Superior Spider-Man #10 – Chris’s Take

superior10covHow does last issue’s shocking status quo change affect the series? Find out in my full review. Leave a comment!

 “Independence Day”
WRITER: Dan Slott
PENCILER: Ryan Stegman
INKS: Stegman & Cam Smith
COLOR ART: Edgar Delgado
LETTERER: Chris Eliopoulos
COVER ART: Marcos Martin



    • Without the nagging voice of Ghost Peter holding him back, Otto does . . . basically the same things he’s been doing: brutalizing criminals, screaming out loud that he makes for “a better hero than you all deserve!” as he swings around, and overall being a the same smug Spider-Man we’ve seen for ten issues going.
    • Otto targets New York’s crime lords, including Owl, White Dragon, and Tombstone. Meanwhile, Green Goblin cult members recruit the each toppled boss’s henchmen to form an army of Goblin acolytes.
    • ”Peter” blows off Mary Jane when she tries talking to him. She finds that odd.
    • Carlie Cooper and Captain Watanabe investigate Massacre’s death, but the cops and eyewitnesses are lying to protect Spidey. Only through Carlie’s autopsy can they confirm that Spider-Man shot a helpless Massacre at point blank range.
    • The Green Goblin tampers with Otto’s spider-bots and sends the Vulture former child minions, now dressed as Goblin Babies, to pumpkin bomb Mary Jane’s nightclub. Otto notifies the fire department to handle it.
    • At family dinner, Aunt May asks “Peter” not to associate with Spider-Man due to his brutally beating Screwball. A debate erupts between Jamesons junior and senior over Spider-Man’s tactics, with junior taking Spidey’s side and senior calling Spidey a fascist.
    • ”Peter” has desert with Anna Maria Marconi. They kiss! Is it “rape-by-deception”? You decide in the comments section!
    • The Green Goblin gathers his followers underground, declaring himself “The Goblin King.”


This issue introduces Pedro the "very big" fireman, who will next appear in Spider-Man vs. Rescue Me: A Porn Parody.

This issue introduces Pedro the “very big” fireman, who will next appear in Spider-Man vs. Rescue Me: A Porn Parody.


Having Ghost Peter excised from this book almost feels like a tumor was removed. His floating in the corner of every panel, spouting incessant, annoying, crazy town banana pants commentary will not be missed. I probably shouldn’t be so happy to have Peter (or a “piece” of Peter, or whatever Ghost Peter was) flushed out of a Spider-Man book. I should probably curse Slott’s name for making me hate my favorite character that much in the first place. I’ll get there eventually. Right now I’m in the relief phase.

I don’t perceive much difference in Otto’s behavior due to Ghost Peter’s absence yet. It’s pretty much business as usual in Superior Spiderville. But all the page space saved by cutting Ghost Peter goes toward significant progression for many subplots. The Goblin built his army and perpetrated his first act of aggression by bombing MJ’s nightclub, Otto’s relationship with Anna Maria escalates, Octo-Spidey pummels some villains, several supporting characters make appearances, and we see at least some investigation into the fact that Spider-Man murdered someone. With one exception, its all good stuff. A multitude of small developments add up to a worthwhile “day in the life” type issue.

That one exception to my approval is Carlie and Watanabe’s investigation into Massacre’s death. I feel like a broken record consistently griping over the post-Massacre subplot review after review, but it keeps sucking. Now Slott means us to understand that the general public never learned of Spidey’s lethal deed because the police and the witnesses lied for Spidey’s benefit. The only reason Carlie and Watanabe even know it happened is because Carlie autopsied Massacre and diagnosed him with getting shot in the head by Spider-Man. First of all, it isn’t plausible that no one would have exposed the truth. Someone would have sold cell phone footage of Spidey popping Massacre to the press. Second, were there no cameras in Grand Central Station? Wasn’t Massacre’s whole plan to achieve maximum publicity so that people would see him killing folks wearing a Mocha Cola t-shirt, thereby tarnishing Mocha Cola’s brand? Third, how did the Avengers learn that it happened? I should not be this confused about who knows what and how, and that’s an egregious symptom of unclear writing.

"Hiding behind a screen in the room during an interview" is the latest in law enforcement surveillance technology."

“Hiding behind a screen in the room during an interview” is the latest in law enforcement surveillance technology.

