Amazing Spider-Man: Renew Your Vows #2 Review: Stillanerd’s Take

AmazingSpider-ManRenewYourVows#2--cover“I can’t just sit here. I have to do something.” –Annie May Parker

Last time, we saw the lengths Peter Parker would go to protect his family. This time, we see how he adjusts to being a “normal” dad, and learns the awful truth that his own flesh and blood doesn’t like his Aunt May’s wheatcakes! It’s the second part of the Secret Wars tie-in showing us a married Spider-Man with a daughter that (as some might argue) we should’ve always had for the actual Amazing Spider-Man.

“Part 2: Because We Said So, That’s Why”

WRITER: Dan Slott
ARTIST: Adam Kubert
INKER: John Dell
COLORIST: Justin Ponsor
LETTERER: VC’s Joe Caramagna
COVER ARTISTS: Adam Kubert and Justin Ponsor
EDITOR: Nick Lowe

THE STORY: Peter has a nightmare of when he killed Venom, but in the dream Eddie Brock pleads for mercy, saying the symbiote made him do it, and that he would never hurt his daughter. But when Peter tries to save him, the symbiote envelops Peter and Venom says because Peter killed him, “you’re no better than me!” Startled awake, Peter’s spider-sense tingles, and he and his wife, Mary Jane, dash to Annie’s room, and find she’s once again crawled out of her bed and onto the ceiling to sleep. After waking Annie up, Peter and MJ admonish her for using her powers, reminding her the authorities could take her away. Peter notices Annie’s power inhibitor bracelet is damaged, while she insists she didn’t mean to use her powers but was trying to get away from the “Shadow Thing” under her bed. Peter reassures Annie the “Shadow Thing” no longer exists, and reminds her how because they have great power, it’s their responsibility to hide it. The next morning, Peter and MJ walk Anna to school. Here, we learn MJ is still a struggling actress while Peter is still a photographer for the Daily Bugle, and although money is tight and that the replacement parts for Annie’s inhibitor are expensive, Peter reassures them “the universe will provide.” Just then two police cars speed by, and Peter hails a cab to follow them. Once at the school, MJ reminds Annie to blend in with the other kids and to keep her powers hidden, even if someone is being picked on and she wants to help.  Annie is also reassured by MJ she would still be special even without her powers.

Meanwhile, Peter is taking pictures of The Regents’ assault team—consisting of Boomerang, the Shocker and the Rhino—fighting Demolition Man, who is protesting The Regent’s rule. Also watching the fight and in civilian guise are The Prowler and Mockingbird, who report to S.H.I.E.L.D. and asks to rescue D-Man. But their unidentified commanding officer tells them not to interfere as D-Man is not worth the risk. Shocker then finishes off D-Man, and the assault team take the body to The Regent. Although The Regent considers D-Man “beneath him,” he promotes Shocker to his “elite squad” and sends the body to Dr. Stillwell to be studied and dissected. Just then, Janice Lincoln, a.k.a. The Beetle, arrives to report a random security sweep has detected a child with powers at a school, and so The Regent orders her, along with Boomerang and Rhino to bring the child to him. At the Daily Bugle, Peter delivers his photos to J. Jonah Jameson who, because The Regent controls the press, pays Peter for them not to be published. Just then, a reporter comes in saying how The Regent’s assault team is heading to same public school Annie attends. Peter secretly leaves and, having pulled and tightened his hoodie over his head as makeshift mask, leaps his way towards the school. He contacts MJ with his earpiece, and his wife tells the attack is all over the news and that she’s also heading to the school, even though Peter tells her to stay put.

However, it’s not Annie who the Assault Team is after—it’s The Power Pack. Annie, watching the fight, feels she has to do something when her dad arrives. Peter tells the Power Pack to leave and the villains, realizing Spider-Man is back, shift their attention to him, while MJ takes Annie. Peter knocks the villains out, and later they report to The Regent what happened. The Regent decides to call in his “Elite Guard” to hunt down Spider-Man, who are revealed to be The Sinister Six, and are comprised of the newly promoted Shocker, Doctor Octopus, The Vulture, Mysterio, Kraven the Hunter and the Hobgoblin. At the Parker’s apartment, Peter says they need to go into hiding now that the world knows Spider-Man is still alive. MJ, however, says running away won’t do any good, and takes out Peter’s Spidey gear from their closet. However, because Peter need to “stick the shadows,” MJ takes out Peter’s black costume instead of the red-and-blues. This freaks Annie out as, of course, the costume looks like the “Shadow Thing” from her nightmares. Yet Peter reassures his daughter he got rid of Venom years ago, “because that’s what daddies do. We do anything to keep our families safe. Anything.”

