Off My Mind: Spider-Man and his New Amazing (?) Sidekick

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Posted by G-Man (34330 posts) - - Show Bio

Spider-Man has always pretty much been a loner. After gaining superpowers, he used them for personal gain. When he had the opportunity to stop a crook, he refused on the grounds of being tired of everyone telling him what to do. This resulted in the same crook killing his beloved Uncle Ben. From that day Spider-Man took on the motto, "With great powers comes great responsibility." He has made countless sacrifices in the name of fighting evil and saving lives. Too many times his personal life has suffered due to his actions as Spider-Man.

Spider-Man has been going through some changes. While he has had the occasional team up in the past, it was just recently he actual became part of two teams, the Avengers and the Future Foundation.

As the life of Peter Parker continues to change, he has an important job at Horizon Labs and is about to take on an even bigger one. Spider-Man is now becoming a mentor and taking on a new sidekick. There will be some spoilers for AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #692, so be sure to read that issue first.

== TEASER ==

The reason for Spider-Man getting a sidekick is simple. Peter was conducting a science experiment. Things didn't go too smoothly and Andy Maguire ended up gaining superpowers. Sounds familiar and that's the point. We all know Spider-Man has a strong sense of responsibility and he is now responsible for Andy, who takes on the superhero identity of Alpha. It turns out that Andy is now incredibly powerful and will need guidance as well as someone to keep their eye on him.

The main problem with Spider-Man becoming the mentor to a new and young sidekick is it makes him feel older. It was said that one of the reasons to erase the marriage between Peter and Mary Jane was because it would be hard for younger readers to relate to a married superhero. Using this same logic, one would think it might be hard for those same younger readers to relate to a hero that's in a position of authority. Do kids relate to their teachers or parents? Probably not in the way Marvel might want.

Spider-Man's responsibilities have been increasing more and more lately. Not only does he have to do his part to fight the bad guys and fulfill or prevent whatever visions Madame Web sees involving him, he also has to be there for both the Avengers and Future Foundation. Of course there's also the responsibilities at his job at Horizon Labs. Spider-Man used to be a carefree superhero in many ways. He might have felt a strong sense of responsibility but he only had to fight the bad guys and be sure to pick up Aunt May's prescription. Adding a sidekick that could become an 'alpha-level threat,' jacks up the responsibility for Spidey.

We have to ask, should Spider-Man have a sidekick? It does change the direction of the title but maybe that isn't such a bad thing. We are talking fifty years of comic book stories with Spider-Man. We've recently seen Spider-Man having to convince Hope Summers of the importance of power and responsibility in the pages of AVENGERS VS X-MEN. If anyone can teach an insanely powerful youth, it's Spider-Man. This may change his focus slightly but after fifty years, this could give us a different sorts of Spider-Man stories.

The main trick with Alpha is how much does he tell him? Andy's already been taking advantage of his power, doing what most of us would probably want to do if we suddenly gained superpowers. Andy also doesn't have a secret identity. How much should Spider-Man trust him with? If he's going to be his mentor, there has to be a great deal of trust. But if Spider-Man can't trust Andy with his secrets, Andy could easily see this as a wall between them and he could start going in a different direction. With Andy being new to all this and completely arrogant, trusting him with a secret like this could be a dangerous choice. This could easily go bad if Alpha ends up hurt or feeling betrayed by Spider-Man.

Spider-Man having a sidekick might not be the best idea but he is well suited for the responsibility of taking one on. Spider-Man is going to have his hands full, especially considering the power Alpha possesses. Whether this ends up causing even more problems in Spider-Man's life remains to be seen. Spidey rarely catches a break and this is a whole new level of responsibility for him.

Staff
#1 Posted by saoakden (1047 posts) - - Show Bio

From these images, Alpha seems a little unstable. He has great power the only problem is will he be responsible with his powers? This Alpha character sounds interesting, I'm just hoping he doesn't become a villain. If he did, then that would just suck.

#2 Posted by noj (1084 posts) - - Show Bio

I REALLY hated Alpha. He's just such an unlikable character. Im actually VERY afraid that they are going to kill Spider-Man in issue 700 and have Alpha replace him. Alpha is showing the arrogance and irresponsibility of Spider-Man pre Uncle Ben's death but to the nth degree. And his origin mirrors Peter's almost exactly with the big difference being that his identity is public knowledge. Thats mainly why im afraid that Peter is going to essentially become the Uncle Ben to this new kid and his death will be what causes Alpha to become a true hero. I REALLY hope this doesn't happen. I would much rather the character turn evil or die.

#3 Posted by Inverno (13230 posts) - - Show Bio

Wow I thought they were just joking but its for real. I already hate him just by looking at these pictures :P

#4 Posted by AdrianOpIvy (25 posts) - - Show Bio

I don't know, I just find the new change of direction, however temporary, to be refreshing- something new. Rather than make an anniversary issue that focuses on the characters past, its good to see one that finally shows us why we love this character by changing things up.

