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 Message
    From: jmsatb5@aol.com (jms at b5)
 Subject: Re: Where is JMS? In the past he defended Sins Past
      To: rec.arts.comics.marvel.universe  
    Date: 10/6/2004 11:02:03 AM  

Message 1 in thread 

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>>JMS doesn't respond to all criticism, but when someone flagrantly writes
>>something that misrepresents what he wrote.
>
>Then I guess by his silence he's conceding that the criticism he's received
>on
>this arc is representative, reasonable, and accurate.
>

One doesn't prove the other. As I've always said...whether someone likes or
doesn't like my work, that's as it should be. I don't argue the validity of
opinions. Matters of fact, sure, but not taste. Some people like white
chocolate. Some people, like me, know it's an offense in the eyes of god.

There are some who don't like the Gwen aspect of this story, and some who think
it's deepened the character in a positive way. Why would I want to weigh in on
that? Arguing is good. For the first time in a very long time, people are
getting passionate enough about the title to have arguments on this scale, and
that's good.

If I stay out of the way, it's to allow the dialogue to continue unimpeded,
whether the book is being praised or raked over the coals. As a long time fan,
I remember almost the identical reactions when it was decided to kill Gwen off,
so I knew I'd be walking into a firestorm here.

To write is to take chances. Sometimes you succeed, sometimes you don't,
because the measure of success is in the eyes of the reader. And a subjective
opinion is always right for that reader, always true for that person.

So yeah, I've kept low to watch the arguing and see where the bodies land.

The only thing I will mention, the only thing that did surprise me, was the
degree to which some folks have turned on *Gwen*. I've heard of the
madonna/whore dynamic, but I've never actually seen it played out this
strenously.

I can't even begin to count the number of posts I've seen from folks who are
calling Gwen a slut, a whore, and a tramp...that this destroys her as a
person...that it would be better if she had been raped than having had
consensual sex.

Better to be *raped*? Having sex with someone makes that person a *whore*?

I'll admit it, *that* flummoxed me. Because I've known plenty of women who,
young and naive and foolish, found themselves caught up with an older guy, even
if only for a moment, because they are drawn in by them...especially if that
someone is as powerful and manipulative an older figure as Norman Osborn.

Maybe because I've known so many of them, all of whom are fine people, I've
never once thought of them in those admittedly ugly terms. We all make
mistakes in our lives. You who are without sin, throw the first stone, right?

Gwen made a mistake. But she took responsibility for it, had the kids when
there were other options (I don't want this to turn into a debate on those
options, I'm just saying), and was prepared to go toe-to-toe with Norman, who
on some level she had to be afraid of, and to raise those children, even if it
meant screwing up her career, and marrying Peter.

Now, to *me*, that is a person of immense personal strength and integrity. It
gives her a spine and a conscience and a will that we really haven't seen in
her before.

To me, Gwen is a person...and like all people, she has good and bad, makes
mistakes and adjusts for them. Always tries to do the right thing. And when
cornered, she'll fight, not just for herself, but for other people.

To other people, this seems to make her a slut.

This aspect of it isn't a writing thing, isn't a storytelling thing, it's a
matter of how one views people who have sex in this world.

And you'll note that at no time does Peter ever say or think these things about
her. Because Peter understands. Peter loves her even though she made a
mistake.

Given the ferocity with which some have turned on a dime and attacked Gwen --
calling someone they say they respected a whore and turning their backs on her
character, damning her as a slut and a tramp -- it seems that I may write the
comics, but a few other people have the issues....

But that's just my opinion.

jms

(jmsatb5@aol.com)
(all message content (c) 2004 by synthetic worlds, ltd.,
permission to reprint specifically denied to SFX Magazine
and don't send me story ideas)
    From: jmsatb5@aol.com (jms at b5)
 Subject: Re: Where is JMS? In the past he defended Sins Past
      To: rec.arts.comics.marvel.universe  
    Date: 10/7/2004 8:45:08 AM  

Message 2 in thread 

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>But i dont understand the point of the story.
>
>Gwen's been dead for a NUMBER of years, why was there this need to
>desecrate her memory?

