Amazing Spider-Man will reach 700 issues in December. Dan Slott, writer of the issue, promises that “something big” will happen in the 700th issue. To quote,
“In the 20-odd years I’ve been working in this industry, I have never done something as big to a character as what we’re doing to Spider-Man in #700,”
Now, this issue doesn’t come out until the end of the year. There is a good chance that something truly incredible will happen within the pages of this comic. To celebrate and speculate, lets look at the previous hundredth issues of the Amazing Spider-Man. Obviously this will be issues 100, 200, 300, 400, 500, and 600.
Amazing Spider-Man #100
Peter Parker is still racked with guilt over the death of Captain Stacy. He decides that he cant be both Spider-Man and Peter Parker. Harry Osborn tells Peter that he has been working on a serum that removes powers. Parker drinks the liquid and takes a nap. A vivid dream takes place. Peter confronts and battles his most dangerous enemies (the ones that have shown up in the previous 99 issues). A voice calls Peter/Spider-Man forward and the Webhead finds the source of that voice. Its Captain George Stacy telling Peter he must continue being Spider-Man. Its a great way to remind us all about the great power and great responsibility.
Then Peter wakes up with four extra limbs.
Nice twist and a great story. Also a story that, if released in the present day, would claim “something big” happens inside as well. But as we know Peter was healed and lost those extra arms. Definitely big, but nothing that changed the character for good.
Amazing Spider-Man #200
A lot happens in this issue, but lets simplify it for the purposes of this article. Peter thinks Aunt May is dead (more on this later). This turns out to be a ruse by Mysterio. With Aunt May “dead” a blast from the past comes back to… rob her house? Yes it turns out the Parker house is the rumored location of a long ago hidden stash of Prohibition money. The blast from the past is the burglar, the same Burglar that killed Uncle Ben. Peter is also powerless, thanks to Mysterio. Yes, for the second century mark in a row, Spider-Man has lost his powers. There are fights and near death moments and loads of drama. In the end, Peter gets his spider powers back, Aunt May is fine and the Burglar dies. What you say? Yup, the Burglar is so frightened by Spider-Man he has a heart attack and falls dead.
Again, Spider-Man remembers what it is to be a hero. He gains closure over a part of his life. He moves on stronger, but again no long term effects. But thankfully the Burglar was killed off. Which is great because if he was still alive he would be a Dark Avenger by now or some equally awful idea.
Amazing Spider-Man #300
The first battle between Spider-Man and Venom. Spidey finds out its Eddie Brock in the symbiote suit. Spider-Man enlists the help of Reed Richards and gains a sonic gun in order to defeat his newest (and some say deadliest) villains.
Yeah, I’d say this was momentous and a game changer for Spider-Man. So far the front runner for importance.
Amazing Spider-Man #400
Part of the Clone Saga! Which means it has to be an all time great, right? Of course not. The big story here is that Aunt May dies. But wait, you say, isn’t she alive in the comics today? Yes, yes she is. Her death was written away later on which is a damn shame. The death is a well written one.
She dies peacefully at home and is then buried next to Uncle Ben. Everyone pays their respects and even the Scarlet Spider shows up to say goodbye. Best of all, May asks Peter what is it like to be Spider-Man? She’s known all along!
It really was a beautiful death that now doesn’t matter a bit. Damn shame too.
Amazing Spider-Man #500
Spider-Man travels through his past present and future. Again. He is reminded about great power and responsibility. Again. In the end he gets a gift from Doctor Strange – a conversation with his late Uncle Ben. Its not the most original anniversary issue idea but its a well drawn one.
Amazing Spider-Man #600
Really the least exciting of the issues profiled here. Probably because it takes place in the weird OMIT time frame. Aunt May (not dead!) is marrying J Jonah Jameson. Doctor Octopus does some bad things and Spider-Man stops it just in the nick of time. Then its time to go to the wedding reception. The bouquet is thrown and who should catch it but… Mary Jane. WHY?! What in the hell?! The creators get rid of a marriage only to then tease one? Crap. Nor any lessons of power nor responsibility.
Well at least issue 700 wont have too high a bar to raise after that 600th one.