But everything else is pretty good. I have no complaints, for example, regarding Stegman’s art. He draws a wicked-looking Green Goblin.

Screen Shot 2013-05-27 at 3.28.34 PM

Speaking of the Goblin, he’s returning to his Ditko-era roots, trying to take over the criminal underworld. That’s quite an about-face from his recent portrayal as a high-level global Avengers villain. The back to basics–waaaay back to basics–approach refreshingly reintroduces the character to Spider-Man’s sandbox while shrugging off some of the burnout readers like me felt regarding his character thanks to his overexposure on the larger stage. I’m hankering for a good Norman Osborn story more than I thought I’d be.

Of course, that’s assuming this Goblin is actually Norman, and not some lame substitute. There can be no substitute for pitting Octo-Spidey against Peter’s other arch nemesis. This series needs to tell that story.

I don’t know what to make of the Green Goblin calling himself “The Goblin King.” Members of our message board might remember that a character with the same moniker appeared in a story written by Kevin Cushing. But no, I am not accusing Dan Slott of ripping off Kevin . . .

. . . I'm accusing them both of ripping off David Bowie!

. . . I’m accusing them both of ripping off David Bowie!



(30) Comments

  1. Andrew Roebuck

    I really think it would be awesome for Goblin and Spock to have a one on one meeting in which The Goblin reveals that he knows its Doctor Octopus. I just think it would be really sinister and interesting that the only one who knows the truth is his greatest foe. I really think the Goblin using children henchmen is just lame....I thought we had been rid of those accursed vulture babies. Overall I'm willing to bet its not Norman Osbourne under the mask which is disappointing another Green Goblin will be such a bore.

  2. Sirspidermonkey

    It be more than willing to bet the farm that it isn't Norman under the mask. It would be nice to have Norman back in the Spider-verse but, I'm pretty sure thats not the case in this instance. If and when Peter does reappear is going to be much further down the road. My leading theory is that it's Roderick Kingsley, but Im only 60% sure. It will probably be a long time before we get the reveal.

  3. Sbee613

    That's cause Stan lee and Jim shooter knew how to tell great stories without alienating and enraging his audience.

  4. Jerry Morrison

    Guys, Superior Spider-Man is nothing more than a dream. The look is quite obvious. Marvel gave Dan Slott the keys to Spider-Man and he's living out his wildest dreams. Would this have happened 20 years ago? Maybe. Would the idea of Ock Octavian mind inhabiting the body of Peter Parker get the nod from Stan Lee and Jim Shooter 30 to 40 years ago? Hell No!!!!

  5. Sbee613

    I wonder how they're going to explain how there is no possible footage or recording taken when spider-fraud shot massacre. I can imagine its going to be everyone's phones were down and couldn't work or the sun was causing a wild flare and disrupted all footage. That's giving slott to much credit though I'm sure it'll never be brought up regardless.

  6. Mike 13

    Peter's mind inhabiting Norman's body is very plausible to me... remember, as stillaners points out, he didn't send the kids to blow up MJ's club, he sent them their to plant his device... they decided once there to "have some fun"...

  7. Xingken

    But something to think - this Goblin clearly is NOT surprised of seeing Sp-Ock use Big Brother Bots, instead just taking delight in hacking one. It seems to me this Goblin is aware Sp-Ock is into those kinds of tactics, which is what i think the "secrets" line refer to.

  8. Enigma_2099

    @#9 While in a way I could accept that, I also have to remember that these were the same people that vilified him over any "truth" Jameson printed about him in the paper, whether they had evidence of it or not. It'll be interesting to see if they're still willing to go that far when Peter comes back. And don't even get me started on Jameson.