#5 Posted by Draste (7 posts) - - Show Bio

My stomach turned and my eyes rolled when I was reading the issue and saw his name was "Andy Maguire" ... Really Marvel? Like Andrew Garfield and Toby Maguire -really- needed that shout out? Lame, Marvel. Lame.

Anyway, his abilities are meh at most. The best outcome from this experiment will be his death, then resurrection about 10 years from now as a villain.

#6 Posted by cuddles666 (310 posts) - - Show Bio

Alpha is such a generic name. God forbid Spider-Man have a bug or insect-themed sidekick for consistency (spiders may not be insects, but they're the same size, so same diff, right?). Batman and Robin are both named after things that fly and though diverse in their superheroic identities, share a common link with the wing motif. Spidey and Alpha? Sounds like a crap fanfiction.

#7 Edited by notarandomguy (316 posts) - - Show Bio

@noj said:

I REALLY hated Alpha. He's just such an unlikable character. Im actually VERY afraid that they are going to kill Spider-Man in issue 700 and have Alpha replace him. Alpha is showing the arrogance and irresponsibility of Spider-Man pre Uncle Ben's death but to the nth degree. And his origin mirrors Peter's almost exactly with the big difference being that his identity is public knowledge. Thats mainly why im afraid that Peter is going to essentially become the Uncle Ben to this new kid and his death will be what causes Alpha to become a true hero. I REALLY hope this doesn't happen. I would much rather the character turn evil or die.

They wanted a spider that could relate to young readers? you had Ultimate Peter and what did you do? Kill him off Marvel WAY TO GO!! Now I love Miles... he's an amazing character and the way he's written, he's up to the point where I'm really digging him as Spider-Man.... but then again this isn't about him. You decided to dissolved MJ and Pete's marriage so he younger readers can relate and now he's got a sidekick? that's not cool at all... I mean is like giving Franklin Richards a sidekick just to have an interesting story. If you wanted so badly a new teenage character I think he would fit better in Avengers Academy... just make him part of a 5 or 6 issues arc and then send him away! the concept is good, in fact, he reminds a bit of Bart Allen when he was impulse, good art, good story and good concept HECK even the similarities in how the got their powers is a great idea for the anniversary but giving Spider-Man a sidekick just seems a little off... I don't hate the idea of him mentoring a younger hero, its actually cool but not for a Batman and Robin kinda thing besides... with all the stuff he's got where will this fit in anyway? If he's actually going to be with Spidy from now on he might have to appear in some other books and with the MarvelNOW thingy seems like we're gonna have a problem but if this really is the direction the book is taking then I just hope this doesn't let me down cause even to is not such a good thing for Spider-Man to have a sidekick it might be cool just... Marvel seems to be good in disappointing me lately, lets see how this actually ends.

#8 Posted by hyenascar (194 posts) - - Show Bio

The same fans that will bitch about needing something fresh will complain when you change something about their character. Boo Hoo.It might be time to kill spider-man. Screams of horror. Like they would ever keep him dead.

#9 Posted by RedheadedAtrocitus (6885 posts) - - Show Bio

Personally for me and what I've read and seen, it seems Alpha could definitely use guidance and Spidey would be ideal to give it. With that said, I still just prefer Peter to be more of a lone wolf in the world of the superhero gig and want him to stay that way. Nevertheless, its a new day and age, and fifty years later maybe Peter finally deserves a Robin like character by his side. Alright, I'll give it a chance!

#10 Posted by Bestostero (5618 posts) - - Show Bio

I don't see this lasting, or at least i hope it doesn't!

#11 Posted by Necrotic_Lycanthrope (2388 posts) - - Show Bio

Call me crazy but I actually liked it back in the day when Kiwi Kid was Spidey's "side-kick". It was always funny to see a fat guy in a bird watcher outfit hide out, basically birdwatching everybody and doing the occasional tech mumbo-jumbo.

#12 Posted by Mrakbarman (65 posts) - - Show Bio

Maybe this is what Madame Webb visioned. A whacked out kid who gets controlled by ( last page of amazing spiderman 692 ). I think that spidermans gonna be the uncle ben for this kid. or maybe not. You guys hate him right ? Even Pete does so I guess Dan Slott's made Andy like that on purpose. He doesn't want you to feel for this guy. But we'll see ( just hope alpha's not permanent )

#13 Posted by EmmRoss (20 posts) - - Show Bio

Crap like this makes me so glad I stopped reading Spider-man (and Marvel books, period) after One More Day.

#14 Posted by SexualLobster (995 posts) - - Show Bio

I think Alpha is going to get out of control/mind controlled or something and it will be Spidey's responsibility to put him down.

