#1 Edited by jointron33 (34 posts) -

As much as people know his motto(great power and what not), Spidey NEVER lives up to these words. All of the big events in his life are usually handled in an immature, high school fashion, even when the character has become an adult. He NEVER maturely deals with things, simply using the fact that he's Spider-Man as an excuse. For all his talk of relatability, he NEVER grows up.

As much as I hate how that the New 52 has a Lois and Clark who aren't married, at least there's a bit of dignity in that continuity was rebooted. One More Day(beating that horse, I know) is one of the worst things in comics, EVER. Not only does Peter respond to Aunt May being shot in a utterly immature fashion, but he gives up his marriage with Mary Jane, something supposedly so powerful and pure that Mephisto himself wanted it gone, to bring back his already frail and ailing aunt. Let's dissect this for a bit. Aunt May was severely frail and old when Peter BECAME Spider-Man, so expecting too much more "mileage" out of her is immature in and of itself. On top of that, Peter selfishly denies his dying aunt's request of "letting her go and be with Uncle Ben" so that HE can have her, content with throwing away his entire relationship with Mary Jane in the process. Of all the things that OMD is criticized for, this gets the LEAST amount of publicity. That fact alone scares me.

Not to mention the fact that that storyline insinuated that people who like escapist fiction are sorry louts and losers, or the fact that THAT isn't criticized. There's also the fact that Quesada believes that Peter became unrelatable after he started being an adult, moving out, getting married, and having a generally happy life. The sad part is, many fans seem to agree with him, which means that the louts and losers bit may actually be true. Are Spidey fans nothing but useless eaters who can't even wipe their own arses and need to be put down like dogs so as to not waste oxygen? That's what they seem to be saying about themselves.

With both Superman and Spider-Man, the marriages were criticized by writers and fans, who seemed to think that nothing could be done now with married protagonists. That says A HELL of a lot about their mindsets and how mature they are, not to mention lending more credence to the above argument.

After ALL of that, what was my point? As much of an unrelatable larger-than-life "god" as some people think Superman is, at least in that respect he's true to the name, as opposed to the utter lie that is Spider-Man, a character who for all of his talk of responsibility, stagnates in a high school mentality limbo to appease both writers and fans who will feel left behind if he goes and does something with his life.

#2 Edited by harinosho (596 posts) -

I'm guessing this is probably you just ranting and not really expecting a reply, but I want to throw in my two cents.

The motto is rarely relates to spider-man these days, from what I have read it's to inspire/guilt trip other "heroes" into being better people. I'm not sure who ever thought they could relate to Peter Parker/Spider-man or who would you want to, the guy screws up more than anyone I have ever known or read about. My theory is that he created every bad guy in Marvel Comics just by existing.

If he was to be relatable, kill off aunt may. Replace her with Mary Jane and a kid or something. She should have been dead years ago, but I'm guessing big wigs in Marvel chose to have her be eternal and always in the background giving Peter Parker (who in comic years is in his 30's) vague and broad words of wisdom that helps no one but always inspires Peter to stand up to the bad guys that he creates (which he creates and never cops to it).

Other than that, the Superior Spider-Man series is pretty cool and a refreshing change. I hope they keep it going for a while longer, and when Peter comes back I hope that these changes are permanent and his aunt dies because of old age, Mary Jane finds a husband and someone just tells Peter to go &*(# himself.

#3 Posted by MideonNViscera (2257 posts) -

Spider-Man's relatable because he fucks up constantly. He was relatable because he had marriage problems. He was relatable because he was broke. He was supposed to be relatable because he sucks with ladies but he really hasn't since the Ditko days.

Even OMD was done to make him more relatable. They just went way, waaaay too far back, making him far more immature than the sum total of his history would ever allow him to be. I'd say they made him even more of a immature loser than he was in the Ditko days.

I don't agree with Marvel's idea that Spidey became unrelatable in the late 80's. I started reading Spidey in the early 90's, and I was 8, and I could still relate to his problems. Not because I had similar ones, but because they were realistic and made sense. It's not exactly difficult even as a kid to understand how having a pregnant wife and being Spider-Man clash.

Marvel hasn't wanted Spider-Man to age for years now, going back to the Clone Saga, but they mostly don't apply that to their other heroes. DC now has a Batman whose history could never ever work within their new timeline, and nobody ever gave a fuck how old Batman was to begin with. Spider-Man's age is relevant, but that certainly doesn't mean it has to never change. You could start with Amazing Fantasy 15 and go all the way to the Clone Saga and watch Spider-Man age and mature and evolve from his experiences. Now that's out the window and it kinda sucks. At least Dan Slott now mostly acknowledges all his history, even if it seems weird that a 25 (the age I view him now, where I saw him as around 30 in the 90's) could have so much.

