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Thursday July 23, 2009 12:42 pm

Marvel Comics Review: Amazing Spider-man #600




Posted by David Torres Categories: Reviews, Marvel Comics

AmazingSpiderman600

Rating: ****

After last week’s excellent Amazing Spider-Man Annual #36, I decided it was time to get back into Spider-Man.  For all of us fanboys who rant and rave about never collecting a title again because of something that is done to our favorite comic book character, I think very few of us are ever able to hold onto that promise.  Let’s face it, if it’s a good story and great artwork, we always come back and I’m sure that’s why Marvel had no problem making the “Brand New Day” decision a few years back because they knew we always come back. 

This issue of Amazing Spider-Man is of course a huge milestone as it’s the 600th issue of the title.  I know that the original title was canceled and this is part of the renumbering that was done a few years ago, but still it’s amazing (no pun intended) to see that Spider-Man continues to wow us after so many issues of Amazing and various other Spidey titles.

This issue marks the wedding of Peter Parker’s Aunt May and J. Jonah Jameson Sr.  The issue opens up with long-time Spider-villain Doctor Octopus talking with a doctor about all of the blunt force trauma he’s suffered over the years in fighting Spider-Man and various other heroes and villains in the Marvel Universe.  The prognosis?  He’s got about a year or so left to live.  With this news, Doc Ock decides that he must do something worthwhile before he dies.  Doc Ock decides to use his “brilliant” mind to benefit mankind.  He will use the technology that he has to enable him to control the city of NY.  He wants to make the trains run on time like Mussolini.  Gee thanks, Ock!

Doc Ock’s body is also degenerating.  He no longer looks like the classic Doc Ock.  He’s now much thinner, has two extra metal arms, and his face is partially covered by metal.  Doc Ock once “died” before just prior to the Clone Saga.  For whatever reason, they decided to bring him back and he was resurrected by the Hand.  I hope they don’t kill him again.  There’s no reason to kill him at this point.  Hopefully he clones a new body for himself and transfers his mind into the new body.  Maybe this will happen during the upcoming Ben Reilly storyline that will be happening later in the year.

Spidey is, of course, able to defeat Doc Ock, but he gets a little help from the Fantastic Four.  The New Avengers also make an appearance and swing in to help clean up the mess.  After some troubles caused by Doc Ock, the wedding of Aunt May and JJJ, Sr. is able to take place with JJJ, Jr. who is now the mayor of NYC performing the ceremony.  In a typical comic book/soap opera ending at the reception May throws the bouquet of flowers over her shoulder to all the waiting single women and who catches it?  Well none other than the former Mrs. Peter Parker, Mary Jane Watson.  And we end there.

There are a few other back-up stories that go along with this issue including a story by none other than Spider-Man’s co-creator Stan “The Man” Lee.  He writes a funny story where Spider-Man visits a psychiatrist and talks about having an identity crisis.  The story is more about poking fun at the crazy stuff that’s happened to the character of Spider-Man over the years including the dreaded “Brand New Day” storyline that erased the Parker marriage from continuity. 

Other good stories featured in this issue include Peter going to a museum where his Spider-Buggy is on display and everyone is making fun of Spider-Man.  Aunt May goes to Uncle Ben’s grave to ask for a sign that her marriage to JJJ, Sr. is okay and a tale that shows the bond that was formed between Uncle Ben and Peter Parker when Peter was young.

This was a great book and although I still hate what was done with the Parker marriage in Brand New Day, this new situation with Peter and MJ may be a good thing in disguise.  If you watch soap operas you know that one of the fun things about watching these stories unfold is how when the couple you know that love each other are not together, you watch all the things that happen to them that prevent them from getting together.  This separation adds a new element to these characters that Marvel can use to tell numerous stories for a long time.  Hey, why not have Peter get married to someone else and add some more heartache.  That would be pretty wild, especially if MJ still remembers her life with Peter when they were married. 

Things should be interesting in the world of Spider-Man in the coming months.  Between the return of MJ and the revival of the Clone Saga, I’m very interested in reading what happens next.  Check it out people.  Good stuff!

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