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YMMV / Dan Slott's Spider-Man

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  • Arc Fatigue: In retrospect, while fans will debate which arc was actually the peak of Dan Slott's run, all will agree that the overall run lasted longer than it needed to. Not helping this belief is that Slott came out after the fact and admitted that part of his motivation for continuing to write the book was for the chance of being the longest continuing writer for Spider-Man. note 
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  • Awesome Art: From "Worldwide" onwards, Alex Ross provided cover art for the main series. As a plus, this means we get to see Ross showing us his painterly take on Venom.
  • Base-Breaking Character: Anna Marie Marconi, Otto's love interest. Some fans love her for being a well-written minority character that isn't defined by her status. Others regard her as a Mary Sue pet character of Slott's who basically steals focus from established characters, and takes away aspects from Spider-Man himself, all in the vein to make her look better by comparison. Oh boy, and at least under Slott's pen, Comic Book/Silk was a beast unto herself.
  • Broken Base: Oh so much. Whether Slott's run is better than the JMS run or worse (see YMMV pages of his major run for more detail).
    • The later Spider-Man stories have Peter serving as a businessman and owner of his own industries which many argue, 1) undoes Peter's original Working-Class Hero appeal, 2) is unearned, since it came from Otto Octavious hijacking his body, 3) Should the Status Quo assert itself again (i.e. Peter goes back to being poor) would make him a bigger Failure Hero than usualnote . On the other hand, fans of these stories argue that Peter is finally living to his full potential and that he should be allowed to have status quos that are nothing like his 20th Century status quos since fictional characters can grow and change (after all, the major controversy of One More Day was how it blithely erased decades of development) and since the spy and corporate intrigue elements of the current series are entertaining and, for Spider-Man, fresh.
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    • Issue #31 brought a whole new controversy when Peter decides to tear down Parker Industries and all of its subsidiaries to keep it out of the hands of Hydra and Doctor Octopus. Some fans herald it is a return to the good old days of web-slinging for the little guy and the loss of a fortune that Peter didn't earn. Others are annoyed at the fact that Status Quo Is God and that Peter just can't seem to catch a break for all the good he's done and the havoc Doc Ock's time in his body did on Peter's relationships, not to mention the fact that Parker Industries let him help people far beyond what he normally could through infrastructure spending, world-wide relief efforts, and being able to actually put his technical genius to use in a big-time job.
  • Ensemble Dark Horse:
    • The Gwen Stacy/Spider-Woman from the Edge of the Spider-Verse storyline produced a frenzy of excitement based on little more than a really cool costume. It took Marvel less than a month after she finally appeared in a comic to announce that she was getting a solo series.
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    • Karn, from the Spider-Verse storyline, is the only Inheritor who managed to become liked by fans, largely for his tragic backstory, fun design, and especially for betraying the other Inheritors.
  • Ending Fatigue: Even defenders of Slott's run agree that it dragged on after an definitive end that Superior Spider-Man was intended to be, and that everything following tends to hop back-and-forth between decent narrative and characterization to half-assed controversial mess riddled with Flanderization.
  • Evil Is Cool: The Red Goblin, that is, Norman Osborn with the Carnage Symbiote. Spider-Man himself basically wet his pants.
  • Growing the Beard: Slott's writing improves considerably after Spider-Verse. The Graveyard Shift story arc introduces Peter Parker's desire to build a prison that actually rehabilitates criminals, showing him take the first steps toward becoming an effective corporate leader. The Renew Your Vows miniseries shows that Slott can write the Spider-Marriage, and quite well at that. The post-Secret Wars Amazing Spider-Man series, (aka the Worldwide era) at least prior to Dead No More: The Clone Conspiracy, contains better characterization for Peter, portraying him as a capable adult whose science background is finally being used to its full potential. Peter's life is happy, he gets to have globetrotting high-tech adventures reminiscent of Batman Incorporated and team up with SHIELD and Nick Fury. Peter is even magnanimous enough to hire former villains who want rehabilitation and engage in charity work and development. Peter even shows some skill at running his company. Even the death of Aunt May's husband Jay is handled in an appropriately moving, tragic fashion that doesn't disrespect any of the characters involved. There are no more insulting Take That, Audience! meta-references to fans who miss the Spider-marriage, and when Mary Jane does appear, her role is handled well.
