Rave : 2017 : Did you ever notice...?

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Date: Nov 25, 2017
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Why do the writers have such a fascination with amoeba enemies? When a mad scientist wants to kill Spidey, but apparently not get their hands dirty, why a gigantic single celled organism? I guess it is creepy in a it's-single-minded-and-is-coming-to-get-you kind of way but the imagery is kind of bland. That never stopped:

  • Alistaire Smythe using a robot to attack Spidey and Black Cat as they dealt with the Scorpion. (Amazing Spider-Man #370)
  • Carrion used some of Spidey's own blood to create a giant singled celled organism to devour him. (Peter Parker, The Spectacular Spider-Man #31 vol. 1)
  • Robot Master sent amoeba robots after Spidey, not once, but twice. (Amazing Spider-Man #37) and (Sensational Spider-Man #11 vol. 1)
  • Scarlet Spider III traveled to the microverse to stop Carnage. While there he fought an amorphous giant creature that he assumed to be an amoeba. (Minimum Carnage Omega)

I love JM DeMatteis and his work. That seems to be pretty controversial, as people either agree or disagree. Not a whole lot of in between. I have to admit, I'm a little curious about a plot point that he has used twice.

  • First instance was in Spectacular Spider-Man #182. Spidey is facing off against Vermin, aka Edward Whelan. Edward's memories of his childhood are starting to come back and they aren't nice. It isn't explicitly said, but "the bad thing" that Vermin keeps talking about is sexual abuse by his father. Confronting his mother, he grips her and screams "You..were never there to protect me! All the time..when he was touching me...hurting me...making me so ashamed--where were you, Mommy?!" Spider-Man shows up in time, and Vermin reacts by saying "At last! Someone I can hate...without feeling so confused! Someone I can hate!"
  • In Amazing Spider-Man #393, Spidey is dealing with Shriek and Carrion II. Shriek has been having brief flashes of memory to her childhood and some kind of trauma. Carrion, meanwhile, is being forced by Shriek to choose between her and his natural mother. While his mother is afraid of Spider-Man, Carrion realizes that while he doesnt know who to love, he knows he can hate Spider-Man. Later, as Shriek removes the virus from Carrion, she thinks about her childhood. "There was a little girl: Beaten down. Terrified. Abused. And she would hide sometimes, in the old church across the street from her house. Hide in the shadows for a few hours. Forgetting the voices that screamed, the sweaty hands that touched and hit."

Okay, so we have some pretty heavily implied incest in these stories. Yet there is one more aspect of Amazing #393 that I noticed. I kinda felt like a perv for thinking of it as a teenager, but I still cant ignore it. The scene where Shriek extracts the virus from Carrion seems oddly sexual. Before she tries to cure him, she says she loves him. She then straddles him and the wordless panels that follow do kinda look like sex. The virus is then absorbed by Shriek and Malcolm is cured of being Carrion. In a later issue, Shriek is locked away at the asylum, caring for the virus inside her like a pregnancy. The only time that she could have gotten "pregnant" was in that ambiguous scene. Keep in mind, Shriek and Carrion call each other "mother" and "son" throughout the story. Incest has been a theme in DeMatties stories before, so it makes me wonder if he hid another one under our noses.

If you'll excuse me I need a shower.