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The Amazing Spider-Man: Parallel Lives by…

The Amazing Spider-Man: Parallel Lives

by Gerry Conway, Andy Mushynsky (Inker), Alex Saviuk (Penciller), Bob Sharen (Colourist)

Other authors: Jim Salicrup (Editor)

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The Amazing Spider-Man: Parallel Lives, part of the Marvel Graphic Novel series, follows the lives of Peter Parker/Spider-Man, Mary Jane Watson-Parker, and Dr. Otto Octavius/Doc Ock. The title recalls Plutarch's parallel lives of famous Romans and Greeks, though, unlike that classic text, the characters' actions converge at several points in the story prior to its climax. Writer Gerry Conway retells Spider-Man's origin while exploring Mary Jane's background and the family history that led her to adopt her own "mask" in the persona of a party girl. My biggest complaint in Mary Jane's story is the continued return to an old-fashioned idea that a woman can only find happiness through marriage. Though Conway wrote after Peter and MJ's wedding in the comics, he doesn't approach a sense of partnership until the end of his narrative. Doctor Octopus also appears in flashback to set up his hatred for Peter/Spider-Man, but this feels somewhat rushed as Conway condenses decades' worth of stories into a single 64-page volume. Penciller Alex Saviuk and inker Andy Mushynsky work well together to reproduce the look of Steve Ditko and Jack Kirby's art for the flashbacks while retaining a certain timeless style for the "modern" parts of the story. In all, this volume does not add much to the Spider-Man canon, but it works well as a catch-up for new readers or those looking to refresh their memories about certain basic plot details. Best of all, it serves as a lead-in to J. Michael Straczynski's run on Amazing Spider-Man prior to Joe Quesada's awful One More Day story. ( )
  DarthDeverell | Jul 4, 2016 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Gerry Conwayprimary authorall editionscalculated
Mushynsky, AndyInkermain authorall editionsconfirmed
Saviuk, AlexPencillermain authorall editionsconfirmed
Sharen, BobColouristmain authorall editionsconfirmed
Salicrup, JimEditorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
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