Ok, so I got to read The Superior Spider-Man #9 during my lunch break (Free Comic Book Day FTW), and I was, frankly, disappointed. Then, as I headed back to work, I got to thinking.
Before I get into this, let’s recap for the uninitiated who don’t care about spoilers.
In the 700th and last issue of the Amazing Spider-Man, Peter Parker’s mind and consciousness died within the body of Otto Octavius, aka Doctor Octopus. Otto, on the other hand, lives on in Peter’s body, with all his memories. Deciding to turn over a new leaf, he’s dubbed himself the Superior Spider-Man, determined to live his life better and be a better, more efficient hero than Peter. On the surface, he’s done that, but by way of beating villains to a bloody pulp, killing another and basically, going full anti-hero on everyone. Sure, he’s carved out little successes that Peter couldn’t have done, but he’s still got a ways to go, and Peter, who was still in his body somehow, knew it and was equally determined to get his body back.
Well, Otto finally caught on to him and, after an epic internal struggle of words, wills, and morals…he won, wiping Peter’s consciousness and memories clean, and finally doing, in a sense, what he never could in the past: Otto Octavius killed Peter Parker.
No more “ghost” Peter means no more humor from the webhead unless something silly happens to him, like the incident with Jester and Screwball. No more subtle moral compass for Otto. And, most importantly, no more Amazing Spider-Man. The era of Peter Parker is now over.
Many readers are, most likely, infuriated by this turn of events and have sworn off Spider-Man comics (and Marvel at large) forever, if they haven’t done so already. However, I’d like to make a few points:
1. Peter Parker is still around.
The Ultimate Spider-Man show, Avengers Alliance, Spidey’s games…in these mediums and many others, Peter’s alive and well, and still getting quippy and thwippy with it. And let’s not forget his movies (one of which is getting a sequel). Peter may be gone in the comics, but his presence is still within Marvel, in some form.
2. It’s Dan Slott’s book, not yoYeah, I said it. He’s the one writing it, we’re not. He can do whatever he wants to the webhead and he’s got the entirety of Marvel backing him, so no amount of angry e-mails or death threats (the latter of which are ridiculous, by the way) are going to make him do what you want. He’s got a job to do, he’s enjoying it and he’s getting paid to do so. All in all, in no way, shape or form is he obligated to give a damn what you think if you don’t like it.
SPOILER: He doesn’t.
3. Life goes on.
In the grand scheme of things, this isn’t the worst thing to happen ever. How about the fact that our country is in terrible shape? How America is rotting from within? How we seem to be the punching bag for terrorists from outside and in, as well as the butt of jokes from anyone else who has a beef with us? The crappy economy, bickering political parties, natural disasters, whatever crap is going down in your own lives, etc.
All of those reasons and more should be higher on the bitch fit totem pole than a frickin’ comic book.
4. It’s out of our hands.
Piggybacking off of #2 for a sec, Dan Slott is the one ultimately in charge of Spider-Man’s comic run at Marvel, not us. Not you, not me. This means that there’s absolutely nothing we can do about this. I’ve accepted that, and it’s how I deal with all unsavory events that befall the franchises I support and follow. If I can’t do anything about it, why get upset? Even if I were to write a rant at Marvel, they don’t have to listen and probably would dismiss it, anyway.
If I want something changed that badly, I’ll work hard, join the Marvel team and change it my own damn self. Until that happens, I’m not going to stress over something that’s out of my control.
Look, Spidey is my favorite super hero, hands down. What’s happened to him SUCKS, and I don’t like the way things have turned out anymore than most, but I’m not going to waste my time getting riled up about it when – compared to the other crap I have to deal with – it’s really not that big of an issue, and neither should you. Yes, it sucks that Peter’s (completely) gone now, but what are we supposed to do? Cry ourselves to sleep over a character that doesn’t exist?
If you really want Spider-Man to go your way, get some writing skills or sharpen the ones you have. Publish stories. Get noticed by Marvel. And, eventually, it’ll be your turn to guide the webslinger yourself. That’s a constructive way of dealing with this without letting anger fuel your actions.
Otherwise, just move on with your lives. Seriously, it’s just a comic book, not the end of the world.
TL;DR – Peter Parker is dead. Otto Octavius is now Spider-Man. The world is still turning without him.