  • It's the Same, Now It Sucks!: A number of Slott's critics have balked at his run being called "historic" by noting that it largely repackages ideas done by other writers. Superior Spider-Man borrows from Kraven's Last Hunt, Parker Industries is mostly Iron Man in Spider-Man shoes and riffing off stuff done in cartoons and games, his reinvention of Ben Reilly as the Jackal is mostly following on the general trend since Jason Todd's resurrection, i.e. a polarizing character's death undone by having him revived as an aspect of a villain who tortured him, MJ having web-shooters to take down thugs is from Tom Beland's "Web of Romance" (which annoyed fans because that was a Valentine's gift given by Peter to his wife) and it mostly amounts to updates and reimaginings of familiar trappings.
  • My Real Daddy: At least 40 of the 164 issues Slott wrote were scripted by Christos Gage, Slott's friend and partner. Slott still has plotting issues but the dialogue on these issues, especially the closing issues of Superior were by Gage, who Slott notes came up with the much memed "manpurse" line in Superior.
  • No Such Thing as Bad Publicity: As divisive as Dan Slott may be online, under his pen, Spider-Man has been one of Marvel's most consistently highest selling titlesnote . His run has also spun-off a number of other relatively successful titles.
  • Older Than They Think:
    • Black Cat as a villainess actually happened before. She originally started out as a villainess in her early appearances before becoming an anti-heroine.
    • The idea of Parker Industries isn't new or unique to Slott (except of course for doing this in regular continuity). The earliest instance happened in an Alternate Universe near the end of Spider-Man: The Animated Series and the video game Spider-Man: Edge of Time. In both instances, the concept of an industrialist Peter Parker was shown as making Peter a jerk and a villain, which Slott modifies by having the business set up by Otto Octavius in his Anti-Hero Substitute phase and Peter shuts it down at the end to stop a virus from causing untold damage.
    • Spider-Man saying things are square between him and Superior Spider-Man despite him messing his life and becoming an Anti-Hero Substitute who has stained his reputation is more or less a replay of the original Venom controversy. Venom was introduced as a villainous Evil Counterpart of Spider-Man who became so popular that later writers made him into an Anti-Hero Substitute culminating in the controversial "pact" of Issue #375, where Spider-Man and Venom leave each other alone. The latter was criticized and disliked by many Spider-Man writers for more or less identical reasons as the Spider-Man and Superior Octopus truce.
  • The Scrappy:
    • New "hero" Alpha due to basically being the antithesis to everything Spider-Man stands for (has zero responsibility, wastes his gifts, has an ego the size of a mountain, etc.). Slott has stated this was intentional. Some also feel that Spider-Man's 50th anniversary has been wasted on him.
    • Carlie Cooper's portrayal is resulting in a massive backlash from fans. Originally it was more along the lines of Replacement Scrappy for MJ, but it escalated when everyone, from past girlfriends to best friends, kept telling Peter how 'right' she was for him because she's his 'intellectual equal'. It was REALLY not helped by the fact she would get mad at Peter for the stupidest things, was pushed as a Woobie because her hero cop dad supposedly died only to be revealed he wasn't a hero and wasn't dead, act like a hypocrite, amongst other problems. She's also received ire for having similar characteristics as four of Peter's past love interests: troubles with father (MJ), Nerds Are Sexy and attempted Adorkable (Deb Whitman), loves Peter for him (MJ, and an invert of Black Cat), is old friends with Harry Osborn, a tsundere, and Peter's 'true love' and perfect girl (Gwen). You could make the case that the writers are trying to evoke Gwen Stacy in her character, but in the end comes off as a lot like Lana Lang in Smallville. In the aftermath of Spider-Island, she was demoted to a supporting cast member without romantic interest in Peter.