I'm not even sure what side of the debate I'm on here, but I read BND and am still reading because at least it's interesting. However, I wish they never did it. At the same time I don't think we'd have Superior Spider-Man without it, so it's a mixed bag.

#4 Posted by Hunkulese (2723 posts) -
#5 Posted by iAmJohn (6120 posts) -

I'm with you, dude. For all Joe Quesada has talked about making Spider-Man more relatable, pretty much every thing he and Dan Slott has done in the past several years has had the exact opposite effect. And Christ, Superior Spider-Man is just the fucking worst.

#6 Posted by Veektarius (4825 posts) -

SpiderMan is supposed to be relatable because he somehow manages not to accumulate any wealth (nor did he have any to begin with). I'm pretty sure it begins and ends there. He's a guy you aren't supposed to look up to, rather, one that isn't any better than you but just happens to have this 'power' that lets him be a super hero. Arguably, they went a bit too far trying to make him flawed. Personally, I don't think relatability is a big problem in superhero stories (Except for, say, Superman or Captain America, who have idealized personalities) so they might have been trying to fix a problem that doesn't exist.

#7 Posted by gokaired (534 posts) -

Yep, I'm among the very disillusioned Spidey fans.

I dropped all Spider-man books excluding Spider-man Noir since One More Day and he has entered a level of immaturity that annoys me sh!tless. OMIT was the nail in the coffin for my hope in the series I actually did pick up and bought the issue JJ's wife died and as good as it was it did nothing to change my opinion on just how devolved Peter has become.

When i heard they would get rid of Peter i waited till 668 -700 (just read, didn't by) and it was embarrassing i was watching any semblance of a "Hero" he didn't even get a heroic death I thought it was the most pathetic defeat i've ever seen... Then Superior Spidey happened, Ghost peter watching Ock do a better job of his life (but ruining his public image) when he started gaining control Peter was so selfish he risked the life of a child just so Ock couldn't try and save her and he was deleted knowing his failure as a good person. Regardless on whether you like SpOck, they have completely ruined Peter Parker as a character. For me at least.

#8 Posted by oldenglishC (957 posts) -

Clark Kent is a mid-western farm boy, has a shitty job with a boss that can't stand him, and is in love with a woman that won't give him the time of day. He's pretty easy to relate to.

#9 Edited by MarkWahlberg (4604 posts) -

Normally I would disagree with you, but goddam, that Andrew Garfield movie made Spider-man a really unlikeable piece of shit.

#10 Posted by JasonR86 (9705 posts) -

He doesn't need to be relatable.

#11 Posted by xyzygy (9988 posts) -

My two cents is that Spider-Man is a terrible superhero.

#12 Posted by iAmJohn (6120 posts) -
@jasonr86 said:

He doesn't need to be relatable.

You mean aside from how that's been his entire thing since the comic started?

#13 Posted by JasonR86 (9705 posts) -

@iamjohn:

Sure? I mean I never really cared about the character. I'm just speaking in general. Main characters don't need to be relatable and they can be more interesting when they aren't.

#14 Edited by churrific (479 posts) -

Any character with that kind of a long history will have individual moments/arcs where he/she is more or less relatable to a certain audience. It's fine that recent events make him less relatable. Has it been good? Not really, but I don't fault them for trying something new with the Spidey forumula.There's only so many fresh, new angles to a character's development. Better than no developments I guess (or maybe not)? Anyway, the editorial below obviously isn't really applicable to recent Spidey stories, but as an overarching outline of what the idealized Spidey character was meant to be, it does a great job delving into the themes and instances that show how relatable a character he can be.

http://comicsalliance.com/ask-chris-96-why-spider-man-is-the-best-character-ever-yes/

#15 Posted by iAmJohn (6120 posts) -

@jasonr86: Not to be a jerk, but you're not really in a good position to be commenting on Spider-Man and relatability if you don 't care about the character, since you're missing a lot of context. Churrific is totally right that some angles are going to be hit and miss when you spend fifty years coming up with storylines for a character, but we're talking about a comic whose mission statement since the sixties has essentially been about making the reader empathize with Peter Parker and not just wowed by Spider-Man. It's one thing if we were talking about a Walter White or someone else who starts from a point of moral grey, or even if the point was to make us question Peter's actions, but we're talking about a superhero notable for being one of the most successful mainstream comics to show the hero as being vulnerable. He gets a cold and it fucks with his superpowers; he has a social life that he is constantly trying to juggle with being a hero; he has a snarky asshole personality that he sometimes affects to a fault to cover up his crippling self-loathing and insecurities. For all the ups and downs, this is who this character has been since the mid-sixties.

