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Comicguy1




These are the ones that I feel have seriously damaged Spidey, the mythology, and the books. It's a top 10 list. Maybe one or two more will do. And unfortunately, this isn't one of my comedy posts (I'll do one of those next time.).

#10. The Sandman- Maybe this is me, but I kind of liked him better as more of a semi-hero and "gray" character. I don't really care for him as a villian except for his early appearances.

#9. They ruined the Jackal- I think that the second Clone Saga ruined him, and he's one of my all-time favorite Spidey characters. But when they had him out to kill everybody and replace them with clones, I think that it pretty much doomed the character. I did like his return though. The only way they can salvage him and bring him back is if they retcon the Jackal in the Clone Saga to being a renegade clone.Also, how many clones did he create anyway? And Spider-Cide. Yuck.

#8. Bringing back Eddie Brock- Ever since that first story in the Jenkins arc, he died at the end. But then in that very arc, he was brought back at the end. And then in the Millar run, they had him attempt suicide. And then in that Sensational Spider-Man arc, he- JUMPED OUT OF A WINDOW. Of course, only to be saved at the end. This guy has had his story closed off three times, and he always gets brought back. I feel that they should retire him for a while.

#7. Bringing back Aunt May- In my opinion, this never should have happened. I could see why they brought her back of course, but really, as Peter grew up, she wasn't really needed anymore. Her being alive sort of sends Peter into a state of less maturity, because he doesn't really need and her role has expired. Although there have been a lot of good stories with her since, I really feel that bringing her back was a huge backstep for the Spidey mythos.

#6. The Goblin legacy/history is a mess- We had Norman, then he died. Then we had Harry and Bart Hamilton. Then we had two Hobgoblins, then a retcon that one wasn't really the Hobgoblin. Along the way we got Demogoblin, Phil Urich, and worst of all, the totally unnecessary Grey Goblin. All and all, the Goblin Legacy has gotten way out of hand. We've had about ten or eleven Goblins total. That's too many, and has convoluted the Osborn legacy. Also, bring back either Kingsley or Macendale.

#5. Bringing Harry back AFTER they Brought Back Norman- When one or the other was dead, the Goblin/Spidey fights and dynamic were much better. Especially when Norman was blaming Peter for Harry's death. It brought a different side to Norman and Norman and Peter's relationship. It's cool that we got to see a few confrontations between Norman and Harry now that both of them are back from the great beyond, but still, I think these characters worked better when ONE of the two were dead.

#4. Norman sleeping with Gwen and impregnating her- This was totally unnecessary. It pretty much diluted the motive behind a classic and pivotal moment in Spider-Man history. We didn't need a "new" reason for Norman kidnapping Gwen and knocking her off of a bridge. Also, as stated above, how many Osborn kids do we need? And this absolutely does not in any way make any sense with Amazing #121. And it also can't work if we take into account the Gwen clone, because the GC would have been pregnant as well. And it gave us yet ANOTHER Goblin. It figures that the one story of his that JMS wanted to retcon/erase, Marvel wouldn't let him. Sigh!

#3. Bringing back Kraven the Hunter and expanding the family- Really, bringing Kraven back is horrible. There was absolutely no reason for this guy to come back. And he blew his head off. His death was as close to a "There's no way that he's going to come back after this" as can get. And when a character commits suicide, there's pretty much no new direction that you can take them in. And really, how many kids does Kraven have no anyway? The only really interesting one is Aloysha or whatever his name is. The Spidey titles, unlike the X-titles where everybody and their mother (In some cases literally.) comes back from the dead, are usually pretty good in that they respect a lot of deaths.And really, Kraven already won. He beat Spider-Man. Any story where he either wins or loses will be totally redundant. Okay? This had better be Mendell Strong after a month long coke bender, because I'm going to pretend that the writers and editors were smarter then this.

#2. Spidey making a deal with Mephisto and them retconning the marriage- Really, I've never heard of this. Them retconning out an entire marriage. I don't have a problem with Peter and Mj not being married or not dating anymore. But really, THIS is the best that they can come up with? This sounds like something that DC would do. Really, they could have left the marriage intact and found a way to make a brand new, clean start. And Spidey making a deal with Mephisto is just too absurb and taints the character. But Spidey has done worse, as we're about to see with number 1.

#1.Having Spidey become a killer/blackmailer/criminal- During JMS's run, Spidey has either killed a few people (Like Morlun. Yes I know that Morlun wasn't exactly a person, but still.), or let people die. Remember that Spider-lady? Spidey just let her die. Remember during Millar's run when Spidey tried to extort Jonah with pictures of John's son as Spider-Man. And Jonah buying it sucked too. Remember when Spidey was doing stuff like stealing ambulances during the Back in Black stories? But really, the killing thing will forever taint him.

