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Spider-Man is Spider-Fun! By Marco Mañalac

A couple of weeks ago, Donald Glover (who I prefer calling by his rapper nickname Childish Gambino) made noise in Hollywood when it was announced that he will be playing a top-secret role in the upcoming Spider-Man: Homecoming movie. The obvious conclusion would be that the star will play the role that he has been campaigning for since a few years back. He’s always wanted the chance to play the live-action Spider-Man, most probably as Miles Morales. And I would be totally cool with that. It makes sense since even in the comic book universe, Marvel is working hard to establish Miles Morales as an equally important, if not flagship, Spider-Man as compared to Peter Parker. I don’t know how exactly they’ll fit Miles in, since he’ll have to be established as significantly older than Peter Parker because of the actor’s real age and appearance. This would be opposite of the mentorship role that Peter Parker now has with Miles in the comics. But whatever the plan, we should all be anticipating these big changes that are coming to the web of life.
In this week’s Spider-Man issue 5, Miles Morales went head-to-head with Hammerhead. It was an entertaining fight which forced Miles to use his additional spider-powers more than once. His ability to sting people with his touch and to quite literally explode in a big burst of spider-energy are coming in really handy lately. Miles was able to capture Hammerhead, but the bigger prey got away. Black Cat, the new Kingpin of Crime in New York City, was able to escape Miles, but not without giving him a warning not to mess with her or her criminal operations. I’m still quite uneasy about Black Cat being a full-time criminal. I hope she finds redemption soon, and I hope either Peter or Miles will be able to convert her to the Light Side once again. It’s a bit exaggerated how she turned completely heel just because she felt scorned and betrayed by Peter Parker. She has to come to her senses some time. Although I love how her bad luck powers are still a factor. It even helped her elude Miles Morales in the issue’s big chase scene.
The big surprise at the end of issue 5 was that Miles’ dad is an agent of S.H.I.E.L.D. once again. And this is big, because already we see how S.H.I.E.L.D. is able to intimidate and scare away big names like Black Cat or Hammerhead. Miles’ connection to the world peacekeeping task-force made Hammerhead think twice about picking on the new kid.
Speaking of new kids, Spider-Gwen is also having a bangin’ good time in her universe. This week’s Spider-Gwen Annual featured the lighter side of our favourite female web-slinger. We’ve been used to the dark, emo side of Spider-Gwen, with all that has been happening in her life lately. She had to deal with Peter Parker turning into the Lizard, and eventually dying. And more recently, she had to encounter Harry Osborn going Green Goblin crazy-mode. She’s also been going thru a lot of personal turmoil with her dad and the strain that her superhero career puts on their relationship. Plus, don’t forget the teen drama she has to balance when it comes to her rock band. So it’s a good thing Marvel took the fun, light approach this week. My favourite short story in the Annual was when the Watcher kept on demanding for drama from Gwen’s band. He was criticizing their lifestyles and making these harsh judgements about the youth of today. But when the band found out about him, they just pepper-sprayed his eyes and punished him for his creepiness. It’s not an essential tale at all but it was a fun read.
But the fun doesn’t stop with Spider-Gwen. This week also released the latest issue of Spider-Man/ Deadpool. The plot focused on Deadpool recruiting Spider-Man to help him make the Deadpool movie a reality. It was another amusing bromance tale that made a lot of fun about everything ranging from Deadpool himself, to Spider-Man and his multiple film incarnations, to the X-Men movie franchise, and to the very polarizing and controversial Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice. It’s all fair play of course, since Deadpool makes fun of everybody and everything anyway. It’s really a filler issue and has no relevance to the bigger arc that is currently being played out in the pages of Spider-Man/Deadpool. So even if you haven’t been following the series, feel free to pick up this latest issue for a rockin’ good time.
As things go deeper and deeper into Civil War II mode, this week was a nice breather from all the seriousness happening in the Marvel Universe and Spider-Family. And yeah… there’s still “Dead No More” right guys? Dun dun dun!

(When he’s not out on the streets saving the world from made-up villains, Marco Manalac is usually surfing the internet. Follow him on Twitter @marcomanalac. Email him at marco.manalac@gmail.com)


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