Miles Morales is Spider-Man

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By Karen Valenzuela, @VictoriaNoir89

Spider-Man was created by Stan Lee in the early 1960s, and since then, he has arguably been one of the most relatable superheroes in any comic franchise. Peter Parker has been Spider-Man’s alter ego for over fifty years, even with the multiple universes we’ve seen him in. That includes on the big screen, with actors Tobey Maguire and Andrew Garfield portraying Peter in five movies and two separate Spider-Man universes in just the last thirteen years.

But all of that has changed now.

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Marvel has officially shifted gears, making an announcement that Miles Morales will be Spider-Man after Peter Parker’s sort-of-death in “Death of Spider-Man,” which debuted all the way back in 2011.

While Peter Parker had the issue of his uncle’s murder that continually weighed on him throughout the comics and films in which he was portrayed, Morales will have his own conflicts and inner demons. For instance, Miles Morales’ creator Brian Michael Bendis described one anxiety Miles has in particular. After he finds out his father and uncle were career criminals in their youth, something his uncle Aaron never seemed to move away from, Miles struggles with the fear that criminal behavior is in his blood, and he wonders whether or not it’ll eventually catch up to him. The new Spider-Man seems to have deeper and darker troubles than Peter Parker had, dealing with inner conflicts, on top of the outside conflicts that go hand in hand with being a superhero.

MILES SPIDEY TNM PIC 2


Marvel’s announcement has had a mostly positive reaction from Spider-Man fans and comic book media. Miles Morales will be the first biracial alter ego for the popular superhero, as he is of Puerto Rican and African American descent. “Our message has to be it’s not Spider-Man with an asterisk, it’s the real Spider-Man for kids of color, for adults of color and everybody else,” Bendis said in an interview with New York Daily News.

While many applaud Marvel Comics for giving Morales the main Spidey suit, addressing the fact that a biracial teen will appeal to more than just the white male youth who related to Peter Parker’s Spider-Man over the last 50 years, there are others who think Marvel is merely pandering to political correctness.

Whether they’re right or not about Marvel Comics’ motivations, those who are upset by Miles Morales as Spider-Man can find solace in Marvel’s other announcement, made in conjunction with Sony just the other day. The newest big screen adaptation of Spider-Man will be Peter Parker again, and the official word is that young British actor Tom Holland is playing him.

There are a slew of other implications that might be brought up in light of this. The Spider-Man movie, starring a young white actor, will be more widely viewed by moviegoers than the comics featuring a biracial teen will be read by comic book fans. How many more youths will go to the movies to watch Peter Parker save the day, rather than read about Miles Morales’ heroics in the comic? Probably a lot more people will watch the movie, as film is the more accessible and cheaper (for now) platform of the two.

Be that as it may, Spider-Man’s first issue will hit shelves this fall. It will be fascinating to see how the Miles Morales comic unfolds alongside Peter Parker’s sixth film debut in which he will be portrayed by the third actor since 2002. The so far untitled Spider-Man reboot is currently slotted for release on July 28, 2017.


    One Comment

  1. BenJune 25th, 2015 at 10:56 am

    I hate this. I have no problem with Miles Morales, and I was perfectly fine with him being Spider-man in the Ultimate universe. I’m also in favor of diversity, but bringing Miles into the 616 universe is an awful decision. It isn’t a good move for Miles Morales fans or Peter Parker fans. According to the announcement by Marvel, Miles will be the primary Spider-man, but Peter Parker is still going to be around acting as a mentor for Miles. First of all, Miles works best in a universe where Peter Parker is dead. No matter how much web slinging he does, as long as Peter is in the picture, Miles will never get the respect for being THE Spider-man. In addition, making Miles the primary Spider-man, by default, pushes Peter into the background. This is incredibly disrespectful to readers who have been following Peter’s story for decades.

    The only way I can see this working is if Miles moves to a different city, and I happen to have an idea for how they could do this. Peter could train Miles for the first year or so. Peter has been a mentor to younger heroes in the past for short periods of time, and these stories can be very good. By then (depending on how they work the timeline), Miles could be about 18, which could allow for the possibility of Miles moving away for college. Marvel could then have two separate books for each character with occasional crossovers. The only problem with this is that one of them would have to change their name. You can’t have two characters calling themselves Spider-man in the same universe.

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