Comics Absorbing Influences from Other Media

Discussion in 'Science Fiction & Fantasy' started by Lapis Exilis, Oct 10, 2008.

  1. Hermiod

    Hermiod Admiral Admiral

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    ^Whereas early in Brand New Day they made a point of saying he'd run out of money to buy the chemicals needed to make more.
     
  2. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Well, of course BND resets the whole continuity, including wiping the whole organic-webshooter thing out of existence, so it's beyond the purview of my comments, which were about how the comics used (or failed to use) the idea during the time when it was supposed to be in-continuity.
     
  3. Technobuilder

    Technobuilder Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I keep hoping BND gets retconned. Mary Jane one ups Mephisto somehow and things go back to the way they were before.

    Now whether or not that means that Spidey's secret is still out or not... who's to say, but for the love of God, he's married, he's a teacher, and his Aunt is Dead.

    Let Peter grow up already.
     
  4. Hermiod

    Hermiod Admiral Admiral

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    ^I, for one, liked the changes JMS made to Peter's life. I liked him being a science teacher, it suits him. Also, Aunt May finding out was written brilliantly. After he initial shock, I loved it when she started writing letters to Jameson demanding he treat Spider-Man better. JMS-era Aunt May was great.
     
  5. mostlyharmless

    mostlyharmless Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Superman is looking quite Brandon Routhy in the books these days...
     
  6. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Absolutely. It's criminal to undo all that terrific character growth. Even if I agreed with breaking up the marriage (which I emphatically don't), I would've objected to them throwing out all the other cool stuff along with it. Aunt May as Peter's confidante was wonderful. It was the best thing that had been done with that character since... well, just about ever.
     
  7. LaxScrutiny

    LaxScrutiny Commodore Commodore

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    I've happily suspended my disbelief for 40 years that I've been a Spidey fan.

    That said, unless he makes his web fluid out of a mix of hairspray and toothpaste, the idea that he is always nearly broke, scrambling to make the rent, pay May's hospital bills etc, doen't jive with having unlimited web fluid.

    Moreover, how the hell did he make his web shooters? I'm a decent mechanic, I have a back room full of tools, but there's no way I could make those from scratch, much less find stock parts somewhere that I could modify.

    For me, the ideal retcon would a mix of things they've tried. Peter creates his own web fluid in a gland in his body. Maybe his arse, but we don't have to know. But he has no way to shoot the stuff 40 or 50 feet.

    Uncle Ben was a mechanical engineer who liked to putter around in his garage. He was making a device to spray, let's say paint, to do the side of the house easier when he was up on the ladder.

    After Ben dies, Pete finds his little inventions and fills them up with web fluid.

    Pete is a chemist, not an engineer, and is able to use his biological fluid in experiments to make different kinds of webbing by adding different solvents. The solvents are cheap and easy to come by, but in a pinch he can run to the bathroom and refill his cartridges with standard webbing.
     
  8. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    ^^Umm... ick. Somehow I don't think comics readers in the 1960s would've been too comfortable with the idea of a superhero leaving his own bodily secretions dangling off of buildings all over the city. Heck, I'm not too comfortable with that.

    The comics' explanation is that Peter isn't just a clever tinkerer, he's a genius. He has a gift for scientific invention.
     
  9. LaxScrutiny

    LaxScrutiny Commodore Commodore

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    Then, like Reed Richards and Tony Stark, they should show him actually inventing things.
    The character they show on a regular basis doesn't have that capability.

    Like I said, it doesn't have to be in his arse. The organic web shooters in his forearms shown in the movie are bodily secretions BTW. There's just no capacity in nature to "shoot" webs that distance, or the relative distance for something a spider's size. So I can see him loading up a mechanical spray device with his own web fluid, but not his body spraying it more than a few inches.

    Anyway, I'll go back to suspending my disbelief.
     
  10. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    He did when Stan Lee wrote the comic, and often thereafter. Not only did Peter invent the webfluid, the webfluid cartridges, the webshooters, the spider-tracers, the tracer launcher, the tracer tracking device, the improved tracers that he could track directly with his spider-sense, and other paraphernalia, but he was often shown to whip up a special chemical formula or gadget when needed to defeat a bad guy -- such as the formula he whipped up that let him dissolve the Rhino's armor in their first encounter. Later on, in the early '80s comics, I believe, he came up with improved webshooters that were plastic rather than metal (to get around metal detectors) and had LED indicators to let him know when his web cartridges were running low.

    (And then, of course, there was the time when he designed and built the Spider-Mobile... but we don't want to get into that.)

    It's always been an intrinsic part of Spidey's character that he solves problems with his intelligence and creativity, not just with muscle and superpowers. That's one of my favorite things about the character, and one of the things that makes him a great role model for younger audiences -- a hero who shows the power of science and imagination.
     
  11. Technobuilder

    Technobuilder Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I'd have to agree with the both of you and I for one really liked May as finally being able to really talk to and get to know Peter after all those years of him "protecting her through lies of omission" and her "worrying about him growing up right".

    Sadly they chose to tear down everything that had been built up. Now do I want May dead... No. She's too good a character to just discard without a reason.

    BUT

    If they (decide to) kill her, then she should be dead thereafter and not coming back all the time. Consequences are what Spider-Man has always been about. And without them, the book is lost.

    The threat of a death or even better the "belief" of death works just as well, yet has none of those pesky demonic reality warping powers involved in rebooting continuity to deal with.
     
    Last edited: Oct 14, 2008
  12. The Old Mixer

    The Old Mixer Clean Old Mod Moderator

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    AIR, he handed that one off to Johhny Storm mostly.