These are what we call the 'YMMV items.' Things that some people find in this work. We call them 'your mileage might vary' because not everyone sees these things in the same way. This starts discussions in the trope lists, a thing we don't want. Please use the discussion page if you'd like to discuss any of these items.
YMMV: One More Day
Abandon Shipping: Averted. Such gross mishandling has been made that Peter/Mary Jane shippers are more devoted than ever now.
The decision to give up the marriage: Heroically sacrificing love to save a life (as Quesada says), unwisely giving up love for someone who has already had a full life and is ready to move on, or stupid by default (regardless of the first two) because it was set up by a demon?
Mephisto: Trying to induce suffering on two truly in love people by destroying it? Trying to off Peter and Mary Jane's kids using the marriage excuse to throw them off? Has Deadpoolesque fourth wall breaking powers, and is doing this to piss off the fans? Or has no motivations of his own because he's just an Author Avatar for...
Joe Quesada: Genuinely trying to free up Spider-Man for new storyline possibilities (albeit through a less than satisfying manner)? Trying to live vicariously through a character he grew up with and he wishes he could be (filtered through his own view as how he should be)? Or a living incarnation of both maliciousness and hackery?
Author's Saving Throw: The original print of One More Day had a speech bubble with some miniscule text of Mary Jane whispering something to Mephisto. Magnified, this would read "I will remember everything", leaving an opening for the retcon to be retconned. This ended up being used for One Moment In Time, however, with different text.
Broken Base: Half the fanbase would like to know what the hell happened to their beloved characters. The other half would just like to forget Peter Parker ever made a pact with Satan and just enjoy the new stories. Note the base is only broken on how to react.
The stories following the reboot have certainly been Base Breakers. Some people love what the reboot has done for the series. Others still maintain a "it wasn't broken so it shouldn't have been fixed" mentality.
Others also believe that these stories could have been told without screwing up 20 years of comic book continuity.
Designated Hero: Peter makes a deal (or rather, guilt-trips Mary Jane into making a deal) with the devil to feel better about himself, despite it being healthier to accept he screwed up, despite his Aunt May's spirit telling him she is okay with dying, and despite the One-Above-All telling him to accept her death.
Note that the One-Above-All is not an expy of the omnipotent, omniscient, omnipresent Judeo-Christian God (unlike Mephisto, who is a devil expy). He literally is the omnipotent, omniscient, omnipresent Judeo-Christian God. The one that quietly devout Methodist Peter has been worshiping all his life. Yes, this character told his God to bunk off, made a deal with a greater demon, ignored all the maxims by which he's tried to live his life, and is still supposed to have our sympathy.
Dork Age: Surprisingly, Brand New Day averts this somewhat. Yes, people hate the relationship mess and want it fixed and forgotten as soon as possible, but for the most part people are willing to take the other retools (such as updating the classic rogues gallery and trying out some new villains) and judge them on their own merits. Some hope these changes will be carried over once the marriage comes back.
Family-Unfriendly Aesop: So when you follow a fascist's (Iron Man as he was then being written) suggestion to do away with keeping your superhero personality a secret and suffer the foreseeable consequences, you accept you made a mistake and — oh wait, you sacrifice your loving wife and marriage TO THE DEVIL because you can't accept responsibility? Wait even the editor thinks it's better than divorce? WHAT THE HELL!?
And One Moment In Time has taught us that marriage is ultimately unimportant because you only need to do so if you plan to have kids. Because without kids, a marriage is just words on paper.
Also at one point Peter meets his future daughter if he stayed married with Mary Jane. The Unfortunate Implication is that when he took Mephisto's deal, he essentially aborted his unborn child. Though in his defense he only found out who she after the deal was made and it's doubtful that Mephisto (being you know, the devil) would allow him to break the deal after going through with it.
Looking back on all this, I think it would have made for an intriguing, compelling, thought-provoking story... but not anything that should ever be done in a Spider-Man comic. In fact, what's so blatant to me now is how Spider-Man is completely overshadowed by the events of this story - he's little more than a plot device, a pawn. And that's not what the readers want to see. Hell, it's not what I would want to see, either!
And for the record, this comment was made beforeOne More Day occurred. Start laughing or weeping, true believers!
Harsher in Hindsight: Remember how Joe Quesada infamously said that people who wanted Mary Jane and Peter Parker to stick together would advocate for the latter to "grow old and die"? Towards the end of The Amazing Spider Man comic book, he does just that - albiet in the body and consciousness of Doctor Octopus, who takes over his form.
Idiot Plot: The sheer idiocy displayed by the entire Marvel Universe sans Mephisto is maddening, especially since many heroes who have been able to solve far more absurd, unworldly problems, cannot fix something so simple as a bullet wound.
