Off My Mind: Is Spider-Man Building Too Many Gadgets?

  • 191 results
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
Posted by G-Man (32458 posts) - - Show Bio

Spider-Man has been going through quite a few changes lately. They're not physical changes such as when The Other storyline took place (or maybe that didn't take place since Brand New Day started). Lately, he's been changing his tactics and adding to his arsenal in order to defeat the villains.

Spider-Man has always been a simple character. He had the proportional strength and speed of a spider. With his intellect, wits and perseverance, he's been able to consistently triumph over evil, with only the occasional loss or two throughout his superhero career.

With Peter Parker's position at Horizon Labs, he is has access to the resources he needs to create incredible inventions and gadgets that have given him a big edge over his enemies. While it's great to see Spider-Man utilize his intellect rather than solely rely on his powers, using so many gadgets could prove to be his downfall.

== TEASER ==

What's wrong with using gadgets? It works for Iron Man and Batman. But Spider-Man never really needed them before. Of course his web shooters are a piece of technology he created along with the spider-tracer. He's always overcome incredible odds and never needed the high tech suits and devices he's been using lately.

One of the items he's created was the stealth suit (in issue #650). This allowed him to turn 'invisible' (by warping light and sound) and he could sneak up on his enemies. It's a great idea but he never needed it before. He could crawl through the shadows and his spider senses would warn him if he was about to be spotted. Having a stealth suit does make things easier.

When it comes to defeating super villains and saving the lives of innocents, obviously the faster it can be done, the better. Regardless, he no longer is in possession of it since Kaine felt he earned it during the Spider-Island arc. It's surprising that Peter hasn't created a replacement suit.

In the recent AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #682, there was mention of several other inventions he's made. The latest was little spider-balls full of thermoreactive foam. Upon impact, the foam can be used to deal with enemies that have heat or cold-based powers. Besides carrying them in a satchel, he also made a Goblin Glider-type flying spider-shaped platform.

If Spider-Man plans on using more and more gadgets, he's going to need a ride in order to carry them all.

After the battle, Spider-Man helped clear the way for a firefighter to get to the hospital quickly. There, he discovered that the Cryo Cubes Peter Parker invented (in issue #666) has saved many lives already even though his original intention was to use it to defeat Hydro-Man. The ability to give an enemy a quick freeze could come in handy should the right enemy be on the scene.

Using this technology for medical purposes, it's been applied to medical transport boxes to carry limbs and organs in cases of emergencies.

There was also the bullet proof polymer he invented (in issue #656). When he lost his spider senses, he needed something that gave him a little edge over dodging a hail of bullets. The technology is being used in motorcycle helmets now but Spider-Man isn't exactly a stranger to wearing armor. It's possible that needing a power source to run it might be keeping him from continuing to wear it on a day-to-day basis but with his track record on inventions so far, you would think he could come up with an easy solution to deal with that.

Even though he's is busy working at Horizon, dealing with his enemies and being an active member of the Avengers and Future Foundation, that hasn't stopped him from creating other devices. Somehow in his spare time, he's also made devices tailored for each of his big enemies. This is a smart thing to do as it could help give him an edge and make apprehending any of his dangerous enemies happen faster.

Is Spider-Man going to become too dependent on these devices? It's not like someone simply handed him the tools to defeat his enemies. He is the one that created them all. But knowing he has these items means he has to make way to the secured storage room where he keeps them all. Of course not all technology is infallible. Wouldn't it just take one magnetic-based villain or someone capable of generating an EMP blast at him to take out his gear? Spider-Man is quick on his feat in coming up with a plan but if he puts all his eggs in one basket, it could prove to be a mistake that costs the lives of others.

Spider-Man with gadgets is a cool idea. It's great and refreshing to see Dan Slott embrace and utilize the fact that Peter Parker is really smart guy capable of these inventions. If they can be used in a broader way and save the lives of civilians, that's great. That means he's saving the lives of innocents on two fronts. It just doesn't feel completely right that Spider-Man would need these devices when he's gone years and years without needing them.

Staff
#1 Posted by ahgunsillyo (113 posts) - - Show Bio

The whole Spidey-Goblin Glider and the not-pumpkin bombs were kind of in bad taste. Did he really need the glider? Or the satchel?

