SPOILER WARNING: The following article contains major spoilers for Friendly Neighborhood Spider-Man #1 by Tom Taylor, Juann Cabal, Marcelo Ferreira, Roberto Poggi, Nolan Woodard, Jim Campbell and VC's Travis Lanham, on sale now.
Spider-Man is no stranger to having his name in the title of multiple Marvel comics in a given month. You're probably familiar with The Amazing Spider-Man, but there has also been Spectacular Spider-Man, Sensational Spider-Man and Web of Spider-Man, just to name a few.
After Peter Parker: The Spectacular Spider-Man came to an end, Marvel looked to writer Tom Taylor and artist Juann Cabal for a new take on the web-slingers adventures, which led to the relaunch of Friendly Neighborhood Spider-Man and a smaller focus on Peter Parker's literal neighborhood in New York City, compared to grander stories found in other titles.
Friendly Neighborhood Spider-Man #1's main story by Taylor and Cabal introduced readers to residents in Peter's apartment building like the elderly Marnie, the possibly-in-trouble Leilani and the duo of Gary and Gracie. Aside from rescuing a father and daughter just moving into the neighborhood, the story is light on appearances by Spider-Man's red-and-blue costume, instead giving the spotlight to the hero's civilian alter ego.
Of course, you can't talk about Spider-Man and Peter Parker supporting characters without bringing up the closest person in his life, Aunt May. She's been around just as long as Spider-Man and has had to endure the loss of two husbands, Ben Parker and John Jonah Jameson, Sr., various medical conditions and numerous attempts made on her life by enemies of Spider-Man.
However, a 10-page backup story in Friendly Neighborhood Spider-Man #1 by Taylor and artistic collaborators Marcelo Ferreira, Roberto Poggi and Jim Campbell reveal Aunt May is keeping a huge secret from Peter, with its implications possibly being too much for her to overcome.
Aunt May Has A Potential Life-Threatening Diagnosis
The short story begins with Aunt May apologizing to Peter in a hand-written letter. The reason for the letter and apology isn't made clear, but she goes on to say how she has started to avoid her nephew. Playing the evasive game is usually reserved for her superhero nephew, so that's the first sign that things aren't as they should be.
Peter can tell something is wrong, so he tries to follow Aunt May on her journey through the city to get to the bottom of things. However, a couple of school bullies distract him from his primary objective of privacy snooping. We do see Aunt May head to the McCarthy Medical Insitute, where inside the hospital walls we learn the startling news that Aunt May found a lump, meaning she could potentially have breast cancer.