Honorable mention goes to:

#Keeping Bendis on Ultimate Spider-Man for so long- I used to LOVE this title. But somewhere along the line I lost interest. I would follow it again if another writer takes over, because Bendis has been aboard for too long, and the title has long run out of steam.

#Norman ripping off the Jackal during the Final Chapter and trying to kill the world.

#The secret identity being erased from everybody named Daredevil, Osborn and Venom.


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Jim M




I'll just skip to # 3 2 and 1.

#3 OMD. Returning Harry like it was absolutely no big deal, simply throwing him back into the picture and when they got around to it they hint at a quick explanation that he simply never died. Basically nothing to it. Returning such characters from the dead that should require a lot of thought and explanation, otherwise it only cheapens the character. Obviously the deal with the devil is just ludacris, pathetic, and can't be put into words. But the reason this is at #3 and not #1 is because after what came before, I just wasn't as surprised to see something this careless and thoughtless, not surprised at all, so I don't even think it deserves to be in the #1 spot, because by now it is just business as usual with Joe Q and new marvel.

#2 Sins past. This was pretty mind blowing disregard for an important "symbol", not just character of Spidey's past. Only for a quick shock value to a new story for quick sale's, they disregard all else, this was the beginning of the extreme they are willing to go to in carelessness and thoughtlessness to sell a story...I don't even think it deserves to be called a story. To sell shock and awe, not at the story, but at their utter reckless stupidity. They were selling their own stupidity and the extreme length it has reached. Hard to put a value on that.

#1 The relaunch, or in specific, the return of Aunt May. This was the beginning of throwing continuity under the rug with the rest of the dust. The careless and effortless way they returned Aunt May was the beginning, this was the signal of what was to come, and though sins past and OMD were surprising to some at their extreme, the relaunch was the beginning that said anything careless and thoughtless is never out of the question as long as the end is brought about, the means doesn't mean anything. It doesn't matter how they go about it, or the consequences to continuity, as long as it brings about the end they are looking for that preferably has the shock value to sell, anything goes. This was when the looney tune's reality and disregard for common sense took over, to sell a quick story, and again I hate using the word story and don't think it fits, but I am in a rush to go eat so don't have time to think of another term that better fits their idea of a story. So after this relaunch, what ever is to come is meaningless and can be erased without any thought process or carefullness or clever craftiness, it will be not just swept under the rug, but they will lift the rug for everyone to see in an extreme manner and say to everyone "this trash now never was to begin with." Let everyone know they could care less, make way for the new.


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Richard L




10. Getting rid of Jason Macendale after he was beefed up and nearly killed Ben Reilly.

9. The Spider-Marriage: Peter and MJ were a bad match, and there was nowhere for their relationship to go. MJ becoming a psychologist and going back to school was great, but then that was killed by the Byrne relaunch. There would have been a greater level of equality in their marriage, a better dynamic if MJ had been able to bring something useful to the superhero side of things. Oh well. Getting rid of the marriage in the face of established storytelling was lame compared to making it work. I can think of several things they could have tried. 1. Make MJ clinically and psychologically incapable of coping with Peter being Spider-man, and the risks. 2. Make MJ a useful psychological partner, so that she could make Spidey's war on crime more organised and effective. 3. Have a child with Peter... see Mr and Mrs Spider-Man. 4. Have her stay with Peter while Ben stayed Spidey for GOOD. 5. Have her turn out to be the clone ala the cartoon and bring back the real MJ in the wake of the 'death' of Reilly and MJ. 6. Have her fall in love with Ben Reilly and actually start to emotionally if not actually cheat on Peter. 7. Give the poor woman some powers, or a role beyond being Peter's trophy. 8. Have her become Spider-Man's greatest foe after being dumped in Goblin Goo, a better 'Menace' anyone? Gee... that's only a few ideas, some not so great but come on Marvel!

8. Having May come back from the dead. I don't need to explain why this is terrible.

7. Killing baby May. A sodding disgrace in every way.

6. Wasting Kaine as a character and now making him into a crappy 'tarantula' monster character.

5. Not keeping Ben Reilly as Spider-Carnage in order to close out Ben's time as Spidey.

4. Dumping Jessica Carradine as Ben's girlfriend and bringing in Elizabeth Tyne instead... yuck, MJ redux.

3. Killing Ben Reilly: It was an epic issue but it left a bad taste that has never gone away.

2. Not killing Venom off and not drawing Carnage as a more three-dimensional villain. I think Carnage was a wasted idea and Venom lost his edge when he stopped being Eddie Brock.

