Seriously, there is a major spoiler coming! Turn away now if you don't want to know the ending of "Civil War" #2.
Let's first begin with a bit of history. Marvel Comics' Editor in Chief, Joe Quesada, has been spearheading the PR campaign for "Civil War" #2, promising that the ending of the issue would cause some major reverberations in the fan community. Some fans were skeptical of this claim, remembering certain statements to that effect made by author Brian Bendis about the ending to last year's "House Of M" #2. The scribe promised that the shock ending would "break the Internet in half," but when the plot point was revealed, many fans felt it was a letdown. However, "Civil War" has been a different beast from the beginning, garnering mainstream press, building up in many of Marvel's books and involving all of the characters in the Marvel Universe: fans were genuinely intrigued by Quesada's hype. For those not in the know, "Civil War" focuses on the divisions in the superhero community as the government for superheroes to register with the government. Some feel that the heroes are walking concealed weapons while other support their vigilantism. Most notably, Captain America and Iron Man have clashed (ideologically speaking), with Iron Man supporting the government act and Cap being vehemently opposed. Iron Man has gone so far as to coerce Spider-Man into working for him, providing him with a new suit of armor to aid in his efforts.
In recent weeks, Quesada has also been chatting heavily about the marriage of Peter Parker (Spider-Man) and Mary Jane Watson with our friends at Newsarama, where Spider-Man himself has become quite the topic of discussion. Last week, a preview copy of "Thunderbolts" caused mass speculation, forcing Marvel to clamp down on those revealing the spoilers, adding to the mystique of "Civil War" #2. Online speculation has centered on the notion that Spider-Man would be the focal point of "Civil War'" #2's big revelation. Would Mary Jane die? Would the marriage end? Will someone's mind be wiped clean?
Turns out that fans may have been thinking too small.
As revealed in today's "Civil War" #2, Spider-Man has revealed himself to the American public as Peter Parker. Everyone in the world now knows Spider-Man's identity. As Quesada told the New York Post, Spider-Man's actions are "taboo in comics" and this represents a major status change for the Marvel Universe. While considered more progressive that the DC Comics superhero universe (a claim many would argue against), Spider-Man's identity has seemed somewhat sacred-heck, any villain who learns his identity seems to die. In many ways, Spider-Man is the Superman of Marvel Comics and such a public identity revelation will certainly be met with claims of heresy from fans. Heck, Bendis also noted on his message board that the event was discussed by Howard Stern! Will this change be permanent? And how will it affect Spider-Man? Only time will tell and CBR News will be here to keep you updated on all the developments. You can also discuss this subject with other fans at CBR's Civil War Forum.