I guess I just don't see it as a desecration. I like the character a lot. For
me, this just makes her a stronger person. But opinions can differ.

jms

(jmsatb5@aol.com)
(all message content (c) 2004 by synthetic worlds, ltd.,
permission to reprint specifically denied to SFX Magazine
and don't send me story ideas)
    From: jmsatb5@aol.com (jms at b5)
 Subject: Re: Where is JMS? In the past he defended Sins Past
      To: rec.arts.comics.marvel.universe  
    Date: 10/7/2004 9:03:41 AM  

Message 3 in thread 

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>>First, it angers me that the only thing JMS addressed was the way he saw
>Gwen
>>being battackedb here. The only reference Ibve seen like this was one
>guy who
>>made a joke about Gwen being bdamaged goodsb after sleeping with Norman
>>Osborn.
>>This was nothing more than a joke, and a rather funny one, I thought. If
>>anyone
>>else seriously characterized Gwen as a bslut,b then theybre idiots not
>worth
>>responding to. If youbre going to take the time to post here, then why not
>>respond to legitimate criticism and/ or questions? Therebs certainly no
>>shortage
>>of them.

Except of course that's not what I said What I said was this:

"The only thing I will mention, the only thing that did surprise me, was the
degree to which some folks have turned on *Gwen*. I've heard of the
madonna/whore dynamic, but I've never actually seen it played out this
strenously. I can't even begin to count the number of posts I've seen from
folks who are
calling Gwen a slut, a whore, and a tramp...that this destroys her as a
person...that it would be better if she had been raped than having had
consensual sex."

My comments were meant to be general in nature. You are trying to change them
into a specific rap against this newsgroup.

If you want to get an eyeful, go over to newsarama.com and do a search for gwen
and slut, tramp or whore. Or just read through the threads there in the
talkback and review sections. Go on over to comicboards.com or the
insidepulse.com forums the comicbookresources forums...you'll get more than
enough of this.

Go take a look for yourself, don't take my word for it. Or just do a google
search with those terms.

It's not like I'm making this shit up, you know.

jms

(jmsatb5@aol.com)
(all message content (c) 2004 by synthetic worlds, ltd.,
permission to reprint specifically denied to SFX Magazine
and don't send me story ideas)
    From: jmsatb5@aol.com (jms at b5)
 Subject: Re: Where is JMS? In the past he defended Sins Past
      To: rec.arts.comics.marvel.universe  
    Date: 10/7/2004 9:05:28 AM  

Message 4 in thread 

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>And I hope you are fired as soon as possible. I would rather have
>Mackie/Byrne back. They look like Shakespere compared to this
>ill-thought out, nonsensical crap that you have put out.

I just renewed my contract through 2006, but I'll put in a word with the
editors and see if they can be convinced to oblige your request.

jms

(jmsatb5@aol.com)
(all message content (c) 2004 by synthetic worlds, ltd.,
permission to reprint specifically denied to SFX Magazine
and don't send me story ideas)
    From: jmsatb5@aol.com (jms at b5)
 Subject: Re: Where is JMS? In the past he defended Sins Past
      To: rec.arts.comics.marvel.universe  
    Date: 10/8/2004 9:30:44 AM  

Message 5 in thread 

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>I'm eagerly awaiting the storyline which tells us more about Mary Parker's
>days
>with that ring of organ-smugglers run by the Kingpin, then.

Nuts...clearly there's a leak at the Marvel offices....

jms

(jmsatb5@aol.com)
(all message content (c) 2004 by synthetic worlds, ltd.,
permission to reprint specifically denied to SFX Magazine
and don't send me story ideas)
    From: jmsatb5@aol.com (jms at b5)
 Subject: Re: Where is JMS? In the past he defended Sins Past
      To: rec.arts.comics.marvel.universe  
    Date: 10/8/2004 9:34:05 AM  

Message 6 in thread 

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>You don't get it do you. You've, in one fell swoop, alienated the majority
>of your ASM readership.

So all these other posts are...from my mom?

Damn.

jms

(jmsatb5@aol.com)
(all message content (c) 2004 by synthetic worlds, ltd.,
permission to reprint specifically denied to SFX Magazine
and don't send me story ideas)
    From: jmsatb5@aol.com (jms at b5)
 Subject: Re: Where is JMS? In the past he defended Sins Past
      To: rec.arts.comics.marvel.universe  
    Date: 10/8/2004 9:35:30 AM  

Message 7 in thread 

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>That's good, but where's that Babylon 5 comic you promised?

