Friday, 28 March 2014

The Incy, Wincy Spider-Man Climbed Up Hyrdo-Man's Sprout

Spider-Man is my favourite superhero. While I love many others, it's always been Spider-Man for me. The reasons aren't all that original: A geeky, scrawny kid with brown hair, a poor adolescent social life, and tendency to make bad jokes in stressful situations? While you could have be forgiven for thinking I was talking about Peter Parker, I was actually describing myself. I am Spider-Man. Just without the spider powers. Or the sciency know-how to create sperm based web shooters.
And people wonder why every article on Spider-Man requires an obligatory 'web=sperm' joke.

I also lack a significant number of animal themed supervillains in my rogues gallery. Where Spider-Man has the Scorpion, Rhino, Doctor Octopus, Chameleon, the Vulture, the Lizard, Black Tarantula, Black Cat, Jackal, Beetle, and um, the Human Fly, I have little-to-no-clue-what-I-really-want-to-do-with-my-life as my primary villain. Which is a really crappy name for an antagonist, although it is in all honesty quite a lot scarier than some of Spidey's villains.
Like the Grizzly! Who is a wrestler. In a grizzly bear suit.
A grizzly bear suit that has an opening for his face in the bear's mouth, because of course it does.

But aside from fighting guys dressed in animal costumes that indicate some questionable fashion choices, Spider-Man is probably best-known for being the first superhero who had to deal with real life issues outside of his crime-fighting extracurricular activities. Peter Parker had to cope with the dual horror of stopping Tinkerer from tinkering AND doing his homework. Or web-slinging across town because he's late to a date with Mary Jane, or Gwen Stacy, or Felicia, (for a guy with girl troubles, he sure gets around) since Doctor Octopus inked downtown Manhattan. Not to mention the trouble of having to maintain a double identity where his secret identity is a puny nerd who no-one really likes,
Damn straight, Dadeo. Those cats gonna regret ribbing you with that jive.

And when he's a superhero that no-one really likes.
I understand that he is quite upset about not being appreciated for the good he does, but I think your logic is flawed when your response to being accused of something is thinking that you should then become that thing. Just saying.

Additionally, he was a teenage superhero in a time where being a teenager in a superhero comic meant that you were regulated to being a sidekick (like Robin) and possibly a victim of sodomy (like Robin). Spider-Man is my favourite hero because he was a teenager who had to deal with average adolescent angst, like his crippling self-obsession regarding his feelings of loneliness and the fear of rejection from his peers. Normal teenage stuff.
Also, unbearable and debilitating guilt. Don't forget the guilt.

Although this angst is a large part of Spider-Man's appeal as a character and as a hero, because he has had to deal with a lot of loss and hurt in his life, such as the deaths of his uncle, Ben, and the first love of his life, Gwen Stacy, he is somewhat emotionally broken.

"I'll be okay. I've got my web-blanky.
I'm fine. I've got my web-blanky.
Web-blanky is always there for me...
Oh, god, I'm so alone."

But that is okay, because as Spider-Man he gets to constantly distract himself from his anxieties and emotional woes by fighting things too awesome to imagine. Like that time he fought a giant red Tyrannosaurus-Rex,
This is a thing that happened. I have only two questions:
1) Why this does not happen more often, like every second issue?
2) Does this validate all the Spider-Man/Jurassic Park fanfic online?

Or that time Abraham Lincoln let him hold his hat and watch as he fought the bad guys to save America.
When Lincoln rolls up his sleeves, you don't see web-shooters, you see freedom-shooters.

You might have noticed that Spider-Man was a wearing a black costume in the above picture. Like many young people as they are growing up into adults and go to college, Spidey tried a new look.
That boy is so terrified by Spidey's costume change that the right side of his face is melting.

And like most new looks tried out in college, it was a passing phase that Peter doesn't like to speak about because it's embarrassing, and created one of his most deadly foes, Venom.
Same thing happened to me after my scarf-wearing phase.

Spider-Man is my favourite superhero, not because he is the smartest or the most powerful or always saves the day, but because he barely uses his considerable intellect for anything aside from developing one world-changing device that he uses to tie up bad guys, is not really that powerful when you consider he lives in the same city as Doctor Strange, and fucks up. Sometimes, he just can't save the day and the bad guys win. Sure, he wins the war or gets them in the end but that's just the logic of storytelling. Heroes win in the end. But in losing to a villain, getting beaten, and having to deal with the damage they have cause (just look at all the shit Green Goblin has done to the guy and you'll see what I mean), Spider-Man is the best superhero because he loses. That makes him real.

Aside from the time he tried to be Batman and talked in Christian Bale's Batman voice. That was just another phase.

Oh, Spidey.


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