By Matt Powell
***Breaking News: New York Times
reports on lines for AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #583 featuring the Spidey/Obama Team-Up and ABC's Nightline
Before he moves into the White House, President-Elect Barack Obama drops by the House of Ideas.
On January 14, President-Elect Obama makes his nationwide comic book debut in the Marvel Universe in a special bonus story in AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #583! Written by Zeb Wells with art by Todd Nauck and Frank D'Armata, the issue will also feature a special variant cover by fan-favorite Phil Jimenez featuring the upcoming Commander-In-Chief teaming with the Wallcrawler.
A spotlight on the nation's new president serves as a natural fit to the real-world aura around Marvel's series.
"Elections change what we do visually every few years whenever there's a new president to draw in our books," explains AMAZING editor Steve Wacker. "Marvel has always strived to be the world outside your window, so whenever we need to see the president, we try to show the one we have. The election hasn't fundamentally changed any stories we've had planned, but it probably has put our stories in a different context."
President-Elect Obama's Spider-Man fandom has been well-documented, and the versatility of the character makes this pairing even more organic as Wacker explains:
"Spidey is without a doubt Marvel's most recognized character, so he's a great ambassador for folks who don't read our books regularly. But I can't take the fact that [President-Elect] Obama's a Spidey fan
out of the equation. If [he] hadn't admitted that he used to be a Spidey fan, we probably wouldn't have done this [in] a separate story, so I'm glad he spoke up about it."
For anyone who's a fan of the Webhead and knows Peter Parker's life, one learns to expect the unexpected. As the story reveals, trouble ensues on President-Elect Obama's Inauguration Day, specifically the trouble of an imposter posing as our nation's next leader! As fans may surmise, a Spidey rogue is the culprit.
"Longtime Spidey fans will recognize the Chameleon as a master of disguise—exactly the guy we needed," reveals Wacker.
The Marvel Universe bursts with its own patriotic powerhouses, from Captain America to Dr. Doom. Collectively what would their advice be to President-Elect Obama's new role?
"Each of those guys would give the same advice: Be sure and pick up 'Iron Man' and 'The Incredible Hulk' on DVD or Blu-Ray DVD," suggests Wacker.
In this year of tremendous change, Wacker affirms the president-elect will show up in future Marvel books and play a role in the Dark Reign storyline. However, could the president-elect's influence on comics extend beyond cameos?
"As a taxpayer, I'd be pretty peeved if he was spending his time writing comics," jokes Wacker. "As an editor though, I think it [would] be great. Both [of] his books are well-
Preview art by
written and he seems to be able to hit deadlines: [The] two prerequisites for a comic career. If only he knew Jeph Loeb, then it'd be a slam-dunk."
The House of Ideas and Wacker wish the president-elect well in his service, however if given the chance Wacker reveals the one change he'd make to his cabinet:
"Stan Lee for Secretary of Education."
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