1. Not sticking with Ben Reilly as Spidey.
Most of Spider-Man's inertia as a comic seems to span from this time. When suddenly the status quo became something that was always going to be stuck to forever more for fear of alienating fans, even to the extent of deals with the devil. The whole notion of identity, and the reclaiming of destiny and responsibility, the dislocation of Reilly as a character who was the original Parker but was disenfranchised, well it was great. The best Scorpion story I've ever read as well, was at this time. The whole Jessica Carradine, and Blood Brother's storylines were the most exciting storylines in a long time. I just don't get why they backed out. They should have had the balls to stick with it, but no, instead we went backwards in the comic, and we still are.

All my points are felt strongly but 1. is felt very deeply. My favourite comicbook ended with PP75, and now I prefer PunisherMax. Sad but true.


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zmberg




1. The Marriage

2. Spider-Man joining the Avengers.

3. Peter Parker leaving high school.

4. Killing Gwen S/Norman Osborn

5. Killing Aunt May

6. Killing Harry

7. Ned Leeds as Hobgoblin (fixed by Roger Stern, at least)

8. The Osborn/Gwen love-fest.

9. Spider-baby.

10. Todd McFarlane


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Edward Whelan




I have 5 that stand out for me.

5. The re-creating of classic characters. Lizard, Doc. Ock, Venom, Electro, Scorpion, Vulture,....etc have all been redone in the last few years as a remix of what they are in the cartoons, movies, and Ultimate universe. It is not needed, and poorly done.

4. Flooding the market with Variants (While not specific to Spider-man alone, he does have the most). I was a person who wanted all copies and all variants at one time. To combat poor sales, and take advantage of people like myself, Marvel started putting out 3 or 4 variants out EVERY issue. One of the main reasons I quit buying (along with #2).

3,2,1 are all similar.

3. Clone Saga. While the best of the last 3, the premise was what made this one bad. Claiming that the Spiderman we had been reading for 250 issues (not to mention nearly all of the Spectacular and Web run) was an imposter is a little much to take. All to erase what Spider-man had grown into and to get back to basics.

2. BND. This time, lets alter not only the character like was attempted in the clone saga, but lets also confuse and destroy any continuity by changing time. Essentially throwing out hundreds of story lines and issues. At least with the clone saga, what we read happened, just with another guy. with this, nothing happened (or as they say, it did but didn't....whatever). Clone saga could have at least lent out the possibility of an extended "lost years" that documented Peter's life (kind of like untold tales did).

1. Chapter One. O.k. Lets take the classic stories and re-do THOSE. Lets give characters new origins to update them with modern times. For me, its like taking the mona lisa and touching her up with a boob job because that is what beauty is these days. I'm so glad the later said that Chapter One is out of cannon. Horrible Idea (and horribly done).




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Dunstan





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    And it also can't work if we take into account the Gwen clone, because the GC would have been pregnant as well.


I'm not following you here. I mean, the Jackal's technology was all "comic book science" anyway, so the writers could have said "oh yeah, the Gwen clone was pregnant, too" if they wanted to, but I don't see why they would have to or why it creates some logical flaw if they don't.

If Jackal cloning is anything like real world science, it simply places the DNA into a new empty egg. If the Jackal took a normal human being, chopped off its left arm, and then cloned the one-armed subject, the clone would have two arms, not one, because having your arm chopped off doesn't rewrite your DNA. Nor does pregnancy.

Presumably the Spider-clones all had superpowers because the radioactive spider bite altered Peter's DNA. And yes, you could say that bearing the Osborn twins somehow changed Gwen's DNA, but there's no evidence that this "must" be the case. We haven't seen any evidence that MJ's DNA was altered by bearing baby May.

(And of course, even the above discussion isn't necessary unless we know for certain that the Gwen clone was made from a post-conception sample of Gwen. I'm not clear on the timing there, so I'll assume that was clearly established to be the case.)

Anyway, all of that is not to defend the actual storyline.


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Hedsizzers




Killing Mattie Franklin. She's had it rough since debuting during one of ASM's worst runs, and her character has been treated poorly ever since. And after all that, she's used as fodder in an attempt to put some gravitas into a story that was already being over-hyped. And does she get to at least go out in a heroic saving-the-day way?

Nope.

Gwen's children not being Peter's. I ain't fussed about Gwen and Norman hooking up, I just think it would have been a lot more interesting if they had been Pete's kids.

OMIT. An exercise in pouring salt into a wound.

And a return to Secret Invasion (the only rational explanation for MJ's reasoning/decisions).

