ASM13 SpiderMan IronMan fight

It would be incredibly hard for any comic book to steal headlines from Marvel’s Hydra-loving Captain America these days, but the latest issue of The Amazing Spider-Man gives it the old college try in terms of defiling a great character. It’s true that Marvel’s editors have not made Peter Parker admit to killing Uncle Ben — yet — but Dan Slott does turn a grown man into an immature loser who puts civilians’ lives at risk. Worse, Peter’s own protégé looks at his behavior and can barely keep his lunch down.

Before we continue on, here is what you need to know for ASM #13:

  • Harry Osborn and Betty Brant get ready to go to lunch with “the old gang.” Harry weirdly tells Peter that he isn’t invited because he’s “the big boss man” and Peter sheepishly replies, “Um…okay.”
  • Harry tells Betty he didn’t want to “risk” an awkward encounter with Mary Jane attending the lunch.
  • The three of them look at one of Betty’s Daily Bugle articles and realize that Augustus Roman is Regent.
  • Peter takes off as Spider-Man for a “Big Brother batting cage playdate” with Miles Morales, aka young Spider-Man.
  • Tony Stark arrived before Peter and soon ribs him about the quality of Parker Industries’ technology. Iron Man has also provided Miles with new web-shooters.
  • Spider-Man goes nuts and begins a street fight with Iron Man in front of parents and their children.
  • Miles Morales throws his hands in the air and says he’s “ashamed to be wearing this costume right now.” He leaves unnoticed and is immediately captured by Regent.
  • The giant explosion that takes down Miles stuns Spider-Man and Iron Man. The charge towards the blast area.

Ask yourself this question: If a writer claims to love Peter Parker, then why would he have the character behave in a way that causes a derivative version of himself to be “ashamed”?

The job of a writer is to make the protagonist shine in his own unique way as much as possible, yet Dan Slott’s Spider-Man has New Yorkers running for the hills as he acts like a clown.

“With great power comes great responsibility” — unless Tony Stark acts like Tony Stark, in which case it’s time to destroy public property and scare everyone within a half-mile radius. Perhaps J. Jonah Jameson was right all along…

ASM 13 SpiderMan IronMan

Regular readers will note that Peter Parker had a bizarre fight with Human Torch in ASM #3 and with Iron Man in ASM #12. He is actually regressing in terms of tact, professionalism, and maturity as the series goes on, so much so that his teenage protégé storms off in disgust. 

ASM 13 Miles explosion

“It was me. This is my fault,” Spider-Man says as he searches through wreckage for Miles. That may be true within the context of the story, but fans are left thinking, “No, this was Dan Slott. This is his fault.”

Long-time Spider-Man fans need to be told the following since they will never get it from websites like Newsarama: Dan Slott uses ASM #13 to elevate Miles Morales by making a mockery out of Peter Parker.

Writer Brian Michael Bendis did the very same thing in SM #2, which is why readers must pay close attention. There is a concerted effort to chip away at Peter Parker’s credibility until Miles usurps him in popularity, and it will certainly happen unless readers push back — hard.

If you want to see the slow-motion destruction of Peter Parker, then run out and buy ASM today.

If you want to see writers knee-cap the original Spider-Man so that Miles Morales wins the long-distance sales race, then check out ASM.

If you want to show Marvel your displeasure at what it’s doing to both Captain America and Spider-Man, then keep your hard-earned cash for better products. Charles Soule, for instance, is running creative laps around his peers as the moment. I highly suggest checking out his version of Daredevil.

ASM 13 IM SM

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About the Author Douglas Ernst

I'm a former Army guy who believes success comes through hard work, honesty, optimism, and perseverance. I believe seeing yourself as a victim creates a self-fulfilling prophecy. I believe in God. I'm a USC Trojan with an MA in Political Science from American University.

36 comments

  1. Yeah, so what was it Slott was saying last year about how Peter has grown and matured into the Peter Parker we always hoped he would be?