AmazingSpider-ManRenewYourVows#2--p17THOUGHTS: One of the great things about comic book stories which take place in an alternate reality is they allow for otherwise familiar characters to be placed in unfamiliar situations and surroundings, and give readers a taste of where those characters lives might have gone under different circumstances. In the case of Amazing Spider-Man: Renew Your Vows, it also allows Dan Slott to craft a story driven by character instead of the plot, which had been one of his biggest hurdles all throughout his run on Amazing Spider-Man up to this point. And just as we saw with issue #1, issue #2 shows just how much potential Marvel squandered when they erased Peter and Mary Jane’s marriage with “One More Day,” because thus far, Peter Parker the husband and father is proving to be far more interesting than the Peter Parker Marvel insists their readers should have.

There was a lot of controversy, as you folks well know, with Amazing Spider-Man: Renew Your Vows #1 in regards to Spidey killing Venom to protect his family, with one of the arguments against this being Venom, even at his darkest, never sought to harm innocents, let alone children. Slott appears to have anticipated this because he addresses Venom’s death head-on right from the start. During Peter’s nightmare, Brock insists he’s not responsible for his actions, that he was under the influence of the symbiote. Of course, those familiar with Venom’s history know the concept of the symbiote bringing out the evil in its wearer originally came from Spider-Man: The Animated Series, and was quietly retconned into the comics later. It does, however, add to Peter’s sense of guilt and doubt; even though Peter knows he had no other choice, his dream shows he wishes there was another way, and by becoming Venom at the end of his dream, he fears the darkness within himself that he believes his taking a life brought out. It’s a common trope in superhero comics that the hero doesn’t kill because they believe it makes them no better than the villains, but it’s an proper one for Spider-Man.

Feelings of guilt, doubt and fear are what lie at the center of Amazing Spider-Man: Renew Your Vows #2, especially when it comes to how Peter and Mary Jane start to raise their daughter. Slott shows how in spite of having to struggle to make ends within a totalitarian police state, the Parkers are a loving and devoted family. Just like any parent would, Peter and MJ want to keep Annie safe, and for good reason considering how she’s already developing spider-powers in a world where superhumans have been all but rounded up and killed. Yet it doing so, we can see they’re also unintentionally instilling both fear and doubt in their daughter; Peter subverts his own mantra “with great power comes great responsibility” by teaching Annie the responsible thing to do is to hide her powers, while the once happy-go-lucky, attention-seeking MJ ironically tell her daughter to conform and not “stand out” from the rest of the kids.

AmazingSpider-ManRenewYourVows)#2--p7So it makes complete sense that just as Peter quit being Spider-Man because of what he had to do protect his daughter, he should come out of retirement when he believes her life is in danger. That it’s the Power Pack, a group of kids who, like his daughter, also have super-powers, who need rescuing couldn’t be more proper, and Slott’s decision to have Peter refusing to banter because of the circumstance is nice added touch. The last scene is not only fitting, it also has the effect of bringing full-circle Amazing Spider-Man #300, the conclusion of Venom’s first story. As Slott reminds us, Peter promised never wear the black costume again for MJ’s sake because reminded her of Venom, yet here it’s MJ who insists he wear it. By having her be the one to give Peter the black costume, she is symbolically conquering her own fears just as Peter is conquering his, and reclaims the costume which Venom had co-opted.

Of course all of this hinges on how we respond towards Annie May Parker, as children are often the most difficult characters for a writer to get right. The heartwarming scene with MJ and Annie outside the school reminded me of Zack Snyder’s Superman film, Man of Steel (2013), and how Clark Kent’s adoptive dad insisted he shouldn’t use his powers even if someone else was in danger. Like Clark in that film, Annie is just as conflicted. Annie not only has inherited her father’s powers, she’s also inherited the sense of responsibility he once had, only she doesn’t know what she can do to help. This, and the adorable way she interacts with her mom and dad (“Wheatcakes are yucky,” and “It’s the red hair [that makes me special], isn’t it?”) make her genuinely likable. Not as effective, however, is Annie’s fear of Venom, or the “Shadow Thing” as she calls it. I understand the idea Slott is attempting, that because of what happened when she was little, Annie has developed night terrors about the shape-shifting, symbiotic psychopath. But as we saw in issue #1, Annie was just a toddler when Venom attacked, so while she might subconsciously be afraid of shadows lurking under her bed, I doubt she’d remember Venom in such specific detail. Also, her reaction to the black costume is way too articulate and expository for a frightened grade-schooler. Even so, Slott still manages to do a very good job in depicting Annie as an ordinary little girl who happens to be special, just as her dad is an ordinary guy who happens to be a super-powered genius.

