Thursday, September 24, 2009

This Spider-Clone recap is a lot less painful, if you didn't pay for those comics...

If this gets your blood pressure up, best stop now.
From Spider-Man: 101 Ways to End the Clone Saga, written by Mark Bernardo, pencils by Ben Herrera, inks by Mike Christian. The 1990's Spider-Man editorial crew, writers, and passersby debate and suggest multiple ways to wrap up the Spider-Clone storyline, which had already snowballed out of control.

I dug this issue back up, since over at the ever-entertaining Doomkopf a recent post asked the imminently fair question, who's bright idea was it to revisit the Clone Saga? Not to encourage going back to the well or anything, but there was plenty of other wells to choose from, don't go back to the poisoned water-hole.

My question is: If you go by the theory that all of Spidey’s stories, from 1962 on, are compressed in Marvel time into a sliding timeline of the last ten years or so; then how long was the Clone Saga for Spidey? A year or more? A couple of months? A few weeks? A really hectic afternoon? Keep in mind...I don't really care enough to look up exactly how long the Clone Saga ran for the poor fans that were buying it. (Oh, all right: from October 1994 to December 1996.)

Two more prescient bits from 101 Ways, after the break!

Back in the day, Wizard gave out trophies. Now, they'll probably give you an employee... Glenn Greenberg shoots down a possible resolution, that would also have written Mary Jane Watson-Parker out of the book, on the grounds that she was still pretty popular. (Maybe that should be 'pretty, popular.') That seems to be a problem the Spider-books still reoccurringly struggle with, and arguably have since well before this issue as well: The creators and the fans like MJ, and want her around; but seemingly don't want Peter to be 'tied down.' (Supposedly. I don't think I had a problem with married Spider-Man, but I don't buy enough new Spidey comics to have a vote!)

I want to say Herrera drew a Silver Surfer issue with Mephisto, too...don't hold me to that. And I'm positive someone else must've pointed this out by now: the "Greenberg Gambit," a last ditch attempt at appeasing both the Ben Reilly fans and the Peter Parker hardcore: mysterious villain Scrier was really Mephisto in disguise, who tries to take "Ben's" soul by throwing "Peter" back in time: Peter and Ben were the same person all along, just at different points in the timestream. One editor points out that "seems a little cosmic for Spidey," while continuity expert Peter B. Gillis seemingly undercuts the idea by noting, "If Mephisto is the prince of lies...why should anyone, including the reader, believe him?" Man, wish you'd been in on One More Day, Mr. Gillis...

This is a silly little read, but it may just alleviate a bit of the pain the Clone Saga may have caused you. Plus, if you find a copy, you can check out Tom DeFalco's two word solution, which was at least partially used!

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