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YMMV / One More Day

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  • Accidental Aesop: The notion that a hard-working, selfless, altruistic young superhero who's too busy saving lives to focus on earning income for himself, can't afford to pay for his elderly aunt's medical treatment (and has to resort to a literal Deal with the Devil to save her) is probably among the sharpest (unintentional) satires of the American healthcare system in modern media to date.
  • Alternative Character Interpretation:
    • 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?
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    • 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?
  • Author's Saving Throw:
    • The original print of One More Day had a speech bubble with some minuscule 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, whereby this retcon was retconned.
    • The Secret Wars (2015) series Amazing Spider-Man: Renew Your Vows seems to exist to appeal to people that really didn't like the change. Renew Your Vows was later turned into an ongoing Alternate Universe in 2016, with Gerry Conway writing and Ryan Stegman pencilling. Although Dan Slott and others claim that that Marvel are not bringing the marriage back to regular continuity and that decision is taken at a corporate level.
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  • Awesome Art: The drawings look nice. You can see Spidey sell his marriage to the devil in beautiful detail. Although Quesada noted that part of the art was meant to be Stylistic Suck, stating that he made Peter and MJ look older and older (saying he made them look in their '30s and near the end '40s) through those issues and intentionally bleak to make the finale where they lapse to Younger and Hipper versions feel like a release. Whether he sticks the landing is up to the reader.
  • Bile Fascination: It's almost universally agreed that this is a bad story; practically anyone who wants to read it these days is only doing so to see just how bad it is.
  • 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 Mephisto and just enjoy the new stories. Note the base is only broken on how to react — this story is just that reviled.
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    • The stories following the reboot have certainly been base breaking. 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.
  • Darkness-Induced Audience Apathy: How exactly Quesada expected people to feel good about reading Younger and Hipper Brand New Day Spider-Man is a puzzle? Theoretically, he could have commissioned a story and plot that provided some Catharsis Factor (similar to Whatever Happened to the Man of Tomorrow? which closed the Pre-Crisis Superman with an all-time classic story that didn't upset or dampen enthusiasm for the Continuity Reboot). Instead the story he commissioned to end the old era and signal the start of the new is a bleak, humorless, and joyless story where Peter is at his most unlikable, unsympathetic and whiny, and whose subtext is that he's losing the best thing that ever happened to him and his reward is to be permanently stuck in an eternal 20s which most readers interpret as an Ironic Hell (especially with Mephisto claiming a small part of Peter's soul will suffer forever) and akin to the Downer Ending of Brazil, while making long-term Spider-Man fans feel entirely demoralized.
  • 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. Yes, this character told GOD HIMSELF to screw 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.)
  • Die for Our Ship: Or rather, Rewrite Reality for our ship. From the editor for his personal Creator's Pet, no less. On the fandom side, Peter/Mary Jane shippers became more devoted than ever before, and even gained supporters out of spite.
  • Esoteric Happy Ending: Quesada has stated that he looks at One More Day and sees Aunt May saved through the Parkers' Heroic Sacrifice of their marriage. Most fans see the Official Couple being forced apart, the hero selfishly and wilfully going against everything he proclaims to stand for, and the villain getting what he wants.
  • 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? The editor thinks it's better than a divorce?! What.
    • 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 was 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.
    • Here's another layer: Peter's daughter is actually born in one alternate continuity and grows up to become Spider-Girl, a successful superhero who is more well-liked In-Universe than her father was. Yeah, in the OMD dimension, there is absolutely no chance of that ever happening. Meaning people in the future are possibly going to die because she wasn't there to save them. All of those people died so one very old woman (who was okay with dying and, let's face it, doesn't have too many years left anyway) would live.
      • This at least was averted when the little girl was conclusively proven to not be Maydaynote  by Renew Your Vows, which showed the alternate universe where she was born and grew up to be Anna-May "Annie" Parker.
  • Fanon Discontinuity: A very unpopular story. And that's putting it mildly. The fact that the post-OMD storyline pretends that the real-time 20-year marriage and consequent Character Development for Peter, MJ and others, of 20 years featured in some great all-time stories (Kraven's Last Hunt especially) didn't happen and closed that chapter with the all-time worst Spider-Man story makes it unlikely for Spider-Man fans to accept it as legitimate.
