Nov 30, 2020

Spider-Rama: Amazing Spider-Man #137

Welcome to Spider-Rama! Every Monday and Wednesday, Ben and Duy will look at a Spider-Man issue from the very beginning, in chronological order, and answer questions for various categories, inspired in large part by one of our favorite podcasts, The Rewatchables by The Ringer. Our goal is to make it to Amazing Spider-Man #200. Will we make it? Grab your Amazing Spider-Man Omnibus or crank up your tablet to Marvel Unlimited, and then tune in every Wednesday to find out!

AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #135
by Gerry Conway, Ross Andru, Frank Giacoia, and Dave Hunt

Harry Osborn has kidnapped Mary Jane, Aunt May, and Flash Thompson!



POINTLESS TRIVIA
 
BEN: Villain appearance count:
  • Doctor Octopus: 17
  • Green Goblin: 13
  • The Kingpin: 12
  • The Vulture: 9
  • Kraven the Hunter: 8
  • The Lizard: 7
  • Mysterio: 6
  • Professor Smythe/Spider Slayer: 6
  • Hammerhead: 5
  • Sandman: 4
  • Molten Man: 4
  • Electro: 3
  • The Enforcers: 3
  • The Rhino: 3
  • Man Mountain Marko: 3
  • Silvermane: 3
  • The Chameleon: 3
  • The Schemer/Richard Fisk: 3
  • The Ringmaster: 2
  • Scorpion: 2
  • Shocker: 2
  • The Beetle: 2
  • Morbius: 2
  • The Gibbon: 2
  • The Man-Wolf: 2
  • Jonas Harrow: 2
  • The Kangaroo: 2
  • The Jackal: 2
  • Tarantula: 2
  • Green Goblin (Harry): 2
DUY: I just realized, Liz never met Gwen. We're only allowed one blonde each time.

BEN: Ironic she returns to the series during Harry’s big breakdown. (They get married later, spoilers.) Too bad she got saddled with him.

WHAT'S AGED THE BEST? 

BEN: This is a much smoother way to tell May to stop worrying, but I still appreciate Gwen telling her off before too.


DUY: MJ telling May off nicely was definitely a conscious choice by Conway.

BEN: This is actually a clever way to resolve the secret identity problem.


DUY: That's a great final panel too. Conway loved his ambiguity. But I get that everyone just thinks Harry is insane, yeah, but what if he actually provides proof?

BEN: What proof does he have?

DUY: "Check his closet, here's when he's not home." or "Check under his shirt."

WHAT'S AGED THE WORST? 

DUY: Nope, so much for your good cover streak. Kane would provide some good covers, and I would guess they were heavily art directed and inked. This is not one of them.

BEN: Kane managed to be a part of some legendary Spider-Man comics, which is why he’s considered an important part of the character’s history. Unfortunately, he was the worst aspect of all of those comics.

DUY: I give all the credit of 121 and 122 now to Romita inking, since we've seen unfiltered Kane.

BEN: On another note... First of all, Jonah is smoking in a hospital. Second, he and Robbie took a whole morning off for MJ, who they barely know? Third, Liz looks great. Fourth, those should be marijuana leaves on her pants. 


DUY: Why is Flash on this list of people closest to Peter, and really, a nuclear bomb???



BEN: Nolan stole this for The Dark Knight.

NITPICKS

BEN: Okay, Conway has gone to this well way too often recently.



DUY: It's funny how the Goblin mask takes on the same shape regardless of whether it's Norman or Harry wearing it.

BEN: Why is Harry being carted away if he’s not in costume? As far as the cops know, Peter invaded his home.

FAVORITE PANEL

BEN: Damn straight:



DUY: THUMP!




WHO WON THE COMIC?

DUY: Gonna go with Spider-Man himself. It's a good showcase for him.

BEN: Liz's pants.