Killing Ben. He was created to bring people like me in (people who weren't buying any Spidey book at the time). So he was as important to us as Pete was to his fans. But they wanted to shove the "one True Spider-Man" line down everyone's throat, so Ben got melted.

101 ways to end the Clone Saga. Ok, not technically a story but another slap in the face to those fans that had actually bought into said story, and the characters in had created. It was pinnacle of "Hey, look we wrote this story that we believed in but then people complained about it and sales dropped so now we're gonna laugh at ourselves to try and win everybody back." It was all kind of... weasily.

Aunt May coming back from the dead. A beautiful story ruined, and for what? A new haircut and nothing to speak of until JMS came along...

Aunt May forgetting Pete's secret. Don't worry, she'll still be relevant and interesting. Maybe she'll get another haircut. \-_\-

Splitting up Pete and MJ. Self indulgent. Wholly unneccesary in terms of story-telling. And a massive step backwards for any character development.

BND/OMDI know I've covered aspects of these above, but the whole sorry mess has to be on this list too. I mean, the idea that it wasn't enough to just split Pete and MJ up but Quesada felt he had to create some ridiculous, continuity stretching, convoluted story(s!) so that they never actually were married - Overkill, much!?

Replacing Ben with Pete after the Clone Saga I've already said that killing Ben was wrong, and that's something I've believed since it happened. However, at the time, I could understand why Marvel wanted Pete back as Spidey. Until OMD.

Cos the clone saga gave us the single Spidey they wanted, and still gave Pete and MJ a happy ending. OMD/BND got us to the same place, but in a much less enjoyable way.

But the end result is still the same. We still have what is essentially a 'fake' Spidey in ASM - And even if Ben had been a clone, I still consider him more real than the alterna-Spidey that's been in ASM since BND.




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Unstable Molecule


Location: Calgary, AB Canada
Member Since: Sat May 17, 2008
Posts: 3,108


10. The Marriage. I love MJ but I think the marriage was forced and pre-mature, and yes, it aged the character.
9. Revealing Ned Leeds to be the Hobgoblin - ruined a three-year storyline of pure awesomeness.
8. Bringing back Kraven the Hunter - well done but diminished his awesome death.
7. Bringing back Harry Osborn - not well done and diminished his awesome death.
6. Bringing back Aunt May - ridiculously explained and ruined her awesome death. Also completely unnecessary.
5. Unmasking Spider-Man - gave rise to some cool stories but we all knew this could not continue to be the status quo.
4. Spidey, Dr. Strange, Reed and Tony mind-raping the world to forget the unmasking. Ethically reprehensible.
3. Revealing the Ben Reilly was the real Spider-Man. Hugely alienating to the majority of fans.
2. Sins Past - character assassination at its worst.
1. Dealing with the Devil. The marriage happened, and existed for 25 years. It was the only status quo most fans remembered. Discarding the marriage was a slap in the face to younger readers, and the WAY IT WAS DONE...





"It is not our abilities that show what we truly are. It is our choices." – Albus Dumbledore
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Michael




You're right. That being said- the clone had all of Gwen's memories up to a short point before her death. Even if it didn't remember giving birth, shouldn't it have remembered getting pregnant?

Michael


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Scottsnewpostingname




10.) The Marriage: Don't get me wrong-I am a fan of the marriage. I am a fan of MJ. I wish they were still a couple. The problem is that rather than honestly explore all the story possibilities that are created by a married Peter Parker Marvel has instead spent 20 years trying to undo the marriage. Every effort has been a gross failure that is stupid, contrived, unenjoyable, embarrassing, and winds up on this list. So, despite my enjoyment of the marriage I have to consider it a mistake.

9.) The Smarmy Attitude: This isn't just a "Spider-man" thing...its a "Marvel" thing. The condescending attitude that editors take towards the fans of the character and the book really turns me off. Marvel used to convey a feeling that "We are all in this together." I thought Joe Q. wanted to get back to those "Good 'ol days." Nowadays it feels very much an "Us and Them," dynamic between Corporate Marvel and the fans of the superheroes who built Marvel into an institution.

8.) The Reboot: I don't completely hate this. I loved JR Jr's art. Tri-Corp was a good idea. Lots of classic villains were involved. But the Senator Ward stuff was dumb. Sandman's regression to villainy was a bad idea with a bad execution. I still don't understand what Doc Ock was trying to do. What was with Mysterio? The revised continuity of Chapter One further bungled these stories. I didn't mind the return of Aunt May so much although it took JMS to actually make her relevant to the books again.