  • 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"? In the lead-up to the Superior Spider-Man comic book, he did just that — albeit in the body and consciousness of Doctor Octopus, who took over his form.
    • The comic boils down to Peter doing the irresponsible thing—-making a Deal with the Devil to save the life of his aunt who was shot due to his actions, who told him it was her time and to let her go. In the Spider-Man (PS4) game, he does the opposite, choosing everyone else's lives over Aunt May's.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight:
    • Or maybe "Funny Aneurysm" Moment, hard to say. This isn't the only time they tried to "un-marry" Spider-Man — the Clone Saga was originally supposed to be this. One of the ways they were going to fix that mess was to reveal the whole saga was a contest between the characters Judas Traveller and Scrier, the latter of whom turns out to be, you got it, Mephisto! Who would have put Spider-Man in a "Shaggy Dog" Story Stable Time Loop just so he could claim Judas Traveller's soul. As the person who had the idea put it here:
      "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!"
    • This Superman cover.
    • The whole story is basically this What If? story... except now it's canon.
    • This issue of The Flash.
    • Harry getting retconned back alive, as it happened shortly after both Ultimate Spider-Man and the films killed him off.
    • At one point in The Incredibles, Dash sarcastically asks if the bad guys are trying to kill their parents' marriage. Only three years off, Dash oh boy. Doubly funny when Disney would end up owning Marvel Comics a few years after this story.
    • One of the most commonly recurring arguments against the story was how unreasonable it was that Peter would do anything to extend May's life when she was basically at the end of a long and relatively happy life anyway. Of course, if they weren't going to permanently kill May off here, they were arguably never going to- and indeed, well over a decade after the story went to print (and even after Peter and MJ have got back together again), the old bag is still alive!note 
  • 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 (especially given the fact that Peter is associates with the greatest scientists alive who regularly destroy the laws of physics with their daily experiments along with multiple Reality Warpers like Doctor Strange), 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, it's Poke the Poodle territory compared to what he could be doing (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.
      • This was perfectly summarized by Bob Chipman in one of the first episodes of his show The Big Picture:
        Bob Chipman: So, if you think about it, Spider-Man not only made a deal with the Devil, he actually came out of it pretty damn good! He gets his aunt saved, his buddy gets back to life, his identity is secured, he still gets to have a long term relationship with a damned supermodel back then and fool around with kinky sex-addicted cat girls now... Basically all Satan gets is the thrill of blinking some bridal photos out of existence. Aaah... Ouch? I guess? So let that be a lesson, kids! If you screw up and need to make a deal with the devil, make sure it's with the Marvel devil. That guy's no idea of what he's doing!
  • Memetic Loser: As mentioned above, the deal he makes with Peter in this story single-handedly destroyed Mephisto's reputation in the eyes of comic book fans because of its sheer contrived pettiness, and ensures that he will now forever be seen as that guy who ruins people's marriages because he's a loser and has nothing better to do, and whose greatest acts of monstrous supervillainy, compared to the rest of the great Marvel villains, are mostly on the scale of littering, not paying for parking tickets, and taking the handicapped spots at the DMV.
  • Moral Event Horizon:
    • From an audience viewpoint, Mephisto's deal. Even though he was established as one of the worst people in the Marvel Universe at that point, fans still liked him for still managing to be an Evil Is Cool Card-Carrying Villain. After the point, you'd find a lot of people that want him to die painfully.
    • For some, Peter Parker making a deal with Mephisto is this. It means that all the times he's harped on how "Great Power comes with Great Responsibility," are a complete and total lie, because he isn't being responsible. He's being selfish and not owning up to a mistake that he made. Instead of dealing with it like a mature adult, he (one of the most moral and upstanding heroes in Marvel's stable) decides that the only acceptable option is to ignore the wishes of his dying aunt, multiple friends and family, and God Himself to say "Screw that," and makes a deal with Mephisto. Any time going forward after these events, all readers can see is an irresponsible hypocrite who is willing to entreat with the darkest entities in reality rather than face a harsh truth.
  • 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.
    • 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!"
    • The fact that Peter goes to some of the smartest men in the world and very experienced healers yet they are all powerless to fix the most complex injury of all: a bullet wound!
    • The final scene between Peter and MJ as they affirm their love and insist they'll find their way is this, since most fans know that Quesada (as is clear in interviews) doesn't believe a word of that scene, and the sheer emotion milked out of it as if this was supposed to be tearjerker is plainly dishonest.
    • Peter waking up in the new world, in his bedroom at Aunt May's house, and proceeding to riding his bike to Harry's "Welcome Back Party." The purpose of the story was to return the status quo to a more youthful state, but for many this scene drove home Peter's Manchild status, which would go on to be a frequent criticism of the Brand New Day era.
  • Never Live It Down:
  • Older Than They Think:
    • There was a very similar plot during Peter David's run on Incredible Hulk. Marlo, Rick Jone's girlfriend, is stabbed, and he starts to ask everyone for help: Dr. Strange (who pointed that his magic is useless with non-magical injuries in that story as well), Reed Richards, Dr. Pym, anyone. Reed Richards Is Useless, as well as all the others. And, when he's in his deepest depair, he accepts the help of the only one who can save Marlo: the Leader (a Hulk villain who had commited genocide a short time before that), who has a Magitek idea in mind to help her.
    • The Spider-Man newspaper comic strip had the same thing happen to Peter... and turned out to be All a Dream.
    • The entire Back Story of Angel is about having to make a choice between love and death, resulting in Angel retconning his relationship away and becoming a monster to save his lover's life.
    • In 2000, a number of writers for Superman including Grant Morrison, Mark Millar, and Mark Waid (the latter supported One More Day and was one of the writers for the Brand New Day status quo), pitched an idea for a Superman reboot that would return the character to what the writers believed was its roots. They cited Clark's marriage to Lois as the problem but also said they couldn't divorce them since that would sully a major iconic romance. Their solution...Mr. Mxyzsptlk forces them to bargain their marriage in exchange for saving Lois' life and ending a terrible period in Clark's life after Brainiac and Luthor discover his secret identity. Superman accepts the deal which also involves wiping out memory of his secret identity, and Superman and Lois get "one last, perfect day" together, after which Clark wakes up in his apartment and goes to the Daily Planet only to find Lois uninterested in Clark but in love with Superman (i.e. reversing a decade or so of Character Development)note .
  • Padding: To the point that a really, really vitriolic review by one of the comic's greatest detractors says that the first three issues don't have much occurring and suggests for a Drinking Game "take a shot every time 'pointless' is said in this review".
    • One major example of this is in Issue 3. Just when the plot starts (sort of) going somewhere, it stops completely so Peter can talk to a video game designer version of himself, who goes off on a page long rant about how escapist entertainment is needed in today's times. It serves no purpose other than to stop the plot completely and act as Quesada's own personal mouthpiece. It doesn't help, of course, that it's never mentioned again.
  • Ron the Death Eater: Based on how Mary Jane was written (and has been written since the story was released), it seems that the writers are internally using this trope in their more bitchy interpretation of her character. For years of publication she was an independent, supportive, concerned but willing partner in Peter's double life — that's all gone now.
  • Shipping Bed Death: Joe Quesada's claimed this was the reason for this storyline, that Peter being single would open doors to more interesting storylines than a Peter who was tied down.
  • Snark Bait: There have been too many jokes among those familiar with the story to count. Death Battle points out how this makes no sense, Linkara points out the overall lack of effort, hell, even Marvel has made more than one Take That! at the story.
  • 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 a magic retcon.
    • 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 — then, Quesada's argument that breaking up the marriage counts as a selfless decision on Peter's part would have at least had some validity, Quesada would get the single Spider-Man he wanted, and Peter would have looked like less of a dick for ignoring May's own wishes to be allowed to die a peaceful death.note 
    • Early in JMS' run, Spidey had an encounter with Loki that ended with the Norse trickster-god saying he now owed Spider-Man a favor that he could collect whenever he wished. Loki is hardly reliable, but when he says he owes a favor, that's big. Unfortunately for Peter and Marvel's readership, Loki happened to be dead at the time Peter really needed that favor. It would still have met with outrage but at least it would have been seen as Canon Welding. Also? Loki Vs. Mephisto. Why could we not have had that.