#2 Posted by TDK_1997 (14697 posts) - - Show Bio

He must make more gadgets because his villains are getting stronger,but him having so many costumes and having a Spider glider.....NO!

#3 Posted by Ganthetsward20 (687 posts) - - Show Bio

He is a smart guy, I felt that these gadgets were just a way of showing his intellect to readers. Not everything he makes is going to stick but its neat that he can make this stuff and try it out and have them in the back of his closet so that he may have a later, more practical, use for them.

Can't we make the same argument for someone like Batman, though in his defense he has no powers. But maybe if spidey had a utility belt to fit this stuff in it would work better?

#4 Posted by Deadcool (6810 posts) - - Show Bio

Too many gadgets? That never stopped Batman...

#5 Posted by darkrider (444 posts) - - Show Bio

@Deadcool: yes but batman has a cave spiderman have an apartment

#6 Posted by FoxxFireArt (3554 posts) - - Show Bio

Spidey has always needed gadgets to some extent. Thing of the tracking devices or the biggest ones, the web shooters. He wouldn't be nearly as mobile without those.

Too many suits? Yes. In that way, he's becoming too much like Iron Man. When a new threat comes along his current suit can't handle, he makes a new suit. But after reading SM: Big Time. I began to think about something. It's funny you should write this now. I've been mulling this over in my head, and it seems from reading your article. A lot of what I was thinking about came true.

It was in how Peter developed that anti-metal to destroy the Re-Vibranium. That tech was then used in making sound canceling headphones. Sure, that's kind of superficial. But there is possibility for more.

Look at how much of the technology we use every day was originally designed for military needs. That's where some of the latest tech is funded, developed, and tested. Only later does it work it's way into every day society. It could be like that for Spider-man. He's finding out things he's making have a wider use. In a way, the villains have been indirectly helping the world by creating a need for some invention or idea.

It can get out of hand, such as with a Goblin-inspired glider. A lines was crossed there.

#7 Posted by saoakden (1040 posts) - - Show Bio

The times are changing. Different writers will come up with different ideas. Peter Parker has always been smart. In the past, he was able to defeat his enemies with some kind of plan and somehow made it on top. He's never had the resources to make these gadgets. Sure he could of gone to the Fantastic Four but something tells me they be to busy to help out Spidey.

I think its good to have Spider-Man have different gadgets now. It shows that Spider-Man is a smart guy and that he's not using the same old moves to defeat an enemy over and over again. It be like Superman from the early years. Doing the same thing every issue.

Plus with different writers, they can make any of Spider-Man's enemies tougher to fight. So Spider-man must come prepared.

Its better to come prepared for a battle. All these gadgets show Spider-Man is now prepared for his enemies. Since he's been fighting them for years, he might as well have the equipment to defeat his enemies. If he didn't make the Spider-Armor, he would of been gunned down. The Stealth Suit played a key role in Spider-Island. His newest suit is suppose to help him defeat the Sinister Six. In the past he defeated them in his regular costume but this new suit will probably even the odds between Spider-Man & the Sinister Six.

#8 Posted by Deadcool (6810 posts) - - Show Bio

@darkrider said:

Yes but Batman has a Batcave, Spiderman has an apartment

Yeah, but what?

#9 Posted by Mokey (188 posts) - - Show Bio

@darkrider: Spidey also has his own giant personal lab.

#10 Posted by Meteorite (3351 posts) - - Show Bio

The problem is that he's been inventing too many gadgets too fast

#11 Posted by leokearon (1790 posts) - - Show Bio

Obviously G-man hasn't seen the new Ultimate Spider-man cartton trailers where SHIELD give spidey webshooters with a targeting sight and a motorbike that has lasers, fires webbing and can drive down it's own webbing

#12 Edited by ArtisticNeedham (2240 posts) - - Show Bio

Great article.

Peter the scientist

From the very beginning Spider-man has used gadgets. Sort of. When Stan Lee was writing him he would fight the bad guy, like the Vulture, get beaten up, go home, and invent a gadget that would help him defeat the bad guy. There are panels drawn by Ditko where Peter is sitting at his desk at Aunt May's house, after fighting a bad guy, building an invention to stop the villain. In Vultures case his anti magnetic device that turned off Vultures wings. With the Lizard he concocted some chemical to reverse the process. With Doc Ock he invented a chemical solution that would melt and weld his mechanical arms together. His web shooters are part of it too. Then theres the tracers. Shows that Peter is a genius.

