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Why Mary Jane is the Best Love Interest for Spider-Man

Peter Parker and Spider-Man have had many loves over the years but it's clear that he and Mary Jane Watson are meant to be together.

Who is Spider-Man's greatest love? Despite having many past loves, it often comes down to a debate between Mary Jane Watson and Gwen Stacy. Both have played major roles in Peter's life. Gwen is often seen as Peter's one true love with Mary Jane appearing the be a flakey party girl.

The reality of it is, there is much more to Mary Jane than most people know or give her credit for. From the moment she first entered Peter's life to the present, she has shown how much depth there is to her and why she is the one Peter is meant to be with.

== TEASER ==

Mary Jane's carefree attitude was always just an act. She unfortunately grew up in an abusive household. Her father couldn't figure out what he wanted and the family was forced to move from city to city. His frustration soon lead to physical violence. Mary Jane created the persona of being fun and carefree in order to mask how she really felt.

Her connection to Peter Parker actually occurred years before they actually met. She was thirteen and she and her mom and sister were staying with her Aunt Anna. She noticed Peter working in the yard and immediately thought he was "cute in a nerdy sort of way." A year later Peter gained spider powers and began his career as a television performer. Mary Jane became fascinated with him because he wore a mask just like she did.

Shortly after, Peter's Uncle Ben was tragically killed. In his grief and thirst for vengeance, Peter ran inside the house to put on his Spider-Man suit. Mary Jane was still looking outside when she then saw Spider-Man emerge from Peter's window.

She knew his secret from that very day. Some would think with her previous fascination and the fact that he possessed great power and abilities she might be attracted to him as some are to celebrities but that wasn't the case. Knowing even more so now that Peter was hiding who he really was behind a mask just as she was frightened her in some ways. She managed to put off the blind date her Aunt Anna and Peter's Aunt May were trying to set up and didn't see him again for two years.

It was because they were similar in some ways that really frightened her. Deep down, she knew a relationship with Peter could work out. But after seeing her parents marriage fall apart as well as that of her sister after she had two kids, being in a relationship seemed like a "death sentence." She didn't want someone else to determine her life and future. They dated but she didn't allow the relationship to become anything. Eventually Peter got back together with Gwen.

When the Norman Osborn, as the Green Goblin, was determined to destroy Peter and Spider-Man, Gwen Stacy was killed. As he was grieving immediately afterwards, Mary Jane came to console him, Peter lashed out against her. This is where MJ began to come out of her shell. Despite the harsh words Peter unleashed, Mary Jane remained by Peter's side, being the friend he truly needed. Peter began to see that he wasn't alone after all.

Eventually Peter realized what his feelings for Mary Jane were. He proposed to her but she was still hesitant. Shortly after, Mary Jane finally fully opens up to Peter. He discovers that she's known his secret all these years. She's not quite ready to fully be with Peter out of fear that all relationships end poorly. She soon comes to terms with her father and parents' relationship and Peter and Mary Jane are to get married.

The two had their share of marital problems (largely due to writers not really knowing what to do with the marriage) and the end was in sight. After Peter revealed his identity to the world during Civil War and Aunt May was shot, Mephisto approached the couple. He declared that they had a love like no other.

It was a love that "comes about once in a millennia." That says a lot right there.

Despite their marriage now never having happened, it has been stated (by then Marvel Editor-in-Chief Joe Quesada) that all the events before One More Day did occur except for the marriage. That means that when Peter was approached by an angelic force still holds. Peter was told that he and Mary Jane would overcome all of their obstacles and raise a family together.

The fact that both Mephisto and this angelic force realizes and acknowledges the love they have is reason enough that Peter and Mary Jane should be together. Peter and Spider-Man may be free to run around with the Avengers or Future Foundation and try to catch a date with Silver Sable or She-Hulk but in the grand scheme, none of that matters. Some day a writer will be allowed to put things back to where they should be.

Peter and Mary Jane may be just friends right now but it's only a matter of time until the relationship that was meant to be is allowed to play out the way fate intended.

140 Comments
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Posted by Inverno

YOU DON'T SAY?!?

