Here’s Chris Sims, of Chris’s Invincible Super-Blog, on Fred Van Lente’s last issue of Marvel Adventures Spider-Man (which was also Fred’s first issue):
I’ve always had the feeling that while they’ve all but cornered the teenage market, Marvel lags behind DC when it comes to marketing their characters towards kids. After all, between Kelly Puckett and Mike Parobeck on The Batman Adventures and some of Mark Millar’s best comics ever on the corresponding Superman title, DC pretty much had the ’90s on lockdown as far as kid-friendly titles that were actually excellent comics in their own right, while Marvel’s “Marvel Age” imprint stuttered, collapsed, found itself reborn as “Marvel Adventures,” and didn’t seem like it ever quite found its footing.
Even so, with the upcoming MODOK story in Marvel Adventures: The Avengers and the arrival of Fred Van Lente (the writer of the truly incredible Action Philosophers and the co-creator of the new Scorpion) to tell a Black Costume story geared towards the kids, I decided to give the Spider-Man title a closer look, and found it to be a highly enjoyable read. Van Lente manages to cram a story where Spidey fights the Rocket Racer, Stilt-Man, and Leap-Frog and still throw in the black costume without even having to bring it back from the Moon. It’s fun stuff, and while it was certainly an odd place for a Hulk #100 promo insert (featuring a story involving genocide and the Hulk being worshipped as a god) and the Guiding Light backup, it’s worth checking out.
I’m dreaming of a white Fred Van Lente Day
Just like the ones I used to know
Where the treetops glisten
and children listen
To hear sleigh bells in the snow.