AmazingSpider-ManRenewYourVows)#2--p10The character who does disappoint, however, is The Regent himself. Just like in the last issue, Augustus Roman comes across as the most generic of antagonists, and in addition to looking like Darkseid and having Sylar from Heroes‘ power-set, he also comes across as both a second-rate Kingpin and wannabe Doctor Doom. Worse, he has no clear motive for why he wants to acquire superpowers and rule New York as some benevolent dictator other than “everything I do is for the greater good.” I do, however, like the concept of him employing members of Spidey’s own rogues gallery as his personal police squad, including three-fifths of The Superior Foes of Spider-Man plus Rhino. Makes sense a Spider-Man comic would use Spidey’s villains, after all. Though with the introduction of The Regent’s own Sinister Six, and that this Secret Wars tie-in also takes place in a dystopia, it isn’t hard to notice a few similarities between this and that other “Last Spider-Man story,” Spider-Man: Reign, only far more colorful, less Dark Knight Returns pastiche, and without the death by radioactive bodily fluids

As for Adam Kubert’s penciling, aided by John Dell’s inking and Justin Ponsors colors, the interior art and panel composition is fantastic. Normally, I would be annoyed having to read a comic with no less than five double-page spreads, but Kubert pulls it off without it being distracting. The only two occasions where there are jarring scene transitions are whenever it cuts back to The Regent and his high-rise headquarters, but otherwise, this comic is once again a solid example of sequential, visual storytelling. The on-panel action is fluid, concise and, best of all, clear. Kubert also does an excellent job when comes to having characters convey the proper emotion, particularly Annie’s. We can see in eyes and face when she’s happy, or sad, or scared or in awe without having to read the corresponding word balloons or over-exaggeration. It’s a style which feels like the perfect combination of Spider-Man art from the 1980s and 1990s, which given the era the comic evokes couldn’t be more fitting.

While Slott’s dialogue does then to be heavy-handed and melodramatic as it’s wont to do, Amazing Spider-Man: Renew Your Vows #2 does hit all the right emotional beats, and proves Slott is able to tell a story without forcing his characters to go from point A to point B. It also shows the advantages and possibilities to be had with an adult Spider-Man wrestling with plausible adult responsibilities and priorities, and that a superhero who is also a family man can still be identifiable to a coveted younger audience. If Marvel really wished to go into an “All-New, All-Different” direction for The Amazing Spider-Man, they might want to take a closer look at their own mini-series and take it under consideration.