#15 Posted by sintzu (6 posts) - - Show Bio

i really hate what marvel is doing to spider man first they scrw up ultimate (wich was my favorit) and now amazing

ultimate : insted of killing peter to bring in a miles they should have givin miles his own comic like what dc dose with green lantern and batwing

amazing : leave the amazing spidey the way it is and just make a new series called spider-man and alpha

that way you keep the original fans happy and at the same time bring in new fans but no they have to go the other way and destroy evrething the fans loved about the 2 series

i wish marvel would relaunce evrething like what dc did and get it right but we all know thats not going to happen any time soon

R.I.P SPIDER-MAN

#16 Posted by Alch21 (210 posts) - - Show Bio

Would suck if he became a Villain. I see a lot of potential in a Impulse-esque character like him as a Teen-Hero. Maybe apart of the new Teen Book when Marvel Now! happens.

#17 Posted by Shotgun (900 posts) - - Show Bio

..I hate it when adult writers try to portray a young character and get it wrong.

Also, poor Chrissy. If Alpha didn't knock her out of the way, she would've gotten super-powers and been able to do all the things that she's read in her comic books.

#18 Posted by cmaprice (809 posts) - - Show Bio
#19 Posted by DATNIGGA (1193 posts) - - Show Bio

I like this kid... he could grow to be something

#20 Posted by Miss_Garrick (1757 posts) - - Show Bio

This is the big 50th anniversary prize? Spider-man having a sidekick? An "Amazing Friend?

Andy Maguire!?!? As in Andrew Garfield and Toby Maguire?!? This is beyond googleplex lame! This is lame squared! This is a lame tumor in my brain!!

Marvel just STOP! Just shut down everything, you're killing us comic readers with all this crap in all of your Spider-man/ Avengers/ X-men comics!

#21 Posted by sintzu (6 posts) - - Show Bio

miss garrick :

so its not just spider-man there destroying there also destroying x-men and avengers ?

by any chance did all this bullshit happen to the marvel titals when disney bought theme ?

#22 Posted by Srsly_nerdy (11 posts) - - Show Bio

I love everything on this website, but you guys need to work on your proof reading. It's really distacting to be reading a great article then stumbling onto an error that you guys are better than making. Remember, always proof read your stuff, then have a friend proof read it just in case! =D But back to the main point: if Spiderman was meant to have a side kick, wouldn't he have had one back in the 60's when he debuted? It just seems a bit too forced, expecially with that name. I get that they're paying homage to Macguir and Garfield for their portrayals as Spiderman but they wasted it on an annoying character.

#23 Edited by BlackArmor (6141 posts) - - Show Bio

I like the idea of Spidey with a Sidekick, but this kid seems like sort of an Alphahole

#24 Posted by Dernman (15110 posts) - - Show Bio

I didn't like his character after he got powers. Pre and post powers didn't seem like the same character and I would have liked to see what that other kid would have done with the powers. Saying that though Spider-Man shouldn't have a sidekick and it's more fitting we get this character who you will be ok with losing by 700 which I think we will.

Online
#25 Posted by JMLG (135 posts) - - Show Bio

Spider-Man needs a new villain who has personal agenda against each other like with Green Goblin and Venom.. this is most likely where this kid comes in sooner than later..

btw, that art is awful.

#26 Posted by sintzu (6 posts) - - Show Bio

to DATNIGGA

lets hope 1 of the super villens beats him up with a crowbar than blows him up in a wharehouse befor he can grow into anything

#27 Posted by AmazingFantasy15 (259 posts) - - Show Bio

I think Alpha is Marvel's attempt to have a character in spider man that younger readers can relate to, I think that was the original point of Robin.

#28 Posted by windcaster (228 posts) - - Show Bio

I would not be shocked if he received his own series in the future. I don't read spider-man but he looks like an interesting character. I would have if Marvel gave Pete a side-kick it would have been Franklin. 

#29 Posted by Dreditz (5 posts) - - Show Bio

@Draste said:

My stomach turned and my eyes rolled when I was reading the issue and saw his name was "Andy Maguire" ... Really Marvel? Like Andrew Garfield and Toby Maguire -really- needed that shout out? Lame, Marvel. Lame.

This.

#30 Posted by Ijan092 (118 posts) - - Show Bio

@hyenascar: I know fucking right!? they have to bitch about every fucking detail even for a change of hairstyle

#31 Posted by KRYPTON (1891 posts) - - Show Bio

About time Spider-Man became more like Batman

#32 Posted by Strider92 (16496 posts) - - Show Bio

This issue just reinforced my original thought that Parker is going to kill Alpha in 700.

#33 Posted by kagato (247 posts) - - Show Bio

Does anyone not see him turning into a bad guy eventually? Kid Omega is balancing on the edge of right and wrong, Genesis dosent have a good looking future (though that isnt pre-determined) and Jean Grey, one of the most powerfull mutants of all time despite being pure and sweet turned into the greatest threat known to the universe. I dont see this ending well, at some point Peter is going to have to take him down...