Just kidding, yeah I agree she is the one. Black Cat would probably drag Spider-Man to insanity with all her hijincks. Oh and Tony props for avoiding Carly Cooper.

Posted by TheWitchingHour

I hated that Peter and MJ had to end. They were a fantastic couple and should be brought together again as soon as possible. But the way their relationship ended was very touching. Conceptually One More Day was a terrible idea. In execution it was brilliantly done.

Posted by KainScion

these is a part of this article that i cant see. its where it gives the reason of their break-up. oh well. yes she is the one. and marvel MAKES THE HOTTEST RED-HEADS EVER!!!

Posted by doomsilver

Cool facts.

Posted by Jonny_Anonymous

Nope, Gwen will be the one and only. MJ was a total dick to Harry Osborn 

Posted by TheWitchingHour

Spider-Man BLUE was a very nice examination of Peter and Gwen's relationship. One of the few things by Jeph Loeb I enjoy.

Posted by saoakden

Spider-Man is one of my favorite comic book characters. I can relate to him to some extent. He was a shy kid but when he was in High School, he went through a life changing event. When the Spider bit him, he became Spider-Man. I can relate on the shy part and some other things but I won't go into it. & no I don't have spider powers.

I never read one more day but I did read Back in Black. The last image in the article is from Back in Black I believe. Peter and MJ looked happy to be together on top of the skyscraper or buliding. I liked how Spider-Man was happy in a relationship. I read Spider-Island and I remember during the event MJ said I love you to Peter while he was controling the Octobots. He didn't hear her but still I liked how the story shows she still has strong feeling for Peter. Even though his relationship with Carlie Cooper, I think thats her name, ended I think Peter should be with MJ now. Is obvious that MJ wants to be with Peter again, so make it happen! Maybe they can do it in the Amazing Spider-Man 692 or 700? I was disapointed when Marvel ended their relationship like how I was disapointed when DC Comics ended Clark and Lois' relationship and just have them as friends.

Posted by InnerVenom123
It was a love that "comes about once in a millennia." That says a lot right there.

So the reason their love is the most valid is because OMD said so?

Lulz.

Posted by oraclefyre

MJ is and always will be brilliant! Her and Peter connected more on a spiritual level more than Peter and Gwen ever could.

Posted by GBrutality

completely agree.

however, one question still bugs me and i can never find the answer; didn't they have a kid at some point? i thought i remembered them having a baby years back. no, not from the MC2 line, but from the regular one. whatever happened with that?

Posted by Dernman

Gwen was Peter's first love and MJ is his one true love. 

Posted by oraclefyre

@Dernman said:

Gwen was Peter's first love and MJ is his one true love.

Posted by Lvenger

Obviously whilst I want to see Peter and MJ back together at some point in the future, it needs to be at an appropriate time and not just half heartedly executed by the writers. Though if Slott stays on Amazing Spider-Man for the future, I know he could do it right. But anyway if more love interests are required to bide the time for Peter and MJ to reconcile naturally then I'm fine with that.

Posted by sethysquare

That is true. Which is why I am so conflicted with the new spiderman movie. Because I love emma stone but I just cant get around to watch a movie that is based on Gwen Stacy. Not to mention Spiderman would always be Tobey Mcguire. Guess I'll sit this one out.

Posted by Teerack

Well I kind of disagree. I think that sense Peter doesn't put much effort into his civilian life he's better off with other super human community members like Silver Sable or Black Cat. Hell it would be cool if he started something with a team made like Mockingbird or maybe someone from out of the blue like Firestar(he's clearly got a thing for redheads anyway).

Posted by Beast_in_the_Shadows

Beautifully put, sir. Nothing against Gwen, Felicia or any of the other Spidey flames, but for me there isn't any room for debate on who is meant to be at Pete's side. Not only is she The most established at being with him, but she is one of the best developed non-super in comics (second I would say only to Commissioner Gordan)

She's a deep, strong, uplifting character and the perfect ground/foil to a hero like Spider-man. She a perfect character, and certainly perfect for Pete.

Posted by wowylied

I never like all the love story in the comic i read. Most of the time it was part that bored me.

The marvel and flash family were the only exception.