  9. Xingken

    18 - see, here is this. For Peter to even have a physical possibility to do this Norman's disappearance must occur during his run in Ock's dying body. And then again, since real Peter still died planting Ghost Peter inside Sp-Ock, all Peter could do is also plant a Ghost Peter inside Norman. And since it didn't do squat for relatively antiheroic Sp-Ock, it would do exactly shit with a full-on monster like Norman. And of course, there is still a matter of choosing NORMAN OSBORN of all people. And kids blowing up MJ. 19 - well, maybe i got my events mixed, probably MJ didn't see it. But still, if Massacre wasn't seen by all of New York on television, this whole "Hitler Cola" plan wouldn't work anyway. So it is safe to assume at least a large chunk of New York saw it. It's not like Sp-Ock was even covert about it, standing in the centre of the hall and giving a dramatic shot to the clearly helpless and weeping Massacre. Here is a mind-blowing theory - this Goblin is J JONAH JAMESON! Thought it'd be uncharacteristic for Jameson to support Spider-Ock like that? No more! It makes perfect sense for Jameson to act supportive towards Spider-Man to earn his trust and seek to destroy him from the shadows, realising that NOW Spider-Ock is a menace that must be put down. Biding his time to build a suitable army to strike, Jameson, as Sp-Ock's prime supporter, has inside knowledge on all of Sp-Ock's tactics, equipment, and somewhat mentality(explaining the "secrets" line). Now there is a matter of Goblin clearly hacking a spider-bot while Jameson is not really a tech guy... well, you got me. All i have is obscure what-if comics of him making a jetpack and using a Spider-Slayer. I'm not really being serious here.

  10. crazychris

    15 - thank you 16 - The solidarity among police officers is legendary and if the NYPD perceive Spidey as "one of them" then I do find that them covering up the true facts of what happened is within the realm of possible. Based on experience from practicing law, I don't believe there is any real limit to what police officers are capable of when it comes to protecting their own. An officer's word is worth less than dirt if the truth would hurt another officer. Yes, that's a generalization and it doesn't hold true 100% of the time, and each officer should be judged on his or her own merits, but what I'm talking about is a real and pervasive part of police culture. Now, Spidey's not a police officer but if the police are starting to view him as such, and they beliece that what he did to Massacre was justified, then it's not outrageous to say they'd cover for him by fudging the facts in their reports. 17 - it isn't clear that all of ny saw Massacre's death. They saw Spidey beating up Jester and Screwball but that was a different occasion. It could be that the new yorkers just saw someone on the news saying Spider-Man "neutralized" Massacre with no more detail then that. However, I do think the plot you outlined would make sense and be a big improvement. 18 - I think that explanation shows how much of a stretch the theory is. You have to say certain events were shown to us out of order even though the comic has given us no sign that that's the case.

  11. stillanerd

    @#15--Well, Xingken, if Peter is in Norman Osborn's body, here's a possible explanation for when, why, and how: What if that the scene we saw at the end of Amazing Spider-Man #697 where Norman Osborn mysteriously escaped the hospital was not actually taking place at the same time as the events shown in the story but actually a flashforward taking place shortly after the events of Amazing Spider-Man #700? Consider that Julia Carpenter was in the very same hospital as Norman, and just because she's in a coma doesn't necessarily stop her from using her psychic powers. What could've happened is that right at the moment Peter died at the end of Amazing Spider-Man #700, Julia was able to use her powers to grab a hold of Peter's astral body/soul and then place it in the nearest able body she could find, which was Norman Osborn--who if you recall in his last appearance in New Avengers went into a vegetative/catatonic state due to his brain being overloaded by the powers of the Super-Adaptoid. This would also explain why the guards who should've been guarding Norman weren't there, because Julia used her telepathy to make them leave, allowing for Peter in Norman's body to escape.

  12. Xingken

    Considering the whole thing went down on live television to the point you could see it on iPhones, it's a slander against the entire New York at best. MJ, from this point of view a random civilian, saw it. EVERYONE saw it. And all the investigation does is ask a few cops whose opinions don't even matter because THE ENTIRE NEW YORK SAW IT. Seiously, this whole thing could have been resolved so easily. Mayor Jameson orders a halt on investigation, forcing Cooper to reluctantly have to face Sp-Ock alone. If the entire city is really letting Sp-Ock off the hook, Jameson would face no reprecussions for this, but at least some sort of protest against this blatant covering up for murder could make Goblin King's camp grow larger would seal this subplot for good without having to bring it up every review. *grumpyface*

  13. Jack Brooks

    P.S. There is no way that NYPD cops would cover up an execution in the street performed by a masked vigilante in front of civilian witnesses. Also, I would bet money that any /real/ NYPD cop would be mightily annoyed by this element in Slott's story were he or she see it, as a slander against New York's Finest.

  14. Xingken

    14 - fine, i apologize. Still, this theory requies tremendous leaps of logic to work. Issues of when, why, and kids blowing up MJ.