  • Want to know how cute and precious Annie May Parker is? She has a My Little Pony and a Strawberry Shortcake doll on her bookshelf…along with a plush black widow spider. Awww…
  • Okay, Pete and MJ, I know you’re all worried about The Regent’s random security sweeps possibly picking up the power levels of your daughter because her bracelet is damaged, but you do see that it’s smoking, right? Being the good parents you otherwise are, maybe you ought to check your daughter’s wrist to see if she has any serious burns. Just sayin’.
  • Holy mother of God, that smiling kid at Annie’s school who appears to be looking directly at us is the creepiest little boy since Damien Thorn from The Omen. Are we sure in this reality Mephisto didn’t have another son or something because yikes!
  • Poor Dennis Dunphy, aka Demolition, aka D-Man. Just when he gets brought back to life after being shot by Sharon Carter in Captain America, everyone treats him as if he were the Rodney Dangerfield of superheroes. Bad enough he gets taken down by the likes of the Shocker and Boomerang. Bad enough the acting head of S.H.I.E.L.D. refuses to rescue and recruit him because he’s “Thick as a post, broad as a board and ain’t even as strong as tenth of The Hulk.” Bad enough his body gets sent to be studied and dissected by the same scientist who turned Mac Gargan into the Scorpion. (And as aside, how is Harley Stillwell alive in this reality?) But he has The Regent make fun of the fact he has a “D” on his chest, saying how it’s a “proper grade” for someone like him? D-Man, the only one who was brave (or stupid) enough to challenge Regent’s rule in broad daylight deserves justice and retribution! Okay, not really but come on? Not every would-be superhero can wear a costume that’s both a knockoff of Daredevil’s original duds and Wolverine’s mask and pull it off.
  • Hold on? Is that Dan Slott in the crowd of onlookers wearing a baseball cap? The one who doesn’t recognize D-Man and calling him a bad guy?  What had D-Man ever done to you, Slott?
  • I’m sure some of you think the acting head of S.H.I.E.L.D. in this issue is supposed be Nick Fury, right? That’s certainly what the art and word balloons want you to think, but look closer. Notice how he has blondish hair, and how what looks like an eye-patch is actually part of a pair of sunglasses. And you can just make out what looks like a quiver of arrows on his back? It’s Hawkeye. Hmm…Clint Barton, director of S.H.I.E.L.D. does have a nice ring to it.
  • And definitive proof we are in an alternate universe? No way would the real Fred Myers, a.k.a. Boomerang, allow for the Shocker to take credit for anything. Knowing Fred, he’d come up with some elaborate, hair-brained scheme to convince The Regent he was the guy who killed D-Man. After all, D-Man did have a considerable amount of boomerang’s embed in his back and arms.
  • Aside from how Peter’s clothing are red-and-blue, notice how the treads of his sneaker look like a webbing pattern? It’s easy to spot considering how high he’s got his leg up.
  • Okay, so the security sweep not only detected Katie Power instead of Annie—who remember has her power inhibitor damaged—but it also didn’t detect Alex, Jack and Julie Power either? And considering how there’s five super-powered kids going to this one public school, The Regent is only now finding out about this? Maybe he should have spent more research on a better detection device instead of those flying cars.
  • “…and I never knew. They were freaks like me.” Oh, Annie. Don’t you know all the weirdos in the world live right there in New York City?
  • Got to say, as far as the Sinister Six of this world goes, Shocker, Mysterio, Kraven and Hobgoblin have some pretty nifty duds. But man, looks like the Vulture paid the price for his purse-snatching last issue as The Regent literally mutated him into a half-man, half-buzzard like he is in the Ultimate Spider-Man cartoon. And then there’s Doc Ock, who seems to have his arms and legs amputated to be fitted with mechanical arms along with the ones he already had. And it looks as though two of those tentacles are coming out of his butt. The indignity!
  • All right, Spidey fans. If according to Annie “Banana Pancakes fix everything” and “Wheatcakes are yucky,” then there needs to be a Spider-Man themed taste challenge: Aunt May’s Wheatcakes vs. Mary Jane’s Banana Pancakes.” We have the recipe for the wheatcakes, so you need to write to Marvel and demand the recipe for the Banana Pancakes, so we can settle once and for all which are the better flapjacks.

(29) Comments

  1. Al

    Guys...I’m told RYV has in fact DOUBLED ASM sales...this is some serious shit right here. I appreciate what Slott was trying to do by having MJ symbolically give Peter the black costume but the facts are that MJ got over that fear a long time ago. She never liked Venom but she conquered her fear ages ago in regular continuity. I mean she hosted Brock in her home more than once in the 1990s and stood up to him. She was also okay in Back in Black with Peter running around in the suit as well as during McFalrane’s No Adj run. She didn’t LIKE it but she was okay. In Mackie’s run it was established that Peter himself chose not to wear the suit just because he didn’t like it. Although the cynic in me likes to think he avoided wearing it because MJ knew Felicia gave him the cloth black suit lol. As for reclaiming the black suit it is funny to say he is reclaiming it since he basically ripped it off Julia Carpenter. Personally I’ve always felt the original suit is symbolic of who Peter truly is whereas the black one is more in a way who he wants to be at the back of his mind. He wants to be a stealthy cool bad ass serious hero but at the end of the day he is your friendly neighbourhood spider-man who is funny and a bit goofy, and so the red and blue clown suit as JR puts it is a better reflection of that. It’s who he really is. I agree with you that Slott surprisingly can do one of the hardest things for many wirters and write children well. He can do that but he can’t do as well with the easier adult characters apparently. Overall this was again, surprisingly good and at the same time truer to Spider-Man than anything since 2007. Also the creepy kid reminded me of one of the Titans from Attack on Titan @#1: MJ is simultaneously less active in this story and yet shown more. It does make sense for WHY Annie is more in focus but yeah thus far this is a story about Spider-Man the parent who is married as opposed to Spider-Man the married father. @#11: Sir your letter was utterly awesome. In fact all the letters were. The first guy had a lot in common with me to the point where I was like “Do I have a clone?” @#12: Who says he hasn’t? But I think the real answer is that either he doesn’t want to even run the RISK of incurring the Regen’ts wrath upon his family, and this would be prompted by how damn close he came to losing Annie before. He basically went through a horrible situation and reacted by swinging to the other extreme and becoming almost a molly coddler like Aunt May was to him. @#16: In fairness the symbiote surviving and laying dormant whilst it heals is exactly what happened in between Web of Spider-Man #1 and when it bonded to Brock so there is a precedent @#21: As I said above it is likely Peter has become a molly coddler and doesn’t even want to RISK any harm to Annie through potential resistance. The Venom thing was highly traumatic for him. @#24: You are presuming though that Mephisto himself was in any way shape or form in character in OMD. He wasn’t. @#25: I think #24 was pondering why this world’s Mephisto hadn’t popped up and made an offer

