ASM #400..A classic destroyed?

Discussion in 'The Comics' started by ragingdemon155, May 4, 2006.

  1. ragingdemon155 Registered

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    I just recently ordered #400 and read it for the first time. Wondering what you guys feel about the issue? Granted it's pretty much been butchered by Marvel.

    Had it not been for the retcons and Aunt May being "revived" so to speak...could that have gone down as one of the best Spider-man tales told?

    I think so..easily.
     
  2. Captivated Registered

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    I read it recently, for the first time too. Trying to picture myself reading it back then... when it was written... and I'm pretty sure that I would have been mostly mad that they killed her in the first place. And I think I would have seen through it as a device to get Peter and MJ to move on... which I would have also been upset with. It's sucks to feel like you're being jerked around emotionally by the writers.

    While I'm really glad to have Aunt May in the stories, I can understand why people are upset that they then came up with a really STUPID explaination to undo her death. First they made you cry, and then insulted your intelligence.

    I'm glad I didn't go through the clone saga. And I'm glad that I can enjoy Aunt May... untainted, so to speak.
     
  3. Doomed_hero Registered

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    I think it is one of the worse mistakes by Marvel to bring back Aunt May. It is my second most hated thing after the Gwen/Norman crap. 400 was a great issue and one of my favorites. It set the tone for Peter to move on without Aunt May. It was set at the start of the Clone saga, so it was not really tainted yet. The only thing having to do with the clone saga was Ben, but he added to the story. There was no reason to retcon this.
     
  4. ragingdemon155 Registered

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    I think it was just a beautiful story. That's the way a "death" should go. Do I enjoy how Aunt May is written now? Of coarse. I'm not so upset about her being ressurected cause I wasn't reading comics around the time of her demise.

    Problem is now, you never have to worry about anything severe happening to Aunt May. I do think that eleminates some storyline possibilties.
     
  5. KingOfDreams Registered

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    ASM #400 was great and sad when it first came out. I still enjoy reading it but the meaning I guess you'd say is pretty much negated now.
     
  6. Gregatron Registered

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    Killing May off the begin with was worse.
     
  7. ragingdemon155 Registered

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    Personally I thought it was a stroke of genious because it was written so beautifully. It's so rare that a death in comics makes sense and has emotional impact.
     
  8. Gregatron Registered

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    Even back then, the story left me cold. It didn't feel genuine at all.

    And, as I've said in the past, May is one of the cornerstone supporting characters in the mythos, coming in just ahead of J.J.J.
     
  9. stillanerd Registered

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    I remember reading it in a trade paperback years ago and thought it was one of the most moving, sad, but really satisfying Spider-Man stories I've read up to that point. On the one hand, it was an error in judgement on Marvel's part to have Aunt May die (just like a good portion of the clone saga was misguided) but J.M. DeMattteis wrote such a beautiful, poignant coda to Aunt May that for Marvel to later retcon it was one of the biggest cheap shots of all time. For that reason, when I had a chance to obtain a copy of this, I ended up deciding against it because, even though it was a well written story, just knowing that this was no longer canon and was undone in such a stupid way (May is alive, please) made me forego in getting it, which is a real shame.
     
  10. KingOfDreams Registered

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    edit: never mind
     
  11. Doomed_hero Registered

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    Ya but at the same time, you have to let characters grow. I think it would be intresting to see how Peter handled life without that cornerstone.
     
  12. ragingdemon155 Registered

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    I agree but I guess you'll never know now.

    Marvel would seem like complete idiots now if they tried to get rid of Aunt May now. The death in issue 400 was written about as well as could be.
     
  13. Gregatron Registered

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    Says who?


    Why?
     
  14. Elijya Registered

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    ASM 400 was well done, but I also greatly appreciated the things JMS did with their relationship when she learned Peter's identity. I also thought that was very well done, so it comes down to a match between a single issue telling a good ending verus many issues telling a good relationship.
     
  15. ragingdemon155 Registered

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    no no no no no no ...

    keep that debate going on over in the other topic..stay away from here :) :p
     
  16. KingOfDreams Registered

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    Because doing otherwise could lead to stagnation.
     
  17. Gregatron Registered

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    Another "stunt".

    Another example of what I call "cathartic realism" (the creators saying the unsayable, and showing the unshowable, because the fanboys demand it).

    This is becoming more and more prevalent in today's comics.

    In all popular fiction, fans daydream about what they want to see happen with their favorite characters. However, if such fanboy daydreams/jerk-offs were ever made to pass, then the dramatic and thematic integrity of the fiction would be vastly undercut by this "realistic" catharisis (a catharsis more for the sake of the fanboys, than the characters).


    Examples (some real, some not):


    "I've always wanted to see Aunt May tell Peter she knows the truth about his double-life and then die dramatically!"

    "I've always wanted to see Superman have a final showdown with Luthor!"

    "I've always wanted to see Buffy and Spike get it on, despite the fact that they're sworn foes!"

    "I've always wanted to see Batman finally kill the Joker!"

    "I've always wanted to see Gilligan and gang get off the island for good!"

    "I've always wanted to see David Banner get busted by Jack McGee!"
     
  18. Gregatron Registered

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    To whom? Potential new readers, or the aging fanboys that have been reading the book for decades?
     
  19. Gregatron Registered

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    More cathartic realism for the fanboys to jerk-off to...
     
  20. ragingdemon155 Registered

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    whoa..relax. Breathe...

    Anyway, Elijya I agree with what you said. I do enjoy having Aunt May around now especially with her knowing Peter's secret..Then again, I enjoyed it when she didn't know either.

    If I was reading comics during the period when issue 400 came out, I think I would have wanted her to stay dead because of how beautifully written it was. Now I'm happy she's back simply cause I wasn't reading comics during that timei n the first place.
     
  21. KingOfDreams Registered

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    Let me use this as a hypothetical situation, if Spider-Man was kept as a teenager perpetually I have no doubt that Marvel would have ran out of stories to tell. Letting Aunt May die relects reality and the progression of a person's (Peter's here obviously) life and experiences. She was old and she died. That's life. Bringing her back was just cheaply reverting to the status quo. I know not everybody likes realism in comic books but I do. There's a reason why a vast majority of Silver Age comics are considered cheesy. I mean, do you really like seeing shallow characterizations?
     
  22. Gregatron Registered

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    Aunt May was not created to know and to accept Peter's secret. This violates yet another basic concept of what makes---no, made--Spider-Man tick.
     
  23. Captivated Registered

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    Oooo... that's good. :up:
     
  24. Gregatron Registered

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    Comics are supposed to be a beginning and then all middle, not "endings".
     
  25. Gregatron Registered

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    "Hypothetically", Ultimate Spider-Man is about a teenage Spider-Man, and Bendis hasn't yet run out of old stories to pillage---uh, I mean, stories to tell.
     

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