7.) Ditching Raimi and Crew for Spider-man 4: OK...Not Marvel's fault (I don't think.) Still, Raimi was right for not wanting to bloat SM4 with a plethora of undeveloped characters. I cannot watch SM 3 without wondering what the original intentions were and what might have been had Avi Arad not stepped up and pee-ed all over the entire production. And seriously...who would NOT want to see Malkovich play the Vulture???

6.) Writers who Overstay their Welcome: I loved DeFalco's first run but his second was blah. I never liked Michelinie and I could still see his work decline through the years. JMS is one of my all-time favorite Spider-writers but I wish he left the books before Sins Past. I think most writers have a finite amount of creativity they can pour into a character and then it is time for them to move on.

5.) Letting Artists Write the Books: Oh sure, every now and then somebody comes along who has the chops to both write and draw but the nineties gave us a silly amount of bad scripts from artists over-extending their talents. Maximum Clonage: Omega and the adjectiveless Spider-man title come to mind as prime examples. And wasn't Terry Kavanaugh an inker or something? The guy never had any business on the scripting end of the creative process.

4.) Venom: The Saga of the Alien Costume ended wonderfully with Web of Spider-man #1. Sure, Venom looks cool but his loosey-goosey characterization over the years has made him a cypher of a character. He is so insane and inconsistent that he can be squeezed into any plot. I strongly dislike "One-size-fits-all-characters."

3.) Extending the Clone Saga: In the beginning this saga was among the most genuinely intense and suspenseful of all-time. However, the notion of replacing Peter Parker was a bad one and doomed to failure. If Maximum Clonage: Omega really wrapped up the storyline (with Peter as the original) this could have been THE archetypical masterpiece of serial fiction.

2.) Chapter One: I still don't understand why Byrne gets so petulant everytime somebody mentions Spider-man. Can he not see how bad this series really was???

1.) OMD/BND/OMIT: This is all really one big package. The mischaracterization of Peter Parker and his supporting cast, the lame execution of rotating creative teams, the God-awful art, all stemming from the misguided notion that it was not enough to merely end 20 years of marriage...Marvel needed to contrive to make it as if it never happened. (To be fair, I know lots of people who feel this way when there marriage ends. Wish fullfillment for Joe Q & crew???) Kiss continuity goodbye. RIP Spider-man. Everything I have seen in this era is worse than nearly everything that came before.

On a related note, who is game for a 10 BEST decisions thread? This is kind of depressing.


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Jats




1. OMD and the end of the Spider-marriage.

2. MJ being killed off in the 90s- although being brought back later on after fans protested.

3. Retconning Ben Reilly into being the true Spiderman- although this was fixed.

4. Gwen Stacey having kids with Norman Osborn.

5. Bringing back Aunt May after an almost perfect death for the character (although we did get good stories with JMS later on as a result)

6. Killing Ben Reilly- would have been great if he had lived post clone saga.

7. Letting Roger Stern retcon Ned Leeds being the hobgoblin (and I know that wasn't his original plan but they should have left well enough alone)

8. Changing the Sandman back into a villain from a reserve Avenger.

9. Killing Gwen Stacey in Ultimate Spiderman- although remedied partly by what has happened since.

10. Death of Jonah in USM- although as this is recent I hope it will turn out to be a fix/etc - lots of possibilities wasted especially considering his knowledge of Peter and his change since Ultimatum

Honourable mentions- bringing back Norman Osborn, killing Harry Osborn and than bringing him back, making Eddie Brock no longer be Venom. Also wasting the chance for lots of stories to be told with Peter's identity public with the rush to end the Spidey marriage.

But by far the worst is all the OMD/BND mess- has stopped me reading Spidey except for Ultimate and some of the mini's that are pre OMD.


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Dunstan





    Quote:
    You're right. That being said- the clone had all of Gwen's memories up to a short point before her death. Even if it didn't remember giving birth, shouldn't it have remembered getting pregnant?



    Quote:
    Michael


Beats me. Did they ever explain how the clones got the original's memories anyway?

That's the thing about comic book cloning; it's really three separate technological feats: (1) cloning a human; (2) accelerating the aging of the clone (so that within a couple of months, you've got a 20-something Peter Parker clone instead of an embryo); and (3) transferring all of the memories of the original to the clone.

(1) is either doable or close to doable with current human technology. (2) and (3) are, as far as I know, not even close.

Only two possibilities occur to me. Either, in the Marvel Universe, the entire Theory of Evolution is wrong, and Lamarckism is right, or the Jackal -- in addition to taking tissue samples from Peter and Gwen -- also managed to copy their brain patterns using some super-duper technology. The latter seems like the easier explanation, especially since we've already seen brain-scanning superpowers and technology in the MU.

