWESOME DAY IN MOSDEFS AND SPIDERMANS HISTORY!!!! OH BUT IF Stephen Schleicher DID THIS REVIEW, IT WOULD HAVE BEEN BITTER SWEET VICTORY, SPIDER MAN WOULD KICK BATMANS ASS. BUT ONTO SPIDER-MAN, I READ THIS ISSUE ALREADY AND IT WAS AIGHT, UR RIGHT THE PREVIOUS WAS ALOT BETTER AND STEPHEN STRANGE IS PISSIN ME OFF, HE CANT SAVE AUNT MAY, HE CANT STOP A PLANE FROM FALLIN OUT THE SKY, BUT HE CAN SWALLOW A LIL ZOM JUICE AND KICK HULKS ASS FOR LIFE 15 SECS. I DONT GET IT, SPIDERMAN DESERVES BETTER!!!

  2. October 28, 2007 at 10:53 pm — Reply

    mos: perhaps if you jumped in the way back machine, and checked the archives of the site, you would see I used to do reviews of spider-man. Granted it was Ultimate Spider-Man during the clone saga, but to a spidey lover like you it shouldn’t make a difference.

  3. Maximus Rift
    October 28, 2007 at 11:16 pm — Reply

    Whomever leaked the Mephisto information, you are my hero. ^_^ You’ve saved Spidey from lamedom.

    That said, I really wish this little incident would change Joe Q’s mind about the ending. It would be nice to have a big surprise in the end.

  4. mosdef
    October 28, 2007 at 11:23 pm — Reply

    i have looked and i have learned, and they were goood reviews, is marvel crackin down on you guys about puttin pages of comics into the reviews, cause in those ultimate spiderman reviews it says the images were removed by marvel legal. if so boo on marvel.

  5. Zimby
    October 29, 2007 at 3:50 am — Reply

    Hey man, is your scanner broken or something?

  6. October 29, 2007 at 7:07 am — Reply

    Zimby: Please contact Marvel Legal regarding that question.

  7. Brother129
    October 29, 2007 at 7:28 am — Reply

    Well, I will also chime in as a life-long Spider-Man fan. First, many thanks for the review of OMD. I’m wondering if it will be more interesting to review Dan Slott’s Amazing Spider-Man once “Brand New Day” (sounds like a Christian rock band) begins. In any event, I’ve been saying for a while that all of us might be wrong about the 101 rumored endings about this event. I’m really hoping so, and I don’t mind a delay if it means a better story. As far as the little girl, I haven’t a clue, but anybody with red hair suggests demonic stuff, so it can’t be good. And if the Scarlet Witch somehow utters the phrase “no more everyone knowing your identity” then you’ll be reading about some crazy duded named Brother129 causing a distrubance at Marvel HQ….

  8. Sanlear
    October 29, 2007 at 7:30 am — Reply

    I’m really disappointed by Marvel (legal). The reviews here and the scans of the art are what interested me in some of their comics. I hope DC isn’t going to do the same thing.

  9. Brother129
    October 29, 2007 at 7:33 am — Reply

    Did I miss the update that you couldn’t run Marvel images in your reviews anymore? I really do have to go down there…

  10. October 29, 2007 at 7:57 am — Reply

    Sanlear: You’ll notice the same thing happening with all our reviews from now on.

    But of course we hope the review gives you an idea if you should purchase or avoid a title (as opposed to not purchasing the title just because of our spoiler filled reviews), and if you have already purchased, we hope the review gives plenty of points to jump off and discuss the issues here in the talk backs. I believe the reviews by themselves stand as a good commentary on the issue and should serve as a basis for discussion, or at the very least, get you to go to your local store and at least flip through the issue.

    The issue becomes – do the reviews with images encourage you to purchase the comic, or do the reviews with images give you cause not to purchase the comic. That is what Marvel Legal is most concerned about.

