Marvel set to kill Spider-Man and bring back his most vilified character – Inside the Magic
Any Marvel fan knows that in Marvel Comics any character can die at any time, but they don’t stay dead for long. Especially after the original Marvel series Loki streaming Wednesdays on Disney +, now even the MCU’s death might not make sense.
But that doesn’t make it any less tragic when Marvel kills a character fans adore like Peter Parker. Especially when it means they can have one that they hate in the meantime.
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Marvel Comics has hinted that Peter Parker’s time as Spider-Man may be coming to an end. The recently released cover art for Amazing Spider-Man # 76 by Arthur Adams and written by Nick Spencer shows Mary Jane Watson sitting at his bedside as the web-slinger clings to life.
Marvel has ushered in a new “Beyond” era for Spider-Man. And they mean beyond Peter Parker who isn’t long for the Marvel Universe. Instead, Spider-Man’s mantle will go to a controversial choice – Ben Reilly, the current Scarlet Spider.
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Who is Ben Reilly?
Ben Reilly is a Peter Parker clone created by Miles Warren aka Jackal introduced in The saga of the clones (1973). Jackal blamed Peter Parker for the death of Gwen Stacy at the hands of Norman Osborn aka the Green Goblin. Miles was a professor at Empire State University, and he fell in love with Gwen while she was his student.
Jackal created a clone of Peter Parker to fight him, but the clone turned against the Jackal. Jackal sets off a bomb and one of the Peter Parker dies, but it’s unclear who lived – the original or the clone. For a while this story was forgotten until 1994 when The saga of the clones start again.
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Then it was revealed that the Spider-Man that fans have been following and loving for twenty years was not Peter Parker at all but the clone. The clone took the name Ben Reilly and lived in exile for five years before returning as the Scarlet Spider.
Ben Reilly was once Spider-Man in Marvel Comics. After Peter Parker was tried for murder, Ben took his place. Peter then decided to leave New York and Ben took the Mantel. He also died and was later resurrected – seriously, no one stays dead for long.
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So why do Marvel fans hate Ben Reilly?
If you weren’t reading the Spider-Man comics back in the 1990s, you might have missed the aftermath of The saga of the clones. To say that it was poorly received is an understatement. Even Marvel admits it in the official description of the event on its website:
No Spider story was as innovative or infamous as the Clone Saga of the 1990s – and now you can read it in full! Spider-Man faces the strangest event of his superhero career: the return of his perfect clone. But does Peter Parker’s carbon copy represent his dark side… or his better half? Twists abound on one of Marvel’s most historic and talked about events!
Infamous is a generous way of putting it. There are lists of things that are wrong with it The saga of the clones.
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The saga of the clones came at a time when Marvel was on the verge of declaring bankruptcy. They had lost most of their editorial staff and the writers were trying to expand Spider-Man’s storyline as it was one of the few with decent sales at the time. They made the event last three years.
The reception can be summed up by Reddit user Mugenhunt who said:
Basically, the plot never ended. They kept dragging it for longer and longer, adding twist upon twist upon twist, until it all didn’t make sense. Is Peter the clone, or is Ben the clone? Who is the real bad guy responsible? The entire plot fell apart in the end, and although it was popular at first, fans soured by how long it lasted and the obvious “We Make It Up As It Goes” nature. “of the Turnaround.
Some of the links like Maximum cloning introduced even more clones which created confusion. And, a lot of character designs have been found to be horrific – especially Judas Traveler’s. The traveler was so badly received that he has not been since The saga of the clones finished.
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same Spider-Man: The Animated Series didn’t care when they adapted the script and called the first episode “I really, really hate clones.” They even pointed out to Peter saying “It’s starting to sound like a bad comic book plot.
Characters like Ben Reilly still carry the stigma of The saga of the clones nowadays. Ben has slowly grown up among Marvel fans as time goes on since the event ended in 1997. But you don’t have to worry about seeing Ben as Spider-Man in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. anytime soon. Sony Pictures currently owns the rights to Scarlet Spider.
Meanwhile, other versions of Marvel’s wall robot like Ultimate Spider-Man Miles Morales have grown in popularity.
Do you hate Ben Reilly or have you never heard of him? Let us know in the comments.