It's now being written, having waited for some other developments to take
place, and will be turned into Wildstorm in the first part of the year. (It's
a 100 page graphic novel, so that takes a while.)

jms

(jmsatb5@aol.com)
(all message content (c) 2004 by synthetic worlds, ltd.,
permission to reprint specifically denied to SFX Magazine
and don't send me story ideas)
    From: jmsatb5@aol.com (jms at b5)
 Subject: Re: Where is JMS? In the past he defended Sins Past
      To: rec.arts.comics.marvel.universe  
    Date: 10/8/2004 9:38:33 AM  

Message 8 in thread 

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>The more I hear from you, and read your comics...the more I can't wait
>for your replacement to fix all this mess, as I come to the conclusion
>you are a very lost cause.

Yep. I was right.

It's my mom.

jms

(jmsatb5@aol.com)
(all message content (c) 2004 by synthetic worlds, ltd.,
permission to reprint specifically denied to SFX Magazine
and don't send me story ideas)
    From: jmsatb5@aol.com (jms at b5)
 Subject: Re: Where is JMS? In the past he defended Sins Past
      To: rec.arts.comics.marvel.universe  
    Date: 10/8/2004 10:10:49 AM  

Message 9 in thread 

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>Seriously, it's one thing to say that art changes over time because what
>we bring to it changes, and quite another to actively revise it. Why
>not paint bunny ears on the Mona Lisa, y'know?

BECAUSE THE FREAKING GUARDS KEEP GRABBING ME AND WRESTLING ME TO THE GROUND
AND...AND....

I'm much better now.

jms

(jmsatb5@aol.com)
(all message content (c) 2004 by synthetic worlds, ltd.,
permission to reprint specifically denied to SFX Magazine
and don't send me story ideas)
    From: jmsatb5@aol.com (jms at b5)
 Subject: Re: Where is JMS? In the past he defended Sins Past
      To: rec.arts.comics.marvel.universe  
    Date: 10/8/2004 10:15:47 AM  

Message 10 in thread 

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>That's all well and good, but what about all of the legitimate comments
>that don't attack Gwen's character, from reasonable people

If they are, or seem to you, legitimate comments, wherefore then should they
require comment?

>how about actually addressing the questions like how you thought this
>would possibly fit into established continuity, and how in the HELL it
>actualy seemed like a good idea to piss on some folks' fond memories of
>a departed character.

You mean aside from the fact that that's one of those "are you still beating
your wife?" questions?

Otherwise I can't think of a thing.

jms

(jmsatb5@aol.com)
(all message content (c) 2004 by synthetic worlds, ltd.,
permission to reprint specifically denied to SFX Magazine
and don't send me story ideas)
    From: jmsatb5@aol.com (jms at b5)
 Subject: Re: Where is JMS? In the past he defended Sins Past
      To: rec.arts.comics.marvel.universe  
    Date: 10/8/2004 9:18:44 PM  

Message 11 in thread 

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>Bull...it's been obvious Marvel wasn't going month to month as the comics
>were. ASM 97-122 all run concurrently with no "monthly" gaps as you
>mentioned. I've relooked at the issues and there no room or timeframe
>available for this JMS folly.

You *do* realize that 116-117-118 were reprints from Spectacular, right? So
there's three months right there unaccounted for.


jms

(jmsatb5@aol.com)
(all message content (c) 2004 by synthetic worlds, ltd.,
permission to reprint specifically denied to SFX Magazine
and don't send me story ideas)
    From: jmsatb5@aol.com (jms at b5)
 Subject: Re: Where is JMS? In the past he defended Sins Past
      To: rec.arts.comics.marvel.universe  
    Date: 10/9/2004 1:40:52 PM  

Message 12 in thread 

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>> I don't think this fits either. The tryst with Osborn happened when Gwen
>was
>> consoling him over Harry's drug collapse, right?