In Slots run, when he started at Horizon, Peter even mentions in a flashback montage that some of his greatest ideas had come from needing something to defeat the Vulture, Venom, etc. So him using gadgets has always been there.

Back then Lee would use this idea a lot. Reed would invent some invention at the last minute to defeat the Super Skrull, or the Leader, or whoever. It does help to show that Peter is smart. He doesn't just beat his enemies into submission, he can invent a device to stop them.

I think Slot is just bringing it back to the forefront. It doesn't bother me at all, he is still the same character. What I am more worried about is that something may happen that stops Peter from working at Horizon and stops his happy life there. Sending Peter back to being a slacker type.

In fact, I worry that the reason he keeps getting more things like gadgets, suits, and status as an Avenger and FF, is because he is going to have a great fall from grace. It could be building up to some story where Peter looses it all.

#13 Posted by McClintick (25 posts) - - Show Bio

We don't want a marvel batman which spiderman is fastly becoming. I don't mind these spider gadgets at times but it"s almost every issue now and it"s stale. I hope after this arc he will get back to his old charming ways. I always enjoyed spidey and how he fights, a mecha suit like now i feel like we as readers will loose and miss the guick fluid fighting that we are used to. They need to keep gadgets tasteful, a utility belt would be ok but all these suits are dumb. Even batman only has a few when you account for most being just a slight modified piece or attachment.

#14 Posted by Eyz (3095 posts) - - Show Bio

Naaah!

Petey's a genius, he needs to work on some gadgets and create some more gimmicks-of-the-day when facing new foes! :)

that's what originally made Spider-man stand out from other naturally superpowered heroes.

#15 Posted by Death Certificate (5438 posts) - - Show Bio

Nope

#16 Posted by DocFatalis (1419 posts) - - Show Bio

I remember at the end of the seventies, they gave him a car, that was the most ridiculous thing ever

#17 Posted by Mattersuit (4270 posts) - - Show Bio

Those six boxes. I see the ones marked Rhino, Electro, Doctor Octopus, Sandman and Mysterio, but am I wrong, or does the other one say Chameleon?

I ask because I can't quite see it clearly.

#18 Posted by Maxwolfe (6 posts) - - Show Bio

Spider man was a simple superhero but now he has started to advance on gadgets. I think it was better when he was simple because he does not any of these advancements accept the stealth suit for temporary

#19 Posted by Chaos Burn (1782 posts) - - Show Bio

I like smart Peter Parker, to be honest id love it if the character evolved his gadget builiding career and ended up the new Tony Stark :D

#20 Edited by Herx (374 posts) - - Show Bio

Well he's a scientist (as we all know) and he's got links to a proper laboratory with proper materials. So why not exlpoit it. I mean if he knowns that, say, rhinno is rampaging through some part of the city why shouldn't he go down with something specifically made to subdue him while also lowering the risk for himself, the city and it;s citizens? If he's aware of the situatiuon im all for the gadgets. But if its a case of "oh look theres....... electro doing something EVIL over there while i was just swining past, luckely i just happen to have my anit-electro gadgets on me for some unexplained reason" im not for it. Only bring the big guns out when the danger is known to him in advance, not if he just happens to pass it by. If he's just swinging by and sees something im saying that he should just jump in in there with little to no gadgets at all and try and stop it. In the end it all comes down to the writing. Sure we don't want to see spidy become some sort of Marvel take on batman with his various gadgets (with rhinno repelant) but we also like to see the sciency (never has such a stupider term been used for a study that spans thousands of feilds :P) intellectual part of him, and that would mean him being prepaired, in advance, for any threat that he's faced so far. (so no new suits or gadgets to take down first time appearaing villains, or villains from other series that spidys never taken on before).

#21 Posted by Planewalker (326 posts) - - Show Bio

There's no such thing as too many gadgets!!!

#22 Posted by TDK_1997 (14697 posts) - - Show Bio

@darkrider said:

@Deadcool: yes but batman has a cave spiderman have an apartment

True.

#23 Posted by RainEffect (3240 posts) - - Show Bio
@Deadcool said:

Too many gadgets? That never stopped Batman...

