The process of creating comic books involves a lot of moving parts, and sometimes continuity glitches slip through the cracks. That was the case this week with Marvel Comics' Invincible Iron Man #593, which depicts an enormous image of Tony Stark standing beside an unmasked Spider-Man on display at the annual Tony Stark International Sciences Expo.
For those keeping score at home, Spider-Man publicly revealed himself to be Peter Parker in a press conference organized by Tony Stark during the events of the 2006-2007 crossover Civil War. However, knowledge of his secret identity was later removed from the collective memory through the deal struck with Mephisto during the controversial "One More Day" storyline that also erased Peter's marriage to Mary Jane Watson.
So if the world no longer knows Peter Peter is Spider-Man, a photo of him dressed as the wall-crawler (and standing next to Tony Stark) doesn't make a whole lot of sense. However, Invincible Iron Man writer Brian Michael Bendis swiftly explained that away by saying the image was "from a kick-ass costume party for rich people."
Looks like a Picture from a kick ass costume party for rich people https://t.co/Qpo7jJzQGJ— BRIAN MICHAEL BENDIS (@BRIANMBENDIS) October 18, 2017
In that sense, it's believable that Tony Stark would be seen standing next to Peter wearing a Spider-Man costume. Tony is the owner of Stark Industries, and Peter was the owner of Parker Industries, before the company went bankrupt during Amazing Spider-Man's tie-in issues of Secret Empire.
Invincible Iron Man #593, by Brian Michael Bendis and Stefano Caselli, is available now from Marvel Comics.