Just posted my latest (and last for a while) update, featuring the return of the Sinister Six.
As far as Sinister Six appearances go, this one is fairly skippable - although the visual spectacle of Spider-Man's primary foes being brought together is still there. Some of Byrne and Romita Jr's artwork is pretty great, and rescues a below par two parter.
For anyone interested I recently wrote a new part in my retrospective look back at the Spider-Man reboot, where I summarize the first year of the reboot and try to pinpoint where exactly it went wrong. A lot of it is treading over fairly old ground, but its a fairly neat summary of the previous 14 parts. Check it out at the link in my signature and let me know what you think
I think one of the biggest problem with the reboot is Mackie was and has admitted in several interviews that he was already burnt out on writing Spider-Man and tried several times to refuse the reboot job but Harris kept pushing it on him and refused to let him turn it down, why in the world would an "Editor-in-Chief" force someone that didn't want the job in first place, force them onto one of your biggest and most marketable characters boggles my mind to this day.
Life's too short and you never know when the end will be so enjoy it while you can.
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
Blood, milk and sky....
For anyone interested, I'm hoping to get this series up and running again over the next few days. I just posted a new updated where I look at the two issues dealing with Mary-Jane's sudden 'death'. Check out the link in my signature if you're interested.
The answer is simple...it was the supposed death of Mary Jane.
Mary Jane (married to Peter or not) is an important part of the Spider-Man's life. They complete each other. That's why even now you can't keep her out of the book for a long period of time without it causing people to lose interest in Spider-Man stories. She adds something to the Spider-Man stories that just means too much to leave out.
I would argue that Brand New Day managed it just fine, although there was of course a fair amount of opposition to it. I do agree that a lot of the reboot's problems stemmed from Marvel's desire to remove MJ from Peter's life though.
Plus, it was rather obvious that MJ was still alive. Hell, two issues after MJ was killed off a guy called Peter's house to say that she's still alive.
What Would Spidey Do?
The TriCorp setting was under-used-- the characters were introduced rather dramatically, but then rarely seen despite them being set up as being new (major) supporting characters.. Peter was set up as a hard-luck sap more often than not.. the one guy at TriCorp who hated him on principle was never put in check (whether by Peter solving a problem in front of the boss, etc.); it all ended with Pete being looked at by everybody as a slacker who gets fired for never showing up.. The corrupt/alien senator subplot was overly drawn out and had a bizarre resolution.. Mary Jane dying (albeit with the literal back-door)..