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Amazing Spider-Man #532: Review

Jul 2006
J. Michael Straczynski, Ron Garney

Story Name:

The war at home, part 1 of 6

Review & Comments

4 stars

Amazing Spider-Man #532 Review by (April 25, 2016)
The issues #532-538 are all part of 'The War At Home' arc. They also carry the 'Civil War' banner. This issue is also part of the 'Spider-Man Unmasked' arc which spreads across the Spidey titles. It is also a continuation of the 'Iron Spider-Man' arc. It's schizophrenic.

This issue is labelled part 1 of 6, but when we get to part 6 it becomes of 7.

The contents of this issue are spread across Civil War #1-2.

The flashbacks occur during CW#1 where we see the Stamford disaster and its aftermath. The TV reality show version of New Warriors tried to capture some supervillains and Nitro blew the place up. Nitro was the only villain survivor and Speedball was the only New Warrior.

Peter's chat with his family happens immediately after that.

The end of last issue where Peter and MJ watch the news about Stamford must be after the flashbacks because Peter learns about the disaster here.

Tony Stark goes public about being Iron Man and supporting the Registration Act before the Spider-Man press conference, in CW: Front Line #1/1.

We met Miriam Sharpe in CW#1.

Spidey's press conference takes place the day after the Act becomes law. And CW#2 ends with it, taking us a few seconds later to the actual unmasking. Next issue will continue with Peter's face already revealed.


Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Amazing Spider-Man #532 Synopsis by Rob Johnson
In the opening page Peter Parker tells Mary Jane and Aunt May that he's got to make a decision which might mean the end of Spider-Man. Then we go into flashbacks.

Peter and Tony Stark are on their way by private jet to Stamford where a fight between superheroes and supervillains has killed 600 people including a school full of kids.

2 hours later as Spider-Man and Iron Man they've helped recover all the bodies. Now they face the glares of surviving townsfolk as the Presidential helicopter surveys the scene overhead.

3 hours later Peter accompanies Tony as he goes for a meeting with the President. When Stark comes out he tells Peter that the Stamford disaster means that the Superhuman Registration Act is a certainty. It will become law in a week or so. People with superpowers will have to register their real identities with the government.

Peter's not happy, and suggests that many heroes won't comply. And he points out that Tony himself has spent a long time convincing people that he's no longer Iron Man. But Tony says he's just admitted to the Prez that he is.

Stark agrees that it won't just be supervillains who refuse to register. This could split the superhero community. As such Tony is going to take the lead in getting heroes to register to prevent more draconian measures. He asks Peter if he'll honour the commitment he made to support Stark in #529. He wants Spider-Man to publicly unmask alongside Iron Man.

Parker of course doesn't want to. But Stark says the alternative is that he will be a hunted outlaw. And if they help him MJ and Aunt May will be guilty as his accomplices.

Tony is staying in Washington. But the jet will fly Peter back to New York to make up his mind. On the way back he checks the withdrawable amount in his personal accounts in case he has to go on the run.

That brings us to the present.

MJ asks what will it mean if he goes public? Will he have to hunt those who don't? (Probably.) Will he have to reveal the names of others? (Peter doesn't think this matters because Stark knows whoever he does.) Which brings MJ to her next question - if he doesn't come out will Tony out him. (Peter's really not sure.)

MJ says she and Aunt May will back him whatever he decides. But Peter tells them if he goes on the run he must go alone. And he can't take any money that isn't his alone. They mustn't become accomplices.

Aunt May chimes in with her opinion. When she found out he was Spider-Man she wasn't angry at Peter for not telling her. She was angry at the people like J Jonah Jameson who said he was a crook. She's proud of him and she wants to share that pride with the world.

Peter objects that he kept his identity secret to protect her. But May points out that other law officers don't hide their identities despite the fact that criminals sometime go after families like theirs. And their families prefer that the world knows the quality of their loved one.

Peter asks MJ to persuade May to change her mind. But MJ agrees with her. He should reveal his identity and stand proud.

4 days later it's the morning of the big reveal, and Peter's having 2nd (at least) thoughts. He decides to make a dash for Canada. But May brings him an old-style costume she's mended for him, so he'll be recognisable. And reminds him that responsibility includes owning up to your actions.

Peter joins Tony before the press conference. Stark goes out and introduces Miriam Sharpe who lost a son at Stamford and is a leader of the pro-Registration movement. Then he calls on Spider-Man, who comes on stage and says he's got an announcement to make.

Ron Garney
Bill Reinhold
Matt Milla
Ron Garney (Cover Penciler)
Ron Garney (Cover Inker)
Ron Garney (Cover Colorist)


Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Iron Man
Iron Man

(Tony Stark)

(Peter Parker)

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