There's a MASSIVE difference between Spiderman and Batman. The biggest one is, obviously the lack of powers.
#24 Posted by Deadcool (6810 posts) - - Show Bio

@RainEffect said:

@Deadcool said:

Too many gadgets? That never stopped Batman...

There's a MASSIVE difference between Spiderman and Batman. The biggest one is, obviously the lack of powers.

That is not an excuse!!! Spider-man has villains 8 times stronger than him, having gadgets or tools is to help you when you are obviously overpowered by someone else.

@TDK_1997 said:

@darkrider said:

@Deadcool: yes but batman has a cave spiderman have an apartment

True.

Meh...

#25 Posted by InnerVenom123 (29499 posts) - - Show Bio

@RainEffect said:

@Deadcool said:

Too many gadgets? That never stopped Batman...

There's a MASSIVE difference between Spiderman and Batman. The biggest one is, obviously the lack of powers.

Either way, Parker's got reasons to build gadgets besides being Spider-man. They just happen to fit together with his superheroing.

#26 Posted by InnerVenom123 (29499 posts) - - Show Bio

@darkrider said:

@Deadcool: yes but batman has a cave spiderman have an apartment

Batman has a cave, Spider-man has a large storage unit in Horizon Labs that might as well be called the spider-cave.

#27 Posted by sora_thekey (8161 posts) - - Show Bio

Is it possible for the over-saturated gadget queue to be part of Slott's overall plan for the whole situation to blow up in Parker's face?

Moderator
#28 Posted by RainEffect (3240 posts) - - Show Bio
@Deadcool said:

@RainEffect said:

@Deadcool said:

Too many gadgets? That never stopped Batman...

There's a MASSIVE difference between Spiderman and Batman. The biggest one is, obviously the lack of powers.

That is not an excuse!!! Spider-man has villains 8 times stronger than him, having gadgets or tools is to help you when you are obviously overpowered by someone else.

@TDK_1997 said:

@darkrider said:

@Deadcool: yes but batman has a cave spiderman have an apartment

True.

Meh...

Uhhh....
 
Batman goes up against people who can destroy an entire planet, on a regular basis.
#29 Posted by TheShame (477 posts) - - Show Bio

@Planewalker:There is if you're adam west....

#30 Posted by Skunkstein (591 posts) - - Show Bio

I dont like the Spider-Glider with the bombs thats just weak.

But on another note, ive already wondered why he DIDNT make more gagdets he is one of the smartest men on the planet after all, and its not like he is a tank. I like gadgets as long as they are in good taste (Spider-Gliders are not)

#31 Posted by Ms. Omega (4441 posts) - - Show Bio

I kinda like the idea of spidey building gadgets myself.

#32 Posted by ravisher (684 posts) - - Show Bio

i can see if he didnt have powers.

i guess it keeps things new and they can make new toys

#33 Posted by BKole (499 posts) - - Show Bio

A lot of people are saying "Spider-man shouldn't have gadgets. He never used them before!" Or some such nonsense.

I actually really like this version of Spider-Man. As a scientist, as using his brain instead of just using his fists. What people are failing to notice is that Spider-Man ALWAYS used Gadgets and even when he DIDN'T use gadgets, he always had a plan. He's always mixed up different types of webbing to fight bad guys, had some sort of noise cannon or something else to make the symbiotes go away, or using different costumes for different purposes, like that Insulated suit he fought Electro with.

The difference is, NOW he has the resources to make all this stuff. So why shouldn't he? It's not like he's changing things up that much. He lost his Spider-Sense, so instead of being shot in the face, he made bullet proof armor. That's not that daft. Only used it the once, didn't he?

It's the Spider-Glider whats done this. I do agree, sometimes the new suits for every problem is going a bit overboard, but this is a refreshing take on Spider-Man that doesn't revolve around "Aunt May is in trouble! Mary Jane is in trouble! Oh No, I am hated and feared blah blah." This is Peter Parker living up to his potential, and I for one, am loving it. Regardless of Spider-Glider, Noise cancelling suit or people yelling that this isn't the spider-man they remember.

It is, just on a much grander scale.

#34 Posted by Mbecks14 (2068 posts) - - Show Bio

Peter just wants to be Batman.