  15. crazychris

    12 - don't call another poster's theory stupid. We want a more civil debate then that. 13 - I think that's a good point that the scentific skill probably rules out Harry.

  16. Jack Brooks

    We still don't officially know who this Goblin is. That disappearance of Norman could be a fake-out; it could be Harry gone bonkers again (hence the "Breaking Bad" look we saw on him some time ago), though Harry doesn't hate MJ and I don't think he has the scientific know-how to hack an octo-spider. I'm assuming that the real Peter has been in Queens Heaven this whole time.

  17. Xingken

    The idea of this Goblin being Peter in Norman's body is kinda stupid. Here's why. Like the issue of WHEN. This isn't Batman who can just excuse himself by planning this months in advance because he's Batman and he always prepares. Norman escaped before the whole Spider-Ock thing, so there is no way Peter, as desperate as he is would be, would go "Hey, imma plant myself into COMATOSED NORMAN OSBORN. Cuz THAT is a good idea". The obvious thing would be him sending kids to blow up MJ. That is as obvious as it gets. And in the light of the obvious: Where is all of the "Peter is a saint" crowd that defended Ock's projection of Peter making a rash conflicted minor understandable if not even justified misdecision that fans claim Peter would never do. But sending kids to blow up MJ is perfectly fine? Look. I want to see a cool Green Goblin as much as anyone. But i actually want it to be just Norman. I don't give a fuck about how "unreveal" that is. Just Norman. No dumb twists. Please.

  18. CrazyChris - Post author

    10 - The theory that being in Norman's body somehow corrupted Peter could work, but I just don't think that's where Slott's going with this. I don't think he needs any special knowledge that Peter and MJ are connected, like you said the story made it clear that the Goblin Babies told him Spider-Man watched that place so he knew it would be a good place to see if his cloaking tech worked. I agree that there's a good chance that it's not Norman if for no other reason then this Goblin has had two appearances and his identity hasn't been mentioned yet, so it seems like Slott's setting it up for some kind of reveal. The best I can tell with the Massacre thing is that the people watching the news might have been just as confused as the people reading that issue for the first time. They said vague words like "neutralized" that didn't make it clear what exactly happened. I know a lot of fans were left uncertain about what happened exactly, and maybe that's what the Marvel public was thinking, too. But we really don't know what the general public's reaction is because Slott hasn't explored it. Up until now I assumed that Massacre's killing was televised because it happened in public, in a place that would have had security cameras, and Massacre's plan was to get as much publicity as possible. But now it seems like only a few people other than the witnesses know about it, and it isn't even clear how those people know about it. Slott's communicating what's going on very poorly. I think this comic almost needs to take a step back and just do an entire issue without Otto in it and just focus on how the world around him has perceived what's going on. The focus is zoomed in so far into Otto's head that the bigger picture is lost.

  19. stillanerd

    @#8 CrazyChris--Oh, I admit that the usage of the Goblin-Kids is a big drawback to the whole Peter is the Green Goblin theory. But, as AmazingOSUman points out, it's possible that if Peter is the Green Goblin, then the mere fact that Peter is in Norman's body would affect his mind given thanks to the Goblin formula coursing through Norman's body. I just find it interesting though that, out of all the spider-bots he chooses to hack into, he picks the one right outside Mary Jane's nightclub. Though it could be, as you said, he just picked the one the Goblin-Kids told him about, but that suggests someone with knowledge that MJ and "Spider-Man" are somehow connected. In any case, I'd be happy if the Green Goblin was Norman Osborn, but I think that's what this issue wants us to think but it's merely a red herring. Let's not forget that prior to going comatose, Norman no longer knew Peter was Spider-Man thanks to Dr. Strange's mind-wipe spell. But we'll see. BTW, totally agree with your take on the whole "blue wall of silence" going on with Massacre's death. Completely stretches all credulity that not a single person would leak to the media that SpOck killed Massacre in cold blood. And what makes it even more unbelievable is that it was reported on the nightly news, and was watched by the exec of Phizzy Cola, that SpOck "neutralized Massacre" in issue #5. Which means people know at the very least that Spidey killed Massacre, but somehow no one but the eyewitnesses know HOW he killed him.

