Top Five- Spideys

Unfortunately, Amalgam's Spider-Boy
didn't make the cut
I was going to update my Krypton viewing posts but didn't have the time or patience tonight. I'll try to get to that next week if I can squeeze the time in this weekend if I don't see Deadpool 2 or binge watch the second season of 13 Reasons Why. Instead, after oddly viewing tons of Spider-Man stuff today, I thought I would a list of top Spider-Man type heroes.

Every generation has a Robin or a Flash. The same is true for Spider-Man. There is always a tale of a teen that is given access to powers or technology and has to learn how to be responsible with these newly acquired abilities. Hopefully. From Darkhawk to Speedball, a new Spider-Man type shows up every couple of years to give new readers a taste of a young Peter Parker.

With that in mind, I thought I would come up with a short list of the top five non-Parker Spider-Man type superheroes. These are the heroes who come close to temperament with Peter, go through a similar struggle, have to fight a certain brand of villains and/or evoke a Parker-esque vibe when you read their stories.

Static.
5. Virgil Ovid Hawkins/Static

I've already talked about Static and his Spidey-ness before on here but I think he still falls into the top five of this list. Virgil is a geeky, smart teenager with scientific interests and a crush on a redhead. Blam. Already Parker levels achieved. He also gained his powers from accidentally getting mixed up in a scientific experiment with unknown consequences. For Peter Parker, it was getting bit by a radioactive spider on a school trip. For Virgil, it was stumbling into a gang riot being gassed by the Paris Island Police.

Static was a series that was near and dear to my heart. Similar to Spider-Man, it showed a teen dealing with being a superhero, trying to be responsible and also trying to talk to the girls around him, in sometimes very awkward (and, sadly, familiar) ways. Static was very much the black, urban Spidey for the 1990s for me and, I imagine, many other teens of color.


Ms. Marvel
4. Kamala Khan/Ms. Marvel 

Kamala Khan snuck out and went to a party but got more than she bargained for. She gained her powers when the the cloud of Terrigen Mist, the catalyst for change in the Kree genetically manipulated humans called Inhumans, passed over Jersey City, New Jersey. Kamala was cocooned and when she emerged she learned that she was an Inhuman with the ability to shapeshift. She soon became the hero of Jersey City.

Kamala has a similar origin to Virgil with gas transforming her but her roots are definitely Spider-Man in nature. She is a teen from a place just outside of the metropolis of Manhattan, New York. She is a huge geek who writes fan-fiction, plays video games and is a fan of the hero Captain Marvel, where she got her name and similar costume from. Like Peter and a lot of others on this list, Kamala story follows her dealing with high school and balancing out the different parts of her lives while being a superhero. She is a practicing Muslim girl but that is just another added layer to her character and another responsibility factor she faces a la great power, etc.

Spider-Gwen
3. Gwen Stacy/Spider-Woman

Gwen Stacy from Earth-65 is better known as Spider-Gwen. She gains her power when in a twist of fate the spider that was going to bite Peter Parker on their school trip bit her instead. She was given an outfit and web-shooters by her Earth's retired superhero Janet van Dyne fka The Wasp to fight crime in her version of New York City.

Gwen Stacy is generally cooler than our Peter Parker and definitely her Peter but she has many things in common with the Peter that we know. She was witness to the death of her Peter which made her become more responsible. Gwen also had to walk the tightrope of keeping her secret life separate from her home life with her single dad who is a police captain, at least for awhile. She also faces similar villains with twists and has to make the tough choices to protect the people around her. Gwen is also currently dealing with having a Venom symbiote attached to her and the potential fall out from that. More than anything, this Gwen has Parker luck to the nth degree.


Batman Beyond
2. Terry McGinnis/Batman

I know what you are probably saying- "Terry isn't a Spider-Man, he's a Batman. At best you can argue that he is a Robin but definitely not a Spider-Man." To that I would respond that you ma'am/sir are incorrect. Terry is DEFINITELY Spider-Man, just in the future with a Batman costume. Or maybe even a Spider-Clone with his genetically manipulated DNA coming from Bruce Wayne.

Terry is an odd choice for this list because he was a juvenile delinquent and not as nerdy as Parker but he did step up and take responsibility after the death of his father and was full of banter with bad guys. Additionally, most of his time was spent balancing his nocturnal Batman exploits with his family responsibilities and trying to keep his girlfriend Dana. Moreso than all of that, Terry is future Spider-Man strictly from his villains. Sure, there are old connections to Batman's rogues' gallery but Terry's villains are generally Spidey villains' pastiches. Spellbinder was Mysterio, Shriek was Shocker, Stalker was Kraven the Hunter and Blight was very similar in story to the Green Goblin. Additionally, like Peter, he had interactions with an element based group in his city called the Terrific Trio which were just the Fantastic Four mashed up. Terry was Spider-Man of a DC future.

Miles Morales
1. Miles Morales/Spider-Man

Miles Morales is Spider-Man for the modern era. The second Spider-Man of Earth-1610, Miles is Black Puerto-Rican kid who gains his powers from an Oscorp spider biting him at his uncle's apartment. He takes up the mantle of Spider-Man after the death of Peter Parker and gets the responsibility thing a little faster than our Peter.

Miles is Spider-Man moving at a faster pace. He has to deal with his Peter's old villains, SHIELD and keeping his secret identity from his parents. On top of that, his reality has the dissolution of America, the rise of Hydra, Gah Lak Tus' return in Catacylsm and his reality's destruction after Secret Wars II. He makes it over to our reality because he is very Peter Parker in his kind ways- he gives a hamburger to the Molecule Man who shifts Miles and some characters related to him to Earth-616, the prime Marvel Universe. He has adjusted to being one of two Spider-Men and has joined an Avengers team and a Champions squad, both with #4 on this list. He still has to deal with teenage life, dating (#3 and Miles were almost a thing but alternate realities, y'know?) and getting his parents fully on board with his Spidey exploits but he is the Spider-Man of the 21st Century that we need. Miles is a good natured kid who just wants to do good and improve the world.

All Spidey approved.
There are other superheroes that almost made this list like the aforementioned Darkhawk and Speedball. Nova aka Richard Rider was definitely close. Sam Alexander, another Nova, was in the running as well, especially since he is on a team with Miles and Kamala and have a similar responsibility arc. Ricochet aka Johnny Gallo from the team of people wearing Spider-Man's old alternate costumes was another person who came close with his secret mutant power and loss of his mother connected to him being who he was. Ultimately, I picked these five because they "felt" the most like old Peter Parker and shared a lot in common with the hero from my childhood. There is one Peter Parker (or actually a ton) but these five could definitely step in and fill his Spidey-booties in a pinch.


Sean Fields is an aspiring writer and has been in the education field for more than a decade. He works mostly with teenagers nowadays which both keeps him well informed on pop culture and makes his hair turn grayer daily. He has a few blogs but is currently focused on this one and this other one. You can also find him on TumblrTwitter and Instagram, if you want to be entertained or infuriated.


Top Five- Spideys Top Five- Spideys Reviewed by Sean Fields on Thursday, May 17, 2018 Rating: 5
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