Spider-Man is Better Off Without Mary Jane, And Marvel Finally Knows It

Mary Jane is Spider-Man’s long-term love interest, but Marvel admits that Black Cat would be a much better partner (and MJ is too toxic for Peter).

Warning: contains spoilers for Amazing Spider-Man # 89!

Marvel has finally admitted that Spider-Man’s relationship with Mary Jane is toxic, and Peter Parker is better off without her and should start a relationship with another – much better – character. Arguably the most successful superhero Stan Lee has ever created, Spider-Man’s appeal is due to his real-world problems influencing his superhero duties and vice versa. As such, Peter and Mary Jane’s relationship appears to be constantly on the rocks – but Amazing Spider-Man # 89 provides a possible solution: break up the relationship in favor of one with Black Cat.


In current comics continuity, Peter is recovering in the hospital after surviving a deadly attack from the U-Foes. Suffering from radiation poisoning, Peter Parker’s powers have waned after staying in a hospital bed for an extended period of time. Eager to return to his duties as Spider-Man (even as his clone Ben Reilly is swinging through New York as the new Spider-Man), Peter engages in regular nightly training sessions with Captain America and Black Cat. Finally, Felicity arrives in Peter’s hospital room with a proposition.

Related: Spider-Man’s Savage Superpower is Too Gruesome For Movies

Black Cat is ready to start another training session when the news reports the arrival of a new villain in the city. Spider-Man naturally wants to fight, but Black Cat firmly disagrees: Peter has not been in the field in quite a while. Faced with the normally-determined Parker, Black Cat drops Spider-Man’s webshooters on a nearby table – and uses them on Parker, attaching him to the bed. “Enjoy the show on the news or meet me at the Bugle … if you can!” shouts Black Cat before disappearing from view.

Mary Jane’s response to the similar situation would not be a choice. Black Cat understands the need for Peter to be a hero – but she’s also not reckless enough to allow Parker to suit up as Spider-Man while he’s recovering. Thus, a test of strength is in order. This proves that Black Cat, despite her thrill-seeking nature, is actually far more mature than Mary Jane (who usually has her own interests in mind before Peter’s, not to mention the safety of civilians and / or the city).

Marvel has established that Black Cat’s only major flaw in a potential relationship with Peter is the fact that she likes Spider-Man far more than Peter’s actual “face.” But Spider-Man ice a part of Peter, and Black Cat has the potential to grow as a character and balance power with responsibility. Mary Jane, by contrast, is seemingly incapable of growth – and so long as he stays be her side, so is Spider-Man.

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