Tuesday, August 2, 2011

New Ultimate Spider-Man? Spidey says it best...

Yep, all of us are owed an apology, Spidey!
The new Ultimate Spider-Man was unveiled today by Marvel, as he is revealed in Fallout #4 (hey, a Marvel Crossover event...that's got to be good, right?). Big surprise to everyone:

Wow, I never saw that coming. Unless you count the dozens of times it's already been done with other heroes.

I think the two pictures Marvel put on their websites are the most perfect choices they could have ever come up with purely for the captions of what they're saying.

I'm going to go way out on a limb here and say the new guy probably lives with his grandmother in a bad neighborhood and constantly gets harassed by drug dealers and bullies on the way to school while he takes his younger sister there. I have not read the comic, but given Marvel's past history and treatment of minority characters, that's pretty much how Marvel perceives their world. No teenager in the Marvel universe gets to come from a stable two-parent home. I could be wrong, but I doubt it.

Reboots are awesome, aren't they? I don't think Marvel could create an original minority character if their lives depended on it. The last one they created was Luke Cage back in the 70's. Since then, it's pretty much been sloppy seconds all around as they find costumes and powers from other established heroes. Need to boost sales? Don't bring in a new, exciting character! No...reboot! Iron Man, Nighthawk, Captain Marvel (later Photon), Giant Man, Ultimate Nick Fury...reboots all around. Originality is neither needed nor rewarded.

For heaven's sakes, Marvel, get some new original writers in there! You desperately need fresh blood in your talent pool!

At these comic book conventions you attend, talk to the readers and let them present ideas! I swear we can create new heroes who deserve a shot and could succeed rather than just starting every brainstorming session with: "Now imagine this: we reboot..."

Remember the originals that rocked: Black Panther, White Tiger, Luke Cage, The Prowler, Storm, Sunfire, and Shang Chi to name a few! These were characters that mattered and made us want to read their stories. Today, we get recycled garbage that excites the folks at Marvel, but never picks up enough readers to keep going past a dozen or so issues.

What do you think? What's the last truly original idea Marvel had for a storyline?


William said...

Nice post.

I have to agree with pretty much everything you said there.

Maybe Bendis has his own personal reasons for wanting to re-imagine an established and beloved Marvel hero as a minority, and I have no problem with that. He comes off in interviews like it's all part of some great nobel and moral cause, but for some reason the whole thing just stinks of sensationalism to me. Like you said, it would have been quite a daring move, if it hadn't already been done again and again ad nauseum. Add to that the fact that they made him African-American AND Hispanic, and the whole thing just reeks of desperation. Why didn't they just go ahead and make him an African-American, Hispanic, Asian, Jewish, homosexual, paraplegic and just get it over with?

But turning Spider-Man (even Ultimate Spider-Man) into a minority isn't the issue at all with me. No, the real issue is turning Spider-Man into anyone other than Peter Parker. I'm sorry, but Peter Parker is Spider-Man and Spider-Man is Peter Parker. End of story. I know this is just "Ultimate Spider-Man", but the general public doesn't know the difference. You can't take an iconic character with a fifty-year history, that everybody knows and loves and just suddenly change his entire identity and personality. The character Spider-Man is more than just a name and a costume and some powers, he's Peter freaking Parker!!! I don't care who else you put in the costume and whether he's white, black, yellow or red… he still wouldn't be Spider-Man, because (well you know why).

When is Marvel going to stop this idiotic "man-boy" that is Brian Bendis from wreaking havoc on the Marvel Universe to suit his own personal childhood fantasies? (I mean he eventually kills off almost every single character he writes). Is it really worth it to them to have long-term and lasting damage done to their iconic and beloved characters just for some cheap shock value, 15 minutes of publicity and a quick buck? I guess the answer is apparently a resounding "YES".

Majewski79 said...

Great post! I agree with everything you've stated. This is news to me. While its interesting I don't see it taking off cause, as you said, Marvel has a problem creating minority characters sadly.

amenra said...

Why not try putting out one shot stories and characters created by Fans who submit them at the Cons. Then move forward based on the sales of each book.

amenra said...

Why not try putting out one shot stories and characters created by Fans who submit them at the Cons. Them move forward based on the sales of each book.

Mike said...

Excellent post!!

I completely agree with William that Peter Parker and ONLY Peter Parker is Spider-Man.
Bendis is doing this for publicity, he can deny it all he wants but it is a publicity move all the way.

Anonymous said...

Why not make him biracial? If it was a white guy taking up the Spidey mantle nobody would care that much, kinda racist if you ask me.

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