  2. Nick MB

    @24 Based on Slott's own interview comments, it sounds like the editorial mandate has been that he isn't allowed to touch on the marriage or OMD and he's only getting a chance now because Secret Wars is letting him do it as an alternate reality. Whether Marvel softening their stance enough to let RYV happen reflects them being less hardline against it going forward, who knows. And re: Mephisto's powers - does his will affect the entire multiverse? The deal in OMD didn't stop Spider-Girl from being published for a while longer with a married Peter/MJ, so maybe it only affects the 616.

  3. AmazingOSUman

    #16. I think you are probably correct. I doubt very much that Slott would ever do anything as cool as resolve the Mephisto storyline, unless it was an editorial mandate, and I don't see anything that wise happening, either. (Boy, have I become a pessimist when it comes to what Marvel might do with Spidey.) Still, if Pete and MJ are married, and in this series they seem to be, shouldn't Mephisto have an objection? After all, theirs "is the perfect love, which comes along once in millennia," or something like that, wasn't it? Doesn't the happiness of this Pete and MJ detract from the "screaming [Mephisto] can enjoy down through eternity?" I'd think it would, at least a little. (Not that I really expect Slott or editorial to address this, either.)

  4. Ronny

    * can't buy he would, "off", Venom so he * wouldn't ever be a future threat to his family & then leave a worse one in, Regent.

  5. Ronny

    @stillanerd sorry its hard to write on the tab sometimes. Terrible grammar & punctuation or lack there of. last line was supposed to say: I can buy him feeling he had to off Venom(Or learning later he didn't have to or shouldn't of) Either way. I can buy him ignoring vulture to be able to work on coming up with a device like a ultimate nullifier or a way to drain all of Regent's powers. I can buy he would "off" Venom so he would ever be a threat to his family & leave a much worse one in Regent. At least that's what I'd write to Slot if it all ends as I predict. (For Slott to say & that's why we can't have this & you've all agreed even you do everything just like this too)

  6. Ronny

    @stillanerd lol I know I tried to correct myself immediately after posting , wondering where I got that other name from but wouldn't work.. & I hear @stillanerd When Slot trys to end this as a way to say & this is why spiderman can't be with MJ they may as well be married which would most plausibly lead to children & it can only end bad like this...I still say, well If Peter decided to use his brain underground to be rid of Regent it would of worked so no not buying that. I can buy something like the Venom thing, even ignoring vulture until he takes down the bigger threat but he had years worth of opportunity to make sure his family would never have to worry about a much bigger problem than venom which you time care of so wouldn't be a threat to you family

  7. RDMacQ

    @#19- I doubt that would happen. If it was, Slott would have telegraphed that turn very, very, VERY early. He hasn't done that. He's hardly a subtle writer, and he's not know for a turn that dark or that quick out of nowhere.

  8. Jack

    Maybe RYV is going to end so horrifically (MJ dead, something terrible happens to Annie like she gets possessed by the Venom symbiote) that Peter abandons the idea of ever having a family, and buries himself into career. Resulting in a hugely-successful company, and a socialite on each arm.

  9. Jack

    Based on the ASM Spider-Stark previews, I'm guessing Annie isn't going to make it out of Battleworld.