So my answer to your question is: what the Gwen clone remembers depends on when the Jackal copied original Gwen's brain. But is there any problem with saying, "yes, the Gwen clone remembered giving birth to twins?" The clone seemed content to leave her entire life behind, never bothering to contact her living relatives like Jill or her uncle, so it's not that big a stretch to say that she wouldn't try to track down the twins that she (thought she) gave up for adoption as infants. And even if she did try, Osborn probably covered his tracks well enough. As for not telling Peter, well, original Gwen wasn't exactly forthcoming about that either.

(Come to think of it, the Gwen clone's willingness to chuck her old life is really really odd, isn't it? I mean, Ben Reilly had the excuse that there couldn't be two Peter Parkers. But the Gwen clone could have just stepped in to original Gwen's old life. In a world where Harry and Norman Osborn, not to mention Aunt May and Mary Jane, can all pop back into society and say "dead? Who, me? Nah, that was just a hoax" and their friends and family seem to accept it, why can't the Gwen clone just do the same, or say "yeah, my crazy college professor cloned me"? Hell, lie and say you're the original and that it was the clone who was killed if you're worried about being treated as a freak.)




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The Green Ninjas





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Todd Arliss


Member Since: Mon Nov 09, 2009



    Quote:
    These are the ones that I feel have seriously damaged Spidey, the mythology, and the books. It's a top 10 list. Maybe one or two more will do. And unfortunately, this isn't one of my comedy posts (I'll do one of those next time.).



    Quote:
    #10. The Sandman- Maybe this is me, but I kind of liked him better as more of a semi-hero and "gray" character. I don't really care for him as a villian except for his early appearances.



    Quote:
    #9. They ruined the Jackal- I think that the second Clone Saga ruined him, and he's one of my all-time favorite Spidey characters. But when they had him out to kill everybody and replace them with clones, I think that it pretty much doomed the character. I did like his return though. The only way they can salvage him and bring him back is if they retcon the Jackal in the Clone Saga to being a renegade clone.Also, how many clones did he create anyway? And Spider-Cide. Yuck.



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    #8. Bringing back Eddie Brock- Ever since that first story in the Jenkins arc, he died at the end. But then in that very arc, he was brought back at the end. And then in the Millar run, they had him attempt suicide. And then in that Sensational Spider-Man arc, he- JUMPED OUT OF A WINDOW. Of course, only to be saved at the end. This guy has had his story closed off three times, and he always gets brought back. I feel that they should retire him for a while.



    Quote:
    #7. Bringing back Aunt May- In my opinion, this never should have happened. I could see why they brought her back of course, but really, as Peter grew up, she wasn't really needed anymore. Her being alive sort of sends Peter into a state of less maturity, because he doesn't really need and her role has expired. Although there have been a lot of good stories with her since, I really feel that bringing her back was a huge backstep for the Spidey mythos.


Damn that John Byrne.


    Quote:
    #6. The Goblin legacy/history is a mess- We had Norman, then he died. Then we had Harry and Bart Hamilton. Then we had two Hobgoblins, then a retcon that one wasn't really the Hobgoblin. Along the way we got Demogoblin, Phil Urich, and worst of all, the totally unnecessary Grey Goblin. All and all, the Goblin Legacy has gotten way out of hand. We've had about ten or eleven Goblins total. That's too many, and has convoluted the Osborn legacy. Also, bring back either Kingsley or Macendale.




    Quote:
    #5. Bringing Harry back AFTER they Brought Back Norman- When one or the other was dead, the Goblin/Spidey fights and dynamic were much better. Especially when Norman was blaming Peter for Harry's death. It brought a different side to Norman and Norman and Peter's relationship. It's cool that we got to see a few confrontations between Norman and Harry now that both of them are back from the great beyond, but still, I think these characters worked better when ONE of the two were dead.


I agree.


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    #4. Norman sleeping with Gwen and impregnating her- This was totally unnecessary. It pretty much diluted the motive behind a classic and pivotal moment in Spider-Man history. We didn't need a "new" reason for Norman kidnapping Gwen and knocking her off of a bridge. Also, as stated above, how many Osborn kids do we need? And this absolutely does not in any way make any sense with Amazing #121. And it also can't work if we take into account the Gwen clone, because the GC would have been pregnant as well. And it gave us yet ANOTHER Goblin. It figures that the one story of his that JMS wanted to retcon/erase, Marvel wouldn't let him. Sigh!