It's also exactly the kind of character writing that, as others have pointed out, Quesada, Slott and others have expressed an interest in getting back to after the character lost some of his relatability throughout the years (which is arguable, but I agree to an extent). Instead, practically every story line they've put him in has made him look like an annoying, ineffective prick who rarely sees real consequence to his actions (Superior Spider-Man excepted to a degree) while also trying to tell us how sympathetic we should feel for him. It just makes the whole thing feel off.

#16 Posted by JasonR86 (9705 posts) -
#17 Posted by Demoskinos (14826 posts) -

What are comics?

#18 Posted by Ravenlight (8040 posts) -

You could distill this logic further and posit that comic book heroes are unrelatable.

#19 Edited by MideonNViscera (2257 posts) -

@ravenlight said:

You could distill this logic further and posit that comic book heroes are unrelatable.

That's not really true though. Wolverine is relatable because he battles against his nature to be a better man. Tony Stark is relatable because he's irresponsible as fuck. Hawkeye is relatable because he always has something to prove. Magneto is relatable because he believes the ends justify the means. Dr. Doom is relatable because he thinks he's the hero of his own story. (same could be said for Lex Luthor)

Like nearly any good fiction these characters are just people in extraordinary circumstances.

#20 Posted by TheHBK (5485 posts) -

I gave up on Spider-Man a while ago. It makes me so frustrated how good that comic was from its start until the one day thing. Maybe the Spider-Man reborn thing did it too where he gets his eye eaten. Anyway, how dumb is it they even bring back Harry Osborn. God damn it, I just want to stop thinking about it.

#21 Posted by CaLe (3983 posts) -

I've had nothing but disdain for Spiderman ever since I was saddled with it as my nickname after crushing it on the climbing wall portion of a work-related team-building weekend.

#22 Posted by wjb (1662 posts) -

Tony's ears are burning...

#23 Posted by Everyones_A_Critic (6298 posts) -

Maybe if he wore a fedora....

#24 Posted by Blu3V3nom07 (4207 posts) -
#25 Posted by RazielCuts (2954 posts) -

ComicVine.com?

#26 Posted by Levio (1784 posts) -

The only cool superhero is Captain America. No dumb internal conflicts, no ridiculous backstory, no absurd allegiance-hopping personality. He's just one super soldier who wants to stand up against the bullies of the world. Now watch him kick some butt.

#27 Edited by OllyOxenFree (4973 posts) -

YOU'RE UNRELATABLE

#28 Posted by TheManWithNoPlan (5490 posts) -

Batman is the only comic book hero I care or know anything about. He's not relatible in the slightest and I still really like him.

#29 Posted by GreggD (4505 posts) -

Normally I would disagree with you, but goddam, that Andrew Garfield movie made Spider-man a really unlikeable piece of shit.

So what you're saying is...

(but honestly, I liked the movie, it was definitely better than the Tobey Maguire ones)

#30 Posted by mlarrabee (2951 posts) -

He is too relatable.

I get emo and dance, too.

#31 Posted by JazGalaxy (1576 posts) -

As much as people know his motto(great power and what not), Spidey NEVER lives up to these words. All of the big events in his life are usually handled in an immature, high school fashion, even when the character has become an adult. He NEVER maturely deals with things, simply using the fact that he's Spider-Man as an excuse. For all his talk of relatability, he NEVER grows up.

As much as I hate how that the New 52 has a Lois and Clark who aren't married, at least there's a bit of dignity in that continuity was rebooted. One More Day(beating that horse, I know) is one of the worst things in comics, EVER. Not only does Peter respond to Aunt May being shot in a utterly immature fashion, but he gives up his marriage with Mary Jane, something supposedly so powerful and pure that Mephisto himself wanted it gone, to bring back his already frail and ailing aunt. Let's dissect this for a bit. Aunt May was severely frail and old when Peter BECAME Spider-Man, so expecting too much more "mileage" out of her is immature in and of itself. On top of that, Peter selfishly denies his dying aunt's request of "letting her go and be with Uncle Ben" so that HE can have her, content with throwing away his entire relationship with Mary Jane in the process. Of all the things that OMD is criticized for, this gets the LEAST amount of publicity. That fact alone scares me.

Not to mention the fact that that storyline insinuated that people who like escapist fiction are sorry louts and losers, or the fact that THAT isn't criticized. There's also the fact that Quesada believes that Peter became unrelatable after he started being an adult, moving out, getting married, and having a generally happy life. The sad part is, many fans seem to agree with him, which means that the louts and losers bit may actually be true. Are Spidey fans nothing but useless eaters who can't even wipe their own arses and need to be put down like dogs so as to not waste oxygen? That's what they seem to be saying about themselves.

With both Superman and Spider-Man, the marriages were criticized by writers and fans, who seemed to think that nothing could be done now with married protagonists. That says A HELL of a lot about their mindsets and how mature they are, not to mention lending more credence to the above argument.

