Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Amazing Spider-Man #530: Marvel Thinks You're Thick

I still haven't quite decided if I'm going to read the bulk of Marvel's fast-approaching Civil War event. It initially sounded fairly interesting, especially for a Marvel event (warning:bias revealed). Like most Marvel mega-events, however, what is promised in the concept is rarely present in the execution. Yes, I'm looking at you, House of M.

The gearing up process for Civil War is taking the form of Peter Parker and his new father-surrogate Tony Stark travelling to Washington to oppose some pseudo Mutant Registration Act that would affect all costumed vigilantes. That's perfectly serviceable as a way to introduce the overconcept for the event, but the way the field trip, and especially the relationship between Peter and Tony, is being presented is making my teeth hurt.

You see, Spider-Man has clearly developed a strong non-sexual crush on Iron Man. It's just really, really weird. He's taken to wearing an outfit that Stark has provided, and even though the outfit could appear in any form (even his classic red'n'blues), he has decided to leave it a metallic supersuit with a decidedly Iron Man-based color scheme.

Honestly, I dont even understand how police officers are recognizing him as Spider-Man. As far as I can tell, they should just think he's some new super guy. Unless maybe Stark International sent out a press release detailing Spidey and Iron Man's new BFF relationship. It's possible I missed that issue.

The most distracting aspect of IM and Spider-Man's new Brotherhood of True Admiration, however, is Spider-Man's complete obsession with addressing by a new nickname. Peter Parker, the world's most irreverent Spider-based superhuman, seems virtually unable to call Stark anything but "boss". Constantly. Ad nauseam. Emphasis on the nauseum.

It's a form of cow-towing, and it jars. I get Peter Parker admiring Tony Stark. It makes a lot of sense. But this swooning, sycophantic behavior is a bad choice. There are ways to show a father-bond without having one character call the other "my new daddy" every couple of pages.

Oh, and his new phallic backback is every bit as silly as you may have suspected. If not sillier.

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6 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Maybe Peter wants to support the former Secretary of Defense Stark and that's why he displays his corporate logo?

(That should be "ad nauseam")

10:53 AM  
Blogger Jhunt said...

Should be "ad nauseam", or is "ad nauseam"? Editing magic!

(thanks...)

11:00 AM  
Anonymous Chuck T. said...

It's dramatic shorthand: they have to build up Tony and Peter's friendship quickly, so it'll mean something when they kneecap it in the third act. And since comics are a visual medium, the costume adds to that shorthand. That, and I think Peter is just being polite, like when you get an uglyass sweater for Christmas, except this one cost $16 million.
Like a lot of the big crossover events, I keep up with the blogs, but not the actual issues. Seems like a non-issue to me, though: government starts registering heroes and mutants, and the next thing you know, Cyclops is in Iraq sweating his ass off in that stupid skullcap.

3:18 PM  
Blogger Jhunt said...

Yeah, I passed on The Others, and caught the gist through Bloglining.

I'll give Civil War another couple of shakes, and then it might be in the same boat...

I think it was the "boss" stuff that really irked me. It was just so blatant. Boss this, boss that.

We. Get. It.

10:38 PM  
Blogger kelvingreen said...

I'm just waiting for Tony to invite Peter into his office one late night so Pete can "pay him back" for his kindness.

And to those of you who think that Marvel wouldn't do such a thing, I present "Sins Past" as Exhibit A.

11:07 AM  
Blogger Jhunt said...

Kelvin,

Please try to avoid leaving "Sins Past" stank all over my blog.

It's just common courtesy.

11:11 AM  

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