As reported on IGN last month Marvel released a Spider-Man-themed teaser image labeled “Dead No More.” If the teaser is to be believed, someone in the Spider-Man franchise will be returning to life in the spring. It would be just the latest in a long line of twists from Amazing Spider-Man writer Dan Slott.
But which Spider-Man character is due for a resurrection? Is it Doctor Octopus’ time to shine again? Are we going to see the return of a Spider-clone? Will Marvel do the unthinkable and bring back Uncle Ben? Check out a list of potential candidates.
Otto Octavius is far and away the most likely character to be resurrected in the near future. Slott teased the imminent return of this iconic villain in the first issue of the current ASM series.
Otto “died” back in Amazing Spider-Man #700 when his battered body finally gave out, but he cheated death by copying his mind into Peter Parker’s body. Otto enjoyed being the “Superior Spider-Man” for a while, but he willingly gave up his new body after recognizing that his old foe would always be the better hero. But it appears that an earlier version of Otto’s mind currently resides within the data banks of his old assistant, the Living Robot.
The main question is whether a reborn Otto Octavius would be friend or foe to Spider-Man. How much of his time as the Spider-Man does he remember? Will he still try to make life miserable for everyone in the Marvel Universe, or will the new Octavius seek to prove himself as a hero again?
Uncle Ben is one of a select few characters in superhero comics who has actually stayed dead all these years. Sure, we’ve seen various alternate universe version of Ben kicking around (most recently in the Spider-Verse crossover), but would it be blasphemy to bring back the real deal?
Maybe not. At this point, with Bucky Barnes and Jason Todd both alive and well again, what’s so unbelievable about the idea of Uncle Ben crawling out of his grave? Peter’s life has been defined by that one terrible mistake he made. Maybe the best way to let our hero finally forgive himself and move forward is to see his uncle alive again.
Now would be an especially interesting time to have Uncle Ben back in play. How would he react to the idea that his nephew has created a global charity in his name, or the fact that his wife is now married to the father of the world’s crankiest newspaper tycoon? The shock of seeing that might just send Ben back to his grave.
Gwen Stacy is another character who seemed destined to stay dead forever. The idea being that, like Uncle Ben, the tragedy of her death is more important to Peter Parker’s journey than her active presence could ever be. But we’re about to reach the point where Marvel will be publishing two ongoing series featuring different versions of Gwen. Is it really such a stretch to imagine the Gwen Stacy of the Prime Marvel Universe coming back to life?
Back in the ’90s, Ben Reilly was the poster child for everything wrong with the comic book industry in general and the Spider-Man franchise in particular. At some point it was a relief to see the character killed off and the bloated, convoluted mess that was the Clone Saga finally put to rest. But time heals all wounds, and these days Ben has quite the respectable fan base. Marvel might do well to throw those fans a bone and bring Ben Reilly back into play.
It could be argued that the Marvel Universe has too many Spider-people already, especially with Miles Morales having just made the jump. But with the right take (and that’s usually not a problem for Slott), a revived Ben Reilly could bring a lot to Peter Parker’s increasingly chaotic world.
Maybe “Dead No More” isn’t referring to a character, but a concept. Many Spider-fans have been clamoring for Peter Parker’s marriage to Mary Jane to return ever since it was wiped away by One More Day in 2007. Slott sort of answered that demand with the Secret Wars tie-in Amazing Spider-Man: Renew Your Vows, but the only element that appears to have carried over into the reborn Marvel Universe is the book’s villain, Regent.
We don’t necessarily want Peter and MJ to be married again at this point, especially with MJ beginning a new chapter in her life in Invincible Iron Man. But we would like to see a story where Peter remembers the events of One More Day and the terrible sacrifice he made. How would he react to learning about the life he gave up and the daughter he might have had? How would Aunt May deal with the idea that her nephew gave up so much so that she might live again?