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Nov 29, 2020

Bill Sienkiewicz 3-Hour Career-Spanning Interview

Bill Sienkiewicz and Duy Tano had a three-hour conversation that covered a lot of his career, including the influence of Neal Adams (1:05), breaking into Marvel with a portfolio of DC characters (13:15), putting Moon Knight and himself on the map (16:59), the alternate universe where he gets into DC instead of Marvel first (22:39), inking over Jim Aparo and Sal Buscema on Batman and Spider-Man (29:37), learning from Doug Moench (36:58), why Duy couldn't find more Bill Sienkiewicz work when he first discovered it on the cover of The Dark Phoenix Saga (45:40), changing the face of comics with the New Mutants (46:59), thoughts on Jim Shooter (55:35), working with Chris Claremont (1:03:20), and working with Frank Miller on Daredevil: Love and War and Elektra: Assassin (1:09:55), how he decides on which style to use for any piece (1:32:15), working with Alan Moore on the unfinished Big Numbers (1:40:25), whether he got in trouble with the government for Brought to Light (1:56:42), clears the air about him, Art Spiegelman, and the melting pot of comics (2:01:04), Voodoo Child: The Illustrated Legend of Jimi Hendrix, and how he was personally recommended by Will Eisner (2:12:00), his work for various musicians like EPMD, Kid Cudi, Bruce Cockburn, and Roger Waters (2:20:04), working with Neil Gaiman on the Delirium story for Sandman: Endless Nights (2:24:11), inking Denys Cowan (2:28:20), his portraits of people who have passed away (2:33:50), the butt challenge (2:39:19), how he is as a writer and what's up with Stray Toasters (2:44:17), how he thinks of his legacy in relation to other artists (2:50:56), and what's up for the future (3:03:50)
    


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Moon Knight: https://amzn.to/36cTfnU New Mutants: https://amzn.to/3lSbpAD Elektra: Assassin: https://amzn.to/2IX32p2 Daredevil Love and War: https://amzn.to/392NsmP Dune: https://amzn.to/3nHiULk Big Numbers (what there is of it): https://amzn.to/35NqPAK https://amzn.to/35NqPAK Brought to Light: https://amzn.to/3kKLqK8 Voodoo Child: The Illustrated Legend of Jimi Hendrix: https://amzn.to/3pNprpF EPMD: Business as Usual: https://amzn.to/3m4yUa1 Kid Cudi: Man on the Moon: The End of Day https://amzn.to/3nEoRbK Bruce Cockburn: Charity of Night: https://amzn.to/2IUbx4e Sandman: Endless Nights: https://amzn.to/3pR0tFK The Question: The Many Deaths of Vic Sage: https://amzn.to/3lRJUY2 Stray Toasters: https://amzn.to/3nObSEr Bill Sienkiewicz: Revolution: https://amzn.to/336rxr0

Nov 26, 2020

Spider-Rama: Amazing Spider-Man #136

Welcome to Spider-Rama! Every Monday and Wednesday, Ben and Duy will look at a Spider-Man issue from the very beginning, in chronological order, and answer questions for various categories, inspired in large part by one of our favorite podcasts, The Rewatchables by The Ringer. Our goal is to make it to Amazing Spider-Man #200. Will we make it? Grab your Amazing Spider-Man Omnibus or crank up your tablet to Marvel Unlimited, and then tune in every Wednesday to find out!

AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #136
by Gerry Conway, Ross Andru, Frank Giacoia, and Dave Hunt

Harry Osborn becomes the new Green Goblin!



POINTLESS TRIVIA
 
BEN: Harry Osborn becomes the second Green Goblin. Sorry, spoiler.

DUY: Holy cow. This is one of my first comics ever and I didn't even realize it. Cover torn off, missing pages, some pages ripped. But one of my first ever..

BEN: Peter quits his staff photog job at the Bugle.

DUY: Inasmuch as Ditko's run centered around Ock, and Romita's was around the Kingpin, Conway's has been — and will remain — all about the ghosts of Gwen and Norman.

WHAT'S AGED THE BEST? 

BEN: This is another iconic Spider-Man cover.

DUY: I always enjoyed this sequence. Peter looks like a detective. I like the methodical pace of it. He's a better detective than Batman.


BEN: Peter being a detective is good, but the idea of Harry covering his tracks to that degree is dumb.

DUY: Harry as the Goblin is going to be a major highlight, for me, of the married Spider-Man era, and the seeds start here.

BEN: I guess Peter and MJ are officially dating now.


WHAT'S AGED THE WORST? 

DUY: I honestly never like these. How many times has Spider-Man lived only because of a lucky break?


BEN: The idea that Harry could hold his own without the goblin serum is not believable.

NITPICKS

BEN: The flow of the caption boxes doesn’t follow the flow of the pictures at the bottom here.


DUY: You did not know each other in high school!


BEN: That is really perplexing. I can’t see Roy Thomas consistently missing these errors, so were they trying to rewrite Peter and MJ’s history?

DUY: If you look at it from a Parallel Lives retcon perspective, this could have been an MJ Freudian slip.

