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SYFY WIRE Chosen One of The Day

Chosen One of the Day: Spider-Man’s 'Spider-friend'

By Preeti Chhibber
Dr Strange 390 Peter Talks to a Spider 1

In one of my favorite single issues of all time, Doctor Strange #390 (hi, Ghost Dog!), there’s a two page spread in the middle of the issue written by Donny Cates and Chip Zdarsky called “Peter Talks to a Spider” and it is, as they say, Big 2020 Mood. In general, Peter Parker as Spider-Man is generally a hopeful character — it’s why his breaks from that hope are such a big deal in the canon. And likewise, this mini-comic detailing a nihilistic conversation between Spidey and a representative of his namesake, is a banger. 

In it, the Spider dismantles Pete’s various super-attributes as decidedly un-Spider-like and in just 15 panels pulls Pete into the collective angst and ennui we’ve all been feeling for the last eight months. 

Dr Strange 390 Peter Talks to a Spider 2

The Spider tries to rally our favorite friendly neighborhood Not-Actually-A-Spider-Man by cheering on the fact that he’d accomplished so much in “under a year.” 

“Under a year?” Spidey asks. 

“Spiders only live a little over a year in ideal conditions, you seem to be well into your adult life cycle. So, yeah, your death is almost surely imminent.” 

And, truly, I don’t know how two static panels effectively get across the sheer enormity of how terrible this year has been, but they do. 

Dr Strange 390 Peter Talks to a Spider 3

Just two blank-eyed masked faces coming to terms with mortality and time and pain and awfulness. “It me,” I whisper to myself, revisiting the pages for the first time in a long time.