Tom Spurgeon's Web site of comics news, reviews, interviews and commentary

January 13, 2009

That Obama/Spider-Man Story Is Gross

The fact that Marvel wanted to do a story where their popular character Spider-Man meets soon-to-be-president and reported one-time comics fan Barack Obama is nice enough, I guess. It would just be a whole lot nicer if a company that has concentrated on story the last decade or so to astounding benefit made a solid comic out of the event rather than a kind of cruddy-looking, cynical one. It's not like there aren't a lot of stories you could tell there. What Marvel did instead seems to have more in common with a commemorative plate than the kind of gripping, pulpy narrative in which President-Elect Obama likely found solace years and years ago. By making it an oddity, the only value this comic has is as a collectible and as a press coverage totem. We have the sort of culture that loves this kind of light feature story, so good news there, I guess. Yet that also means it gets forced through the system designed to maximize the most crass, ugliest things about comics, not place a good comic into the hands of interested, involved children or other fans of the medium. Let alone fans of the man.
posted 7:30 am PST | Permalink

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