    1. “Yeah, so what was it Slott was saying last year about how Peter has grown and matured into the Peter Parker we always hoped he would be?”

      Zing!

      Well, Peter has aged … and he’s been given a company (courtesy of Doc Ock), but on multiple levels it appears as though he’s gone backwards in terms of maturity. I don’t really visit other message boards these days due to time constraints (It’s hard to write my own stuff if I’m reading ComicVine, etc.), but is there anyone out there who regularly puts forth a cogent defense of this version of Peter Parker? I have to believe that at this point they’ve culled readers my age replaced them with guys who just go, “Arachnorockets! Haha! That’s so stupid but I love it. This is so Looney Toons meets Spider-Man. Keep the crazy train going Slott, you whacky, whacky man.”

  2. Marvel tried to discredit Peter back in the ’90s in the run-up to revealing Ben Reilly as “the one true Spider-Man.” It was a disaster and sales ultimately crashed (albeit still being a greater number than what passes for a hit today). You’d think a self-proclaimed fan like Slott would be aware of that. The House of Ideas really needs to stop recycling bad concepts; it also needs to fire the bad writers, but that’s a much larger problem.

    1. “Marvel tried to discredit Peter back in the ’90s in the run-up to revealing Ben Reilly as “the one true Spider-Man.” It was a disaster and sales ultimately crashed (albeit still being a greater number than what passes for a hit today). You’d think a self-proclaimed fan like Slott would be aware of that.”

      It’s really hard to describe how much Dan Slott bastardized Peter Parker in this issue. It’s truly a shame that this is going on in The Amazing Spider-Man. I’m really looking forward to reading Stillanerd’s review once he gets it up. My bet is that it’s going to be great. It always is…but I’m confident that he’ll knock this one out of the ballpark.

  3. I’m ashamed of Peter. Thanks Slott! At this point I think he is doing this just out of spite at us because he knows his run is almost over so he is gonna make us suffer until it truly ends and make the job of the next writer a nightmare so that the next one will have to pick up the pieces.

    I’m still laughing my ass off because of Harry’s reaction due to his “Amazing” discovery.

    And I’m so relieved that I’m not the only one feeling that Marvel, especially from Bendis part, wants Miles to be a better Spider-Man than Peter Parker. I truly hate marvel for doing something like to the character of Peter just to push Miles.

    And Doug you’re totally right : A writer’s job, especially at the comics, is to make their protagonist shine and Dan Slott just can’t do that because he is a massive fan boy of Doctor Octopus and is still salty that Marvel didn’t let him continue his run on Superior like he wanted because at the time ASM 2 was being released.

    Remember when I asked you what could surprise you next coming from Slott : Well I found it for me = Miles leaving Peter and Tony because they are both irresponsible men-children.

    1. “I’m ashamed of Peter. Thanks Slott! At this point I think he is doing this just out of spite at us because he knows his run is almost over so he is gonna make us suffer until it truly ends and make the job of the next writer a nightmare so that the next one will have to pick up the pieces.”

      It’s probably buried in one of the old comments sections for one of my posts, but there was a time he admitted to inserting something weird to spite fans on CBR and then I think the moderator took it down. Perhaps another reader remembers. Zariussi might know.

      “I’m still laughing my ass off because of Harry’s reaction due to his ‘Amazing’ discovery.”

      I wonder if that part will make Stillanerd’s “nerdy nitpicks.” 🙂

      “And I’m so relieved that I’m not the only one feeling that Marvel, especially from Bendis part, wants Miles to be a better Spider-Man than Peter Parker. I truly hate marvel for doing something like to the character of Peter just to push Miles.”

      They will never admit it publicly, but that is exactly what they’re doing. If one were being generous then he could say that it’s almost a subconscious thing. Perhaps the editors said, “I don’t care how it gets done, but will will raise Miles’ profile — significantly — within the next five years.”

