Marvel has released a teaser image for the upcoming Spider-Gwen: Ghost-Spider #10. The promo image hints that major changes are in store for Earth-65’s Gwen Stacy:
The image for the Seanan McGuire-written and Takeshi Miyazawa-drawn series appears to be drawn by series cover artist Bengal. Sporting a tagline of “Spider-Gwen No More!” and featuring Gwen’s Spider-Woman costume stuffed in a trash can, the image calls back to an iconic John Romita Sr.-drawn image from Amazing Spider-Man #50:
A major difference, of course, is the mood of the image. Whereas Peter appears sullen and defeated on the Romita Sr. page, Gwen is running away from the crumpled costume, drumsticks in hand, to join her friends onstage. It’s worth noting that Spider-Gwen: Ghost-Spider #10 is the 50th overall issue of Gwen’s solo adventures (Edge of Spider-Verse #2 + Spider-Gwen #1-5 + Radioactive Spider-Gwen #1-34 make up the first forty issues). Maybe it’s just a tradition that after 50 issues spider-heroes have to give up their identities.
Given how things have been going for Gwen of late, it’s not hard to imagine she would want to leave the superhero business behind. After having her identity outed to the world and a brief stint in prison towards the end of Jason Latour and Robbi Rodriguez’s Spider-Gwen run, writer McGuire has explored the impact her public identity has had on Gwen’s ability to have a private life of her own. Being a superhero—and a convicted felon—has made it difficult for Gwen to hold down a job, which has led to her becoming something of a ‘hero for hire’ in recent issues of Ghost-Spider. On top of that, the symbiote which makes up her costume and gives her her powers appears to be deteriorating, though at this point Gwen doesn’t appear to be aware of that. Is Gwen going to give up being a superhero, or will the loss of the source of her powers give her no choice?
“Spider-Gwen No More” could also refer to the codename pains the character has suffered over the years. Originally known as Spider-Woman on Earth-65, Gwen’s solo title was called Spider-Gwen since Marvel already had a Jessica Drew-starring Spider-Woman series at the time. Having the series title not match the character’s name—and having the best-known name for the character also include her secret identity—has been an issue for the publisher, and they have attempted to transition to the “Ghost-Spider” codename since the addition of the character to the Marvel Rising initiative. The relaunch of her comic series added “Ghost-Spider” to the title of the book, and this “Spider-Gwen No More!” tease could mean the series will finally drop the first half of its title and become simply Ghost-Spider.
Spider-Gwen: Ghost-Spider #10 is due in stores in July 2019.
Joe Grunenwald is a writer and editor living in the Pacific Northwest. He’s taller than a lot of people but not as tall as some people.