Posted by Strider92

@InnerVenom123 said:

It was a love that "comes about once in a millennia." That says a lot right there.

So the reason their love is the most valid is because OMD said so?

Lulz.

Oh the Irony!

Although MJ and Pete made a great couple lets face it this is the comic-verse nothing is going to stay permanent and to be honest i'm surprised the writers managed to get them to stay together for as long as they did.

Edited by Suprman

Joe Quesada needs to read this article.

Edited by animehunter

@GBrutality:

however, one question still bugs me and i can never find the answer; didn't they have a kid at some point? i thought i remembered them having a baby years back. no, not from the MC2 line, but from the regular one. whatever happened with that?

If I remember correctly they did have a baby girl, who was kidnapped by Alison Mongrain, the con artist, on instruction from the Green Goblin (Norman Osborn) on the day of her birth. But as far as I remember that was the last we saw of her in the normal continuity, meaning Marvel never pursued that story line.

Another scenario I heard was that Norman Osborn hired Alison Mongrain to poison MJ's food to make sure the infant was stillborn, but then why take the child

I've had a look at previous issues I found references to the baby here

A few hypothesis were around as to what might have happened afterwards

  1. Alison Mongrain murdered the baby
  2. Alison Mongrain was caring for the baby

And just to put my 2 cents in, I 1000% agree that Peter Parker and Mary Jane should get back together, they are one of the few couples that are actually an interesting read.

But if Marvel decide otherwise, I would have no problem with these relationships

  1. Silver Sable / Silver Sablinova
  2. Ms Marvel / Carol Danvers
  3. Black Cat / Felicia Hardy
  4. Betty Brant (if she leaves Flash Thompson)
Posted by LordRequiem

Ms. Marvel/Carol Danvers!

Posted by FadeToBlackBolt

Felicia or F*ck off. 

Posted by Deadcool

@Dernman said:

Gwen was Peter's first love and MJ is his one true love.

Mary Jane was created to be a second love interest but not as the main love interest., said Stan Lee.

Posted by primepower53

@oraclefyre said:

@Dernman said:

Gwen was Peter's first love and MJ is his one true love.

^^^^^^^^^^

Posted by Dernman
@Deadcool said:

@Dernman said:

Gwen was Peter's first love and MJ is his one true love.

Mary Jane was created to be a second love interest but not as the main love interest., said Stan Lee.

Spider-Man like most characters have evolved beyond their original creator's vision. What was originally intended isn't so any longer. 
Posted by FoxxFireArt

If Marvel tries putting Mary Jane and Peter back together after the utter debacle that was OMD. It will prove that Marvel has no intention of ever doing anything different. They had an opportunity, and gave the middle finger to long term readers in the process. As my writing teacher taunt me. A character that doesn't evolve is static, and a static character might as well be dead. Marvel might as well make "The more things change. The more they stay the same." Their official company motto.

The whole superficial premise behind the break was that editorial wanted Peter to be single. So, that tells us there that editorial will only let any relationship he has from now on will go so far then end. We now know the outcome before anything even begins based upon their own statements and previous actions.

As to the idea that everything happened except the marriage is absolute, award-winning bunk. That would have to mean that MJ could do everything that was involved with a marriage but couldn't do a ceremony. Quesada saying that was just his way of trying to make it seem as if he didn't wipe out decades of history. He didn't evolve the character, he took away his development.

Also, I'm with James Robinson on the issue of MJ knowing Peter was Spider-man from the start. That makes her look more superficial. She's not that impressive of a character. She's been a plot point as a damsel in distress. At least Lois Lane is proactive.

Posted by Squabblez

If I remember correctly, One More Day happened because Quesada said Spider-Man being married made him too "old". There's nothing wrong with a happily married superhero. In fact I think we need more comic book examples of people who stay together in a world where divorce has become a social norm.

Posted by BlueLantern1995
Posted by sesquipedalophobe

Pfft, true love.

Posted by Mrakbarman

Lol, this article should have been released earlier ( parallel lives came out a month ago )

Posted by Phaedrusgr

@oraclefyre: The Doctor knows better! Agreed.

Posted by G-Man

@Mrakbarman: It actually came out in 1989.

Staff
Posted by BlueLantern1995
Posted by Planewalker

I really would like to see Peter with Felicia just for the laughs, I like Black Cat and after seeing her costume in the new game she looks even better. But yeah MJ should be with Petey

Posted by Dark_Vengeance_

because she is normal, not dead, and not Carlie Cooper

Posted by Deadcool

@Dernman said:

Spider-Man like most characters have evolved beyond their original creator's vision. What was originally intended isn't so any longer.

Well, in my opinion, Spider-man is one of the couple of characters that haven't envolved from what was actually meant for the character, but in the "love interest part" well, yeah, MJ envolved a lot from the orignal concept, so in that part you are right.

Posted by Mokey

That's not Gwen!

Posted by fodigg

My thoughts:

  • Ha! You just HAD to use that messed up contortionist pose for the header title!
  • You will NEVER convince Gwen shippers that MJ is the one. It was such a weird situation, it was like Betty & Veronica and then Archie commits to one of them (say Betty) which is a big freaking deal, and then the writers KILL OFF Betty so suddenly he settles down with Veronica. It's just...weird. Since then, so many new readers didn't even really know Gwen that it doesn't matter as much, but it still kinda hangs over the couple's head. No matter how well written, MJ was the consolation prize.
  • The Mephisto thing...is just awful. It only builds up their relationship ever so slightly so it can viciously tear it down. It was such a shoddy solution and so poorly handled. By Peter willingly sacrificing MJ, and by MJ encouraging him to do so, they did not prove themselves to be a "great love" or even the dubious honor of "star-crossed lovers", they just proved they were unworthy of their relationship. And so it ended.

It's a bit funny though, that both situations come from the same source, writers don't want a married Spider-Man. The story is easier to tell when you can keep the romantic tension high, when you can dangle a new bauble in front of the protagonist when the old one gets boring, etc. They couldn't see where else to go with Peter & Gwen, so they killed Gwen. They spent years trying to sabotage the Peter & MJ relationship, so they finally just decided to kill it completely.

The new status quo hasn't been terrible, but with MJ constantly waiting in the wings pining for Peter, it just doesn't seem like much more than an excuse for Pete to fool around until he gets bored and is ready to go back to being married. Yay "great responsibility."

Posted by fodigg

@TheWitchingHour said:

Conceptually One More Day was a terrible idea. In execution it was brilliantly done.

Say wut? I'd argue that you have that backwards. Conceptually, it makes sense from a story-telling standpoint to keep the romantic interest out of reach from the protagonist, in execution, having Peter and MJ make a literal deal with the devil to abandon their relationship was ridiculous.

Posted by Crackdown

@Dernman said:

Gwen was Peter's first love and MJ is his one true love.

true loves don't sleep with older men, just because she feels sorry for someone.

and then had two twins by the other man, and hid it from Peter

Posted by Sovereign91001

@FoxxFireArt said:

She's been a plot point as a damsel in distress. At least Lois Lane is proactive.

That was pretty much Lois Lane for the better part of her existence and I don't think that invalidates her any more as a character than it does MJ. If anything 'The gung-ho' attitude Lois shows makes the distressed damsel thing worse in my eyes.

Posted by BigBDawg

Nice article. :) In the long run, it leaves me in a bit of an empasse. Although I do wnder too who will be the writer that will bring Peter and MJ together again.

Posted by SandMan_

Gwen is the one that got away and MJ is the one and only.

Posted by GrandHarrier

Oh One More Day. I will never understand you. Ever. You were so terrible.

Posted by Mercy_

This article ♥

Moderator
Posted by Nefarious

She will always be Spidey's favorite red-head. 

Posted by Crom-Cruach

I've always thought that Peter could do better then Mary Jane...

Posted by Remi

Because his first one was a crush, nothing much happened between them when you compare it to Spidey's and MJ's relationship and died.

The third major woman, Felicia, wouldn't work because she's too unpredictable and unstable for a relationship.

Posted by KainScion

@Crackdown: there are some sick people at marvel

Posted by KainScion

@Crom-Cruach: like who?

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