  11. Gin
    October 29, 2007 at 8:24 am — Reply

    That’s too bad. I enjoyed seeing the panels and I did go pick up books with artwork that I enjoyed… I’ve kind of gone past the point about really caring about the characters anymore since Marvel isn’t consistent with the characters personalities as much anymore so nowadays if I pick up a Marvel book it’s because the artwork caught my eye.

    I think it helped spice up the reviews when they were used to comic effect. Sometimes the artwork featured did a good job of adding suspense to the reviews. Does this mean that parting shots will be gone as well?

  12. October 29, 2007 at 8:43 am — Reply

    I will say what I always say: Spider-Man should not be late!All I will say as far as the images in the reviews is…Leave ’em in. I am now buying Immortal iron Fist and World War Hulk because of this site. If Marvel would like me to cancel them , I would be more than happy to!Gimme my money back!Long Live Spoiler Reviews!!!

  13. October 29, 2007 at 9:01 am — Reply

    Talked with Marvel legal today. You *MAY* see *SOME* images returning to the reviews, but not as many as before.

  14. Brad
    October 29, 2007 at 9:03 am — Reply

    Well if you need an offcial poll let Marvel know that I just called my comic shop and canceled my pull box with all my marvel titles.

    Your commentary made some of the purchases more interesting to the point that I enjoyed the pics you didn’t show just as much as the ones you did. I’m straight out pissed, I can find a better way to spend my 35 bucks a month now…….. maybe I’ll take WoW back up.

  15. Sanlear
    October 29, 2007 at 9:10 am — Reply

    Glad to hear it. Some images are better than none. I know you’re trying to make the best out of a bad situation, but the visuals of the art bring alot to the reviews.

  16. Scott S.
    October 29, 2007 at 9:15 am — Reply

    Regarding the legal: I read the picture-filled reviews of comics I’ve already bought, because I like to hear your take on them. And there have been several times when I’ve gone out and bought as issue based on a spolier-filled, picture-filled review. So the comprehensive Major Spoilers review is NOT taking money out of the publishers’ pockets… quite the opposite.

  17. Jim
    October 29, 2007 at 9:26 am — Reply

    I did miss the images but the writing here is strong enough that I’ll continue to read the reviews.

    I know the Hero Histories are DC properties, so I hope that these don’t become off the board b/c I really like the images in those.

  18. Brother129
    October 29, 2007 at 9:34 am — Reply

    The price of fame I guess. I some indirect way, this is a testament to the ever-growing success to this site. Congrats!

  19. John Simons
    October 29, 2007 at 9:47 am — Reply

    This makes no sense to me. Unless Marvel is going to start wrapping all of their comics in plastic, we will still be able to flip through them and check out the art at the store. This seems like some kind of bass-ackwords strategy to get fandom to talk about their comics *less*!

  20. Baal
    October 29, 2007 at 9:51 am — Reply

    Please stop covering Spider-Man.

    There, I said it. How many more before it cancels out all the ones that demanded this?

  21. October 29, 2007 at 10:08 am — Reply

    Hmm – I think reviews with images encourage me to purchase the comics. After all, comics are as much about art as story so it seems reasonable that a review should show the art.

    Frankly reviews with no art samples don’t interest me much. A story may sound really interesting but if I can’t be reasonably assured I’m going to like the art then I’m not going to buy it – I’ve been burned too many times before by bad art ruining an otherwise excellent comic.

    Major Spoilers is my first stop for comic reviews but without image samples it seems kinda pointless. I know it’s not your fault – just my two cents.

  22. Sanlear
    October 29, 2007 at 12:25 pm — Reply

    You post a Spider-Man review, and now the site is closing up shop. Coincidence? Hmmmm….

    Somehow, I bet Joe Quesada and “One More Day” is behind the destruction of Major Spoilers!! KHAAAAAANNNNNN!!

  23. Tobias Drake
    October 29, 2007 at 12:34 pm — Reply

    There are plenty of things the little girl could be, Mephisto included, but one thing in particular keeps coming up for me: Spider-Man is still owed a favor by Loki. I think that’s who this is.

  24. October 29, 2007 at 1:13 pm — Reply

    You post a Spider-Man review, and now the site is closing up shop. Coincidence? Hmmm…

    Peter Parker: Harbinger of Doom.

  25. Sanlear
    October 29, 2007 at 1:28 pm — Reply

    Seriously though, I hope to see you writing hero histories and comic reviews somewhere again some day. I’m really going to miss it.

  26. Brad
    October 29, 2007 at 2:40 pm — Reply

    Okay Okay I take it back I won’t cancel the pull box

  27. Brad
    October 29, 2007 at 2:41 pm — Reply

    You post a Spider-Man review, and now the site is closing up shop. Coincidence? Hmmm…

    Peter Parker: Harbinger of Doom.

    Darn-it Parker this is why we can’t have nice things

  28. Mark I.
    October 29, 2007 at 5:23 pm — Reply

    F*** “One More Day” for Spider-Man, how about “One More Year” for Major Spoilers!?!?!

    Spider-Man hasn’t been relevant since they decided to “modernize” the character in the Ultimate line and left the old dog still limping around in the mess of 616. Now Ultimate Spidey has a clean, single-line continuity with no major reboots and more or less a clean slate to work from and 616 Spidey is so f***ed up thanks to piss-poor character management in every corner of the 616 universe and spreading the character around 10 different books that they have to pull something they usually make fun of DC for doing? What’s next, a SENTRY-BOY PUNCH???

    If Spider-Man and Marvel are truly the straw that broke Major Spoiler’s back then F*** Marvel. Skipping that Blu-Ray Spider-Man boxset now for starters, will do the same for the X-Men set. Matter of fact, I only bought so many comics as it is…it’s not hard to just make mine DC (and Dynamite for THE BOYS, of course.)

    If DC was in on this too, well f*** them too.

  29. October 29, 2007 at 6:22 pm — Reply

    Since all of this involves Marvel in some way or another, I’d like to again voice my opinion that Peter’s coming off more and more crazed as this goes on… Since he’s not trying to throw Uncle Ben into the mix, this is SERIOUSLY coming off as something bordering on incestuous here..

    Part anger, part… well, this arc just has me feeling like I’m going to be let down in May when it’s finally finished, so I’m not quite sure what word I’m looking for.

  30. October 29, 2007 at 6:30 pm — Reply

    I need to really point out that none of this is Marvel’s fault. Yes, I did receive a C&D last week that put a tizzy on how things would have been done differently on the site, but everything with marvel was resolved this morning in a phone call. Really. Marvel people are ok people – they sent more PR and “please post” material than any other company out there. If anything I want to thank marvel for everything the did to make Major Spoilers the site it is – even if they are going to get rid of Peter and MJ’s marriage.

  31. Brad
    October 29, 2007 at 8:29 pm — Reply

    …..So uh Steve……. did you get any other C&D letters? : )

  32. m2thaj
    October 30, 2007 at 4:48 pm — Reply

    i Wasn’t going to post anything regarding this entire mess originally because i was so, upset, angry and disappointed by it all. this site kept me abreast of good stories that were going on that i don’t even read and helped me to know which books i wanted to avoid. I had just told a friend of mine about this site this weekend and then i saw this monday morning. I want you to know that i can truly appreciate your decision to spend even more time with your family. Despite the selfishness i feel over the site, I am proud of your Example of Manhood. i know that the other trouble does also compound the situation, and i can see Marvel’s issue with the site, or their fear as it maybe. And to that note i will say this, it is single handedly because of this site that i went and picked up the annihilation series or nova for that matter. I associate this with going to a comic shop and reading the comics on the shelf. i might start out just reading stuff that i don’t intend to buy and 4 times out of five buy things that i did not intend to read. You though have done a great job with the site and as many have said to overwhelming sentiment i am sure, what you accomplished here will be missed. Though i still want to rage at something- weird to feel so attached to a website. Godspeed[never understood what that meant…sounds good though].

  33. m2thaj
    October 30, 2007 at 4:49 pm — Reply

    oh. yeah. my wife made me write when she heard how passionate i was about the loss.

You know you have something to say, say it in the comment section