#35 Posted by feargalr (1163 posts) - - Show Bio

I do like that they are trying new things with Spidey with the other 2 ultimate Spider-man series going on at the moment, there's no reason to keep the status quo here.

#36 Posted by JonSmith (3996 posts) - - Show Bio

Hey, at least Spidey's doing what no other super genius in the Marvel world has done before: Donate his inventions to the public for use in the everyday lives of many. I don't see Stark, Mr. Fantastic, or any other super smart hero doing that.

#37 Posted by Death Certificate (5438 posts) - - Show Bio

@BKole said:

A lot of people are saying "Spider-man shouldn't have gadgets. He never used them before!" Or some such nonsense.

I actually really like this version of Spider-Man. As a scientist, as using his brain instead of just using his fists. What people are failing to notice is that Spider-Man ALWAYS used Gadgets and even when he DIDN'T use gadgets, he always had a plan. He's always mixed up different types of webbing to fight bad guys, had some sort of noise cannon or something else to make the symbiotes go away, or using different costumes for different purposes, like that Insulated suit he fought Electro with.

The difference is, NOW he has the resources to make all this stuff. So why shouldn't he? It's not like he's changing things up that much. He lost his Spider-Sense, so instead of being shot in the face, he made bullet proof armor. That's not that daft. Only used it the once, didn't he?

It's the Spider-Glider whats done this. I do agree, sometimes the new suits for every problem is going a bit overboard, but this is a refreshing take on Spider-Man that doesn't revolve around "Aunt May is in trouble! Mary Jane is in trouble! Oh No, I am hated and feared blah blah." This is Peter Parker living up to his potential, and I for one, am loving it. Regardless of Spider-Glider, Noise cancelling suit or people yelling that this isn't the spider-man they remember.

It is, just on a much grander scale.

#38 Posted by vicioushero (163 posts) - - Show Bio

@RainEffect said:

@Deadcool said:

@RainEffect said:

@Deadcool said:

Too many gadgets? That never stopped Batman...

There's a MASSIVE difference between Spiderman and Batman. The biggest one is, obviously the lack of powers.

That is not an excuse!!! Spider-man has villains 8 times stronger than him, having gadgets or tools is to help you when you are obviously overpowered by someone else.

@TDK_1997 said:

@darkrider said:

@Deadcool: yes but batman has a cave spiderman have an apartment

True.

Meh...

Uhhh.... Batman goes up against people who can destroy an entire planet, on a regular basis.

Thats crap. Who Bane? Joker? The Penguin? You DC fanboys are just ridiculous. Give it a rest already.

#39 Posted by Green ankh (998 posts) - - Show Bio

i was just goin to post the same thing..at least go work for Tony.

#40 Posted by sethysquare (3843 posts) - - Show Bio

Dan Slott is ruining Spiderman.

#41 Posted by sethysquare (3843 posts) - - Show Bio

@vicioushero said:

@RainEffect said:

@Deadcool said:

@RainEffect said:

@Deadcool said:

Too many gadgets? That never stopped Batman...

There's a MASSIVE difference between Spiderman and Batman. The biggest one is, obviously the lack of powers.

That is not an excuse!!! Spider-man has villains 8 times stronger than him, having gadgets or tools is to help you when you are obviously overpowered by someone else.

@TDK_1997 said:

@darkrider said:

@Deadcool: yes but batman has a cave spiderman have an apartment

True.

Meh...

Uhhh.... Batman goes up against people who can destroy an entire planet, on a regular basis.

Thats crap. Who Bane? Joker? The Penguin? You DC fanboys are just ridiculous. Give it a rest already.

Purlease. Batman defeated Darkseid, Starro and other cosmic villains so many times single handedly. Have you heard of the term Batgod?

Spiderman is a simple hero and fights simple villains like the green goblin and venom.

He does not need gadgets and what not. You marvel fanboys are just ridiculous.

#42 Posted by vicioushero (163 posts) - - Show Bio

Parker took a new more proactive stance as a crime fighter when Jonahs wife died (she's the one who hooked him up with the job) after so many deaths he vowed "No one else dies". That's why he's been making more gadgets. So he will be better. What I don't get is why comic reader complain about stale story lines and no character development, and then complain when they try to make changes. Making gadgets isn't even really out of character. The glider is ugly and maybe in poor taste, I'll give you that but I'm sure it's not like that's his main mode of transportation now.