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    #3. Bringing back Kraven the Hunter and expanding the family- Really, bringing Kraven back is horrible. There was absolutely no reason for this guy to come back. And he blew his head off. His death was as close to a "There's no way that he's going to come back after this" as can get. And when a character commits suicide, there's pretty much no new direction that you can take them in. And really, how many kids does Kraven have no anyway? The only really interesting one is Aloysha or whatever his name is. The Spidey titles, unlike the X-titles where everybody and their mother (In some cases literally.) comes back from the dead, are usually pretty good in that they respect a lot of deaths.And really, Kraven already won. He beat Spider-Man. Any story where he either wins or loses will be totally redundant. Okay? This had better be Mendell Strong after a month long coke bender, because I'm going to pretend that the writers and editors were smarter then this.


This annoyed me big time. I hoped that Sergei would be one of the few Spidey villains that actually stayed dead. Resurrecting him ruined a classic story arc. Why not resurrect Eduardo Lobo instead? I hope they keep Stan 'Sin Eater' Carter and Spencer Smythe deceased.


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    #2. Spidey making a deal with Mephisto and them retconning the marriage- Really, I've never heard of this. Them retconning out an entire marriage. I don't have a problem with Peter and Mj not being married or not dating anymore. But really, THIS is the best that they can come up with? This sounds like something that DC would do. Really, they could have left the marriage intact and found a way to make a brand new, clean start. And Spidey making a deal with Mephisto is just too absurb and taints the character. But Spidey has done worse, as we're about to see with number 1.



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    #1.Having Spidey become a killer/blackmailer/criminal- During JMS's run, Spidey has either killed a few people (Like Morlun. Yes I know that Morlun wasn't exactly a person, but still.), or let people die. Remember that Spider-lady? Spidey just let her die. Remember during Millar's run when Spidey tried to extort Jonah with pictures of John's son as Spider-Man. And Jonah buying it sucked too. Remember when Spidey was doing stuff like stealing ambulances during the Back in Black stories? But really, the killing thing will forever taint him.



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    Honorable mention goes to:



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    #Keeping Bendis on Ultimate Spider-Man for so long- I used to LOVE this title. But somewhere along the line I lost interest. I would follow it again if another writer takes over, because Bendis has been aboard for too long, and the title has long run out of steam.



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    #Norman ripping off the Jackal during the Final Chapter and trying to kill the world.



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    #The secret identity being erased from everybody named Daredevil, Osborn and Venom.





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Dave Phelps




My personal top 10.

I'm afraid there's nothing surprising and I'd probably rejigger the order next time I come up with the list, but here you go:

(Oddly enough 8/10 boil down to the same issue for me - trying to "fix" what wasn't broken and doing a pisspoor job to boot.)

#10 The Other
Any story involving Peter eating an enemy belongs on the list. Still, no permanent harm was done and I did like Peter David's third.

#9 Reboot
Admittedly an unpleasant time to be reading Spider-Man (Mackie's take on the Peter/MJ relationship was just no fun to read), but that's not really an issue now. It's more than I don't get the reasoning behind some of the decisions made. I'm not as down on Chapter One as others, but what was the point of it? 13 issues to introduce new fans to where Peter was decades prior? I hate it when companies restart the numbering of a long running series as a quick cash grab. They didn't have the decency to properly wrap up the stories left dangling in the pre-reboot books. Their attempt to fake a "last Spider-Man story" failed miserably. Nothing against Mackie (at the time) or Romita, but where's the sense in doing a "big relaunch" and keeping one of the creative teams from the books that prompted you to do a relaunch in the first place?

#8 Sin's Past
Wrong on sooooo many levels. Fortunately easily ignorable. Unfortunately, the current writers don't appear to have done so.

#7 Clone Saga
Anyone who thought making Peter the clone was a good idea should have their head examined. Since undone so it would be lower for the list if it wasn't for the fact that I consider the backtracking this story represented (trying to restore "single Peter") was the beginning of the end of "My Spider-Man."

#6 Sandman unreforming
Partly annoying because I liked the idea of an actual bad guy trying to change. (Previous Marvel reformations (i.e., Hawkeye, Scarlet Witch, etc.) were folks who were misguided at first but quickly changed their ways.) Partly annoying in how they opted to change it. Fortunately, Tom Brevoort helped clean up the reason why a little (although I have quibbles there as well).

#5 May's resurrection
Superhero related resurrections are one thing, even in Spider-Man, but Peter Parker casualties really do need to stay dead. Would be much higher if it wasn't for JMS having May discover Peter's id. Even though that's since been undone, it helped reduce the emotional annoyance I felt at having her around.

#4 Harry's resurrection
I could have actually lived with the idea of Harry behind the Clone Saga notion as an avenue towards bringing him back. (Maybe I wouldn't have realized it at the time, but ah well.) What we got is much less interesting, particularly since we're just going through the same "escaping the shadow of his father" motions we've been reading about for almost 40 years. One of my "rules" for accepting resurrections of Really Dead characters is to only do it if you have something new to bring to the table and I'm not seeing it.

