Comics Ate My Brain

January 26, 2009

In which I nitpick a harmless piece of Inaugural ephemera

Filed under: spider-man — Tom Bondurant @ 3:03 am
Generally, I thought the Spider-Man Meets Barack Obama story was fine. However, I was disappointed that a couple of fairly obvious bits were left out.





First of all, in case you haven’t read it, it was pretty short — five pages. (If you have read it, feel free to skip to the next paragraph.) When a second Barack Obama shows up on the way to the inauguration, this attracts the attention of a certain news photographer. Peter puts on his Spider-Man costume and swings in to help, suggesting that the two Obamas answer a question that only the real one would know. Said question is “what was BHO’s basketball-player nickname,” which isn’t exactly classified information, but it does the job. Fake Obama turns out to be Spidey’s old foe the Chameleon. That would have been OK, except the plot hinged on the Chameleon knowing absolutely nothing — like “you need a helmet” nothing — about basketball. I can’t remember who on the Internet compared it to Spidey Super Stories, but I think that’s a pretty accurate estimate of the story’s tone.

Anyway, Spidey excuses himself, but before he can go, the Prez-Elect tells Spidey he’s “been a big fan of yours for a long time.” They share a fist-bump, the inauguration proceeds without a hitch (even the oath!), and we all live happily ever after.

I’m disappointed, though, because even with only five pages, I think we could have seen:

— Jonah Jameson ranting “how much do we really know about Obama” and how he can’t decide who’s worse, Obama or Spider-Man;*

— Obama and Spidey comparing notes on their treatment in certain sectors of the media (terrorist sympathizer! threat or menace?); and

— the new POTUS acknowledging that With Great Power Comes Great Responsibility.

These are all fairly cheesy moments, I know; and what’s worse, I am criticizing what is basically a five-page opportunity for Marvel to cash in on Obamania. Still, there it is, so if we can have the fist-bump, why not make the most of it?

*[The story has Peter working for “Frontline,” not the Daily Bugle, but I think Jonah could have appeared regardless, via Peter’s imagination.]


  1. I must object: Jameson has an established history as a civil rights and equal opportunity proponent. (Yes, I realize this has been made somewhat less relevant by the sliding timescale of Marvel continuity…but that character history should still be honored in spirit.) Whether or not Obama had been his preferred candidate, his view of the incoming president would definitely be influenced by an awareness of the symbolic and historic significance of this election: Jameson certainly wouldn’t bash the guy. Perhaps Jonah’s hypothetical rant could be something more like “Maybe now with someone authentic and admirable to inspire them, young people will finally stop wanting to be like that wall-crawling criminal!”

    Comment by RAB — January 26, 2009 @ 5:48 am

  2. I suppose the typical JJJ thing would be for Jonah to be Obama’s biggest fan, only to discover that Obama is Spider-Man’s biggest fan.Also, shouldn’t the stupid Jedi have been a splinter group of the stupid Sith, that took their evil empire away from them? Wouldn’t that have made more sense? Then somebody could have taken a line’s worth of words in one of those stupid Star Wars movies and said so, and then I wouldn’t ever have had to wade through Wikipedia to find out a bunch of stuff which quite frankly I find pretty horrible. And stupid.Just sayin’.

    Comment by plok — January 26, 2009 @ 7:07 am

  3. Gentlemen, I bow to your superior suggestions.And plok, sorry about your bad Wikipedexperience.

    Comment by Tom Bondurant — January 26, 2009 @ 12:28 pm

  4. I too must bow to plok’s superior suggestion!

    Comment by RAB — January 26, 2009 @ 7:23 pm

  5. No, it’s a greater honour for me!

    Comment by plok — January 28, 2009 @ 5:25 am

  6. you may like this blog:

    Comment by Kay — February 2, 2009 @ 1:57 pm

RSS feed for comments on this post. TrackBack URI

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Blog at

%d bloggers like this: