In which Mike goes on too long about Spidey’s marital status.

§ September 14th, 2007 § Filed under Uncategorized Comments Off on In which Mike goes on too long about Spidey’s marital status.

At work yesterday:

Customer: “So, what do you guys think about all the negative response to the marriage of Peter and Mary Jane?”

Me: “There isn’t any. It’s all manufactured ‘outrage’ generated by Marvel/Joe Quesada’s talking points that the ‘Spider-Man marriage is bad!’ in order to prepare fans for the undoing of that particular status quo.”

Customer: “But don’t you think it’s a bad thing?”

Me: “No…if anyone actually doesn’t like the Adventures of Married Spider-Man, it’s not as if there aren’t plenty of other Non-Married Spidey comics on the market. They can read those instead.”

You know, pondering that, I realized that I’ve been selling the funnybooks for about as long as Spider-Man’s marriage has existed. And, in all that time, I don’t think I heard word one from anyone who really did not like the fact that Spider-Man was married. They objected to dumb storylines, they objected to the Spider-Clone story after it dragged on for its sixth or seventh decade, they objected to multi-part storylines that bounced back and forth among the several monthly Spidey titles…but no one objected to Spider-Man having a wife back home. I don’t recall any extensive discussion on the merits, or lack thereof, of said nuptials.

I’m sure when it actually happened, there were those fans who thought it was a bad idea, or had problems with it simply because it was change, and change is bad and must be feared, you know. There may have even been the usual declaration of “I’M NEVER READING MARVEL AGAIN,” a resolution whose lifespan is usually “until the next New Comics Day.”

But recently, Marvel’s editor-in-chief Joe Quesada has been going on and on about what a mistake the marriage was, and how it’s “controversial,” and how people really don’t like it. I’ve seen that word “controversial” thrown around in describing the marriage, but that would imply there’s a controversy about it, and I’ve never seen one. Just seems to me that most people are okay with it…and that’s it’s been around long enough that everyone was pretty much used to the marriage by now.

Quesada’s repetition of his talking points (and their faithful reproduction by online news sites and Wizard) is making inroads, however, causing people to start message board discussions like “Why do people hate married Spider-man so much,” (general response there: they don’t, for the most part) and, well, causing people to walk into our store and imply, for the very first time in my memory, that it wasn’t a good thing.

So, to sum up: it just seems to me that, for the Spider-Man fans, the marriage is hardly seen as some kind of albatross. (In fact, here’s one poll on the topic, where folks overwhelmingly are in favor of the marriage). And, any indication from Marvel’s representatives that the marriage is a bad thing is solely an attempt to prepare the fans for the marriage’s impending undoing. Spidey’s married, and has been so for nearly half of the character’s existence; no big whoop.

Again, I’m not saying there was no objection to the marriage at any point; just that my feeling is that the objectors were vastly outnumbered by the fans who were okay with it, and that calling it a “controversy” is overstating it a bit.

That’s a long way to go to basically say “I think Quesada’s full of it.” Sorry ’bout that.

What’s your reaction to this? Did you object to the wedding of Peter ‘n’ Mary Jane, or were you okay with it? What’s your reaction to the apparently-imminent undoing of said marriage? Have your say in the comments section.

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