    • Cindy Moon aka Silk. A pretty girl who got bit by the same spider that bit Peter but spent over a decade locked in a room by Ezekiel. She has all of Spider-Man's powers but, with the exception of physical strength, they're all better than his. She's already proven to be just as competent as Peter, with no training except for watching videos of Spidey in action, and in a few issues has saved him on multiple occasions. She seems to be very important as it's Peter freeing her which seems to awaken Morlun thus setting off the Spiderverse event. Also, she lands a job on the Fact Channel despite not having any education beyond high-school, which likely she didn't even finished. A lot of readers find her incredibly annoying while having all of the traits of a Mary Sue. And blatantly so at that.
      • It doesn't help that she once acted like a jerk to Anna Marconi (widely fan-favorite from Superior Spider-Man) by bragging that "[Peter] is now mine!", although at least she immediately apologizes to Anna for it.
      • This is getting worse after Spider-Verse, in which her incompetence causes the deaths of Last-Stand Spider-Man and Spider-Assassin, two beloved characters that fans had been wanting to see return for years. It doesn't help that she is introduced in the same arc where Black Cat undergoes a massive Face–Heel Turn due to SpOck's actions. And when she finds out the truth, her reaction is similar to Carlie Cooper's as she still blames Spidey for her troubles. Many fans (particularly those that ship Spider-Man and Black Cat, but it's common even among those who don't) see this as an example of Derailing Love Interests.
      • Eventually, she was Rescued from the Scrappy Heap in her ongoing written by Robbie Thompson.
    • All of the Inheritors except Morlun and Karn. While some dislike Morlun, most are ambivalent towards him and he had a mysterious and scary vibe that made him a decent addition to the Rogues Gallery. The others on the other hand are generally considered boring and annoying at best, and ruin Morlun's style at worst. Two stand out in particular:
      • Daemos, Morlun's bigger, dumber, eviler brother. Mostly for having very few personality traits beyond... "big, dumb, and evil." Also because he killed MC 2 Peter Parker and Spider-Man Unlimited.
      • Morlun's father Solus, for being capable of killing Captain Universe!Spider-Man with little effort, despite the latter being a Physical God.
    • The Regent, seen by some readers as a boring and uninteresting Expy of Darkseid that wants only to collect superpowers.
    • Sajani Jaffrey, a co-worker of Peter's at Horizon Labs who becomes his right-hand once he (or rather Otto in his body) starts Parker Industries. Most of her page time towards Peter was spent acting condescending, rude and acting as if she knew best about everything even going behind Peter's back to sabotage him because she disagreed with his rehabilitation-focused supervillain prison. When she was framed for further sabotage and fired by Peter few, if any, readers were sad to see her go.
    • Bobbi Morse is pretty unpopular as a love interest due to how poorly she often treats Peter. She means well much of the time, but she's also shown to belittle Peter a lot (even subtly making fun of him for losing Parker Industries; something she knows is a sore spot for him), undermine his confidence, and constantly invoking Exiled to the Couch for the smallest things. Fans usually view the relationship as annoying at best, or almost abusive at worst. On top of it all, she's also shown to be a Straw Feminist, often bringing up petty arguments about gender at inopportune times for absolutely no reason.
  • Scapegoat Creator: Slott has gotten a lot of flack from fans during his run, especially the Superior Spider-Man, killing off MC2 Peter Parker, having Black Cat pulling a Face–Heel Turn, having Peter being a Tony Stark Expy and most recently the reveal of Peter's clone Ben Reilly as the Jackal.