#34 Posted by Ijan092 (118 posts) - - Show Bio

at first i was like

Do we have a sentry Jr? then i started to dislike this kid since he is an attention whore and i dislike the fact that he called spidey "sidekick" i just hope this dont mess up the amazing spider-man book

#35 Posted by sintzu (6 posts) - - Show Bio

@KRYPTON said:

About time Spider-Man became more like Batman

spider-man is not batman and marvel should leave it that way

#36 Posted by Ijan092 (118 posts) - - Show Bio

ppl need to stop over reacting Alpha wonte be taking over the amazing spider-man books issue #693 has still has the tittle of the amazing spider man but with alpha in the cover like it was his book. This just mean the kid will being an attention whore in this issue I bet for sure the kid wont be his side kick after this issue.

#37 Posted by wdchefdave (136 posts) - - Show Bio

This looks so much like a "set-up"!

I do not care about this kid with new powers... yet, it would be fun to see Spidey run with a REAL side-kick for a little while.

Alpha is a stupid name... and two or three writers will mess up the original plan (If there ever was one.)... and Marvel/Spider-man will have more pie in the face!

What are they smoking?

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

As with EVERY story line some people will bitch and some will praise. As for me i dont the same stories over and over (and over). And these books are not really made for people who read them for 30 years. I'll check this out and if i dont like it i'll stop buying it.

#39 Posted by DeusVult (83 posts) - - Show Bio

I think its awesome that Spider-man has a sidekick, but couldn't they at least have chosen a different guy. I mean Alpha doesn't seem cool in the slightest. Also what's with this artwork!!!

#40 Posted by EdBlank (515 posts) - - Show Bio

YAWN. Energy projection, super speed, super strength. I am so bored. All the good characters have already been taken so now they have to make every new kid a energy projecting reality warping powerhouse. The problem with all this stuff id there really is no story here, just endless weirdos showing up to attack NY and another set of costumed weirdos determined to stop them. Me thinks the writers need to go on a creative writing retreat. Also: the sidekick HAS to be in the footsteps of the main guy or else what's the point? As stale as it is that there are like 65 Flashes, the cool part is when they get together and try to out "Flash" each other. Parker and Morales for instance would have been WAAAAY better.

#41 Posted by wowylied (238 posts) - - Show Bio

We already had the beyonder, moleculeman, sentry and now franklin richard...do we really need a new "godly" character ? And seriously, a stupid teen ?

I really hope this guy is killed or lose his power.

#42 Posted by x_29 (2274 posts) - - Show Bio

Thats stupid.

#43 Posted by Souche99 (6 posts) - - Show Bio

This was the very first issue of Spider I buy. My knowledge of the character is limited to the movies and the animated series. I must say I really enjoyed this issue, I think it is a wonderful jumping point for me, and I will continue reading this book from now on.

I also started Hawkeye at #1 and Im looking for more Marvel titles. Do you guys have any suggestions for me, like in the Marvel NOW or something? I could afford 5 marvel series total so that leaves the spot for 3 new Marvel titles.

WOW comics are amazing guys I'm glad I entered that comic book store in my city a couple months ago!

#44 Posted by Ramier (80 posts) - - Show Bio

Dear everybody Alpha was written for us to hate him, so i'm not surprise he is a douche. His character needs some rushed development and had to start from somewhere. Has people lost confidence in Dan Slott he has a plan, ASM has been the one of the consistant writing I seen in the marvel u. Sooner are later Alpha will have his fall of grace and will be humbled and a better character going forward. I personally think he will lost most of his powers (since he can't use all of his powers at once), almost dies and gets humbled and have his own series. Having him die or become evil is too predictable.

#45 Posted by cerial442 (83 posts) - - Show Bio

If they were to kill Peter and have Alpha replace him, I'm dropping the title until Peter returns from the dead.

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

While it's definitely arguable that having a sidekick ages spider-man, it also provides younger readers with someone to relate to while reading spider-man. That's why sidekicks exist.

#47 Posted by NerdsFTW (3732 posts) - - Show Bio

Weird.

#48 Posted by Phaedrusgr (1672 posts) - - Show Bio

@Alch21: Well, they do draw him as a villain, if you take a closer look at his face...Don't know, just saying.

#49 Posted by MutieLover (102 posts) - - Show Bio

@cuddles666: Robin is named after Robin Hood, hence the costume.

#50 Posted by Crash_Recovery (850 posts) - - Show Bio

Alpha looks to be Spider-man's Jason Todd.

One way or another, this partnership's going to go wrong.

It's funny for Peter to lecture a kid on "great power and responsibility" when it's his own experiment gone haywire that blasted Alpha.

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