As the Scarlet Spider joins Iron Man on a cosmic mission to save the Marvel Universe, the webslinger reveals the worst part of his superhero job.
WARNING: The following contains spoilers for Iron Man #13, on sale now from Marvel Comics.
Facing off against the cosmic supervillain Korvac and his insidious cult of fellow villains that see him as a god looking to reshape the Marvel Universe in his fiendish image, Iron Man has not charged into battle alone. However, instead of assembling the Avengers, as per usual, Tony Stark has put together his own makeshift motley crew of obscure superheroes to save the day, even with the fate of the entire universe hanging in the balance. And among this team is the Scarlet Spider who takes the opportunity to finally air some grievances that come with the unique nuances of his superhero career and the sartorial choices he has made.
With Korvac and his followers deciding to steal the Power Cosmic from Galactus’ relatively abandoned spaceship to gain the energy needed to initiate such a drastic change, giving Korvac dominion over a single collective hive mind that would effectively subjugate all sentient life in the universe, Iron Man and his team rally at the faraway vessel for an epic showdown. Iron Man’s team surprisingly more than holds their own against Korvac’s villains, working together to outmaneuver and outsmart the assembled foes. Swinging into action is the Scarlet Spider who, in Iron Man #13 by Christopher Cantwell, Cafu, Frank D’Armata and VC’s Joe Caramagna, Ben Reilly admits that his classic costume is major pain to replace and fix from his usual superhero derring-do.
Scarlet Spider reveals that he has lost count of the amount of times he has had to replace the classic, blue hoodie that he used through the “Clone Saga.” More annoyingly, this particular brand of hoodie has been out of production since 1998, making obtaining replacements increasingly difficult, a fact that Reilly stresses as he puts out a patch that catches on fire during a skirmish with the Golden Age Human Torch Jim Hammond. And this costume headache may help inform Reilly’s decision to change up his Scarlet Spider outfit when he eventually returns back to terra firma as recently seen in the pages of Amazing Spider-Man.
Sometime after returning from his impromptu cosmic odyssey, Reilly reclaims the mantle of Spider-Man, wearing a modified costume provided by the Beyond Corporation. More than simply resembling the Spider-Man outfit he wore in the ’90s while filling in for Peter Parker, this particular costume comes with a whole arsenal of upgrades at his disposal to make Reilly’s crimefighting crusade more effective than ever. And in a direct contrast to his classic, blue hoodie as the Scarlet Spider, Reilly’s current superhero costume provides an advanced mesh that cushions most physical blows and offers shielding from radiation and energy bursts through experimental foam polymers laced through the outfit making retail costume changes a thing of the past for Ben.
After flirting with his own potential for villainy during the crossover event Dead No More: The Clone Conspiracy, Ben Reilly has been fighting for good once again as the Scarlet Spider for sometime. However, on the cosmic side of the Marvel Universe and up against a villainous demigod, the Scarlet Spider probably wishes he had a superhero costume half as good as the one provided by Beyond as the final battle against Korvac is joined. The blue hoodie has its own throwback appeal but against a cybernetic god and his army of supervillains, Scarlet Spider is going to need some more tricks up his sleeves.
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