A Few Words About ‘The Clone Conspiracy’

I’m talking about, of course, how many books Charles Soule is able to write while maintaining a full-time job running a law practice. There has to be many Charles Soules.

But seriously, this might be the place where a long-time fan of a certain age needs to step away from having loved Spider-Man. Not because it Dan Slott and Jim Cheung’s epic tale won’t be good; just the opposite — Slott (and Marvel on the whole) has earned our trust that an idea that caused us all to roll our eyes at first will likely turn out to be terrific.

It’s just that as I look at the press release and the artwork, I realize this is where I came in.

Amazing Spider-Man #150 wasn’t the first Spider-Man comic book I ever bought — I’m pretty sure that honor goes to Marvel Tales #27, a reprint of a classic Lee/Ditko story with the Molten Man. But it was the first major storyline that I bought into (and quickly picked up back issues at the De Anza Flea Market, probably from Lee Hester before he was Lee’s Comics).

I knew Gwen Stacy had died, and even as a kid could appreciate how weird it would have been for her to come back. I didn’t fully understand who Miles Warren was, but it didn’t matter. The Jackal was an interesting looking villain (as most Spider-Man villains were), especially as drawn by Ross Andru. The clone element was cool — Spidey vs. Spidey! And…

Here we are retooling it again 40 years later. Not just one, but two generations later, it’s being positioned for an audience that should be discovering it, thinking it’s cool, and probably wouldn’t go back and read those comics I read. It’s not a bad thing at all. That’s comics. The storytelling is cyclical with a veneer of freshness. Joseph Campbell would approve. But maybe, having gone around the wheel a few times, it’s time for us older fans to shut up and move on.


Who am I kidding? I’m going to love talking about this with my son, filling in the backstory for him, and talking about the previous Clone Saga — which had some great moments to it, despite its reputation. And look at these covers — if I was 10 again, how could I resist either of these?

No matter what happens to him, Spider-Man is a character that strikes something deep, and even an older Peter Parker makes me feel like a kid again. He’s an old friend. I can’t shut him out.

But I know I have to stop and question it from time to time.

From Marvel:

This is it! The cataclysmic Spider-Man event of 2016 that promises to shake Peter Parker’s life to it’s very core! Today, Marvel is pleased to present your first look inside the can’t miss debut of THE CLONE CONSPIRACY #1! A-list creators Dan Slott and Jim Cheung bring their A-game as they put the webhead through the ringer as he goes up against one of his deadliest foes.  That’s right True Believer – the Jackal is back and where he goes, the clones are sure to follow! He’s offered some of Spider-Man’s greatest villains a chance to be reunited with their lost loved ones in exchange for loyalty. Now, outmatched and outgunned, Spider-Man must take on the Rhino, the Lizard, Electro and even the returning Doctor Octopus! But they’re not the only ones returning from the grave! Who from Spider-Man’s past is also returning?

Can the Amazing Spider-Man stand against a new and improved Jackal and a who’s who of his greatest villains? The explosive Spidey event that will take your breath away kicks off on October 12th in THE CLONE CONSPIRACY #1!

Can’t wait that long? Read this year’s Free Comic Book Day prologue to The Clone Conspiracy from Dan Slott and Javier Garron right now. Available for FREE in the Marvel Comics App and the Marvel Digital Comics Store.

Written by DAN SLOTT
Variant Covers by MARK BAGLEY (AUG160754) & JIM CHEUNG (AUG160755)
Connecting Teaser Variant by ALEXANDER LOZANO (AUG160756)
FOC – 09/19/16, On-Sale – 10/12/16

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About Derek McCaw 2010 Articles
In addition to running Fanboy Planet, Derek has written for ActionAce, Daily Radar, Once Upon A Dime, and The Wave. He has contributed stories to Arcana Comics (The Greatest American Hero) and Monsterverse Comics (Bela Lugosi's Tales from the Grave). He has performed with ComedySportz and Silicon Valley Shakespeare, though relocated to Hollywood to... work in an office? If you ever played Eric's Ultimate Solitaire on the Macintosh, it was Derek's voice as The Weasel that urged you to play longer. You can buy his book "I Was Flesh Gordon" on the Amazon link at the right. Email him at editor@fanboyplanet.com.