No. That was never said or implied.


jms

(jmsatb5@aol.com)
(all message content (c) 2004 by synthetic worlds, ltd.,
permission to reprint specifically denied to SFX Magazine
and don't send me story ideas)
    From: jmsatb5@aol.com (jms at b5)
 Subject: Re: Where is JMS? In the past he defended Sins Past
      To: rec.arts.comics.marvel.universe  
    Date: 10/9/2004 1:47:19 PM  

Message 13 in thread 

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>
>No I don't expect that either. I just want to know why the story was
>written and why use Gwen...

Jim, there is *no* good answer that is going to satisfy you on this issue.

Look...why does *anyone* write a story? Because they think it's a good story.
What do you think writers base their decisions on? Casting runes?

Why use Gwen? Because I needed a fair amount of time to grow the kids to have
at least a fair chance of making it credible, logically it couldn't be
MJ...who's left? Betty? Too obscure.

The key to writing, as somebody once said, is to put your character up a tree
and throw rocks at them. Gwen was the biggest rock I could find which would do
the job.

To ask any writer "why" or "was this story necessary?...what story is actually
*necessary*? What defines *necessary*?

You will never be satisfied with your line of questioning.

jms

(jmsatb5@aol.com)
(all message content (c) 2004 by synthetic worlds, ltd.,
permission to reprint specifically denied to SFX Magazine
and don't send me story ideas)
    From: jmsatb5@aol.com (jms at b5)
 Subject: Re: Where is JMS? In the past he defended Sins Past
      To: rec.arts.comics.marvel.universe  
    Date: 10/9/2004 1:51:20 PM  

Message 14 in thread 

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>There is ONE thing that he can do which would satisfy EVERYONE.
>
>He could retract the story.
>

Yeah? Check out the message boards where people who *liked* the story said
they hope it *doesn't* get withdrawn or changed because that would be a
cop-out.

Always be careful when you make claims to speak for everyone. Because you will
always be wrong.

jms

(jmsatb5@aol.com)
(all message content (c) 2004 by synthetic worlds, ltd.,
permission to reprint specifically denied to SFX Magazine
and don't send me story ideas)
    From: jmsatb5@aol.com (jms at b5)
 Subject: Re: Where is JMS? In the past he defended Sins Past
      To: rec.arts.comics.marvel.universe  
    Date: 10/9/2004 6:00:28 PM  

Message 15 in thread 

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>
>JMS, imho you are putting the cart before the horse and evading the issue.

No, actually, I'm not. If I say "I won't answer," or I change the subject to
another area entirely, that's evading the the issue, and the question was "why"
write a given story. That's the question, and I answered that specific
question. How is that evasion?

If you mean the point you raise a sentence later, how can I evade something
that wasn't written until afterward?

I answered the question I was asked. I evaded nothing.

>Before you can make the kids credible, you have to make the Gwen/Norman
>stuff credible.
>and thats where it falls apart. It is just not believable among the
>readers that Gwen would WILLINGLY sleep with Norman Osborn

Again, you are speaking for all readers when clearly there are many readers
here who do not agree with you. What you are saying is that it didn't work for
*you* but if you are going to start speaking for others who don't agree with
your position, then it is you who are evading the facts, not I.


jms

(jmsatb5@aol.com)
(all message content (c) 2004 by synthetic worlds, ltd.,
permission to reprint specifically denied to SFX Magazine
and don't send me story ideas)
    From: jmsatb5@aol.com (jms at b5)
 Subject: Re: Where is JMS? In the past he defended Sins Past
      To: rec.arts.comics.marvel.universe  
    Date: 10/9/2004 6:19:28 PM  

Message 16 in thread 

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You say:

>If JMS doesn't respond, then posters unhappy with the current storyline
>state that he concurs with the criticism.
>
>If JMS does respond and explains why he prefers not to weigh in on the
>debate in order that it will continue unimpeded, then posters unhappy with
>the current storyline state that he's ducking the debate.
>
>If JMS does respond and makes some jokes, then posters unhappy with the
>current storyline state he's mocking them.
>
>Apparently, nothing JMS does can be remotely positive as far as those
>posters are concerned.

To which I would add:

If I am called to task on something and counter it, I'm criticized for being
defensive and told that I'm attacking fans for their opinions.