BEN: She watched him from a distance. Like a stalker.

FAVORITE PANEL

BEN: Andru does good Goblin:


DUY: This will not be the last time Peter looks at Mary Jane and remembers Gwen:


WHO WON THE COMIC?

DUY: The ghost of Norman Osborn.

BEN: I guess Harry, even though most subsequent writers didn’t seem to like him as the Goblin.

DUY: One of the best Spider-Man writers ever did. Or will. 

Leave us a comment below or on our Facebook page. And be sure to subscribe to our YouTube channel! Go watch our Spider-Rama videos!

Spider-Rama: Marvel Team-Up #25

Welcome to Spider-Rama! Every Monday and Wednesday, Ben and Duy will look at a Spider-Man issue from the very beginning, in chronological order, and answer questions for various categories, inspired in large part by one of our favorite podcasts, The Rewatchables by The Ringer. Our goal is to make it to Amazing Spider-Man #200. Will we make it? Grab your Amazing Spider-Man Omnibus or crank up your tablet to Marvel Unlimited, and then tune in every Wednesday to find out!

MARVEL TEAM-UP #25
by Len Wein, Jim Mooney, and Frank Giacoia

Spider-Man and Daredevil vs. The Unholy Trio of Cat-Man, Bird-Man, and Ape Man!



WHAT'S AGED THE BEST? 

BEN: Daredevil will be one of Spider-Man’s closest superhero allies, so that will age well. This unfortunately also continues the annoying trend of Daredevil knowing more about every situation than Spider-Man, so it technically ages well, but I hate it

DUY: Uh, I guess Daredevil in general has aged well.

BEN: I like that Spider-Man has been in enough fights to think critically about them.




WHAT'S AGED THE WORST? 

BEN: “Ladel out?”



DUY: This comic is literally half-flashback.

NITPICKS

DUY: There's really no way Matt should be able to stand up after this.



BEN: I know the whole ‘danger from a friend” is an established reason his spider sense doesn’t work, but it never makes sense. Except I guess in this case, since Daredevil truly didn’t mean him harm.



FAVORITE PANEL

BEN: Mine:



DUY: Mine:




WHO WON THE COMIC?

DUY: Matt?

BEN: Half-animal people everywhere, bask in your moment.

Leave us a comment below or on our Facebook page. And be sure to subscribe to our YouTube channel! Go watch our Spider-Rama videos!

Spider-Rama: Marvel Team-Up #24

Welcome to Spider-Rama! Every Monday and Wednesday, Ben and Duy will look at a Spider-Man issue from the very beginning, in chronological order, and answer questions for various categories, inspired in large part by one of our favorite podcasts, The Rewatchables by The Ringer. Our goal is to make it to Amazing Spider-Man #200. Will we make it? Grab your Amazing Spider-Man Omnibus or crank up your tablet to Marvel Unlimited, and then tune in every Wednesday to find out!

MARVEL TEAM-UP #24
by Len Wein, Jim Mooney, and Sal Trapani

Spider-Man and Brother Voodoo vs. Moondog!



POINTLESS TRIVIA
 
BEN: The previous issue of Marvel Team-Up featured The Human Torch and Iceman against Equinox, with an appearance by the rest of the X-Men. Spider-Man only made a brief cameo appearance, so we didn’t cover it.

DUY: I really do have to wonder why Johnny wasn't seen fit to have his own ongoing, if they were going to have him be the backup anchor of the book.

BEN: The first and only appearance of Moondog.

WHAT'S AGED THE BEST? 

BEN: One of the complaints among a current group of bitter malcontent “fans” is that Marvel has too much “forced diversity.” What they don’t understand is that diversity, or the lack of it, is a choice made by writers and artists, and it’s a choice Marvel had steadily been making since the early days of the Silver Age. Everything in a fictional story is forced, because it’s not real. Part of introducing a new diverse character, is making sure the fans will like them, so they will want to see more of them. You have to hype them up a bit, is what I’m saying. This was true of all the characters Stan, Jack, and Steve created too. Stan hyped up Spider-Man in every issue. Every new character, no matter what race, has that mountain to climb when they’re created. There are subtle ways to do this, like Spider-Man talking up Brother Voodoo in his thought balloons here, and less subtle, like everything Roger Stern would later do with Monica Rambeau. Regardless, all approaches are necessary, because diversity is necessary. I said it before, Marvel has been a force for diversity since the ‘60s, it’s just that some of you didn’t notice.