  20. CrazyChris - Post author

    4, 5, and 6 - I agree with 5 that it's unlikely and I think 6 sums it up pretty good. It'd make an interesting plot but stillanerd you have to admit your reading is kind of a stretch. He sent criminal children armed with explosives to MJ's club with no direction on what to do there? It doesn't make sense to me if he's Peter. The simpler reading is that the Green Goblin intended the children to blow stuff up and he sent sent them there to test the blind spot the Goblin programed into the spider-bots because the Goblin knew that was a place Spidey had his bots keep an eye on. And the Goblin calls the kids his little cherubs. That doesn't sound like Pete. I love a good off-the-wall theory as much as the next guy, but I think there's too much against that one. 7 - Yeah, I think that's a fair assessment. 8 - The explanation in-story is that the cops and civilians thought Spidey was doing a service by killing Massacre and they don't want him to get arrested for it, so they're covering it up. That still doesn't explain how the Avengers found out about it.

  21. Enigma_2099

    "Carlie Cooper and Captain Watanabe investigate Massacre’s death, but the cops and eyewitnesses are lying to protect Spidey..." ...HUH?!?!?!?! Where the hell were these loyalists before Doc Ock took over?!?!? Oh man, no wonder Marvel doesn't favor continuity. At this rate, who'd want to be the one to fix everything they're breaking at this point?

  22. Phantom Roxas

    Kevin, shame on you for ripping off Labyrinth. This sounds like one of those issues where it's mostly good because it FINALLY brings a lot of Slott's subplots to a head, although it gets ruined by Slott constantly having characters conveniently not being able to do the things they need to.

  23. AmazingOSUman

    #4 Doesn't this still mean that Peter (if it's him in the) sent children carrying high explosives into the city? I suppose you could have it be Pete, but he is suffering from whatever physical factors contribute to Norman's insanity. It's Pete-software running on a badly-malfunctioning-Norman-machine, in a manner of speaking. I kind of like that idea, and feel Slott missed a real ooportunity in not having Otto's insanity mitigated by Otto's mind now residing in Peter's non-damaged brain. Would have (or could have, in the hands of some other writer) made for some really interesting character movement. Slott could do it now, I suppose, with Pete running in the da,aged Osborne brain, but then the question arises why SpOck didn't get a benefit by running in Pete's healthy brain. I guess maybe you could argue that running in ANYBODY else's brain makes you crazy, and since Otto is already crazy,we don't really see a difference in his personality, but Pete, having been sane before, is now running seriously off-kilter compared to what he was before. If Pete IS the Goblin, hen we will finall find out if Norman's hair looks like that naturally, or is the result of some weird 50's Vitalis/Brylcreme mixture. . . Rob

  24. Jack Brooks

    Peter /would/ know more about "Spider-Man"'s tricks than anyone else. But still I think it's unlikely.

  25. stillanerd

    @#3 CrazyChris--Ah, but notice that while it appears on the surface to be that the Green Goblin ordered the Goblin-Kids to bomb the club, he actually didn't. Take a closer look at the dialogue between the two Goblin kids reads right before they fire bomb the club: GOBLIN KID 1: Can't believe the new boss sent us here. We told him the Spider keeps an eye on this place [MJ's nightclub]. GOBLIN KID 2: (Waving hand in front of spider-bot) Hm. Maybe that's why. Look. Nuthin'. GOBLIN KID 1: He [The Green Goblin] did it! He hacked into the Spider's network. We're not showin' up on his "web." GOBLIN KID 2: (as they're pulling out their pumpkin bombs) Y'know what that means? Time to make some mischief! That could very well read as though the Goblin-Kids were sent to the club without actually knowing why they were sent there and, having realized they couldn't be spotted by the spider-bot, decided to act on their own imitative to fire bomb the club.

  26. CrazyChris - Post author

    1 - True 2 - You're saying Peter sent children to bomb Mary Jane's club?

  27. stillanerd

    "There can be no substitute for pitting Octo-Spidey against Peter’s other arch nemesis." I can think of one acceptable Goblin-substitute, Chris. What if this Green Goblin, now the Goblin King, is the real Peter Parker trapped in Norman Osborn's body?

  28. Donovan Grant

    I forgot to comment on how silly Carlie hiding behind a screen for...reasons was. That looked as though a Carlie Cooper-shaped silhouette would still be visible.

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