Thursday, April 10, 2008

In Quest of a(nother) No Prize

As many of you all know, Marvel Comics has a long-established history of awarding a No Prize to fans who either spot an error in a Marvel Comic, explain away something that appeared to be an error, or for Marvel Zombiesim far and away beyond normal fannish activities.

I have two No Prizes (Yes I am a Marvel Zombie Geek-a-zoid.)

Well, in Amazing Spider-Man #555 Spider-Editor Stephen Wacker steps into the Letter’s column (Hey! A letter’s column! I had almost forgotten that these used to appear in virtually every issue of every non-reprint Marvel comic!). Anywho, this issue included an appearance of Dr. Strange, and Wolverine who (along with Spidey) are New Avengers, and hiding out in Doc Strange’s place in the Village. The part of this scenario that is odd, is that not only did Doc recently bow out of the team, the team itself relocated to new digs owned by Danny (Iron Fist) Rand, and that after both of those events, Spidey changed from his Back-in-Black dudes to his classic Red-and-blue jammies.

Well, Mr. Wacker graciously ‘splains that rather than launching into his own reasoning, he is throwing open the doors to fans to set the record straight and to give an “official” continuity timeline of what was going on. To that end, I figured that I toss in my two cents (before they discontinue the penny). Needless to say, I just shot off a version of the rest of this post to the Spider-Offices.


I dove into this task of explaining the presence of Dr. Strange, Spidey (in his red and blues) and Wolverine hanging out in Doc’s Greenwich Village home) headlong, and worked up this entire complex scenario that involved Dr. Doom’s time travel platform (as recently seen in The Mighty Avengers #9–11), pocket universes, trickery by the gods themselves, unorthodox deals with other-worldly demons, nefarious subterfuge by global-spanning intelligence organizations (as well as their self-serving villainous counterparts), Machiavellian manipulations by world leaders with hidden agendas, secret intergalactic invasions…and that’s when it hit me!

It was all as plain as the nose on my face. There on page 16, panel 1, Spidey makes a revealing comment to himself. He says (and I quote) “B-but I remember how ridiculous a blue hoody looks over this costume. I doubt a Yankees jacket would be much better…”

A Yankees jacket? A Yankees jacket?

It has long been established that Peter (like his beloved Uncle Ben before him) is a Mets fan (I refer you to Peter Parker: Spider-Man (Vol. 2) #33). Not to mention that he grew up in Queens (the home of Shea Stadium — where the Mets play). No self-respecting resident of Queens would root for the Yankees! Which can lead us to only one conclusion.

Spider-Man is a Skrull.

Now I’m not saying that all Yankee fans (or even all Yankee players) are Skrulls, (but it would certainly explain quite a bit about their years of championship teams).

Hence, after careful consideration I have to go with the only answer that makes any sense. Something that John Byrne once said. “They’re ALL imaginary stories.” Or, in the words of our current editor-in-chief…

It’s magic, we don’t have to explain anything.


Reggie White Jr. said...

Bravo, Robbert! I do hope Wacker prints your letter as it would be amusing to see him try to argue with ahem, "logic" like "Its magic."

Yankees suck!!

Robert J. Sodaro said...

OK, Reggie’s not a Skrull.

Reggie White Jr. said...

Yaay, I'm not a Skrull!

And you got two No-Prizes? Sweet! Too bad No-Prizes are extinct now. If you pointed out an error in continuity Marvel would probably just say "JUST SHUT THE $#!& UP AND GIVE ME YOUR MONETY!!"

Robert J. Sodaro said...

Like I said, Reggie, Wacker is looking for an explanation of the presence of Strange and Spidey in his red-and-blues at this point in Spidey Chronology. I’m hoping that they run my letter, seems that a couple of editors already read it.

I’m as giddy as a schoolgirl.

Tommy said...


Thank you so much for giving an image of the No-Prize envelope! I've always wondered what that all looked like!

And, man, that response is awesome! I ain't gonna think of any funky continuity explaination for all that either. In my mind, this is a pocket universe, or if not, a temporary state that will be reverted someday with luck.

As it is, Stark Towers being up in OMD Pt. 1 after it was wrecked during WWH is a continuity gaffe in and of itself.

Btw, besides the Yankee/Mets thing, I was thinking it was a Scarlet Spider costume reference.

Ahh, continuity. For all the anti-types, I just say one thing: What goes around comes around, so hope you just care about the money, though even that will be retconned with purchases down the line. :P

Robert J. Sodaro said...

Yeah Tommy, The Hoody (which I always thought was spelled “Hoodie” BTW) reference certainly was a sideways hook to our buddy Ben (Can someone please ‘splain to me why we can remember the Scarlet Spider, and that he was a clone of Spidey, but not the red-headed supermodel who used to be married to Pete — or, more specifically, we can remember her, but not that she and Pete were married for the past 20 years!)

But don’t get me started.

Mike P said...

I have two No-Prizes from the mid-nineties, and they changed them a bit.

Robert J. Sodaro said...

Cool, Mike! Don’t think that I ever met anyone else who won one. The posted on is the first one, The second one (from the mid-‘80s I think), that I haven’t been able to locate for some time, so it might be different as well.

If I can find it, I’ll post it as well.