  10. Chase the Blues Away

    @#16 We have evidence that when the symbiote is hurt, it takes a while to recover and bides its time. It stayed in the bell tower until Eddie Brock came by, and that was just sonic noise, not noise AND fire. And Slott foreshadows just such a thing - the symbiote taking over a "good" person and making them do "bad" things - with Peter's dream. Also, the trope of kids scared of monsters who - *gasp* - are actually real is a trope that it just unoriginal enough for Slott to use. And then there's Peter using the black and white costume, which looks just like the symbiote, when really in the world of the story any Spider outfit is going to be a huge negative so why not use the red and blues. Plus, if the symbiote goes after Annie, it would allow Slott to do his own version of Earth X Mayday Parker, since he already did his best to leave his imprint on MC2 Mayday. Not to mention Slott usually telegraphs his supposed twists way in advance, like when he made Karn the Inheritor who betrayed his family and took over the Master Weaver's role in Spider-Verse as nearly everyone predicted from the beginning. But I guess we'll have to wait and see what happens on the page! And I do really appreciate your reviews.

  11. Stillanerd - Post author

    @#1 RDMacQ -- <blockquote>So… was there any reason WHY this HAD to wait until Secret Wars #4 came out?</blockquote> Yeah, your guess is good as mine on that one. @#4 Phantom Roxas -- <blockquote>This story is just putting the characters in the very status quo we’ve been told “won’t work”.</blockquote> Yep. And I don't think the irony is lost on anyone. Not to mention if the sales estimates for ASM: Renew Your Vows #1 are any indication, it proves that a married Spider-Man who also happened to be a father does have a very strong appeal. @#5 Enigma_2099 -- Which I totally understand, especially since there's been "What If?" that have also made one go "What the hell?!" Fortunately, Renew Your Vows is not one of those, at least so far. @#6 ryan3178 -- Well said, Ryan. @#9 Chase the Blues Away -- Yeah, it took me awhile to figure out Annie May phonetically sounds like Anime until you start saying it real fast. Also, while I do agree Slott isn't the most subtle of writers, I don't think he's going as far as to suggest the Venom symbiote is literally under Annie's bed. The whole idea--which Slott was heavy-handed, specifically with what Annie said when she saw the Black Costume--was that Peter and MJ's daughter has nightmares about Venom, imagining he's the monster under her bed, due to the events of Renew Your Vows #1. Which, as I say in the review, is a stretch considering how Annie was barely a toddler at the time and probably wouldn't remember something in that much detail. But even if the Venom symbiote is supposed to be literally hiding under her bed, then the obvious question is why hadn't it tried to take over Annie, MJ, or Peter for that matter? So no, I believe Slott is taking things in that direction. @#10 AmazingOSUman -- It could also just be the way Kubert drew the kid and it just happened to wind up looking like a creepy child out of a horror film. Besides, I'd be very surprised if Slott even so much as touches Mephisto in this story, especially, as we saw in the last issue, there's more than just Peter and MJ being married and having a kid that's different about this world. @#11 Peter -- That's awesome! And I'll echo Nick Lowe's comment to you that, based off that picture with your daughter, you are one lucky dad. @#12 Ronny -- Thank you, good sir, even though it's "Stillanerd" and not "WhatANerd," but no biggie. ;) As for why Peter hasn't been studying the Regent and how to stop him over the years, I think the idea is supposed to be he was far more concerned about taking care of his family that he never bothered to do that. Remember, he did hang up the webs in issue #1, and I agree that under any other circumstance, he'd be trying to do exactly as you said. Perhaps, now that Peter is back as Spidey, he might just try to start figuring out how to bring down the Regent. Not to mention meet up with the S.H.I.E.L.D. underground.

  12. PeterParkerfan

    Ya know, it's ironic how Slott writting in Renew Your Vows is much better than his writting in the main ASM series. For once, I'm actually enjoying a Spider-Man comics written by Dan Slott. And this is coming from some who HATED Slott's writting in the main ASM issues.

  13. AHunter

    I REALLY enjoyed the issue, which is beyond surprising, I found Mary Jane was level headed, while Peter not so much considering the danger his family was in, she was courageous, knew what to do and prepared and funny. and Annie, she was just adorable. As for Peter, he was competent, to the point and less bantery and we saw how clever he is.

