Axel Alonso On The Spider-Man Controversy
You know the deal by now. Spider-Man #700 came out the day after Christmas. Even before the finale of The Amazing Spider-Man run, the book was causing all kinds of havoc on the web after the ending leaked online. Dan Slott started receiving death threats from some crazed people because of what happened to Peter Parker. The issue has come out and the fervor has settled down somewhat. The issue is receiving mixed to more positive than not reviews. Marvel’s Editor-in-Chief Axel Alonso spoke with Newsarama about the controversial issue and some of the, shall we say, passionate responses from some fans.
Alonso addressed the major leaks for all the issues leading up to the release of #700. Full comics and scans appeared online weeks in advance of the three books’ release. While the stories may have been put online in advance, it didn’t have too big of an impact on sales of #700:
There’s always going to be people who want to get attention for spreading a rumor or leaking confidential information. What people need to remember about piracy is that it is not a victimless crime. If a few less people come from this store because they can get it [illegally] online, then the victims include retailers that are counting on sales to pay their bills, and creators, whose royalties are affected by lower sales. If I were a retailer, I would consider pirates my enemy. Ditto if I were a creator on or a fan of a lower-circing title that needed every reader if can to stay alive. That said, I’m pretty sure that the buzz around Amazing Spider-Man #700 offset any damage done by the leaks.
As we all know by now, Peter Parker dies in the conclusion of the landmark issue. The decision to kill of Parker and allow Doc Ock to live on in his body was not an easy decision on Marvel’s part. Alonso was originally reluctant about the idea, but the story was approved:
This was the subject of heated discussion involving many of the people who attend our editorial summits. And ultimately, I had to have the support of my boss, Dan Buckley. We don’t make a move like this rashly. Dan and [editor] Steve [Wacker] survived the gauntlet. You could scour the planet and not find a bigger fan of Peter Parker than Dan Slott. If he wanted to do this, he had good reasons to do it. No one has more love for Peter Parker than Dan Slott — the guy who killed him. [Laughs.]
The question was raised if it was a concern to have no Peter Parker in play in the Marvel universe. Peter Parker of the ultimate universe died not too long ago, and now there are no Parker’s in play in either universe. Alonso says that is a big concern and that the challenge is to make a “Parker-less Spider-Man book a must-read.” He says that it’s a creative chance and that as the story unfolds people will be rushing to the stores to know what happens next. The widespread thought that this won’t be a permanent change was also raised. Alonso says don’t think this is a one and done deal:
Hey, don’t forget that we did a little story called “One More Day” a few years ago that had a lasting effect on the Spider-Man universe. And remember how long Bucky wore Captain America’s red, white and blue tights? We seriously considered never bringing Steve Rogers back.
Looks, when people read Amazing Spider-Man #700 and see how the story unfolds — how Peter’s memories embed themselves in the consciousness of the next guy to wear the tights — big questions will emerge. I’ll leave it at that.
To wrap things up, Alonso commented on the internet reaction to all of these developments. Since word broke that something big would happen in #700, fans have been very vocal about what’s going on. Alonso says that the internet doesn’t play too much into Marvel decisions- “With all due respect, I don’t know if the Internet is really the ultimate indicator of what fans desire, want or need. You don’t predict your next president by only polling red states, know what I mean? Most of our most successful stories and initiatives have been met by Internet cynicism. Our job is to create buzz and excitement, and then deliver a quality story to back it up.” Marvel’s editor says that sales reaching upwards to 250,000 copies speaks for the popularity and love of the character. Seeing if people stay for Superior will judge whether it was successful or not. If you want to read all of Mr. Alonso’s comments, click right here. So what do you think? What side do you come down on in the Spider-Man debate?
Source : Newsarama