      “Remember when I asked you what could surprise you next coming from Slott : Well I found it for me = Miles leaving Peter and Tony because they are both irresponsible men-children.”

      Haha. That was a pretty stunning moment…for all the wrong reasons. I’ll have to think about where this ranks on the “Top 10 Worst Moments from Dan Slotts run on The Amazing Spider-Man.” If anyone has their own Top 10 List, they can feel free to share in any post from here on out.

  4. Funny how Tony seems to resent Parker Industries doing so good (despite Peter’s screw-ups). Tony is acting like a teenage Flash Thompson (no excuse for Peter acting up, though). Still, it was pretty mean of Tony to bad mouth Peter behind his back (from Tony’s pov ).

    1. “Funny how Tony seems to resent Parker Industries doing so good (despite Peter’s screw-ups). Tony is acting like a teenage Flash Thompson (no excuse for Peter acting up, though). Still, it was pretty mean of Tony to bad mouth Peter behind his back (from Tony’s pov ).”

      Every character Dan Slott writes seems to have front lobe damage that takes whatever their normal decision-making skills are and then degrades it by about 15 percent. It’s embarrassing. He needs to stop Watching Dr. Who, get off Twitter, and figure out how to write adult men.

    1. “Mephistoverse era MJ, along with Harry and Betty play Scooby gang while Peter acts like Scrappy Doo ‘LEMME AT ‘EM, LEMME AT ;EM'”

      There is no way you could have known this, but I absolutely hated Scrappy Doo when I was a kid. I thought he was the dumbest character… Describing Peter Parker as Scrappy Doo was both painful and hilarious at the same time. Good one, zariusii!

  5. “Every character Dan Slott writes seems to have front lobe damage that takes whatever their normal decision-making skills are and then degrades it by about 15 percent. It’s embarrassing. He needs to stop Watching Dr. Who, get off Twitter, and figure out how to write adult men.”

    Couldn’t agree more, but is Slott capable of writing mature substantial stories? IMO, I think his creative juices dried up a long time ago. Reading ASM #13 was as laughable as it was sad to see how incompetent and out of character Spider-Man continues to be.

    Welcome to the wacky nonsensical world of Slott’s counterfeit Spider-Man.

    1. “Is Slott capable of writing mature substantial stories? IMO, I think his creative juices dried up a long time ago. Reading ASM #13 was as laughable as it was sad to see how incompetent and out of character Spider-Man continues to be.”

      I have often found with blogging (in addition to my day job), that I need to take a break to recharge the batteries. There are months where I do not write very much on the blog. Last month I posted 21 times, but there are months where it will go down to around 12. I use that time to relax, read books, and fill up the creative well with new knowledge. If you consider the demands writing for ASM and Silver Surfer places on Slott, and then couple that with the frequency of his online antics, then it appears as though his routine is: Write, Tweet, watch Dr. Who, Sleep, Repeat. That is a recipe for burn out, which is not good when even at his most focused he is not inclined to write mature content.

      I think Renew Your Vows was sort of the apex of Slott’s run on Spider-Man in terms of overall quality. It appears as though he needs a six-month vacation. He needs to just go to Hawaii, read on the beach, reflect on a lot of things, and not go on Twitter. I honestly think it would do him a world of good.

    2. “BTW, Good to hear you on The Henchmen’s Lounge. 😎 Keep up the great work.”

      Thanks! I had a fun time talking with “Captain Frugal” and “Henchman 1.” Haha. I’m always up to talk comics, so any time they want to invite me on then I’m game.