#3 Return of Norman Osborn
Ruined one my favorite hero/villain dynamics (and one of the most unique in comics) to get a generic "Lex Luthor" thing going. Plus how do you top Gwen's death? Basically, they're either milking a 37 year old story or not doing anything with him they couldn't have done with someone else. Bleh.

#2 Kraven
Really belongs after May's resurrection, but gets a bump for me not understanding the point of it and it's still fresh. I can understand why May, Norman and Harry "had to come back," even if I disagree with it, but Kraven? He was barely used even before they killed him. Another "how can you top this?" kind of situation.

#1 OMD
Eh. Nothing you haven't heard before. It gets first place because I can occasionally ignore any of the other stories. This one informs every Spider-Man story published from now on. And by wiping it from existence, I can't even get an untold tale from time to time to revisit a favorite era. Maybe someday Marvel will do a "Forever" series or something with the married version. (It doesn't help that BND hasn't done a thing that makes me think - "okay they had a point; maybe they were limited by the marriage." The stories I liked could have been just as well or better with married Spider-Man and the stories that did need him single aren't worth the paper they're printed on.)


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Michael





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Pengi





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The Green Ninjas





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Jared






#10: The Sandman's Reformation: Writers like David Michelinie handled it in a believable, organic fashion that saw the Sandman trying to reevaluate his life and go straight. Then, all of a sudden, he's brainwashed into being evil again. Was that really done by the same John Byrne who developed the classic X-Men series with Chris Claremont?

#9: Todd McFarlane as Spider-Man's Artist: The reason artists continued to follow John Romita Senior's art style on the spider-comics is because he defined what Spider-Man's world should look like. McFarlane should have remembered that if something isn't broke, there's no need to fix it.

#8: The Revelation that Roderick and Daniel Kingsley are Twins: Okay, before I get lynched let me say both that I'm a huge Roger Stern fan and I love the original Hobgoblin mystery. That said, though, I feel it's a dramatic cheat and deus ex machina that Stern and his successors had to resort to the cheap "evil twin" plot device to steer people away from suspecting Kingsley.

#7: The Clone Saga: This one needs no explanation.

#6: Aunt May Inherits A Nuclear Reactor: I've reread this story several times in the Essentials, and I still can't figure it out. A core aspect of both Peter's and Aunt May's characters is that they're poor and have a hard time making ends meet. But apparently May's relatives are wealthy enough not only to own a nuclear power plant, but their own private island where the plant is stored. How can she be able to own an island, and yet not be wealthy enough to help support her nephew?

If May's relatives had that much money, why couldn't they spring for her medical bills? Or do they just not give a damn?

#5: One More Day: Getting rid of the marriage was worth getting the mask back on and getting JMS off the spider-books for good, not to mention allowing the new writers to begin telling Spider-Man stories again. But Joe Quesada was so desperate to see it happen that he did it in the worst possible way.

#4: Morlun: Who would have thought that such a supposedly badass villain could be so boring and flat? No origin, no backstory, a generic design and a generic motive (I want to kill you, Spider-Man!) all make for a character who tries to go out with a bang, but comes across as more of a whimper.

#3: The Totem: All of a sudden it turns out that the random quirk of fate that turned Peter into Spider-Man was destined. And Spider-Man's not even the only one out there-apparently there are lots of totem people just like him.

JMS somehow managed to crap on two of the most essential elements of Spidey's character-namely, that what happened to him could have happened to any of us, and the idea that Spider-Man is unique. Instead, it sucks just as much as Buffy the Vampire Slayer did when it went from having just one Slayer to a whole army of them, cheapening the uniqueness of what Buffy had going.

#2: Sins Past: It was a stupid idea no matter who would have been the twins' father. Would it really have added anything to Peter's character to essentially make him guilty of child abandonment and being a deadbeat dad? Not to mention Straczynski defecated all over Gwen's characterization, turning her into a tramp who'd do it for donuts in the process.

#1: Spider-Man Unmasks Himself: Sure, Aunt May and Mary Jane are safely guarded in Avengers Tower. But no one seems to have considered the danger that Peter's putting everyone *else*, like Flash Thompson and the students at his school, from unmasking. Is Stark supposed to guard all of those people too?

What makes it even more galling is that Aunt May told Peter that Uncle Ben would be proud of him. If that's the case, then May obviously never really knew Ben Parker to begin with. He'd be horrified and appalled that Peter would so cavalierly put so many innocent people in danger by revealing his true identity.


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