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Spider-Man has been the face of Marvel superheroes since his first premiere in Amazing Fantasy #15 (1962). For just over five decades, our friendly-neighborhood Spider-Man has been crawling walls and fighting crime in comic books, television shows, and films from all over the world. Peter Parker made his official entrance into the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) during the events of Captain America: Civil War. In a few short weeks, Marvel will be releasing their first solo film within the MCU featuring our very own Spider-Man. Spider-Man Homecoming will hit theaters on July 7th and to honor this momentous occasion, we’ll be bringing you every thing Spider-Man for the next few weeks. Starting off our Love and Comics collection will be 7 of the most romantic covers featuring the incredible, spectacular, and amazing Spider-Man! Marvel Knight’s – Spider-Man Blue #2 (Gwen Stacy and Peter Parker)
Spider-Man Blue has to be one of the best Spider-Man stories for any story-telling fan. The writing and art team of Jeph Loeb and Tim Sale did a number of these “color” themed mini-series including Daredevil Yellow and Hulk Gray. The theme for each of their titles looked at the romantic counter-parts to the masked vigilante of each issue. For Spider-Man that story is very complicated because Peter’s first girlfriend was killed at the hands of the Green Goblin. Spider-Man Blue is a beautiful story arc that looks at those first moments of love when Peter began to fall for Gwen Stacy. Also as an overall Spider-Man mini series, it takes a look at most of his rogue’s gallery of villains. For fans that are looking for an introduction to how high quality Marvel comics can be, Spider-Man Blue is a great mini-series to add to this summer’s reading list.
Marvel Knight’s – Spider-Man Blue #3 (Mary Jane Watson and Peter Parker)
Even if Peter Parker’s first love will always be Gwen Stacy, it won’t be his only love. Mary Jane Watson is the one who ends up with Parker in the end. Although the story paints both Mary Jane Watson and Gwen Stacy as rivals to winning Peter’s heart, they still remain friends up until her death. There is even a moment at the end of the series when we realize that Peter is re-telling his story over a recording when Mary Jane walks in on him. Peter is surprised and very sad as he worries that Mary Jane had heard about his heart-breaking confession and torment of losing Gwen. Her response as his Wife truly shows how she feels, ” Will you do me a favor Peter? Say Hello for me — and tell Gwen I miss her too…” What’s even more sad yet hopeful is how Parker found a way to move on. In a beautiful line that sums up the tragedy and the progress of their healing, Parker says in his audio recording, ” Gwen. I don’t think Mary Jane Watson could’ve had a serious relationship with me until she realized how much we all lost with you gone. She would later become my wife. I had to learn to love again, and she taught me how –.”
The Amazing Spider-Man Vol 1 #641 (Mary Jane Watson and Peter Parker)
The “One Moment In Time” story-line was one that many fans were not very pleased with at first because it revealed more of the details following Spider-Man: One More Day. In Spider-Man: One More Day, Parker and Watson dissolve their marriage via Mephisto in order to save the life of Peter Parker’s Aunt May. Following the events of “One More Day” was the story line known as “Brand New Day”. In this series, Peter Parker’s history has changed and with it so have some of the major events of his life. For instance Harry Osborne is alive, everyone has forgotten the identity of Spider-Man, and Mary Jane Watson and Peter Parker are no longer married. This shift in the status quo for comics is pretty common, but this story line seemed to change plenty of things in Parker’s history since it’s inception. Coming back to “One Moment In Time”, the 2010 series looked at even more details to those events and flashbacks that resulted in the dissolving of the Parker’s marriage.
Marvel Valentine Special Vol 1 #1 (Spider-Man and Mary Jane Watson)
Valentine’s Day specials come every year and this classic from 1997 is no exception. Featuring more than just the duo of Spider-Man and Mary Jane, Marvel’s Valentine’s Special issue showcases several Marvel couples including Cyclops and Jean Grey, Absorbing Man and Titania, Venus, and Daredevil. In this issue Peter Parker plans a surprise Valentine’s night in with his Wife, Mary Jane. As they sit down after a short romp in their web bed, Peter begins to tell Mary Jane about how he helped a fellow colleague try to win over his crush. He gloats about how he helped this guy get some new clothes and a new “cool” attitude to win over the girl of his dreams. Mary Jane is then upset that Parker did such a thoughtless act and contrasted it to how creating a mask of yourself doesn’t make anyone fall in love with you. She is basically saying that people should love others for who they are and not what they wear or how “cool” they can pretend to act.
Winter Solider Vol 1 #2 – Spider-Man 50th Anniversary Variant #2 (Spider-Man and Carlie Cooper)
Although this Winter Soldier issue has nothing to do with our wall-crawling vigilante, the cover features the celebration variant for the 50 year anniversary of Spider-Man. A number of Spider-Man variants came out this year across most major Marvel titles. In this cover, Spider-Man has a number of Valentine’s including Ms. Marvel, Mary Jane Watson, Black Cat, and Spider-Woman. The one character that some might not be too familiar with would be Carlie Cooper. A forensic specialist and friend, Ms. Cooper began to date Parker following the events of Spider-Island. They eventually break up because Carlie begins to suspect that Peter Parker is indeed Spider-Man. Carlie Cooper comes back to make an appearance in The Superior Spider-Man series, as she is the one to discover and investigate that Otto Octavius has switched bodies with Peter Parker.
The Many Loves of Spider-man Vol 1 #1 (Carlie Cooper, Mary Jane Watson, Black Cat, and Gwen Stacy)
In this issue the writers take a look at the many loves of Spider-Man starting with his most casual relationship with Felicia Hardy, aka Black Cat. In a strange turn of events, Spider-Man ends up with a giant bag of money. In order for him to return the accidentally stolen cash, he recruits Black Cat to help him break out a magician that put the teleportation spell on the stolen cash. In another separate story line, Carlie Cooper reminisces about how she helped solve her first mystery, as a child, in the police department. Growing up Carlie was friends with Captain Stacy’s daughter, Gwen. In her reminiscing she retells the story of how both her and Gwen stumbled upon a case when snooping in her father’s office. The last story looks at where Mary Jane Watson is currently at in terms of the Marvel universe. She comes back to New York, after a long hiatus, to do a book-signing of her first publication. She doesn’t want to be recognized by either Spider-Man or the New Yorkers, so she disguises herself and snoops around the city as an ordinary citizen.
The Superior Spider-Man Vol 1 #20 (Black Cat and Superior Spider-Man)
The Superior Spider-Man was the series that took over after the supposed death of Marvel’s 616 Universe’s Spider-Man. What we discover is that Peter Parker and Dr. Otto Octavius switch bodies and Doc Ock is now the new Superior Spider-Man. The series received mixed reviews because of Doc Ock’s brash and sometimes cruel treatment of villains as well as a change in the theme and status of the friendly neighborhood Spider-Man. Even if original fans of the series were not thrilled, the Superior Spider-Man also brought some new readers to their title with promises of a tougher and more aggressive Spider-Man. In this issue, Superior Spider-Man actually fights Black Cat on a rooftop during a pursuit. Not realizing that Doc Ock has switched bodies with Spider-Man, Black Cat is infuriated and vows to take her revenge on this strange new Spider-Man.
Come back next week as we take a look at more Spider-Man romance covers and countdown the release of Spider-Man Homecoming on July 7th, 2017!
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