  6. Stillanerd’s review is up. It’s seriously on point:

    “Perhaps it’s Slott’s intention is to show how immature Peter is acting, that by becoming a wealthy businessperson, he ironically hasn’t really grown up and is losing sight of who he really is. Or perhaps Slott, annoyed by constant accusations that he turned Spider-Man into a “man-child” went, “You think Spider-Man is a man-child? I’ll show you Spider-Man as a man-child!” Or perhaps, and the most likely, explanation is his intention was to create an amusing comedy of errors where two heroes have a stupid fight only to realize how stupid they’ve been acting and decide they need to work together. But like anything else Slott does, he over did it. Because all you can conclude from this comic is that, for someone so smart, Spider-Man sure is stupid.”

    The amount of time, effort and thought this guy puts into each review is impressive. He always seems like a professional guy to begin with, but it must be hard work covering that much ground on ASM while stripping out unnecessary raw emotional responses, etc. He always strikes the perfect balance.

  7. The day when Slott will stop writing/killing Spiderman will be a good day. The day when Marvel will finally stop their b******t will be an ever better one.

    I’m glad that your blog cover the atrocious writing of Slott for Spiderman: Spidey was one of my favorite but since One More Day, I started to almost hate him because of terrible writing and poor decisions: Slott and Marvel actually almost made me hate one my childhood hero at one point…

    Also you’re right: they continue to make a mockery of Peter for pushing Miles… A good company/writer could make both of the characters look good but after “Superior Spiderman” or “NaziCap” I’m not even surprised that decided to make Peter look bad.

    Personally, I will buy a Spiderman comics when the writer will actually wrote Peter Parker as an adult and as the hero he should be right now.

    1. “I’m glad that your blog cover the atrocious writing of Slott for Spiderman: Spidey was one of my favorite but since One More Day, I started to almost hate him because of terrible writing and poor decisions: Slott and Marvel actually almost made me hate one my childhood hero at one point…”

      Thanks for taking the time to read and comment, Greg. I really appreciate it. We’re very much in the same book in terms of growing to dislike the character we grew up loving. The thing is, people who were reading before OMD know how Peter should be written. They know that current ASM is a radical departure on multiple levels — not only do we now have Peter Parker Wayne-Stark-Zuckerberg-Musk-Gates, but Peter also acts like a man-boy.

      A good writer will be able to return the character to form once Dan leaves, which is why I think it’s important that honest reviews get out there. I guarantee you that well-known sites that will give this issue two-thumbs up. They don’t care one lick about the character as long as “crazy” things are happening to him. If it allows them to think “zany,” then they’re happy.

      Anyway, I’ll continue reviewing the book as long as guys like you keep reading. 🙂 One day it will be a different author we’re talking about and my guess is that we’ll get some pretty cool stories.

  8. Don’t complain that this Peter is an impulsive, irresponsible, self-centered, angry guy who neglects his work and gets into completely needless fights. Someone told Slott, “Write what you know”, and he took it to heart.

    A good writer will restore Peter in just one issue. An even better writer will come up with a story that will explain why and how Peter became this way.

    1. “Don’t complain that this Peter is an impulsive, irresponsible, self-centered, angry guy who neglects his work and gets into completely needless fights. Someone told Slott, ‘Write what you know,’ and he took it to heart.”

      That one cut deep…

      “A good writer will restore Peter in just one issue. An even better writer will come up with a story that will explain why and how Peter became this way.”

      Agreed. The other day my wife said, “If Marvel wants to get rid of your negative reviews, then they should just hire you to write one of their comics.” I laughed and said, “Well, I’m pretty sure the current crop of editors would have to be gone for a decade before that was ever a possibility. I do like Daredevil, though!”

      Besides, we all know that Marvel loves diversity … unless it’s ideological diversity among its staff. Maybe that will change one day.

    2. I’d love a Garth Ennis Punisher-style fix for this. After a weird and convoluted series of events, Ennis just had his narration say “I tried that whole avenging angel thing. It didn’t take.” And that was it, it was dropped forever because Ennis’ writing was great. In ASM v7 or whatever, he just says “seems like a weird dream where I was a CEO or something. But nah, stuff like that would never happen to me.” And drop it. I don’t know how else you deal with it. It really hurts his character when he inevitably returns to his roots, though maybe they’ll kill him off for a while to promote Miles Morales before finally grudgingly bringing him back sans corporation when sales aren’t as good as they want.

  9. Doug, have you read any of the current Spider-Man 2099 book? I skimmed this month’s issue and it was leaps and bounds better than the garbage ASM is putting out these days. They introduced a whole new (as far as I know) 2099 version of the Sinister Six, who had interesting personalities and acted intelligently, and actually seemed threatening. Spider-Man didn’t do a whole lot but he was written fine, and that new costume is pretty cool looking (I always liked the old one but it never really seemed like it fit for a guy called Spider-Man).

    Maybe they’re just trying to write all the white male characters as badly as possible so they can replace them all. That’s certainly how it came across, the way Slott wrote Stark and Peter Parker this issue. And I’m sure excited that there’s a teenage black girl who built her own Iron Man suit in IIM. That’s certainly a thing that would happen and not incredibly stupid even in the Marvel universe. Girls sure do love to tinker with electronics, and don’t lack the strength and inclination to build equipment and work on hardware at all.

    1. “Doug, have you read any of the current Spider-Man 2099 book? I skimmed this month’s issue and it was leaps and bounds better than the garbage ASM is putting out these days.”

      I heard that it was a pretty good book, but I have not checked it out. If I end up dumping Black Panther after six issues then I may give it a shot. I need to look at my finances and see what the appropriate number of comics per month should be at this point. I do like it that I always have blog material on hand, though. 🙂

      “Maybe they’re just trying to write all the white male characters as badly as possible so they can replace them all.”

      Marvel is certainly not doing itself any favors in terms of dispelling that theory.

      Sam Wilson is Captain America while Steve Rogers is a Hydra agent. Dan Slot made a conscious decision to have Peter behave like such a moron that Miles Morales wanted nothing to do with him. Bendis has done a lot of groundwork to make Riri Williams, aka Iron Maiden, a player in the Marvel universe. I guess a lot will depend on how Tony is treated in Civil War II. We all know that his reputation was dragged through the mud last time around…

  10. It’s interesting you make a comment regarding Peter mentally regressing.

    I think it’s no secret that the powers that be at Marvel/Disney are big fans of the first dozen or so Lee/Ditko ASM books where Peter was in High School.

    They don’t appear to be a fan of the stories where Peter went to college and got married. This why Ultimate Peter Parker remained in high school during the entire run of Ultimate Spider Man and why the new cartoons always portray Peter as a highs school student.

    The OMD/Dan Slott era in my opinion has largely been a conceited and poorly planned attempt to reboot Peter to be more like what he was like in his high school stories. The problem is that you can’t mentally regress an adult back to a teenager, nature doesn’t work that way. If Dan Slott wants to write about teenage Peter then he should write stories about teenage Peter however if he does that then he should also step aside and let someone else (maybe Charles Soule) write adult Peter stories.

    DC recently killed off the New 52 Superman and replaced him with Pre-New 52 Superman that’s married to Lois Lane and has a 9 year old boy named Jonathan. Maybe Marvel should just kill off the OMD Peter Parker and replace him with the Pre-OMD Peter Parker that’s married to Mary Jane Watson.

    1. I agree. It seems that there is a whole generation of newbies out there who have been brought up on cartoon teen Spider-Man only.

      They are in complete denial that the ASM title had Peter graduate High School, graduate College and spend decades as an adult super hero.

      Amazing Spider-Man was always about the natural progressive narrative of its main protagonist. Stan Lee has been quoted many times in print and on video about the slice of realism component he and Steve Ditko infused into the book, the life lessons learnt and the relatability factor where the reader identifies with how Peter deals with certain situations.

      “With great power there must also come great responsibility” is not an adage Marvel’s print division can seriously affirm to. Not even a sliver of a chance of that even being true or plausible in Dan Slott’s wacky Spider-Man world.

