Unless for the past few months you’ve been living, under a rock, hunting your former WW2 buddy or saving the galaxy from aliens named Ronan. Then you should be aware by now , that the next few months will see the biggest Spider-Man event in years. SPIDER-VERSE. I’m sure you’re aware of the premise, if not check out the UTF article “Prepare to enter the Spider-Verse” Long article short, the premise is Mystical villain Morlun, is out to kill every Spider-Man, Woman, Monkey and Ham in the Marvel Multiverse
There’s already plenty of debate among fans of the wall-crawler, over who will be the ones to live or die. This list offers up the case for five of the Spider-Men and Women, that we here at the UTF office would like to see survive the Spider culling. This is purely our opinion on the matter, we’re sure you’ll have your own favorites so without much further ado…..
May “Mayday” Parker – Spider-Girl
May Parker first made her debut in the Marvel multiverse back in a “What If ?” storyline in 1998. The story proved popular enough to give the character her own ongoing series, which became the longest running female led superhero book in Marvels history. Unlike the traditional Marvel universe (Earth 616) May Parker lives with her parents Peter Parker and M.J. Watson-Parker and is a feature in Marvel’s MC2 universe.
Given that she is an alternate universe version of a daughter that 616 Peter Parker never managed to have through nefarious deals with Devil’s and the such like, any interaction between the two will surely make for interesting reading. Especially as she’s due to make her 616 debut in the pages of Amazing Spider-Man #8along with her baby brother Ben, fleeing from an attack by one of Morlun’s brothers. That is to say, any interaction will be interesting unless she becomes one of the many casualties That Dan Slott is teasing.
If that is the case and “May” is to be one of the fallen, then it would be to Marvel’s detriment, as i believe it sends out the wrong message in terms of female superhero role models at a time when the where the company is already fielding a fair bit of derision regarding the lack of a female led superhero movie, what message does it send from Marvel should they kill off a well received character? Marvel could be making a rod for their own back. Which is why May should be a survivor, after all Marvel there are female geeks too.
Ben Reilly – Spider-Man
Ben Reilly’s back, lets keep him…….Oh you actually want me to make a case for him, Ok then here it is. First though a little background on a character you may not be familiar with.
Born out of the Original Clone Saga Amazing Spider-Man #139-#150. As the original clone of Peter Parker, it was thought that he “died” during a fight with Spider-Man, who then disposed of the clone’s body in a warehouse smokestack.
It later transpired that “The Clone” wasn’t dead and awoke and returned to Peter’s apartment where he spied Peter and Mary Jane through a window. Confused he left New York dejected to learn he was a clone and not Peter Parker.
Years later he returned to New York drawn by an urge to visit an ailing Aunt May that he never knew. Ben felt the pull too strong to stay away, after learning that May was dying. It wasn’t long before he surcummed to the pull of the night, swinging though the New York skyline under a new name in and out of costume.
During his time wearing the webs, Ben was a divisive character and sales of the book suffered after many long term readers felt cheated as during the course of the 90’s “Clone Saga” revealed the Peter Parker they had been reading about for the past 20 years was in fact a clone.
However Ben grew his own loyal fan-base and there were cries of derision when Marvel retconned parts of the clone saga to prove Ben was the clone, who Marvel hoping to bury the sorry mess killed off at the hands of a recently resurrected Norman Osborn (The original Green Goblin)
16 years later Ben Reilly fans once again have their “Spider-Man” back with the news that he will be swining his way through the Spider-Verse,albeit an alternate universe version where in his world Peter Parker never regained his powers and remained with Mary Jane in Portland Oregon.
The need for Ben to survive is that if he “dies” again in the story it’ll be a blow for the loyal Reilly fans who have been calling out for his return, feeling that the character was handled unfairly and poorly by the editorial team and writers of the time. it’s time Ben was given the due that he rightly deserves.