If I am called to task on something and don't counter it, I'm either agreeing
that it's true or being rude to fans for not answering every single question
posed.

I have to obey the Marquis of Queensbury rules of fighting, because if I show
even a flicker of annoyance I'm being rude to fans, but it's okay to call me a
"fucking brain dead idiot."

If I try to inject some humor into a heated issue, I'm being rude.

If someone attacks, that's good, but if someone defends, that person is an
"apologist" or a "so-and-so worshipper" and beaten down and insulted for
expressing the same right to hold an opinion as the one who attacked in the
first place.

If someone insults me and I respond forcefully, I'm gigged for being
combative...if I don't respond forcefully andI just point out that this is what
they do, I'm gigged for playing the victim. (Because that's how people who
like to insult other people get away with it...when called on their behavior,
they say the other person is playing victim, therefore making their poor
behavior somebody else's problem...but perish the thought if you go after them,
because they'll scream bloody murder about what a meanie you are.)

Let us all recall, folks and folkettes, that this thread began with somebody
asking where I was. I responded, very gently and informatively...and
throughout this entire debate have not resorted to an angry response or
namecalling...and ironically because I didn't do this, I was accused of not
taking the debate seriously.

I think we just answered the original question about why I was letting the
debate continue without me...and why there are so few pros who *do* hang around
here.

The moment you walk in the door, you're in a no-win scenario.

The sad thing is that I know that a lot of them would *like* to do so...when we
get together, invariably the boards come up, and I get a real sense that more
of them would like to hang out with the fans, they (and I) enjoy hanging with
fans...the problem is the 10% of fans who are, shall we say, socially
maladroit, combative, vicious, insulting, and mutually reinforcing who render
these groups toxic, making it hard on the 90% of fans who are nifty, generous,
intelligent, healthy, altogether terrific people

I've seen it now for over fifteen years online. The song never changes.

And as for those who puff themselves up like pouter-pigeons and say they speak
for ALL fandom, for ALL readers...I'm from New Jersey. I was born in New
Jersey. I may even speak for some New Jerseyans.

But I am NOT New Jersey.

Learn the difference.


jms

(jmsatb5@aol.com)
(all message content (c) 2004 by synthetic worlds, ltd.,
permission to reprint specifically denied to SFX Magazine
and don't send me story ideas)
    From: jmsatb5@aol.com (jms at b5)
 Subject: Re: Where is JMS? In the past he defended Sins Past
      To: rec.arts.comics.marvel.universe  
    Date: 10/10/2004 10:10:08 AM  

Message 17 in thread 

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>But you probably know the best way the natives get from Jersey to Manhattan
>because of your experience. And, JMS, I'd look carefully at the uproar and
>where it's coming from. To be encouraged or propped up by the minority that
>support this storyline is a mistake. That segment will not support ASM in
>the numbers required for the comic to survive as a monthly.

Show your math, please, in order to back up this statistic.

You made a specific statement, so you must have those figures at hand. Please
provide them.


jms

(jmsatb5@aol.com)
(all message content (c) 2004 by synthetic worlds, ltd.,
permission to reprint specifically denied to SFX Magazine
and don't send me story ideas)
    From: jmsatb5@aol.com (jms at b5)
 Subject: Re: Where is JMS? In the past he defended Sins Past
      To: rec.arts.comics.marvel.universe  
    Date: 10/10/2004 10:12:49 AM  

Message 18 in thread 

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>Sometimes, it is easier to simply let people vent and get it out. Maybe
>being selective about who one replies to?

Thing is, if I *don't* reply to them, they say that they're being deliberately
ignored and thus disrespected (those comments were made in this very
argument...I asked JMS a question and he hasn't responded so he's a jerk (to
parphrase)...so again, you can't win.

jms

(jmsatb5@aol.com)
(all message content (c) 2004 by synthetic worlds, ltd.,
permission to reprint specifically denied to SFX Magazine
and don't send me story ideas)
    From: jmsatb5@aol.com (jms at b5)
 Subject: Re: Where is JMS? In the past he defended Sins Past
      To: rec.arts.comics.marvel.universe  
    Date: 10/10/2004 10:20:20 AM  

Message 19 in thread 

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BTW...an aside to those who suggest that MJ could never keep a secret like this
from Peter...bear in mind that for years she kept the secret that Peter was
Spider-Man from *her mother-in-law*, Peter's mother, who you would think would
have one hell of a right to know. One can now argue the reasons for keeping
the secret, but the fact is that she *kept* it. From someone she loves.

