2016 and 2017 were rough years for Nick Spencer, maybe the worst in a decade since he was driven from Cincinnati after losing his City Council bids. First, despite dedicating most of his waking hours to tweeting, sometimes hundreds of times per day, about Hillary Clinton, she was still defeated by Donald Trump in the 2016 election. On top of that, Spencer soon launched Secret Empire, one of the most polarizing Marvel super-mega-crossover events ever, which sold so poorly in comparison to past Marvel events that it was even defeated by Batman and The Flash in the sales charts. Secret Empire saw Captain America turned into a Nazi, a decision which seemed to rile fans and critics on both sides of the political spectrum. Again, Spencer took to Twitter, arguing with anyone who criticized him, his work, or Marvel Comics and providing fuel for dozens of clickbait comics news articles.
And then, Secret Empire ended. And Nick Spencer went quiet, locking his Twitter account. Though Bleeding Cool reported and was ultimately correct that Spencer was headed for a run on Amazing Spider-Man, but between the end of Secret Empire and that book’s start in July, Spencer has written few comics. So what has he been doing with all that time freed up by not writing comics, and even more so, the greater amount of time freed up by not arguing on Twitter 24/7? Apparently, he was reading every Spider-Man comic ever published, according to a new interview with Marvel.com.
“When I got the book, I sat down and tried to comprehensively read through basically everything — every issue of AMAZING, SPECTACULAR, TEAM-UP, WEB, SPIDER-MAN, SENSATIONAL, FRIENDLY NEIGHBORHOOD, and all the titles in between,” Spencer revealed. “You name it, I read it.”
“And it really shows what a proud tradition there is. Everyone tries to bring their A-game when they’re writing Spider-Man. And I’m directly following one of the most acclaimed and successful runs of all time in Dan Slott’s,” Spencer continued, revealing that his judgement hasn’t really improved in the past six months. “So no pressure! It really does inspire you to do your best work. I’m just honored to be a part of this.”
Amongst all those back issues, Spencer revealed some of his favorite creators (besides Dan Slott) to work on the book.
“Any conversation there has to start with Lee/Ditko/Romita, obviously,” Spencer said. “That run is, in my opinion, the high-water point of mainstream American super-hero comics and can never be surpassed. It takes your breath away reading it through. Beyond that perfect foundation, I’m especially fond of two writers: Roger Stern and J.M. DeMatteis. I’m a different kind of writer than those guys, but they both have a huge influence on me and how I view the character.”
Head over to Marvel.com to read more about Spencer’s plans for Amazing Spider-Man, the first issue of which hits stores in July.