  • Seasonal Rot: When Slott took over he had a lot of positive press due to streamlining the books, fixing a bunch of divisive changes, and delivering Spider-Island which helped re-popularize the books with older fans. Then, Superior Spider-Man happened, and he slowly began playing a lot of the tropes he'd earlier criticized, such as Darker and Edgier. While Superior has its fans, very few people enjoyed much of the short-lived post-Superior, pre-Secret Wars volume, which introduced horribly received characters like Silk and the Inheritors and produced Spider-Verse, a Batfamily Crossover that seemed designed to piss off as many fans as possible. Not help that he basically writes Peter like a Manchild erasing all his development. Not to mention Black Cat's Face–Heel Turn that turned her in a crazy jerk. Or Mary Jane getting a firefighter boyfriend, which some fans see as her settling for a lesser version of Spidey (being a person who risks his own life to save others).
Also, the above-mentioned Growing the Beard portion of the run was followed by the "Fall of Parker" storyline, which sees Peter portrayed as a hapless bum that no one offers any sympathy to, has MJ portrayed as an airheaded ditz more akin to her 60s and 70s personae through only three lines of dialogue, and wastes several issues on the Spider-Man/ Mockingbird romance which is soon broken up. It came as no surprise to many that soon after Fall of Parker launched, Slott was announced to be leaving the book in mid 2018. While his final storyarc, "Go Down Swinging," was ultimately well-received, the majority of the fanbase has agreed that he stayed on the book far longer than he needed to.
  • Signature Scene:
    • The "No One Dies" story is considered this. Not only for it forming the Arc Words of Peter's character with follow-ups in later stories like Dead No More but for its main idea impacting Slott's final issue.
    • The end of "Dying Wish" with Peter in Otto's body dying as he gazes on Otto in his.
  • Unintentionally Unsympathetic:
    • Otto Octavius is supposed to be the protagonist of Superior Spider-Man, being a Darker and Edgier Anti-Hero. To some he comes off as an Invincible Villain. Some of the fans despise him and the series for various different reasons. Just how unintentional this was is up in the air, as it's actually a plot point that Otto is Slowly slipping Back Into Evil. A major sticking point for fans is that Dr. Octopus in Ends of the Earth planned to kill billions of people and gloated about being in the same sentence as real-life dictators like Hitler and Pol Pot, and yet in the story that followed, Dr. Octopus is now somehow the Superior Spider-Man, who is capable of redemption, and who Peter says things are square with them at the end of Slott's run with a new younger body and set of Spider-powers, when in real life a would-be war criminal and genocidaire would be well beyond the Moral Event Horizon for most reasonable people and in Marvel history, inspired the conclusion of The Dark Phoenix Saga for the exact same moral concerns.
    • Carlie Cooper, Spider-Man's one time love interest, was featured in stories designed to make her seem similar to Spider-Man and therefore a more appropriate love interest and a better match for him as a person. Unfortunately, it caused her to come across as selfish, entitled and self-centered, declaring that Peter couldn't possibly understand what she went through. Her attempts to be seen as a more appropriate match for Peter and a more sympathetic character ultimately made her into someone the audience couldn't stand.
    • Peter is this in some of Slott's run, mostly stemming as frustration from the controversial One More Day and Superior Spider-Man stories. Many argue that Spider-Man's new personality, coming as it does from external retcons makes him almost an entirely different character from the one planned by Steve Ditko and Stan Lee. His behavior in the Regent story is especially contentious since he punched and started a fight with Tony Stark for no real reason, and acted like a caveman over the thought of MJ maybe moving on from him. The entire fight and aftermath is brushed aside as a case of both Spider-Man and Tony Stark behaving like jerks when clearly Spider-Man started that fight.
    • Otto beating up Black Cat and leaving her for the police is meant to be seen as an utter betrayal (from Cat's point of view) and a legitimate Freudian Excuse for her to go back to villainy. Many fans have trouble putting up with it because, in essence, her frustrations amount to " What the hell, I actually got arrested and suffered consequences for committing crimes!"

YMMV pages for Slott's Specific Arcs


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