Wednesday, January 09, 2008

Amazing Spider-Man #546 – Brand New Day - A Review

Amazing Spider-Man #546 Writer : Dan Slott, Artist: Steve McNiven, Inker: Dexter Vines, Colors: Morry Hollowell.

Lame is the most apt word to describe this book. We open with Peter Parker kissing some girl and one of the captions says “Just forget I’m “macking” on Ms. Girls-Gone-Wild”. Macking? Maybe I’m just out of it and not down with all the hip lingo, but macking please.

So the new status quo is Peter Parker is now unemployable. No one wants him as a teacher because he missed too many days from work without an explanation, his photography looks like he shot it from sitting a camera on a ledge and he has not done any real science work lately so no research lab wants to touch him. He has no money at all and is back living at his Aunt May and sponging off of her. We have Betty Brant from the bugle back in his life, Harry Osborune as his uber-rich friend floating around and Peter loosing his web-shooter to a hold-up man.

Not only did his marriage get undone his entire life is utterly changed. It feels like what someone’s vision of a “Charlie Brown” Peter Parker is, all hard luck and nothing going right for him. Even when Stan Lee and Steve Ditko were writing him, he was more of an everyman whose problems were magnified because he was constantly doing the right thing as a super-hero.

This is a character that has so many problems that I don’t think of him as “hard luck” I see him as a loser who can’t do anything to pull an actual life together. At the same time he hangs with an incredible wealthy friend and sponges a few hundred off of him and then has a robber take it away from him. Peter can’t chase him because of a young lady that is with him when he is robbed.

Then they make it even more ludicrous as he throws a spider-tracer on the crook but loses him and he is seen as a homeless person at the shelter Aunt May works at and is given a pair of shoes. Then he goes to Jameson and yells at him about money he is owed and JJJ has a heart attack and so ends issue #1 of Brand New Day and my last issue of Spider-Man for a long time.

This is really taking this character backwards and is doing nothing to add to the character of Peter Parker. He is now a pathetic whiny loser, who is nothing but a waste of his power and his potential.

Plus they charge $4 for the book and add apparently Mary Jane as the registered hero of New York called Jackpot and some other back-up stuff.

Steven McNiven and Dexter Vines do a good job on the art, but that is all that is worthwhile. This is a shame as I liked the idea of a single continuity for Spider-Man coming out three times a month.


  1. I think JACKPOT is a red herring and she'll be one of the two ladies introduced for PETE. (Wow, first issue and 2 potential love interests.)

    There is also internet rumor that HARRY is Mephisto (sp?) since Peter says, "Speak of the Devil."

    I'll be honest and say I was able to kind of enjoy it and suspend my prejudice until we got the PETER speech about how he is too young to get married, yadda yadda.

    There is no way we can "accept" the new status quo and move on if they're going to constantly throw it in our faces.

    Oh and the only thing they could not do as far as injecting life in Spidey stories before BND is hooking Pete up with other girls.

    Pretty book. I like Slott. But that speech pulled me out officially and I would say that nothing really happening was ok since it was a first issue, but Slott and McNiven only have two more.

    New creative team next month.

    I'm still happy ULTIMATE SPIDER-MAN is good.

  2. Last comment:

    I told RUSTY I'd give them a shot if the issue was really awesome, and artwork aside, it wasn't.

    It was ok.

    Which is even worse.

  3. Hey Jim, sorry I haven't been around and commenting. I need to remember not to neglect my former haunts just because I'm playing World of Warcraft. =P

    Gwen lent Mike the Mephisto issue to read. Apparently she wants to share the pain of "Spider-man is now a loser" with the Spider-man fans she knows. I do not know if he has had the heart to read it yet.

    Personally, I think it is a shame that they did this to Peter Parker and Mary Jane. I do not understand what the comic book industry seems to have against the concept of marriage and monogamy.

  4. Shawn - OK is a nice review.

    Arielle - I remember you, the crazy horse lady. I think that was all the Editor-in-Chief, everyone else is fine with Spider-Man being married.

  5. Nah. I think it wasn't anything special. It was ok.

    Regardless it'll sell a bazillion copies and Joe Q will look like he was right.

    Here is the best essay on OMD I've read that keeps it fair and level headed.


  6. I'm proud of you for boycotting the book for a while. Bravo! I've been in my boycott since issue 511!

    I thought that two-page "new status" page was really dumb.

  7. Hey there... I pretty much agree with everything you wrote. If you want to check out my view on this, and why I don't think this works from a story-telling or philosophical point of view, check here: