Dan Slott still has three more weeks to be the writer of Amazing Spider-Man, a position he's held for more than a decade, but this week saw the release of Amazing Spider-Man #800, one of the biggest Spidey events ever published by Marvel Comics. Amazing Spider-Man #801 might be the curtain call, but #800 really felt like a finale for Slott's massive run with Peter Parker. So, to celebrate, Marvel has released a brief retrospective video to mark the occasion and commemorate Slott's time on the title.
Slott joined Amazing Spider-Man in 2008, as part of a team of writers working on the title as part of the "Brand New Day" event. In those days, the book was releasing three issues every month, hence the need for more than one writer, but while everyone else (including writers Bob Gale, Marc Guggenheim, and Zeb Wells) moved on, Slott stayed. By 2010 he was the sole lead writer of the title, and thought a lot of comics creators will tell fans they're never leaving their signature book, with Slott it often seemed to be true.
Working with an incredible lineup of artists that's included Marcos Martin (who will return for Amazing Spider-Man #801 next month), Humberto Ramos, Stefano Caselli, and most recently Stuart Immonen, Slott has taken Peter Parker and his supporting casts to places even other legendary Spider-Man writers perhaps never dreamed of. Through storylines like "Big Time," "New Ways to Die," "Spider Island," "Spider-Verse," and "Ends of the Earth," Slott has put Spider-Man through hell, and even through death.
In 2012, Slott scripted the Amazing Spider-Man story "Dying Wish," which concluded with issue #700 when Dr. Otto Octavius, aka Doctor Octopus, succeeded in swapping bodies with Peter Parker. Peter apparently died when his consciousness was sent into Octavius' dying body, while Octavius launched a new career as Spider-Man, living his life as Peter as Marvel cased publication of Amazing Spider-Man and launched Superior Spider-Man. The story was so controversial that Slott received death threats for it, and while both Peter and Amazing Spider-Man did eventually make their triumphant returns, it remains one of the most talked-about Marvel stories of the 21st century.
Even when you talk about the huge impact of "Dying Wish"/Superior Spider-Man on the Marvel Comics landscape, it still feels like only scratching the surface of what Slott's done in the last decade. You may love his work on Spider-Man, you may hate it, or you may have taken the ride with a mixture of both, but 10 years on one of Marvel's most high-profile characters — often scripting more than one issue a month — is a massive achievement, and it all came to a head this week with #800. Amazing Spider-Man is the first Marvel comic to ever reach 800 issues, and while we won't spoil what happens for you, Slott delivered an incredible showdown between Peter Parker and Norman Osborn with what feels like an exclamation point on a decade of ambitious storytelling. It's a giant milestone not just for Slott, but for Marvel, so in a way this little video seems like a small gesture in comparison.
Just one minute long, the retrospective video features a montage of covers from Slott's tenure on Amazing Spider-Man, but doesn't offer too much context for any of them other than remarking on just how much (more than 180 issues) Slott's written for the title. If you have no frame of reference for Slott's Spider-Man work, it might seem like a small thing, but if you read these issues, you're going to have flashbacks to all the big moments, from the triumphs to the tragedies, and the full impact of Slott's time with the character is going to hit you all over again.
Of course, this still just feels like a prelude to the real goodbye. Amazing Spider-Man #801 drops June 20, and then it'll be time for the real tributes and farewells, while #800's release feels more like a victory lap for both writer and publisher. Slott's not going anywhere, of course. He's trading Spider-Man for Iron Man, and he's also helping to relaunch Fantastic Four in August, but even if you've been prepared for this moment for months, it really feels like the end of an era is upon us.