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World of Superior Spider-Man Pt. 3

Artists Ryan Stegman and Giuseppe Camuncoli discuss visually tweaking the new Spidey!

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Superior Spider-Man by Ryan Stegman

By Andrew Wheeler

It's the story everyone's talking about: there's a new Spider-Man in town.

Sure, he looks like the old one, but he's packing a new superior attitude. Doctor Octopus has swapped minds with Peter Parker, stolen his identity and left him for dead. In the pages of SUPERIOR SPIDER-MAN and AVENGING SPIDER-MAN, the story of Otto Octavius and Peter Parker continues to unfold.

This week we'll explore how the Superior Spider-Man will interact with the world of his old foe, continuing today with artists Ryan Stegman and Giuseppe Camuncoli going over the differences Otto brings to the table visually as Spidey.

Marvel.com: Spider-Man is a character with a really distinctive physicality; the way he moves, the way he fights, the way he swings. Does all of that change when it's Otto behind the wheel?

Giuseppe Camuncoli: It does to me. He's more menacing, sinister and dangerous now. Despite being more "angley-rigid" now—as Ed McGuinness' character design sheet suggests—I imagine him possibly even faster, and deadlier. Unpredictable, also, like he could snap and do something Spidey-unexpected in any moment.

Ryan Stegman: I try to make Otto fight with more brutal tactics. He has the strength and agility of Peter, so he could be just as graceful but he would go for the low-blow a little more. Really though, it's not much different because he's Otto with Peter's memories etc., so in pressure situations where he's making split-second decisions I think he'd react more like Peter.

Superior Spider-Man by Ed McGuinness

Marvel.com: Tell me about the Ed McGuinness' redesign of the Spider-Man costume. What are the big changes, and what's the thinking behind them?

Giuseppe Camuncoli: It's a little more aggressive—and twisted. After all, it's only minor adjustments, but sensitive ones, like the spikier spider on his back. Plus you have two big changes: the eyes and the claws, including the one in his big toes, if you want.

Ryan Stegman: A big [change] for me is the removal of the webbing on his triceps, because that was always a huge pain in the butt to draw! It's always difficult to figure how that wraps around his arms. The eyes are very different too. I enjoy rendering out the black trim on his eyes, it has a nice 3D effect.

Giuseppe Camuncoli: It was quite easy to get acquainted with the new costume. I think it's really cool; I'm having lots of fun with it.

Marvel.com: With the mask off, is there a difference in the look of Otto-as-Peter and Peter-as-Peter?

Ryan Stegman: For me, absolutely. Otto is so arrogant that he makes no attempts to act like Peter because, in my mind, he wouldn't be self-aware enough to know he was acting a certain way anyway. He doesn't know he's a jerk, he just is a jerk. So you'll see him smirking a lot and puffing out his chest; things he would always do when he was in his own body.

Giuseppe Camuncoli: To me, it's mostly body language and expressions. And attitude. The only thing that I made slightly different in Peter is his hair, now mostly combed-back. It makes me think that Otto is someone so meticulous and precise that he would take care of his hair in a way that Peter wouldn't. Remember his classic bowl haircut? Not a single hair was misplaced there, bro.

Superior Spider-Man by Giuseppe Camuncoli

Ryan Stegman: I hear a lot of people saying, "How can people not know that Pete's acting weird?" Well, think about it. If somebody in your life all of a sudden started acting completely different, but looked exactly the same, would your first conclusion be, "Well obviously somebody's switched bodies with him"? No. Well, unless you have a really insane life.

Marvel.com: I know some fan-favorite villains are coming back to fight the new Spider-Man. Are any of them getting a makeover?

Ryan Stegman: Not that I've drawn! Other than putting my own stamp on the villains, I don't change anything about their costumes. I just try to make them uglier than ever before.

Giuseppe Camuncoli: The only one I'm tackling right now for issues #4-5 is Massacre, and he just got a little restyling in his outfit. But I can't wait to get to draw the next story-arc. Makeover or not, Spidey's villains are always a treat. Especially now, since every one of them has to deal with a radically different kind of Spider-Man.

Marvel.com: Without giving too much away about future stories, what are you most excited to show us in Superior Spider-Man's world?

Giuseppe Camuncoli: Well, [writer Dan Slott's] keywords for the new title are, if I remember, "dark and weird." So anything "dark and weird" sounds awesome to me. Villains aside, I'm definitely curious to see what happens with his friends and family—especially MJ and JJJ—and with his allies in the Marvel Universe, like the Fantastic Four—Johnny Storm, anyone?—or the Avengers.

Ryan Stegman: All of it. I've always wanted to draw his world, and that extends to his supporting cast. Getting to draw J. Jonah Jameson and Mary Jane, it's so much fun. And then the villains are great. You never realize how into the characters you are until you finally get to work on them!

Next week, AVENGING SPIDER-MAN writer Chris Yost wraps up our look at the “new” Spidey by talking about his place in the larger Marvel Universe—and be sure to pick up SUPERIOR SPIDER-MAN #2!

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