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  1. #76
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    I went silent on this thread for TWO WHOLE DAYS and there have been conspiracies about THAT.

    (Psst. I wrote a SPIDER-BOY plot and started the next SUPERIOR script.)

    Here's another peek behind the curtain (so you can have more insights when concocting your next conspiracy theories about what's *really* happening behind the scenes)...

    The week before Thanksgiving and the week before Christmas-through-New Year's are the scariest time of the year in the comic industry.
    The printers shut down for both of those times.
    That means that offices have to DOUBLE UP on getting the books out. TWICE.
    Everyone is working at a furious pace. ESPECIALLY colorists and letterers!!!

    If people in the industry go quiet on social media during the end of November and most of December, the safest bet is that they're up to their ears in work.
    And if you're an idiot like me who agreed to do LA COMIC CON for the first 3 days of December... expect to see me around on Social Media even less.

    Right now, this is me *unwinding* after getting some stuff done. Chances are, an hour from now, I'll be back on script until I go to sleep.

  2. #77
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    Hi Dan,

    I've always wondered, especially with Spidey having such a deep bench of villains, is villain coordination a big problem? Right now, you've got two books, Zeb's comes out twice a month, then there's the new Spectacular book coming out, plus there's usually something like Spine-Tingling, too. Pete certainly has the rogue's gallery to satisfy that many books, but is it complicated? And is it harder when you're on the main book vs a satellite?
    Blue text denotes sarcasm

  3. #78
    Astonishing Member Majesty's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dan Slott View Post
    It's not that. It's that the powers-that-be worked a long time to try to undo the marriage. Clones, fake deaths, you name it. However people felt about OMD, there was the feeling (at Marvel) that the proverbial band-aid had been pulled off and there was no going back this time. But there were books like SPIDER-GIRL, the MR. & MRS. SPIDER-MAN features, RYV, and things like Peter B. Parker in ATSV, that have made it more palatable for the Marvel of today to tell those stories away from the 616. So that's something.
    That's great that they can do new things in the 616 because of that. But I really do wish that they'd commit to a relationship for Peter, even if they weren't going to 'marry' them. Allow character growth for characters in the relationships rather than just ending them before it gets to that point.

    I don't think people don't get invested in those relationships because they all pine for MJ back. That may be the case for some or a loud section. But there's a lot of fans (at least ones I know) that find it hard to get invested because they don't really let any other relationship flesh out and be treated as anything other than temporary. They had Carlie Cooper, but at the pivotal point (right before Superior even) when they could have had her and Peter's relationship grow to her understanding that Peter 'isn't' the mask and it only brought them closer. Instead it was used to end the relationship. But then it swung into Superior where she figured out Peter wasn't Peter, and you'd think they'd expand on that or call back to their break up to allow more growth in her understanding of him and their relationship from there, but it wasn't.

    He had Michelle whom really kept him on his toes and clearly did like him deep down, but we saw how that went. There was Silk but we saw how that went. There was hints Anna may have liked Peter as well, but it went nowhere. Then he's with Mary Jane for a bit on and off till he wasn't. Then he was back with Felicia where they were to give their relationship a real go at it, but it was never paid attention to very much and barely seen or represented despite the buildup and personal growth for Felicia for years. Now he's 'talking' to this lawyer where there's conflict with Peter because she represents villains as well in court as is her job.

    But when you see what was done with Carlie, with MJ, and then with Felicia, and now with this Lawyer, and so on and so forth, neither relationship is treated like it ever could be lasting or like there's growth that is coming from within it. There's a lot of moments for that kind of growth but it seems like it's treated as a bad thing. Like there's a fear if they let the relationship blossom or the characters grow within it, they 'risk' somehow it leading to a marriage again. When there's such things as long term relationships that don't lead to marriage for decades and things such as that.

    But when none of the relationships(that aren't MJ) aren't given that moment of growth or attention when in them, it becomes very hard to become invested in what they're telling because even if it's "not going to last to marriage", it can still be treated with more than what feels like a passing thought. Or rather it feels like a lot of thought goes into leading up to it, but it isn't shown much or allowed to prosper or be consistent. Then when it reaches a point where the relationship growth can truly happen, it's ended for one reason or another.

    I get they don't want "the marriage" but they don't have to nerf character relationship development of any other girl in a relationship with Peter because(what feels like) they're afraid it will lead to another 'marriage' situation. If they get Peter in another relationship I wish they'd commit to it, even if it isn't headed to 'marriage', it being committed to and fleshed out across time where relationship growth happens to actually be seen as alternative, instead of being treated as a 'temporary distraction/reprieve' would be nice.

    Also, Happy Thanksgiving!