After ALL of that, what was my point? As much of an unrelatable larger-than-life "god" as some people think Superman is, at least in that respect he's true to the name, as opposed to the utter lie that is Spider-Man, a character who for all of his talk of responsibility, stagnates in a high school mentality limbo to appease both writers and fans who will feel left behind if he goes and does something with his life.

Well, I mean, you're not far off.

Rather famously, Joe Quesada, when summing up Peter Parker and his role as Spiderman, called him a loser. He did it in an affectionate way, but he was saying what he thought was obvious. Peter is a loser. nerds FLIPPED OUT and threatened to burn Quesada for saying peter was a loser.

I think you're right in your observations, but I think Marvel kind of has their hands tied behind their backs because they can't write spiderman the way Stan Lee intended him to be written.

Personally, I always felt like the relationship between Peter Parker and Spiderman should be illustrated by when you run into a situation when someone says something to you and you can't think of a retort, but later you think of what you wish you said? Peter is the guy who never can think of the right thing to do or say, and Spiderman is the wish fufillment of comign back and saying and doing the right thing that zings everyone.

#32 Edited by Darson (451 posts) -

#33 Posted by TheHumanDove (2523 posts) -

Man, sometimes I feel like writing a lot and ranting about stuff. But spiderman never really came to mind for me.

#34 Edited by PandaBear (1371 posts) -

@jointron33 said:

As much as people know his motto(great power and what not), Spidey NEVER lives up to these words. All of the big events in his life are usually handled in an immature, high school fashion, even when the character has become an adult. He NEVER maturely deals with things, simply using the fact that he's Spider-Man as an excuse. For all his talk of relatability, he NEVER grows up.

As much as I hate how that the New 52 has a Lois and Clark who aren't married, at least there's a bit of dignity in that continuity was rebooted. One More Day(beating that horse, I know) is one of the worst things in comics, EVER. Not only does Peter respond to Aunt May being shot in a utterly immature fashion, but he gives up his marriage with Mary Jane, something supposedly so powerful and pure that Mephisto himself wanted it gone, to bring back his already frail and ailing aunt. Let's dissect this for a bit. Aunt May was severely frail and old when Peter BECAME Spider-Man, so expecting too much more "mileage" out of her is immature in and of itself. On top of that, Peter selfishly denies his dying aunt's request of "letting her go and be with Uncle Ben" so that HE can have her, content with throwing away his entire relationship with Mary Jane in the process. Of all the things that OMD is criticized for, this gets the LEAST amount of publicity. That fact alone scares me.

Not to mention the fact that that storyline insinuated that people who like escapist fiction are sorry louts and losers, or the fact that THAT isn't criticized. There's also the fact that Quesada believes that Peter became unrelatable after he started being an adult, moving out, getting married, and having a generally happy life. The sad part is, many fans seem to agree with him, which means that the louts and losers bit may actually be true. Are Spidey fans nothing but useless eaters who can't even wipe their own arses and need to be put down like dogs so as to not waste oxygen? That's what they seem to be saying about themselves.

With both Superman and Spider-Man, the marriages were criticized by writers and fans, who seemed to think that nothing could be done now with married protagonists. That says A HELL of a lot about their mindsets and how mature they are, not to mention lending more credence to the above argument.

After ALL of that, what was my point? As much of an unrelatable larger-than-life "god" as some people think Superman is, at least in that respect he's true to the name, as opposed to the utter lie that is Spider-Man, a character who for all of his talk of responsibility, stagnates in a high school mentality limbo to appease both writers and fans who will feel left behind if he goes and does something with his life.

As soon as I read that I was out. Sorry, but New 52 was a cynical, poorly timed and handled reboot of a universe that didn't need it. It was my jumping off point for DC (Final Crisis was the first real stab to the heart though)...

And I don't need to relate to a character to like them. I just need to feel empathy for their cause. Like Dexter -- he's a bad guy and next to impossible to relate to, but his desires and attempts at being 'human' make him sympathetic.

Also, I wasn't reading much Marvel when One More Day hit ... but if they pulled that shit with characters I care about I'd feel pretty fucking annoyed too.

Comic book writers and editors love to say "it's all about the story, forget continuity and the death/brought back to life mess" ... then an event comes along "this changes everything, continuity is super important, this is for the fans!" ... then the event ends "now back to not caring, and if you do care you need to get a life!!"...

At least guys like Mark Waid can write a fucking amazing Daredevil that doesn't shit on the characters past.

#35 Edited by MarkWahlberg (4604 posts) -

@greggd: Haha. I mean, it's probably a better overall movie than the other ones (it's been so long I don't remember them too well) but... yeah. He's an asshole.