Mephisto is an idiot as well. He gains absolutely nothing by this petty act of vindictiveness. Sure, he's a Prince of Hell, and Evil Is Petty is expected, but this doesn't even cause that much damage; when you consider that he is the premier Satanic Archetype of this world, its Poke the Poodle territory compared to whathecouldbedoing (he's long had this problem, but this is a career low). Moreover, his claim that trying to buy the soul of a hero who makes a Heroic Sacrifice is a hollow victory (because they "suffer righteously" knowing that their deal did some good), retroactively makes him more of an idiot because a vast number of his schemes have been attempts to do just that.
Or another take on Quesada's statements is that she's the hero because Mephisto is denied his prize thanks to her - which would have also happened if she didn't take the deal in the first place. (Also, it shouldn't be that easy to Scam the Devil.)
Narm: "Tune your ear to the frequency of despair, and cross-reference with the latitude and longitude of a heart in agony. Listen. Listen." It's the narration of the first panel, so at least they warned you what you were getting into.
Special mention has to go to how Peter expresses his despair when giving up his marriage, when he knows he must lose something that has so much value to him - "NYRAAARGH!"
Notably, one of the goals of this was to make Peter single again so they could explore him further as a character. Carlie however, is introduced immediately at the end of OMD following the marriage being erased, with everything being all too obvious that she would Peter's "new girl". So much for exploring him as a free man...
In mid-2010, Marvel released a one-shot called The Many Loves of the Amazing Spider-Man. The cover featured Gwen Stacy, Felicia Hardy, Mary Jane Watson-Parker, and... Carlie Cooper. This was well before the two even went on a date at that!
On one of the variant covers for Issue 700 of ASM, all of Peter's major loves are included in a shot on the moon behind him...Carlie is among them (despite Carlie being one of Peter's more short-lived interests, as ASM writer Dan Slott broke them up in 2011 after barely a year had gone by)
Running the Asylum: The MO is Quesada reversing Spider-Man's marriage to Mary-Jane, which happened when he was a young man.
Shipping Bed Death: Joe Quesada's exact reasoning for this storyline was that Peter being single would open doors to more interest storylines than a Peter who was tied down. Detractors have argued that, relationships aside, every story told after OMD could still have been told with a married Peter.
They Just Didn't Care: In his review of the comic, Linkara points out that JMS and Quesada's biggest crimes were that they just didn't put any effort into trying to tell a coherent story. There were ways that could have made OMD at least interesting or understandable or even good, but the writers opted for the easy way out.
They Wasted a Perfectly Good Plot: Mary Jane's concerns in OMIT about Spider-Man being trouble for Peter and his loved ones are pretty valid. If she had voiced them after Aunt May got shot, then we might have had a decent breakup story instead of all this magic retcon nonsense.
Also, what was really baffling was why Aunt May was the one who was shot. Logically, the story would have made sense if Mary Jane was the victim, putting Peter in a Morton's Fork situation where he would have to decide to save her life at the cost of their marriage, or let her die but still keep his memories of her.
Early in JMS' run, Spidey had an encounter with Loki that ended with the Norse god saying he now owed Spiderman a favour that he could collect whenever he wished. Loki isn't exactly Mister Trustworthy but he is a much less treacherous character than Mephisto and it would have been a more acceptable solution as well as a decent bit of Canon Welding if Spidey had went to him instead.
True Art Is Angsty: Somebody clearly believes that "happy equals boring.'' Just look at the quote for Narm up above.
Villain Decay: As the Escapists The Big Picture puts it, what does the Devil get out of this, other then the satisfaction of erasing some wedding pictures from existence? Plus his actions brought Harry Osborn back, giving a damned soul a chance at redemption and a better life. As one troper put it, "Methinks that Mephisto would cure cancer just to hear a doctor grumbling about losing work". Furthermore, according to Quesada under the Canon Discontinuity section in the main page, Mephisto lost to someone who had no idea what she was doing.
Word of God is that Harry would have come back regardless of what Mephisto did (on account of Not Quite Dead being in play); which makes Mephisto less foolish in that area, but also means that his deal looks like it had no effect whatsoever- which, as Word of God also says, it didn't. Mephisto literally did nothing except undo the marriage- everything else, even saving Aunt May and his secret identity being forgotten by everyone, was done by other characters. Considering that Mephisto canonically defeated Doctor Doomevery single year for X number of years when the latter fought to reclaim his mothers soul (and Mephisto managed to even turn that into a Bittersweet Ending)...yeah, Villain Decay doesn't begin to describe this. He has just been turned into a plot device to cause an ultimately very minor shift in the status quo.
What an Idiot: Why would Mary Jane agree to sell her marriage to the devil?