Chapter By Chapter features me reading one chapter of the selected book at the time and reviewing it as if I were reviewing an episode of a TV show or an issue of a comic. There will be spoilers if you haven’t read to the point I have, and if you’ve read further I ask that you don’t spoil anything further into the book. Think of it as read-along book club.
So we have scientists trying to separate a serial killer and the symbiote he bonded with AFTER becoming a serial killer (I mean, you can make a better insanity defense for the Joker than you can Cletus Kasady), Aunt May about to lose the house…again, Mary Jane looking for work, and a dinner for the homeless. Meanwhile a scientist trying to keep a mistake he stumbled upon from being turned into a weapon being hunted by the obligatory shadowy government. Simon Furman didn’t have this many plot lines going at the same time and they’re still doing it better. However, based on the image for today’s chapter…
…I’m betting it’s the obligatory “how I became Spider-Man” section of our story. No matter how culturally significant a hero is they seem to think nobody knows his origin story. Am I right?
Yep, I called it. With the exception of the 70s live-action series and the Electric Company appearances and until the later Sam Rami movies (we’re not counting Japan here, that had two different not-Peter Parker Spider-Men both on TV and in manga) every version of Spider-Man–as in cartoons–told his origin as it was in the comic. If you only knew Peter’s backstory from the comic tie-in to The Electric Company, the show that taught grade schoolers how to spell and use words (the original was way different from the more recent namesake about street kids with word-based superpowers) you still at least knew about the radioactive spider at the science exhibition. The Ultimate universe hadn’t been created yet. What I’m saying is most of the people buying a Spider-Man novel in the 90s probably knew his origin by heart at this point and the ones that didn’t weren’t that invested in the origin. Bit by radioactive spider, got powers, fights crime, let’s move on.
At least they still know to progress the plot as Spider-Man ends up outside the abandoned school now being used to kill the symbiote without killing Kasady that we all know is going to fail. Somehow the word got out. I guess the afternoon edition hit the stands because there’s a lot of protestors out there upset they brought him back to New York. I still don’t know why they had to come all the way out here. There have to be better facilities for him. SHIELD alone must have a better place for this than an abandoned school in a thriving neighborhood. These are the reasons I make fun of the citizenry in the Marvel universe.
So it’s Spidey’s origin again. Been there, done that. Hopefully next chapter gets back to the important story. At this point we’re all just waiting to see how Carnage escapes and makes Peter late for the loan signing, because we all know that’s what’s going to happen. It’s the how and what happens next that should have us returning next week.