Monday, January 25, 2016

#Top5ComicBooks of 2015 - #4: "The Amazing Spider-Man: Renew Your Vows" by Dan Slott and Adam Kubert

Spider-Man...married? With child? That's the way Spider-Man comics should've continued, in my humble opinion. No crazy stalker-kidnappers, vampires, Gwen Stacy-Norman Osborn shippers, Iron Spidersuits and deals with Mephisto. Just stories about Marvel's greatest superhero defying his hard-luck existence by becoming a husband and father while continuing to fight the good fight using his unusual powers, intelligence, resourcefulness and wit, because that's what a responsible grown-up man does. THAT'S the real Peter Parker. That's the real Spider-Man.

And if it required a tie-in mini-series set in a parallel universe showcasing a preposterous new villain as part of a patchwork crossover to dust off this status quo and show what readers lost in favor of a bizarre, myopic, "not-on-my-watch" possessivenes on the part of higher-ups, so be it. It's only on the final page that Dan Slott hints that even he's aware that The Regent is an incredibly stupid villain whose m.o. has him miscast as a Spider-Man foe and he may have been working off an outline that was handed to him from editorial, but the dialogue between Peter, Mary Jane and Annie May Parker rings true in a way that many Spider-Man comics orbiting this mini-series haven't in almost two (!) decades. It ain't perfect, but it's the best I've seen or read with the webhead in a long time. My one regret is that this feels like the end - the "Whatever Happened To The Man of Tomorrow? "-esque execution has me suspect that Peter Parker will never be portrayed in this manner anywhere again. His default characterization will be either a teenager ( example: the new Spidey comic book series), or a late-twentysomething "millennial" sap.

Now if only we knew who is that kid in that one panel of issue #2...who is he looking at?

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