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  1. #1
    Senior Member remoteman's Avatar
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    Default Why Did The Spider-Man Reboot Fail?

    I have a bit of time off over the Christmas period, and while it would be fun to just sit around eating and drinking I figured it would be better to do something productive with my time

    With that in mind, I have decided to re-read what has become one of the most heavily criticised eras of Spider-Man's history - the reboot (that is, the Mackie / Byrne one from the early 2000's) I'm not sure what sort of schedule I will keeping to (and it will have to work around family commitments over the holiday period), but I recently posted a background piece on my blog - where I will be posting the rest of my 'project'.

    If it's something that interests people I can carry on updating this thread, and it can perhaps become a place for general discussion on the Reboot. While perhaps not the most enjoyable period of history it should make for an interesting topic.

    Anyway the first part can be found over at my blog, so check it out if interested. Thanks guys
    Last edited by remoteman; 12-19-2011 at 04:07 AM.
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  2. #2
    BANNED Jake V's Avatar
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    Did it?


    10101010

  3. #3
    Senior Member remoteman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jake V View Post
    Did it?


    10101010
    Yes. I don't have exact statistics but I understand that it sold poorly and was widely critically panned. It was a comprehensive failure in pretty much every respect.
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  4. #4
    Senior Member pedroparkero's Avatar
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    saw it on twitter...didnt know it was you.

    cant wait for part 2

  5. #5

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    Very nice blog. I like your reviews. However, I don't agree with your assessment that the Spider-Man reboot failed. It's still one of Marvel's most popular titles and events like Spider-Island show that there's still a strong market for 616 Spider-Man in it's current status quo. The top 616 Spider-Man books continue to remain in the top 50. It's faced greater competition from DC's new 52, but then again so has every major Marvel title. I think there's a lot to like about the current status of Spider-Man. Now I still believe there's plenty of room for improvement, but I think it's a stretch to call it a failure.
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  6. #6
    Hey, Larry! Darrell D.'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MarvelMaster616 View Post
    Very nice blog. I like your reviews. However, I don't agree with your assessment that the Spider-Man reboot failed. It's still one of Marvel's most popular titles and events like Spider-Island show that there's still a strong market for 616 Spider-Man in it's current status quo. The top 616 Spider-Man books continue to remain in the top 50. It's faced greater competition from DC's new 52, but then again so has every major Marvel title. I think there's a lot to like about the current status of Spider-Man. Now I still believe there's plenty of room for improvement, but I think it's a stretch to call it a failure.
    Wrong reboot period. He's talking about the Mackie/Byrne era in the late 90s, not the current one.

  7. #7
    Senior Member pedroparkero's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Darrell D. View Post
    Wrong reboot period. He's talking about the Mackie/Byrne era in the late 90s, not the current one.
    the fact he didnt remember or many dont...reflects how much of a failure it was.

  8. #8
    Senior Member remoteman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MarvelMaster616 View Post
    Very nice blog. I like your reviews. However, I don't agree with your assessment that the Spider-Man reboot failed. It's still one of Marvel's most popular titles and events like Spider-Island show that there's still a strong market for 616 Spider-Man in it's current status quo. The top 616 Spider-Man books continue to remain in the top 50. It's faced greater competition from DC's new 52, but then again so has every major Marvel title. I think there's a lot to like about the current status of Spider-Man. Now I still believe there's plenty of room for improvement, but I think it's a stretch to call it a failure.
    Yes, my apologies - I wasn't aware that the current era was known as 'The Reboot'. The other two posters are correct, I am discussing the reboot of Amazing Spider-Man and Peter Parker: Spider-Man from the early 2000's. I will make it more clear in the opening post. Thanks very much for the kind words.
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  9. #9
    I wanna hear you scream Kevinroc's Avatar
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    I have a few ideas as to why that run isn't very fondly remembered.

    I think it could all be boiled down to being far too convoluted. Aunt May was alive. We had a new Spider-Woman. Mary Jane "died" in a plane crash. And of course Chapter One was a fizzle (it wanted to be "Man of Steel" but Spidey didn't need such a reboot).

    I also think Mackie was burnt out on Spidey by that point and it showed. (Poor guy gets a rap he really shouldn't.)
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  10. #10
    Junior Member Therion's Avatar
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    It did not sell poorly, it was mostly ranked in the 11-15 range (thru the end it got closer to 18-20), with PP:SM landing 2 to 4 places behind, lowest ranked number was ASM25 foil cover at 24 but adding the normal cover, it should had been ranked at 12...