  4. #79
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    Quote Originally Posted by bob.schoonover View Post
    Hi Dan,

    I've always wondered, especially with Spidey having such a deep bench of villains, is villain coordination a big problem? Right now, you've got two books, Zeb's comes out twice a month, then there's the new Spectacular book coming out, plus there's usually something like Spine-Tingling, too. Pete certainly has the rogue's gallery to satisfy that many books, but is it complicated? And is it harder when you're on the main book vs a satellite?
    It's hard to coordinate even if you're on the lead book! For half of my time on ASM, I had to get permission to infrequently use Norman Osborn (mainly NEW WAYS TO DIE). It wasn't until SUPERIOR that I had control over the character. During my tenure, I was only able to use the Venom and/or his symbiote a handful of times. And I was completely shut out from using Carnage for over a decade, and only had clearance to use him in my last big arc. I also had a pretty hard time using Mysterio and the Lizard. And there was one time when I had to sub in Quicksand for Sandman at the last minute. It's tricky.

    On the flipside, boy did I ever hog the ball with Doc Ock!

    Coordination between all the Spidey titles and sharing all the toys is always very tricky. Fortunately we have a top notch editorial office that keeps it all running smoothly.

    For my part, I try to expand the rogues gallery when I can: Mr. Negative and the Inner Demons, Paper Doll, Screwball, Overdrive, Clash, Supernova...
    ...and bring back characters that haven't been in the rotation for a while: Cardiac, Stunner, Jackal, and the Queen.

    Roger Stern did a great thing in his run by mixing and matching villains from other books and trying them IN Spidey's titles. Loved it when he put Red Ghost & the Super Apes, Juggernaut, and others into the title.

    Okay... Think that's it for me for the night. Hope you all have a lovely Turkey Day tomorrow! And if you're traveling, please be safe.

  5. #80
    Astonishing Member Mercwmouth12's Avatar
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    Any thoughts on giving Spider-boy a symbiote arc?

  6. #81
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dan Slott View Post
    It's not that. It's that the powers-that-be worked a long time to try to undo the marriage. Clones, fake deaths, you name it. However people felt about OMD, there was the feeling (at Marvel) that the proverbial band-aid had been pulled off and there was no going back this time. But there were books like SPIDER-GIRL, the MR. & MRS. SPIDER-MAN features, RYV, and things like Peter B. Parker in ATSV, that have made it more palatable for the Marvel of today to tell those stories away from the 616. So that's something.
    By the "powers-that-be" I understand that those are a select few people in Marvel, who have the agenda of ending the marriage, which only resulted in the regression of the main and support characters, their character development all those years and the stagnation of the ASM comic, using the guidelines from Brevoort's manifesto like a bible. Back when the comic was about "growing-up" and "responsibility", now it's about "youth", constantly going back and forward without any character development, like a closed loop with no way out of it. Ever since OMD, I notice (as well as the majority of the fandom) the editorial and the creative teams for ASM focusing on their agendas, rather than the book, it's characters and their source material (except for Spencer's run). And when the fandom starts pointing out theses things they either being ignored, replying them with diminishing their role for feedback and improvement for the comic (despite the fact that fans are the main reason for sales) or being thrown an AU spin-off title like a bone to a dog with the hopes to stop talking about the main title's problems. The only way people listen is when outside medias are proving how better the characters from the comics are with "growth", "responsibility" and "marriage".

    Quote Originally Posted by Dan Slott View Post
    Pretty sure Nick was safe there. Marvel was always very clear that it was okay to have Peter & MJ date, they just didn't want them married.
    I broached editorial about if I could get them back together by the end of my run, but I was asked to please not do that, because having them date again in Nick's run was going to be a big opening status quo change for the book.

    I get that.

    When I was working on the first Spider-Verse I was having a hell of a time wrangling all the various Spider-Characters together. And a number of writers thought they'd be doing me a favor by creating MORE of them in their stories. And I'd be like, "Dude. No. Please stop. I've got enough-- and I've got stuff for them all to do."

    Coordinating this stuff is always weird, especially when you think you're doing the next guy a favor.
    The main reasons why the fandom was fine with Spencer's run and not giving criticisms was because Spencer wrote the characters true to their source material, the stories were decent and despite the failed attempt to undo OMD (that part goes to the editorial stopping him, no doubt about it), at least Peter and MJ were still together (because between OMD and Spencer's run they were together a few times which only to last two or three issues). And when Wells came, he made all of Spencer's work worthless with the very first issue - characters are "acting out of character" (unless it's the characters are from an AU), Peter and MJ are seperated again, MJ is with some dude named Paul (who wasn't given attemps from the team to make him likeable) and two kids which resemble both of them (like they're their biological kids). Then they told us to wait for the explanation why this came to be before judging, only to find the "explanation" between #21 and #25 an utter failure - nothing made any sense whatsoever. The only good thing was that the kids weren't real.
    Last edited by Konnik92; 11-23-2023 at 12:53 AM.

