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Common-Sense, Tingling!

Subj: Re: Amazing Spider-Man #400 through #500
Posted: Fri May 29, 2009 at 12:55:17 pm EDT (Viewed 130 times)
Reply Subj: Re: Amazing Spider-Man #400 through #500
Posted: Fri May 29, 2009 at 01:41:24 am EDT (Viewed 174 times)

    AMZ400 is quite possibly my favorite Spidey story ever.

    I think there are points in the “spastic child” run (401-441) that don’t get enough credit. Even putting aside the better points of the Clone Saga (like JJJ secretly covering Peter’s court costs, the interactions of the three main “Parker Brothers”, ect)*, we still got some pretty good relatively-standalone Tom DeFalco stories (with Mark Bagley) with Ben as Spidey amidst the crossovers (I remember Blood Brothers being particularly disappointing).

    Then you have some really good stories from 419-439 (plus the really fun flashback issue). Sure Steve Skroce’s art isn’t really my favorite but his run with DeFalco gave us Black Tarantula (one of the last interesting Spider-Foes) and a great Electro arc. Plus Spider-Hunt and Identity Crisis are two of my favorite Spidey crossovers ever (and IC was less a crossover and more an “event” anyway). The funny thing is that I think that Amazing was the weakest of the Post-CS/Pre-Byrne comics even though its one of my favorite recent runs on the book. It’s a little weird that Marvel keeps putting their A-Team on Spectacular instead of Amazing.

    *Which honestly were so caught up in crossovers that I don’t recall which parts happened in Amazing and which happened in the other books.

    I don’t have much to say about the Byrne Mackie reboot. At least I don’t have very much nice to say.

    I do feel the need to defend them on Peter’s reaction to MJ’s “death”. I think it made perfect sense. No one ever dies in comics. Especially if they’re a major character. Especially if I happens in an explosion and there’s no body. The writer didn’t think MJ would stay dead. The readers didn’t think MJ would stay dead. Why would Peter think MJ would stay dead?

    The story where MJ is brought back is indefensible though. MJ just went through a traumatic experience and all Peter can think about is getting some? What the heck? I’ve defended Mackie a lot around he but I won’t defend that story. That last annual he did may be the worst Spider-Man story ever (or at least it was until Peter sold his marriage to the devil).

    JMS is really overrated. Paul Jenkins had been quietly fixing Spider-Man in PP for about a year before JMS showed up in Amazing.

Paul Jenkins' run was much stronger than JMS's I felt, but went south when editorial told him to do lots of long multi-part stories and what-not. Also, whilst I do really enjoy Humberto Ramos's art I don't think he was particularly well-suited to Spider-Man, whereas Mark Buckingham was.

You know, if they'd dealt with Peter and MJ separating for good as a subplot during the Jenkins era, and quickly coming to a clean and simple divorce with no hard feelings then they could have gotten to "Brand New Day" much sooner and much cleaner than they ended up doing. Paul Jenkins' Peter Parker, in the Buckingham issues anyway, mostly came across as a young character.

    Ezekiel, the return of MJ, the teaching job, and May finding out Peter’s identity are his only worthwhile contributions to the Spider-mythos

I was in high school when JMS started writing ASM. Needless to say the idea of Spider-Man being a high school teacher did not work for me.