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[personal profile] stillanerd posting in [community profile] scans_daily
First, we get an example of the bad. In the beginning of this issue, Spidey goes up against a villain named Equinox, who has the powers of both Iceman and the Human Torch. Since he couldn't come up with web formula specifically designed to stop Equinox in time, Spidey decided to "[borrow] a few tricks from someone else's bag." And just who was that someone else?

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Gwen Stacy would approve, I'm sure.

However, when Spidey helps to rush a firefighter to the hospital who had one of his feet broken off as a result of Equinox's freezing powers, we get one of the rarest of scenes in superhero comics: how a costumed hero's high-tech gadgets could actually change the real world:

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Okay, it begs the question as to why Peter can't make his web-shooters have practical, real-world applications like all the other stuff he's made for Horizon Labs (not to mention make a certain super genius with elastic powers who heads "the world's greatest superhero team" even more "useless"). However, I do think Slott does a commendable job in actually showing how Peter's Spider-Man inspired inventions actually start to make the world a better place beyond just him fighting crime. What's more, it makes for a nice juxtaposition in Peter believing he's finally making a difference as Peter Parker instead of taking pictures, only to have J. Jonah Jameson, moments later, J. arrives at Horizon Labs and threaten legal action to shut the place down, thus putting Peter new-found success in jeopardy.

But then, Doc Ock sets in motion his "final master plan" towards the end of the issue (which is quite brilliant, by the way), and at last we get to see what Peter has come up in order to prepare himself for his eventual battle with the Sinister Six. And the end result of all that hard work and preparation is this:

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Because that's EXACTLY what Spidey really needed all this time: bulky shoulder pads and wrist-mounted laser beams!

All that being said, the issue overall is still quite enjoyable and a good start to the "Ends of the Earth" storyline.

Date: 2012-03-22 02:47 am (UTC)
From: [personal profile] darkknightjrk
Yeah, the little bombs like Norman I can accept, but why would he even need a Spider-Glider?

As for the Richards Is Useless troupe you throw out with this, I actually saw a decent counter-point to this over on the Bleeding Cool forum:

"Why don't the Fantastic Four provide the world with flying cars? Because some dingus...either a drunk frat boy or a terrorist...would crash it into a building and kill a lot of people. Why doesn't Reed create a cure for cancer? Because for the millions he saved dozens would die, and then he'd have to spend his time in court. I think Jonathan Hickman's SHIELD...years after Morrison's Sci-Fi Closet for Batman...provided the perfect narrative escape from these kinds of questions. All through out Marvel's history, da Vinci, Galileo, and such could have made the world a utopia, except they kept getting distracting trying to keep it from being destroyed. The reason people think Reed Richards is Useless is because...instead of conducting three years of drug trials, answering endless bug reports, and dealing with help desk phone calls...he's inventing shit to stop Celestials and Dr. Doom from glassing the planet."

Date: 2012-03-22 03:28 am (UTC)
dr_archeville: Doctor Arkeville (Default)
From: [personal profile] dr_archeville
I've used a similar thing for the "Reed Richards Is Useless" trope in my superhero games. The stuff the super-geniuses make is so advanced, most peer review boards simply cannot make heads or tails of it. The only ones who can do a proper review of it are other super-geniuses, but they're either busy making their own super-tech, or countering/fighting supervillains and other threats.

Date: 2012-03-22 04:32 pm (UTC)
darkblade: (Default)
From: [personal profile] darkblade
Of course Peer Review boards probably would have nixxed things like Ultron in the bud.

Date: 2012-03-24 03:58 am (UTC)
halloweenjack: (Default)
From: [personal profile] halloweenjack
"Why don't the Fantastic Four provide the world with flying cars? Because some dingus...either a drunk frat boy or a terrorist...would crash it into a building and kill a lot of people."

This I agree with, although having a ground-effect-type car would save wear and tear on roads--a huge expense and inconvenience to repair--and allowing authorized emergency vehicles to fly would save lives and vastly decrease response time.

"Why doesn't Reed create a cure for cancer? Because for the millions he saved dozens would die, and then he'd have to spend his time in court."

Lots of types of treatments have potential adverse effects; thousands of people die every year just from general anesthetic.

"I think Jonathan Hickman's SHIELD...years after Morrison's Sci-Fi Closet for Batman...provided the perfect narrative escape from these kinds of questions. All through out Marvel's history, da Vinci, Galileo, and such could have made the world a utopia, except they kept getting distracting trying to keep it from being destroyed. The reason people think Reed Richards is Useless is because...instead of conducting three years of drug trials, answering endless bug reports, and dealing with help desk phone calls...he's inventing shit to stop Celestials and Dr. Doom from glassing the planet."

Richards wouldn't be doing those drug trials himself, but the Galactus Answer is plenty good in and of itself. I tend to think that the net result of supergeniuses in the world would be closer to the versions of New York City that we saw in Watchmen and Promethea: life would be more or less like it is now, with the exception of some consumer goods and maybe a few buildings.

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