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Subj: Re: What Have Been the 10 WORST Decisions/Stories In Spider-Man History/The Spider-Man Books? My List..
Posted: Tue Oct 26, 2010 at 01:52:04 pm EDT (Viewed 24 times)
Reply Subj: What Have Been the 10 WORST Decisions/Stories In Spider-Man History/The Spider-Man Books? My List..
Posted: Sun Oct 24, 2010 at 03:01:33 am EDT (Viewed 408 times)

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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.

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.