  11. As always a great review Douglas

    I think what I’ve been saying about the issue since I’ve read it sums it up

    ASM #13, is the stupidity of stupidity, it was boring as @~#£$, and I think I lost a few IQ points reading it, thank god I’m able to read it at the store before buying, so didn’t lose any money and Mary Jane, I would have thought he would have done better, but I think it’s worse, she looks tired, there was nothing that showed that there is life coming from her, she basically had dead eyes.

    And you know what you get more emotion from Mary Jane from two panels in Civil War #1, where she had to tell Tony about Rhodey. http://i1027.photobucket.com/albums/y331/animehunter2k13/Comic%20Pages/Mary%20Jane/Civil%20War%20II%202016-%20001-025%20-%20mj_zpshl6rkll4.jpg

    Compared to this, Camuncoli’s art is simply uggh, and it pains me to no end to have to see MJ drawn that way

    1. “Mary Jane, I would have thought he would have done better, but I think it’s worse, she looks tired, there was nothing that showed that there is life coming from her, she basically had dead eyes.”

      That whole scene was a bit embarrassing. When I see old friends I haven’t seen in a long time I do things like, “Dillion, you son of a bitch!” joke around, and have a big smile on my face because it’s great to catch up. These three just looked like someone put a gun to their heads and said, “You will eat lunch together…”

      “And you know what you get more emotion from Mary Jane from two panels in Civil War #1, where she had to tell Tony about Rhodey. Compared to this, Camuncoli’s art is simply uggh, and it pains me to no end to have to see MJ drawn that way.”

      Agreed. I think Stillanerd has summed up my feelings well, which I never really thought about until he brought it up: Camuncoli does superhero scenes well but regular people aren’t treated like a priority. Mary Jane and Betty have this vibe like, “Okay, I’ll just give women lollipop heads, a cute nose and the same kind of eyes and call it a day.” It’s unfortunate.

  12. Aaaannnndddd that’s why I canceled my subscription of The Amazing Spider-Man. I’m tired of the constant character assassination of Peter Parker just to raise Miles Morales stock. I read an earlier comment where Marvel tried the exact same thing to raise Ben Reilly’s stock as the one true Spider-Man (sigh). When will Marvel learn? Dan Slott continues to write Peter as an immature man-child taking no time to properly develop his character. Sadly as long as he continues to write The Amazing Spider-Man, it will continue to be crap.

    1. “Aaaannnndddd that’s why I canceled my subscription of The Amazing Spider-Man. I’m tired of the constant character assassination of Peter Parker just to raise Miles Morales stock. I read an earlier comment where Marvel tried the exact same thing to raise Ben Reilly’s stock as the one true Spider-Man (sigh). When will Marvel learn?”

      It appears as though the guys who currently control the wheel of the “ASM” car are the types who will never stop at a gas station and ask for directions when they’re lost. They would rather wander around aimlessly for an extra two hours than just ask a local and get to the right destination in 15 minutes.

      Has Dan Slott ever admitted to making a bad decision while he’s been on the book? Has he ever given an interview where he said, “You know what, [insert weird editorial decision here] was a mistake. If I had it to do over again I would have not done that,”? The closest I have ever seen to him admitting a mistake was within the pages of ASM where the “No one dies!” mantra was framed as an odd blip in Spider-Man history.

  13. Wacker once admitted that the Jackpot reveal was a botch. So there you have it — two admissions of error in nearly eight years.

    1. “Wacker once admitted that the Jackpot reveal was a botch. So there you have it — two admissions of error in nearly eight years.”

      Does the Bluto-ish Steve Wacker still bully people on message boards or is he too busy for that these days now that he changed positions within the organization?

  14. I’ve heard neither hide nor hair of the guy ever since he joined Marvel Animation. He loved to troll fans, and was Enabler #1 to Slott’s worst impulses.

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