Amazing Spider-Man (Vol. 1) #546 (Story 2)

Background

Plenty changed in between One More Day and Brand New Day, and Marvel haven't been too shy and giving us the specifics. Of course, each answered question leads to a hundred others...

Story 'Spider-Man: The New Status Quo'

This two-page spread has already appeared online as a promotional image. It attempts to summaries the major changes in Peter's life since the end of One More Day. In brief:

  • Peter and MJ dated seriously for years. They recently broke up (we don't know why yet) and she moved to California to become an actress.
  • Gwen Stacy is still dead. She was still killed by the Green Goblin in exactly the same way. This story seems completely untouched.
  • Harry Osborn is alive. He has recently returned from Europe. He owns the Coffee Bean, and he hates Spider-Man. He doesn't get on with his father, and doesn't remember that he used to be the Green Goblin.
  • Aunt May's house in Forest Hills was not burned to the ground. Aunt May still lives in it, and does volunteer work at a local soup kitchen.
  • All knowledge of Peter's secret identity has been erased from the world. Even people who knew of his identity before Civil War - like Daredevil, MJ and the Avengers - don't know who he is.
  • Spidey still revealed his identity during Civil War, but no-one seems to remember what he looked like, or who he was.
  • Spidey is not registered with the Initiative and has no intention of so doing.
  • Spidey's webshooters are back. No organic webbing for our Spidey any more.
  • Peter is completely broke, which is why he's having to live with his Aunt May at the moment.

General Comments

Well, what can I say about this? John Romita Jr delivers a couple of fine looking pages, the Spidey in the middle looks happily Ditko-esque. Bob Gale's patter has the bounce and exuberance of Stan Lee. It's a good read, and it's edifying which is surely a bonus for any reader whose first issue wasn't this one.

The thrust of the argument is 'the past is past, get over it and get onboard for all the cool stuff we have planned'. It's a little insensitive to those mourning the loss of the marriage, but at least they're being honest.

Personally, I can put my general annoyance to one side and enjoy the spread for what it is. If these pages tell us anything it is that we don't know the whole story yet, and I'm comfortable with that.

Overall Rating

This was in the style of all those wonderful shorts that Stan put in the back of early ASM annuals. It made me smile and wince in equal measure. Three webs.