    • Parker said that he needed money for May, and that he would do anything, anything, to get it. Even steal it. But what about asking Tony Stark for it in exchange of registering again? Despite a discussion with Tony, that basic idea was not even mentioned. Tying into this, one of the people he asks for help is Doctor Doom. Considering that in the past, Doom has been willing to help his mortal enemies just to show them upnote , odds are that he would gladly have helped Peter in return for a favor at a later point, or just for being able to show Reed up — yes, Aunt May likely would've been a cyborg, but Peter probably would've preferred that over her being dead. This could have led to any number of stories where Spider-Man has to work alongside Doom, but no.
    • If you absolutely had to have the two of them broken up, Quesada, why not have Mary Jane disagree with Peter's desire to save Aunt May, and have that lead to them splitting up, rather than the two of them accepting Mephisto's deal? Having Peter tell his wife "hey, honey, I'm going to make a deal with Satan to erase our marriage from existence" sounds like a great way to initiate a divorce. The source of tension between them leading to a separation anyways would be a brilliantly cruel form of Both Sides Have a Point, and it would have made Mephisto into a genuine Magnificent Bastard who won either way, rather than just a petty jerk bizarrely fixated on ending the marriage of one New York college couple.
    • A number of fans have noted that as bad as the story is, JMS' and Quesada's original plan (which would have brought back Harry Osborn and Gwen Stacynote ) would have made the aftermath more palatable and acceptable. Aunt May being old and decrepit and saving her from dying despite there being a few years at best for Spider-Man's greatest love in the eyes of fans is too depressing to be believable and acceptable. But bringing Gwen Stacy back, being Peter's first love and MJ's close friend, and a chance to trade one Shocking Defeat Legacy (failing to save Gwen) for another (being conned out of his Happy Ending by Old Scratch) would have put sweet within the bitter. It would also have marked a real new slate in the Spider-Man continuity with Peter's classic love triangle (him, MJ, Gwen) revived and updated in the 21st Century, while also undoing a classic example of fridging, providing a chance for Gwen to become a more rounded character, and even in the eyes of Peter/MJ shippers a chance for them somewhere down the line, to have a romance without the baggage of Gwen's death between them. Instead the retcon still kept that, changed the wedding into a long live-in relationship, and basically had them regress into the characterization that they had both shaken off decades ago.
    • Instead of having Spiderman go to various characters who are unable to help him, why not just have him go to Stephen Strange, and have him be able to help him...but have Strange not make it in time? Not only would this have avoided having everyone else Peter asked for help suffer a case of Reed Richards Is Useless, but Strange was in hiding at the time.
  • True Art Is Angsty: Somebody clearly believes that "happy equals boring.'' Just look at the quote for Narm up above. In either case it failed, since the story is consistently ranked among lists of all-time worst Spider-Man stories.
  • Unintentionally Unsympathetic: Infamously so. Peter Parker, the Trope Namer for Comes Great Responsibility, gets an innocent relative of his fatally wounded as a result of his misguided loyalty to Iron-Man in a Civil War whose stakes he never fully understood. He then switched sides midway without considering how the switch would affect the protection of his loved ones. When confronted with the tragic consequences of his own decisions, rather than do the mature thing and own up to his mistakes like a functional adult, and accept that everyone dies sooner or later, he goes against the wishes and advice of everyone else, including Aunt May herself, and gives up his happy, loving marriage with his beloved wife via Deal with the Devil, part of which includes wiping their unborn child from existence. All to save the life of an elderly woman who just wanted to see Uncle Ben again and couldn't have more than a few years left to live anyway.
  • Wangst: Peter behaves like he's the only person to ever have lost a loved one to violence, let alone gun violence, or that the concept of Aunt May dying is entirely foreign or unexpected for an old woman with plenty of Near-Death Experience in the past.
  • What an Idiot!: Why would Mary Jane agree to sell her marriage to the devil?
    • Peter was too messed up to realize it at the time but even if he changed the past, one way or another, Aunt May will still eventually die anyway. The first is of old age which can happen at anytime. The second is that Mephisto made it so that Aunt May never died, that does not mean that he will also make it that Aunt May will never die so it was pointless to even make the deal in the first place.


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