    It consistently outsold Batbooks and Superbooks. X-titles and Spawn + specials (and later, the Ultimate line) was what kept it out of the top 10, but then JMS took over, and then no one referenced to the Mackie/Byrne issues at all, so it was swiftly forgotten...



  11. #11
    Loose mongoose Venomous Mask's Avatar
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    If I recall, it began to have too many throwaway stories and villains no one cared about There were a few brilliant moments, like the Green Goblin stories, but on the whole, it just struck me as very tedious.
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  12. #12
    My Turn. Kevin Nichols's Avatar
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    I think it muddled with the origin and social status too much. When Byrne revamped Superman, he used basically the same classic origin. He just streamlined it and toned it down a bit. Instead of there being enough Kryptonite for any two-bit thug to get his hands on a piece, he made it extremely rare. He expanded on the Clark Kent character and made him more human and relatable.

    With Spidey, the human and relatable thing was NEVER a problem, so all they could do was screw around with the origin (a la Doc Ock sharing his origin with Peter). It wasn't well received because Spidey's origin was basically perfect to begin with. As far as his social status, Pete and MJ lived in a swanky condo and were living the good life. It seemed to come out of nowhere.

    In addition to that, the stories were forgettable. There were unnecessary updates to the classic villains (Electro's blue costume). They brought in new characters that were forgettable and just kind of blah. There were definitely some good stories in there, but they were simply overshadowed by the majority of a very boring run.
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  13. #13
    Senior Member oldschool's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kevin Nichols View Post
    I think it muddled with the origin and social status too much. When Byrne revamped Superman, he used basically the same classic origin. He just streamlined it and toned it down a bit. Instead of there being enough Kryptonite for any two-bit thug to get his hands on a piece, he made it extremely rare. He expanded on the Clark Kent character and made him more human and relatable.

    With Spidey, the human and relatable thing was NEVER a problem, so all they could do was screw around with the origin (a la Doc Ock sharing his origin with Peter). It wasn't well received because Spidey's origin was basically perfect to begin with. As far as his social status, Pete and MJ lived in a swanky condo and were living the good life. It seemed to come out of nowhere.

    In addition to that, the stories were forgettable. There were unnecessary updates to the classic villains (Electro's blue costume). They brought in new characters that were forgettable and just kind of blah. There were definitely some good stories in there, but they were simply overshadowed by the majority of a very boring run.
    Pretty much this^.

    I recall being a combination of confused/underwhelmed at the whole thing at the time. In hindsight, it still seems a very curious move; the only reason i ever thought they did it was to try to "wipe away" the lingering odor from the whole 1990's Clone Saga fiasco. (btw, I thought it started brilliantly but too much got mucked with and it it quickly grew unwieldly and confusing to the point where no one really knew who was Spidey and what costume he wore). I think they looked to the relaunch to wipe the slate clean and, in theory, it may have worked except for some really poor execution as Kevin noted.
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  14. #14

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    My impression is that the series did not distinguish itself in a meaningful way. It was a bit like putting a new coat of paint on an old house rather than reworking the house.
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  15. #15
    Loose mongoose Venomous Mask's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by oldschool View Post
    In hindsight, it still seems a very curious move; the only reason i ever thought they did it was to try to "wipe away" the lingering odor from the whole 1990's Clone Saga fiasco.
    I agree with this. So much of the reboot seemed to try to portray itself as the anything-but-the-nineties-Spiderman: no clones, very few symbiote stories, MJ is taken out of the picture for a while, few crossovers and long stories, flat and unflashy portrayals of older villains and utterly boring and mundane newer ones, too many "a day in the life" issues, countless references to Gwen Stacy and other pre-eighties Spidey events to try to give it a feel of being "classic" Spiderman, Flash Thompson temporarily becoming a douche again, and placing more emphasis on abstract visuals than on dynamic and engaging storytelling. These characteristics seemed to go into heavy gear after the Revenge of the Green Goblin story (which was one of the most brilliant Spiderman stories that I have ever read).

    The reboot is the chief reason why to this day, much of John Romita Jr.'s artwork makes me physically uncomfortable. If you ask me, the character really didn't start to get interesting again until they restarted SSM.
    Empty winds scrape on the soul never stop to realize/Animal whisperings intoxicate the night
    Hypnotize the desperate slow motionlight/Wash away into the rain
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