  7. #82
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    ^^^ Congrats! The many conspiracy theories you cite in your post is the motivation behind this thread in the first place!

  8. #83
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mercwmouth12 View Post
    Any thoughts on giving Spider-boy a symbiote arc?
    Hmm. Not really. We're kinda forging ahead with Spider-Boy's own, unique Rogues' Gallery (Madame Monstrosity, Hellifino, Gutterball, The Balloon Man, Killionaire, etc.).

    But you never know. If he did have a Symbiote related arc It'd probably be with an all-new symbiote... that was incredibly silly.

  9. #84
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    My conspiracy question is, bring back Paper Doll.
    2023: The Year of Hellion

  10. #85
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rift View Post
    My conspiracy question is, bring back Paper Doll.
    The powers-that-be at Marvel fear her

  11. #86
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    Quote Originally Posted by Konnik92 View Post
    By the "powers-that-be" I understand that those are a select few people in Marvel, who have the agenda of ending the marriage...
    You would understand wrong then. I don't mean this to be insulting, I'm just trying to play this straight with you. It's not a "select few". It's pretty all encompassing.
    I've been working regularly for Marvel for 20 years (and that's not including my original time at Marvel back in the 90's). I've written stories where Peter & MJ were married. I enjoyed writing those.
    I also enjoyed writing their 616 characters as they are now. I also understand that if writing them the way are now were a deal breaker for me, I wouldn't be writing them now-- and I wouldn't have been writing them as far back as 2008.

    Quote Originally Posted by Konnik92 View Post
    ...using the guidelines from Brevoort's manifesto like a bible.
    There is what people say online ad nauseam. There is what you choose to believe based on that. And then there is reality.
    No one has followed Tom's Spider-Manifesto like a bible ever.
    Not even when we had our earliest Spider-Man: Brand New Day summit... before even the SPIDER-MAN FCBD SWING SHIFT story was even written.
    Tom had written that up on a whim, as a way to put all his thoughts together before that summit. Even when he passed them out to the room, he made it clear that this wasn't the law. This was him putting to paper all of his personal thoughts and beliefs about Spider-Man. They were a jump off point for discussion. There were people in the room-- and people who would join the second BND team-- who if you asked them what Spider-Man was all about would say, "Power and Responsibility".

    People who've been upset about the Spider-Man status quo have created their own side reality where that doc that Tom wrote up one night on a whim is a "bible".
    And that Tom's mantra is that "an enraged fan is a engaged fan." Which is equally silly. You'd have to scour the entire internet top-to-bottom to try to find where Tom has sad that more than twice in his 30+ years of editing comics. Yet people who are upset about Spider-Man say that he says this all the time. (They've even misattributed the quote to ME, because one YouTuber's popular video had a title card attributing the quote to me. Years later that YouTuber made a follow up video stating that he got it wrong and that I'd never said that.)

    Quote Originally Posted by Konnik92 View Post
    ...(Spencer's) stories were decent and despite the failed attempt to undo OMD (that part goes to the editorial stopping him, no doubt about it)...
    Again, you're dealing more with an internet-constructed-belief as opposed to reality.

    Did Nick want to undo OMD? You'll have to ask him. I believe there was a panel where he was asked this directly.

    Was any writer ever given permission to undo OMD? No. That has never happened.
    Editorial has been consistent on this since 2007 and hasn't wavered.

    Again, I'm not saying this to be mean or insulting. I'm saying this in as straight forward a way as possible, because you're all adults and I'm trusting that you can handle it when someone tells you the facts of a situation, even if you don't like the outcome.

    *Edited for clarity.
    Last edited by Dan Slott; 11-24-2023 at 11:10 AM.

  12. #87
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rift View Post
    My conspiracy question is, bring back Paper Doll.
    I will make a note of that.

  13. #88
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dan Slott View Post
    I'm not saying this to be mean or insulting. I'm saying this in as straight forward a way as possible, because you're all adults and I'm trusting that you can handle it when someone tells you the facts of a situation, even if you don't like the outcome.
    Oh, boy! This one is going to grow arms and legs pretty quick!

    Who knew there was going to be a need for popcorn on a Thanksgiving holiday? LOL!

  14. #89
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dan Slott View Post
    You would understand wrong then. I don't mean this to be insulting, I'm just trying to play this straight with you. It's not a "select few". It's pretty all encompassing.
    I've been working regularly for Marvel for 20 years (and that's not including my original time at Marvel back in the 90's). I've written stories where Peter & MJ were married. I enjoyed writing those.
    I also enjoyed writing their 616 characters as they are now. I also understand that if writing them the way are now were a deal breaker for me, I wouldn't be writing them now-- and I wouldn't have been writing them as far back as 2008.