  14. Ronny

    Great review @whatanerd I feel this is a solid issue 3.5 out of five. Slott, you actually write really well when you work with the Spider-man fans. Plus you get a youthful "Spider-girl" with about that? I know Annie really saw the symbiote or something under the bed which explains everything there for you whst a nerd. So wondering if the mephisto deal plays a big role in all of this. Finially making something of it would be brillant. One huge gripe. Why hasnt Spider-man been studying underground all these years Regent &amp; how to maybe drain those powers. It would be a Spider-man thing to do if you look at the writings made by his creator his biggest strenth has ALWAYS been his cunning mcguyver like witts. Only thing that left for me that weighs down slotts writing of Spider-man. He doesnt seem to know how secretly &amp; lowkey Spider-man, is up there with marvel's smartest

  15. Peter

    I loved this issue. Plus, my daughter and I made the Letter Section!! No better issue for a Spider-Dad and his little girl!

  16. AmazingOSUman

    I had a similar reaction to Creepy the Kid. I thought, "What's THAT? L'il Normie, mebbe?" Now, looking more carefully, that looks really intentional. Could that be Mephisto lurking about?

  17. Chase the Blues Away

    "Heavy handed and melodramatic" is the kindest things to say about Dan Slott's writing. His storytelling is as subtle as Wile E. Coyote's attempts to catch the Roadrunner (actually, the coyote is far more clever than Slott's authorial endeavors). Since Slott is as heavy handed as a mafioso with his limbs encased in cement, I'm calling it now: the symbiote really is under Annie's bed, biding its time; Peter's use of the black costume will allow the symbiote to mimic/impersonate/take over his body without the others noticing (a hallmark of Slott's, after all); and it will all end in bitter, bitter tears (for fans) and gloating (for certain others). In other words, I'd like to enjoy this miniseries for what it is, but experience has taught me well. Also, "Annie May?" ANIME?! SRSLY?!!

  18. cronotose

    @5 Kinda how I feel about Marvel's entire line right now. Though really, this is what the comic companies want to write these days. 12 month long What If stories, followed by a gimmicky "event" which gives us the hook for the what's different in the next 12 month What If.

  19. ryan3178

    This series has just proven that Peter and MJ married and with a kid could/would have worked no matter what. Sure, the villain is extremely cliche but the struggles and relating to the characters is all there. It also proves that the reason why there was such a huge "anti-marriage" at marvel was because they didn't want to try. The solution was "a deal with the devil." Over at DC it was "reset the entire universe." I've seen it time and time again, it's not that marriage and kids will "ruin a series" as they want to say in books and TV, it's the writing. Like I said, this does show that Dan Slott is a very capable writer it's just his view on what the "modern Spider-Man" should be where we get so upset about (and his social networking). But it's still not a well set up story as we get Regent who is so cliche and he is ripped from previous villains from Dr. Doom to Darkseid that we could care less. However, seeing MJ struggle as an actress and be a mom. Annie dealing with the fact she has to hide her powers or Peter doing what he can to protect them from finances to super power Sur valiance. Its the characters we all love and the stories we want and soon it's just going to go poof and it won't matter anymore.

  20. Enigma_2099

    ... is this over yet? Because none of it matters. And I'm not even heaping all the blame on Slott. This is how I feel about What If stories in general.

  21. Phantom Roxas

    "Here, we learn MJ is still a struggling actress" ……………Of course she is. You know, even though apparently her being an actress wouldn't HAVE her struggle, as she makes things "easy" for Peter. This story is just putting the characters in the very status quo we've been told "won't work".

  22. Sean

    I'm glad I'm other the only one who noticed that creepy smiling kid. It was the first thing I noticed and I couldn't help staring at him wondering what his deal was. Also agree on some of the dialogue being a bit weird with the stand out being Annie's reaction to the black costume. It almost felt like dialogue out of a play or something with her lines there. Overall I did like the issue even if the main villain is rather lame. I just wonder why Scott hasn't been writing like this the whole time. It's not perfect by any means, but much better than a lot of his other work with Spidey. It does make me wish this was our main Spider-Man as opposed to what we're getting when Amazing relaunches. Curious to see what the rest of the gang this of this and if they enjoyed it as much.

  23. Adam S.

    I liked this. It makes me sad that Peter Parker, the Amazing Family-Man isn't going to be the status quo going forward.

  24. RDMacQ

    So... was there any reason WHY this HAD to wait until Secret Wars #4 came out? Also, once again the story seems to be more focused on Annie than MJ. Not surprised, mind you, just a little disappointed.

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