We all keep secrets.

jms

(jmsatb5@aol.com)
(all message content (c) 2004 by synthetic worlds, ltd.,
permission to reprint specifically denied to SFX Magazine
and don't send me story ideas)
    From: jmsatb5@aol.com (jms at b5)
 Subject: Re: Where is JMS? In the past he defended Sins Past
      To: rec.arts.comics.marvel.universe  
    Date: 10/10/2004 5:34:29 PM  

Message 20 in thread 

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>I'm assuming you mean May here, since MJ never, to our knowledge, met
>Peter's birth mother.

Yeah, I did, I'm an idiot.

>But this does make me realize something odd about
>Peter. In the two decades or so (and 40 years of comics stories) that May
>has been the parental figure in his life and one of the two who raised him
>from pre-teen/post-toddler childhood, I can't recall a single time he's
>ever even tried to address her as "Mom" or even said something like "You do
>know that you're also my mother". He's often thanked her for raising him,
>but never gone all the way to acknowledging the effective adoptive mother/son
>relationship.

Hmm...good point....

jms

(jmsatb5@aol.com)
(all message content (c) 2004 by synthetic worlds, ltd.,
permission to reprint specifically denied to SFX Magazine
and don't send me story ideas)
    From: jmsatb5@aol.com (jms at b5)
 Subject: Re: Where is JMS? In the past he defended Sins Past
      To: rec.arts.comics.marvel.universe  
    Date: 10/10/2004 8:21:51 PM  

Message 21 in thread 

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>Why on earth did JMS age these kids ?
>
>There would have been just as much drama if they had aged normally ( and be
>what now ? 6-ish )

Now, imagine the drawings in the book of Spidey slugging it out with
six-year-olds...


jms

(jmsatb5@aol.com)
(all message content (c) 2004 by synthetic worlds, ltd.,
permission to reprint specifically denied to SFX Magazine
and don't send me story ideas)
    From: jmsatb5@aol.com (jms at b5)
 Subject: Re: Where is JMS? In the past he defended Sins Past
      To: rec.arts.comics.marvel.universe  
    Date: 10/11/2004 3:01:37 PM  

Message 22 in thread 

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>Regardless-- at some point you had the idea to make these
>*Gwen's* kids. At this stage, you realize that if they're Gwen's kids, they
>can't be more than six years old, tops. When you reach this stage, you should
>have said to yourself, "okay, I obviously can't make this work." Instead, you
>come up with the outrageous idea that the kids somehow aged 18 years in just
>six. You had an idea that can't reasonably work but (for some reason) you
>were
>absolutely committed to write it, CREDIBILITY BE DAMNED. This is BAD
>storytelling.

How does one apply that rule in a universe that incorporates Sorcerers Supreme,
Thunder Gods, mutants, gamma-ray strong-guys, and somebody who got bit by an
irradiated spider who suddenly gains its powers...?

Why are all THOSE things credible and rapid aging inconceivable when we even
have a rough scientific basis for that in progeria, where we see children start
to age and even die of old age by thirteen...where there has not been even a
*hint* of scientific data to support anybody getting powers from irradiated
spiders?


jms

(jmsatb5@aol.com)
(all message content (c) 2004 by synthetic worlds, ltd.,
permission to reprint specifically denied to SFX Magazine
and don't send me story ideas)
    From: jmsatb5@aol.com (jms at b5)
 Subject: Re: Where is JMS? In the past he defended Sins Past
      To: rec.arts.comics.marvel.universe  
    Date: 10/11/2004 3:05:43 PM  

Message 23 in thread 

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>In other words, back up your implicit claim that works of art
>have one and only one correct interpretation.

Exactly. The whole thing about being a work of art is that it can be
interpreted in new and different ways. Art is what happens in the space
between the viewer and what's being viewed, where we bring our own view of the
world into play. (I'd go into a lengthy thing about art and quantum mechanics
but I haven't yet done all the math on that one yet).