#43 Posted by Death Certificate (5438 posts) - - Show Bio

@sethysquare: Batman never defeated Darksied single handedly, and batgod isn't a literal term.

#44 Posted by Death Certificate (5438 posts) - - Show Bio

@vicioushero said:

Parker took a new more proactive stance as a crime fighter when Jonahs wife died (she's the one who hooked him up with the job) after so many deaths he vowed "No one else dies". That's why he's been making more gadgets. So he will be better. What I don't get is why comic reader complain about stale story lines and no character development, and then complain when they try to make changes. Making gadgets isn't even really out of character. The glider is ugly and maybe in poor taste, I'll give you that but I'm sure it's not like that's his main mode of transportation now.

Simple, they don't know what they want

#45 Posted by vicioushero (163 posts) - - Show Bio

@sethysquare said:

@vicioushero said:

@RainEffect said:

@Deadcool said:

@RainEffect said:

@Deadcool said:

Too many gadgets? That never stopped Batman...

There's a MASSIVE difference between Spiderman and Batman. The biggest one is, obviously the lack of powers.

That is not an excuse!!! Spider-man has villains 8 times stronger than him, having gadgets or tools is to help you when you are obviously overpowered by someone else.

@TDK_1997 said:

@darkrider said:

@Deadcool: yes but batman has a cave spiderman have an apartment

True.

Meh...

Uhhh.... Batman goes up against people who can destroy an entire planet, on a regular basis.

Thats crap. Who Bane? Joker? The Penguin? You DC fanboys are just ridiculous. Give it a rest already.

Purlease. Batman defeated Darkseid, Starro and other cosmic villains so many times single handedly. Have you heard of the term Batgod?

Spiderman is a simple hero and fights simple villains like the green goblin and venom.

He does not need gadgets and what not. You marvel fanboys are just ridiculous.

He does not fight Darkseid or any other cosmic villian on a regular basis. Spider-Man has gone up against cosmic villians too, but on a regular basis his rogues gallery are street level. Just like Batman.

#46 Posted by fodigg (6146 posts) - - Show Bio

I think gadgets are fine. He's always been a tinkerer and even in his oldest stories he's followed the formula of:

  • Meets new villain
  • Tries to physically overcome villain and fails
  • Invents device to counter villain advantage
  • Victory over villain

That's a long-standing Spidey tradition. The above structure is much better than what we see in some Batman stories where it's:

  • Meets new villain
  • Villain starts to overpower him
  • Pulls invention out of his bet that's perfectly suited to countering villain advantage that we've never seen before

It's that "perfect solution that just happens to be on hand" that is problematic with "gadget" characters. We have to see them struggle to puzzle out these inventions and their applications.

#47 Posted by buhssuht (14 posts) - - Show Bio

as long as he is not too dependent on his gadgets. In my opinion, Spiderman is all about using his wits and skill to defeat his enemies (then again so it the other superheroes). If he's having hard time against certain enemy and force him to retreat and come up with some invention to help his next fight, I'd be fine with that as well. If he becomes too dependent on gadget instead of his spider powers, that would not be Spiderman at that point.

#48 Posted by sethysquare (3843 posts) - - Show Bio

@Death Certificate said:

@sethysquare: Batman never defeated Darksied single handedly, and batgod isn't a literal term.

Yes he defeated Darksied single handedly before and no, I'm not talking about the battle with Darkseid in Justice League.

#49 Posted by Death Certificate (5438 posts) - - Show Bio

@sethysquare: Name the instance, cause I know that in Final Crisis, he didn't beat him.

#50 Posted by dvorak (187 posts) - - Show Bio

Peter had his mind for science before he became a super hero, so I think it's pretty cool that he still uses it at all. The moments when Spider-Man uses his knowledge of science and technology to solve problems are some of my favorites, because it humanizes him.

He's still just a nerd who accidentally got super-powers.

This edit will also create new pages on Comic Vine for:

Beware, you are proposing to add brand new pages to the wiki along with your edits. Make sure this is what you intended. This will likely increase the time it takes for your changes to go live.

Comment and Save

Until you earn 1000 points all your submissions need to be vetted by other Comic Vine users. This process takes no more than a few hours and we'll send you an email once approved.