Spider-Man: We Always Hurt the One We Love

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Bookslut points me to this — to all appearances — justifiably savage review of Spider-man: Reign #3. The Reign mini-series is set 35 years in the future, with a middle-aged Spidey — yaar, spoilers — mourning the death of his beloved Mary Jane. (There’s a 10-page preview from the first issue here.) What killed Mary Jane? Cancer. From? From prolonged exposure to Peter Parker’s, ulp, bodily fluids. The review quotes actual dialogue from the comic: “Loving me killed you!”

This is A) the very definition of bathetically bad comics writing. B) a limp rip-off of Niven’s original take on Superman and Lois Lane’s love life, “Man of Steel, Woman of Kleenex” (“Superman would literally crush LL’s body in his arms, while simultaneously ripping her open from crotch to sternum, gutting her like a trout…” C) Implausible, no, nonsensical, in so many ways. Yeesh. It’s just amazing what gets perpetrated in the name of a once-proud franchise.

Meanwhile I’ve been reading DMZ. It’s a little in love with its own darkness/political revelance, but it’s almost totally free of radioactive semen.