Everyone knows that Hamlet was a guy, but there have been many productions
where that part is played by a female, or when Henry V is moved into modern
dress. That it's art doesn't prevent this, the fact that it's art *allows*
this.

jms

(jmsatb5@aol.com)
(all message content (c) 2004 by synthetic worlds, ltd.,
permission to reprint specifically denied to SFX Magazine
and don't send me story ideas)
    From: jmsatb5@aol.com (jms at b5)
 Subject: Re: Where is JMS? In the past he defended Sins Past
      To: rec.arts.comics.marvel.universe  
    Date: 10/11/2004 5:00:46 PM  

Message 24 in thread 

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>JMS they are all the same comic conventions with pretty much the same
>level of credibility. or as you called them "cheats"

Except that I didn't.

>Rapid growth is as much a comic cheat as time travel or cloning.
>(the most notable case that I recall being the Carol Danvers Ms Marvel
>Immortus pregnancy)

No, it's not.

>but you promised no cheats. in this unedited quote of your post
>and that puts a high standard for the story to meet
>and rapid growth to solve a timeline is just another "cheat"
>though technically you might say that you promised not to use the listed
>cheats, and nothing about using a differetn cheat.
>is readers wrath so hard to understand?

Yes, it is, on this count at least, because I *didn't* cheat. Here's where you
went off the rails.

You are using such a broad definition of cheating as to make the term
meaningless. You are saying that if one uses a fantasy or SF device, that's a
cheat. But that's not a cheat, and that's not what I said.

Let's go to the record of what I *did* say, shall we, and discover why this is
NOT a cheat?

I said --

>To the broader questions raised here...I don't generally believe in
>cheats.
>This isn't a time travel deal, it's not an alternate history story, it's
>not a
>hoax, it's not a clone story, it's not, in short, a *cheat*.

A cheat is when you tell everybody it's one thing and at the very last second
change it to something else to escape the consequences of what you've written.


So if I led the readers on to think they were Gwen's kids, and it turned out
that --

OHMYGOD THEY'RE TIME TRAVELERS! or OHMYGOD THEY'RE THE CLONE'S KIDS! or OHMYGOD
THEY'RE JUST HOAXING HIM!

-- then it's a cheat. I think that's pretty clear.

You are trying to say that *ANY* kind of use of SF, comics or fantasy devices
constitutes a cheat, in which case since the entire Marvel universe is based on
that stuff, then ipso facto the whole THING is a cheat...and the term becomes
meaningless. If you're going to say that this MUST and can ONLY have a
solution that has NOT ONE SINGLE element of the comic book universe that it
inhabits, then you are putting on impossible restrictions.

I started off this road implying that these were Gwen's kids. I provided a
solution that is consistent not only with the Marvel universe but even science
(with a variation on progeria), rather than having to go around the horn to
come up with time traveling Stacy clones that come in at the eleventh hour to
explain the whole thing away so that THE STORY YOU JUST READ DOESN'T MEAN
ANYTHING!

That, fella, is a cheat.

And that, this *ain't*.


jms

(jmsatb5@aol.com)
(all message content (c) 2004 by synthetic worlds, ltd.,
permission to reprint specifically denied to SFX Magazine
and don't send me story ideas)
    From: jmsatb5@aol.com (jms at b5)
 Subject: Re: Where is JMS? In the past he defended Sins Past
      To: rec.arts.comics.marvel.universe  
    Date: 10/11/2004 7:10:19 PM  

Message 25 in thread 

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>Oh come the hell on.
>
>Spider-Man's schtick is to be the "everyman" superhero. Fast-aged children
>can
>certainly work in his world, just like clones, gods, mutants, radioactive
>spiders or six-legged spider-insects can-- if they're properly established,
>that
>is.
>

1) The kids are Norman's.

2) We know that Norman is the Green Goblin (properly established).

3) We know that the Green Goblin became that way because of the serum (properly
established).

4) We know that the serum affected his biology (properly established)

5) We know that the serum gave him an accellerated healing capacity (properly
established)

6) We know from the Marvel universe (and some measure of biology) that some
acquired traits can be passed on genetically to the next generation (properly
established).