DUY: Spider-Man really puts Brother Voodoo over in that panel. Yeah, diversity has always been a Marvel specialty. I'm sure bigots complained about these back then too.

BEN: This is a good "drifting off" effect.


WHAT'S AGED THE WORST? 

BEN: The name Brother Voodoo might be drifting too much into stereotype. Which might be why they changed it to Doctor Voodoo in recent years.

DUY: I want to say anything related to the African race has aged badly here, but those were necessary steps for the times.

NITPICKS

DUY: I know this has to do with voodoo, but c'mon, yet another mind control plot? Also, I'm almost positive there's no way one marker is going to have enough ink for this.



FAVORITE PANEL

BEN: Mooney looked like he enjoyed drawing Voodoo more than Spider-Man:


DUY: I'll say the Jameson vandalism splash up in the Nitpicks section.

WHO WON THE COMIC?

DUY: Brother Voodoo.

BEN: Brother Voodoo.

Leave us a comment below or on our Facebook page. And be sure to subscribe to our YouTube channel! Go watch our Spider-Rama videos!

Spider-Rama: Amazing Spider-Man #135

Welcome to Spider-Rama! Every Monday and Wednesday, Ben and Duy will look at a Spider-Man issue from the very beginning, in chronological order, and answer questions for various categories, inspired in large part by one of our favorite podcasts, The Rewatchables by The Ringer. Our goal is to make it to Amazing Spider-Man #200. Will we make it? Grab your Amazing Spider-Man Omnibus or crank up your tablet to Marvel Unlimited, and then tune in every Wednesday to find out!

AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #135
by Gerry Conway, Ross Andru, and Frank Giacoia

As if the Tarantula weren't enough, Spider-Man now has to deal with The Punisher!




POINTLESS TRIVIA
 
BEN: Villain appearance count:
  • Doctor Octopus: 17
  • Green Goblin: 13
  • The Kingpin: 12
  • The Vulture: 9
  • Kraven the Hunter: 8
  • The Lizard: 7
  • Mysterio: 6
  • Professor Smythe/Spider Slayer: 6
  • Hammerhead: 5
  • Sandman: 4
  • Molten Man: 4
  • Electro: 3
  • The Enforcers: 3
  • The Rhino: 3
  • Man Mountain Marko: 3
  • Silvermane: 3
  • The Chameleon: 3
  • The Schemer/Richard Fisk: 3
  • The Ringmaster: 2
  • Scorpion: 2
  • Shocker: 2
  • The Beetle: 2
  • Morbius: 2
  • The Gibbon: 2
  • The Man-Wolf: 2
  • Jonas Harrow: 2
  • The Kangaroo: 2
  • The Jackal: 2
  • Tarantula: 2
DUY: The second full appearance of the Punisher.

BEN: Harry confirms his suspicions in a very memorable sequence.




WHAT'S AGED THE BEST? 

BEN: I feel like this is an iconic Spider-Man cover.

DUY: Same.

BEN: This panel is a metaphor for what superhero comics would become in the ‘80s. The idealism of the ‘60s heroes, crossing paths with the more violent anti-heroes of the ‘80s.


WHAT'S AGED THE WORST? 

BEN: Haven’t you already learned Spider-Man isn’t what his reputation says he is, Frank?



DUY: I've read that Marvel in many ways was actually stricter than the Comics Code Authority, and one of those in-company rules was no mentioning of the word "Hell." So here's literary Punisher.



BEN: It would have been funny it Punisher shot and killed Tarantula while he was monologuing here.


NITPICKS

BEN: I’m going to keep tracking how the Parallel Lives retcon tracks with the actual comics. (Parallel Lives was a 1989 graphic novel that established that Mary Jane knew Peter was Spider-Man before she even met him.) Yes, I do know retcons change what happened in previous comics, so the events as seen here could have altered. Anyway, this could read as Mary Jane pushing Flash to suspect why Peter disappeared before Spider-Man appeared, which would be a crappy thing to do.




DUY: Does Peter normally take showers with the bathroom door open?


BEN: You don't?


FAVORITE PANEL

BEN: Mine:


DUY: Anytime Peter beats up the Punisher, it's a great panel.



BEN: It should never even be a contest, but yes.

WHO WON THE COMIC?

DUY: The Punisher.

BEN: Frank continues his path to superstardom.

Leave us a comment below or on our Facebook page. And be sure to subscribe to our YouTube channel! Go watch our Spider-Rama videos!