    There is what people say online ad nauseam. There is what you choose to believe based on that. And then there is reality.
    No one has followed Tom's Spider-Manifesto like a bible ever.
    Not even when we had our earliest Spider-Man: Brand New Day summit... before even the SPIDER-MAN FCBD SWING SHIFT story was even written.
    Tom had written that up on a whim, as a way to put all his thoughts together before that summit. Even when he passed them out to the room, he made it clear that this wasn't the law. This was him putting to paper all of his personal thoughts and beliefs about Spider-Man. They were a jump off point for discussion. There were people in the room-- and people who would join the second BND team-- who if you asked them what Spider-Man was all about would say, "Power and Responsibility".

    People who've been upset about the Spider-Man status quo have created their own side reality where that doc that Tom wrote up one night on a whim is a "bible".
    And that Tom's mantra is that "an enraged fan is a engaged fan." Which is equally silly. You'd have to scour the entire internet top-to-bottom to try to find where Tom has sad that more than twice in his 30+ years of editing comics. Yet people who are upset about Spider-Man say that he says this all the time. (They've even misattributed the quote to ME, because one YouTuber's popular video had a title card attributing the quote to me. Years later that YouTuber made a follow up video stating that he got it wrong and that I'd never said that.)


    Again, you're dealing more with an internet-constructed-belief as opposed to reality.
    Did Nick want to undo OMD? Yes.
    But was he ever given permission to undo OMD? No.
    Were they consistent about this every step of the way? Yes.
    There is no world where editorial gave the go ahead for Nick to undo that 616 storyline. Editorial has been consistent on this since 2007 and hasn't wavered.

    Again, I'm not saying this to be mean or insulting. I'm saying this in as straight forward a way as possible, because you're all adults and I'm trusting that you can handle it when someone tells you the facts of a situation, even if you don't like the outcome.
    Call me weird, conspiracy theorist, or wrong, but I guess thing I don't get is why there's "all encompassing" dedication to keeping the source material off-brand in regards to the franchise as a whole and what it's evolved into, eps. considering how it's a bit of an anomaly in terms of adaptational bleed back and franchise synergy.
    Doctor Strange: "You are the right person to replace Logan."
    X-23: "I know there are people who disapprove... Guys on the Internet mainly."
    (All-New Wolverine #4)

  15. #90
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    The biggest conspiracy theories I've seen about ASM...
    "Its sales are plummeting!"
    "Nick Lowe will be fired any day now!"
    "And Zeb is on the way out!"

    Ever since DC and Marvel switched to different distributors, it's been hard for armchair quarterbacks to put together regular sales information. You can't just click on a button on the Diamond web site or over on Comichron. And that's lead to MANY people on the internet just making sh*t up. They know how they feel about the book. They know how their online friends feel about the book. And going off of those gut level feelings-- and the earnest belief that the squeakiest wheels equal the entirety of fandom, they feel perfectly justified to create their own pocket reality and make all their doomsday proclamations from there.

    I am employed by Marvel. Marvel (like every company ever) does not want to share sales information if they don't have to. I have seen the sales figures for Marvel's Top 25 selling books from the last year. But I am bound not to say anything about what I saw...

    ...but I can point out that ICV2 (a SECTION of all sales) puts up their sales figures every month, and that those (while not 100% of the big picture) give a damn good indication of how titles are performing in the marketplace.

    That said, if you look at the ICV2 numbers for the past year...
    With the exceptions of MILES MORALES: SPIDER-MAN #1 and WOLVERINE VS. PREDATOR #1, the Nick Lowe edited & Zeb Wells written AMAZING SPIDER-MAN is consistently Marvel's best selling title. And ASM's 2nd monthly issue is also consistently one of Marvel's highest charting issues.

    When you look at the previous year, the Top Ten titles were dominated by Zeb's ASM. And a LARGE number of the books that joined ASM in the Top 10... were books coming out of Nick Lowe's office and the offices where Nick is their senior editor.

    Comic companies are a business. Businesses LOVE results like that. No business in their right minds would let Lowe or Wells go.
    There are people online who don't like the book. No one is saying those people don't exist. But going by concrete evidence, those people are very outnumbered by the fans who show up at the register. Especially the registers that are monitored by ICV2.ASM sales 6 months.jpgASM sales 4 months.jpgASM sales 2 months.jpg

    Now if you'll excuse me, the reality that I'm happily living in is about to celebrate Thanksgiving.
    Happy Holidays.

    *edit... Wow, those came out blurry! :-D Just go over to ICV2.Com and get the numbers yourself, please. I've got holiday stuff to do AND I've got script to finish.
    Last edited by Dan Slott; 11-24-2023 at 11:12 AM.

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