Spectacular Spider-Man #171-172
Issue(s): Spectacular Spider-Man #171, Spectacular Spider-Man #172
After Spider-Man goes to Puma and insists that it's time for them to settle the situation between them, Puma sells the Daily Bugle back to J. Jonah Jameson, for a dollar. I wonder if the FTC wants to look into that.
Then Spider-Man and Puma go out to New Mexico, supposedly to fight to the death to settle their feud or debt of honor or whatever. It actually kind of sucks for Spider-Man. Puma thinks he owes him a debt, so why do they have to have a fight to death? But Peter goes along with it, i guess because he's sick of the overly positive press that the Bugle has been giving him while Puma owned it.
The majority of issue #171 has Peter and Puma sitting in a sweat lodge, supposedly purifying themselves for the fight and watching shadow images of their totems fighting each other.
Then in issue #172, they actually fight.
Spider-Man has the opportunity to kill Puma...
...but of course doesn't, and they part as, well, not friends, but not enemies.
As for MJ, she kind of goes to extremes to convince Jason Jerome that she's not interested in him.
Look, lady, if you didn't want to have an affair, you could have just said so. We're all consenting adults here.
These issues have the feel of Gerry Conway putting his toys away, maybe with short notice. He was off Web of Spider-Man at this point because he was working in television. There are two more issues on this title plotted by Conway, but scripted by other writers. Both plots feel hastily concluded, but it's still good to see Conway wrapping things up.
Quality Rating: C-
Chronological Placement Considerations: J. Jonah Jameson regains control of the Daily Bugle.
Continuity Insert? N
My Reprint: N/A
Inbound References (4): show
The MJ in this stupid Jason Jerome plotline has seemed a little odd so far but that whole thing at the end just makes her seem crazy.
Posted by: Robert | June 28, 2015 8:02 PM
Yep. I'm not sure if the plot Conway handed in said "Peter and Puma make up after taking ayahuasca, while MJ decides to scare Jerome away by acting crazy", but that's how it seems to have turned out.
Posted by: Jonathan | June 29, 2015 1:16 PM
In MJ's defence it not only worked but at the same time the dude wouldn't leave her alone so...
Posted by: Al | December 23, 2015 9:01 PM
MJ has no defense here. She could have got rid of him at any time. Or just tell Peter or just threaten to tell Peter, problem solved. He was only continuing cause she was on board.
Posted by: kveto | April 17, 2016 4:56 AM
MJ's plot here felt like a coming-of-age tale to me. I remember being impressed by how far we were from the stereotypical pretty and impulsive MJ by this point.
She seemed sober, thoughtful, troubled and, unusually, solidly 30-something here. The last few panels looked all the world like a commitment speech given to herself, albeit one that doubled as a statement towards Jerome.
The implication - and a reasonable, solidly adult one it was - is that Mary Jane doesn't always feel sure how best to deal with the pressures and uncertainties of her life. She loves Peter, but the fact of the matter is that she sort of has to accept that he will never be entirely devoted to her as long as his sense of duty demands so much of him. To the better of my knowledge this is an interesting subject matter that never got developed in any proper way: does Peter realize Mary Jane is accepting sharing their marriage with his crimefighting career, and that maybe, just maybe, she is entitled to some sort of compensation for dealing with so much secrecy and uncertainty not of her choosing?
While Peter clearly loves Mary Jane, I don't think he has been shown on-panel to give clear appreciation of how much she renounces on his behalf and how unreasonable her situation is. It is not like she can have a talk with her Aunt, Liz Osborn or Betty Brant and ask whether they think she is being too demanding on Peter or anything.
Posted by: Luis Dantas | April 17, 2016 7:20 AM
I bet the Black Cat is jealous MJ has a better Peter Stalker Shrine than she does.
This is the first time I see someone with a Stalker Shrine for their own spouse, by the way. No wonder Jerome backs away.
Also, this, plus the way Kristy had seen them making out last few issues, kinda throws an all new creepy light on Kristy's posterior unexplaned disappearance from the books, heh heh...
Posted by: OverMaster | June 19, 2017 9:40 PM
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