Quote: I got it on sale for $5 (And no tax either, woooohooo.:), so when I saw it, I just HAD to pick it up. It was written by Gerry Conway, and other than his Death of Gwen Stacy storyline (And his introduction of The Punisher.), he ALSO did a lot of very good and underrated work on Spidey (His run on Web Of and Spectacular had some of my favorite stories, and Tombstone was actually very cool back in the day.). I did read this a few years ago, and I thought that it was pretty good. I thought that Conway did a pretty good Doctor Octopus as well. There is a human side to him, but he's also a murderous villain at the same time(And that's VILLAIN, not anti-hero or anti-villain. Writers, take note.). Spectacular #173 (Also with Doc Ock and wriiten by Conway.) was really good, too.
Quote: Question though, this establishes that Mary Jane always knew that Peter was Spider-Man. How often was this brought up? I imagine that this completely changed after Brand New Day. By the way, is MJ still in the Iron Man books? Thanks.
I like "Parallel Lives" and AFAIK the thing about Mary Jane always knowing/suspecting Peter is Spider-Man from the night of Uncle Ben's death is still canon. The OMD/OMIT retcon could not affect it because there the point of departure of the new continuity is much later, on Peter and MJ's wedding day.
The fact that MJ knew Peter's secret since the first day of his crime-fighting career has not really been brought up much because it only really makes a difference to stories set in the 1960s and 1970s continuity(1), and there haven't really been that many even before OMD. The only notable story using that element that springs to my mind was Untold Tales of Spider-Man #16.
(1) When MJ revealed to Peter that she knew he was Spider-Man in DeFalco's original version she did not state when she found out, but one could infer it was the reason for her departure from New York ca. 1981 and possibly also a contributing reason for her rejecting Peter's first proposal of marriage in ASM #183 (1978). In the late 1970s MJ already had a key to Peter's apartment so it would have been plausible that she could have stumbled across some piece of evidence while waiting for Peter there, and that is what I surmised might have happened - before "Parallel Lives" came out.
I recall reading a few pages in the 80s where MJ was staying up late at night and she reflects on her and Peter's friendship and how she wished it was something more, but once she "figured out" he was Spider-Man, she felt at the time she could never settle down with him, so while the whole "figuring out" thing might contradict Parallel Lives a little (unless you presume MJ was in denial about Peter's identity for a while after until the Puma attack confirmed her fears), it does put into perspective why she ultimately did reject his first marriage proposal.