Peter Parker – Spider-Man Noir
Created by writers David Hine and Fabrice Salpolski. Spider-Man Noir is a universe set in the days of the great depression in New York. An interesting and slightly darker take on Peter Parker who gained his powers after getting bitten by a spider, that was hidden inside a mystic African totem. Padding out from the bite, Peter dreams of the Spider god Anansi and when he awakens he discovers he now has the powers of an archnid.
As with his 616 counter part it is tragedy that befalls the noir universe uncle Ben, who gets killed in a gangland style killing. Peter discovers Ben’s mutilated body, however it is Ben’s memory that causes Peter to don his costume and go into action against the city’s mob bosses as ‘The Spider-Man’
I’m looking forward to the noir Peter Parker’s interactions with 616 Spider-Man, although he’s already met and joined forces with the team that Superior Spider-Man (SpOCK) built to deal with ‘Karn’ in the pages of Superior Spider-Man #33
Another interesting impact will be when noir Spider-Man discovers his would be rescuer is none other than Doctor Octopus who saved him in Edge of Spider-Verse #1. The reason noir Spider-Man should be safe is Marvel are quite aware that the character has a large following, which should only grow due to his involvement in Spider-Verse.There have also been rumors of perhaps another mini-series or even an ongoing for the character, something that will be less of a possibility should he not make it through.
Gwen Stacy – Spider-Woman
Another of the Spider-Women, that would be a welcome addition to the ranks of the multiverse Spider people, is a recent incarnation of Gwen Stacy. Anyone who has read the UTF article of Gwen Stacy Spider-Woman or even visited any Spider-Man related fan forum over the last month, will be aware of the current ‘buzz’ surrounding the character.
The reason Gwen needs to survive the Spider-Verse experience, isn’t just because we the fans have taken her to our hearts. She needs to survive as her character has immense potential to be something greater. If ‘May Parker’ does indeed die in the story it’ll be down to Gwen to provide the female role model for girls to read about much in the same way many have been following the adventures of Peter Parker for 50 plus years.How better to get more females involved in comics than a young strong independent teenager who is struggling to find her direction in life, juggling her time between friend, school, band practice, family oh and swining through the city taking down crime bosses and muggers?However, if they bring a character like Gwen StacySpider-Woman, to the fore and public consciousness only to ‘kill’ her off again in Spider-Verse, then we feel Marvel will have missed an opportunity.
Peter Parker – Assassin Spider-Man
One of the darker Spider-Men to appear in the Spider-Verse storyline, is the Peter Parker from Earth 8351, is making his return to the Spider books since his debut in a one shot storyline What If? Spider-Man vs Wolverine from January 2008.
That issue asked the question, what would happen if Spider-Man never returned to New York, following the events of the ‘High Tide’ storyline way back in 1987 during which Spider-Man accidentally killed Wolverine’s friend. The 616 Peter Parker returned to New York deabting whether or not he could continue as Spider-Man after taking a life. whereas the What If? issue explored how Spider-Man would change had he stayed with Wolverine.
Now after being recruited by Superior Spider-Man in the pages of Superior SPider-Man #32 to help in the fight against Morlun and the inheritors. The Assassin Spider-Man is set to play a role within Spider-Verse. Given that he is more in line with SpOCK and Wolverine in attitudes towards assailants, he is netherless a ‘Peter Parker’ and it’ll be interesting to see the reactions of the other Parker’s towards Assassin’s methods. Just as it’ll be asmusing to see how Assassin reacts to light-hearted Spider-Men who are against killing, especially seeing as he is a ‘Parker’ who divorced Mary Jane and is an expertly trained S.H.I.E.L.D operative. The likely hood is that he’ll only find allies in SpOCK and Kaine.
By having a character like Assassin Spider-Man survive, would balance out the storyline well and provide a welcome contrast to the narrative. Bearing in mind the darker tone of the whole Spider-Verse storyline, it’s feel a bit silly if every Spider-Man was cracking jokes and trying to out banter each other. We here at UTF feel that having Assassin survive would provide the readers with a differing take on a charcter we’re all familiar with, and that can’t be a bad thing.
Do you agree or disagree? with the choices provided here. why not submit your choices below.