Thursday, January 13, 2011

Best of "What If...?": #17

Volume 1 #30 (1981)
What if Spider-Man’s clone had survived?

CoverWritten by Bill Flanagan
Drawn by Rich Buckler

The scene is unlike any other: Spider-Man versus Spider-Man. One is the real Peter Parker, the other is Peter’s clone, and not even Miles Warren, the clone’s creator, can tell the two apart. Ultimately, this mirror match ends only when both Warren and his clone are killed in an explosion meant for the real Spider-Man.

Yet this fight was so evenly matched that no outcome was inevitable. The bogus Spider-Man could have gained the upper hand; the real Peter could have died alongside Warren. But how, thereafter, would the false Peter have coped with a reality three years removed from the one in his mind?

Peter’s clone visits the childhood home that he fondly remembers only to find its windows boarded. He learns that an old friend of his is now his girlfriend and that an old girlfriend of his is now married. What Peter’s clone does not realize is that the many holes that he perceives in his memory are in fact one massive void…

“Parker, my boy-- I think we’ve been asleep for a very long time.”

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