7) We know, from real life, that glitches in DNA can cause children to age
prematurely at a frightening rate. The disorder is called Hutchinson-Gilford
progeria syndrome (HGPS).

I quote from one of many reference sources:

"The disease, also known as Hutchinson-Gilford progeria syndrome (HGPS) occurs
once in approximately 8 million births. It affects both sexes and all races."

"Children with HGPS appear to age at a rate that is 5 to 10 times the normal
rate."

"According to researchers, progeria is caused by a single-letter misspelling in
a gene on chromosome 1. They found 18 of 20 children with classic progeria had
the exact same misspelling in the Lamin A gene. Lamin A is a protein that is a
key component of the membrane that surrounds the cell's nucleus."

"The studies showed that almost half of the progeria patients cells had
misshapen nuclear membranes."

So this has been properly established IN THE REAL WORLD.

8) The healing factor (properly established) which was passed on to the kids
(simple genetics) is the only thing that has allowed them to survive even this
long.

What part of this progression escapes you?

What part of this comes "out of the blue?" It's ALL either a logical extension
of continuity or of the real world.

Look...you can say you don't like it, that's one thing...but you *cannot* say
that it's not properly established, and you *cannot* say it is therefore by ANY
definition a cheat.

Saying it doesn't make it so.

Sorry. I *did* my homework.

Clearly, you didn't.


jms

(jmsatb5@aol.com)
(all message content (c) 2004 by synthetic worlds, ltd.,
permission to reprint specifically denied to SFX Magazine
and don't send me story ideas)
    From: jmsatb5@aol.com (jms at b5)
 Subject: Re: Where is JMS? In the past he defended Sins Past
      To: rec.arts.comics.marvel.universe  
    Date: 10/12/2004 9:19:21 AM  

Message 26 in thread 

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>I think it's ironic that something under his definition would be a "cheat"
>is being used to justify what others would classify as a "cheat".

But then again you make my point...by your standards, *everything* is a cheat,
and therefore the term no longer has any meaning.

Further, you keep saying that Spider-Man is the "everyman" and that therefore
nothing extraordinary can be used...but that's not the meaning fo the term
everyman. You continue to misuse vernacular to suit your own purposes.

An everyman is expressly someone who represents the average reader, NOT someone
whose world has to be average. We identify with Spidey because he's not
perfect, NOT because everything that happens to him has a mundane explanation.

If you think that everything that is in his world has to be readily acceptable
and explainable and mundane...explain to me the Sandman, please, in a way that
makes conventional sense. Ditto for the Molten Man and the Lizard.

By your definitions, those are also cheats that don't belong in Spidey's world.

Words have meaning, you can't just make them mean what you want them to mean.

jms

(jmsatb5@aol.com)
(all message content (c) 2004 by synthetic worlds, ltd.,
permission to reprint specifically denied to SFX Magazine
and don't send me story ideas)
    From: jmsatb5@aol.com (jms at b5)
 Subject: Re: Where is JMS? In the past he defended Sins Past
      To: rec.arts.comics.marvel.universe  
    Date: 10/12/2004 9:23:06 AM  

Message 27 in thread 

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>Excuse me? No, it hasn't. As I pointed out, progeria only produces rapid
>*aging*, not development or growth. Progeria patients develop diseases such
>as arthritis, but they don't become adults fast.

Which, as I already explained, is where the genetic effects of the goblin
serum, now in their DNA, has allowed them to survive the process...it's
modified it a few degrees to one side. These aren't normal kids because of
their altered DNA so it's reasonable to accept that it would have an effect on
this aspect.

Look...all of comics and science fiction are, to one degree or another, based
on rubber science. We can argue this all day. You can choose to accept it, or
not, but you can't say it's not legitimate, any more than ANY kind of SF,
fantasy or comics is acceptable.

Otherwise stop buying comics altogether, because it's ALL rubber science, and a
lot of it doesn't even aspire to THAT level of justification.

You don't like it. But that's not the same thing as showing it ain't just as
valid as anything else out there.

jms

(jmsatb5@aol.com)
(all message content (c) 2004 by synthetic worlds, ltd.,
permission to reprint specifically denied to SFX Magazine
and don't send me story ideas)

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