Oh. My. God.
Sharp-eyed readers may remember when Jose kidded around several months back– saying I would be buying the Sideshow Collectibles Premium Format Poison Ivy Statue any second. Up to that time, I’d never really thought much about the Sideshow statues– primarily because I knew they were very expensive and the few times I had looked at them, they always seemed to have a cloth component.
That last bit was always a deal breaker for me. Trying to keep a statue intact in Earthquake Country is near impossible, but add in the fact that SoCal is essentially one big dust bowl as well… It’s virtually impossible to keep anything dust free unless it’s encased in some kind of elaborate hermetically sealed chamber. Since I could never figure out how I was supposed to clean a cloth outfit on a statue… I always passed.
Until yesterday… When I received the Sideshow pre-order email featuring the J. Scott Campbell designed Gwen Stacy and Mary Jane polystone statues. Good Lord. The second I saw it, there was never any question I was going to buy the Gwen Statue. I liked the Mary Jane piece but it was Gwen’s curvaceous swagger (and that AWESOME SPIDER-MAN FACE UMBRELLA) that did me in.
As much as I grew to love Mary Jane Watson-Parker and the special place she used to have in Spider-Man’s life, Gwen was always “my” Spider-Gal… And I still swoon over her to this day. The truth is, Gwen was– and always will be– my only comic book nerd crush.
I was so excited to see the pre-order, I didn’t care about the statue’s price. Me Want Now!™ was all I could think. And I was so overjoyed with the piece, I was even willing to forego taking my usual jabs at Marvel and that useless Spider-Hater Joe Quesada— thoughts that always come to the fore whenever I think of Spider-Man, Peter Parker, Gwen Stacy and Mary Jane Watson-Parker in the same moment.
But then I saw the following.
Tell me if you notice anything different between these two ad headlines:
Well, Gwen’s ad uses her last name… But Mary Jane’s ad doesn’t use Watson (her last name) or Watson-Parker (her married last name.)
And before you think, “Oh Ian, come on!”… What? The proof is right in front of you. Gwen’s Spider-Man association is slyly reflected on the top of her umbrella in her statue… But it seems fairly obvious to me (and I’m just assuming here) that no one at Marvel wanted the MJ Statue called Mary Jane Watson-Parker (even though Mary Jane is clearly wearing part of Spider-Man’s costume– meaning she knows Peter Parker’s superhero identity and is most likely engaged or married to the man) because the statue isn’t called Mary Jane Watson-Parker.
Then you could see how some Sideshow people might think, “If we call the statue just Mary Jane Watson with her wearing part of Spidey’s outfit and all, won’t we risk pissing off some Spider-Man purists?” And then these people just sit there idly looking at one another until someone finally says, “Screw it!” and decides not to use either MJ’s single or hyphenated married surnames to advertise her statue.
If I believed in God and the Devil (and I’m not saying if I do or if I don’t), I would like to think there’s a special spot in Hell for questionable “creators” who intentionally fuck with people’s fictional icons for no other reason than they are petty, untalented hacks who can… But then I realize that if there really is a God and a Devil, then neither one of these powerful entities gives a rat’s ass about something so trivial… And, after all that thinking, I just start to feel silly.
This is usually when I turn to a mirror near my writing desk and flip Joe Quesada off with my middle finger and shout, “Take that, you slimy fuck!”… “And here’s another flip for the time you drew that ridiculous mini-series where Daredevil had the physique of The Incredible Hulk!”
I’ll take a deep breath now and try to calm down while you enjoy these great pictures of both the Gwen Stacy and Mary Jane Watson-Parker statues in a cool slide show: