Spider-Girl #1

Background

In the future, the daughter of Peter and Mary Jane Parker once tried her hand at her Dad's old job and defeated Normie Osborn, who had assumed the mantle of the Green Goblin (but who hasn't?) Now her life is at a crossroads as she ponders whether or not to continue her career as a costumed crimefighter.

Story 'Choices'

  Spider-Girl #1
Summary: First Issue, Continues From What If #105
Editor: Tom DeFalco
Writer: Tom DeFalco
Pencils: Pat Olliffe
Inker: Al Williamson

May "Mayday" Parker is confused. She's your typical high-school student, much more popular than her daddy ever was at that age (must be Mom's genes kickin' in) and plays on the girls' basketball team. She's also the daughter of the Amazing Spider-Man (now retired) and has recently manifested similar powers, right down to the spider sense. But what should she do, should she follow her father's career path, which eventually cost him his leg, or forget it ever happened and try to live some semblance of a normal life?

It is that question that plagues young May as she goes to school one morning. And it seems that no matter what she does the issue of her spider powers won't leave her alone. Her spider sense goes off as her friend Jimmy Yama opens a locker and promptly gets drenched by a bucket of water. And at basketball practice she leaves her teammates in the dust. Seeking more information on her. . . condition, she drops by the police lab where Peter works and runs into Phil Urich, who gives her the basic rundown on Spider-Man history. Just then Peter shows up and has to beg off a lunch invitation due to a prior commitment. But outside the police station he and May feel an old familiar tingle. Someone, it would appear, is tailing Mr. Parker. May parts ways with her father, then ambushes the tail, leaves him lying half-unconscious in an alley and later tracks him back to a clothing store.

Throughout the rest of the day, May can't get the incident out of her head, blowing off a get-together with some friends. Finally, she dons a makeshift costume (remember, the old Ben Reilly suit was burned at the end of Spider-Girl #0) and swings back to the clothing store. She eavesdrops on a gang of criminals, but ignores her spider sense and gets spotted. (Let the games begin!) Flipping and dodging her way through the gang with little difficulty, she's surprised when its boss, the aptly titled Mr. Nobody, teleports right in front of her and opens fire. She this goes on for about a page, with Nobody's shots getting closer and closer until May closes her eyes, trusts her spider sense, and decks him. The police having had the clothing store under surveillance, arrive right about then and May exits. Mr. Nobody, apparently not as unconscious as everyone thought, follows suit. Peter and Phil show up with the rest of the cops, and the news of some "lady ninja" causes him to run off in a panic just before Phil makes a discovery of his own: webbing.

While Mr. Nobody reports back to his boss (I'll give you a hint: he's really fat, really bald, and "does not react well to complications") May comes to the conclusion that she has to follow in her father's footsteps. Thus is born--The Stunning Spider-Girl!

General Comments

Fun. Very fun. Olliffe and Williamson return after their memorable run on "Untold Tales" and have teamed up with Tom DeFalco to create a book that's worth my $1.95 per month.

Now that it's official that May won't be coming back in the "normal" continuity, does that detract from this book any? Heck no! (If anything, it detracts from the "normal" continuity, but we won't go there.) May is a bright, fun character and a real contrast from Peter in his high school days. It's nice to have a Spider-Person that wasn't a nerd in high school. Phil Urich was a pleasant surprise, as was Mr. Nobody's boss, and I get the feeling we'll be seeing more of such surprises in the future. This issue left two things hanging: what will happen when Peter and MJ confront May about her new hobby, and how will May hold up when things get really tough? Peter became Spider-Man after his inaction led to Uncle Ben's death. What's driving May and is it strong enough to keep her from quitting when things get bad? I'm eager to find out.

Boring villain, but you can't have everything.

Overall Rating

Four and a half webs. I hesitate to give a perfect score, but this might've gotten it were it not for a lackluster bad guy.