Two heads are better than one, but are two Spider-Men better than one? Ask many readers of Marvel Comics’ “Spider-Man” offerings from the 1990s, and they’ll answer with a resounding “nope” — but that doesn’t seem to be stopping Sony from exploring the pages of “The Clone Saga.”
The Daily Bugle, fictional news organization and go-to viral marketing page for this summer’s “Amazing Spider-Man 2,” has published another new article, this time teasing the existence of clone technology in the “Amazing” universe:
“Manhattan’s Empire State University announced a new class for the 2014 fall semester in advanced biogenetics that will actually require the successful cloning of a living creature. Introduction to Live Cloning, taught by noted geneticist Professor Miles Warren, is the first class of its kind anywhere in the world.
“When asked about the ethical aspects of teaching a class on how to clone living cells, Warren said, ’Our responsibility is to educate our students and prepare them for life. For those who study genetics or biology, cloning will be a fact of life.’
“The ethical aspects of cloning are irrelevant to Warren, who added, ’We are cloning single-celled amoeba. Maybe one day we’ll work our way up to mice. There is no ethical dilemma. Save your red flag for when I start cloning co-eds…'”
In the mid-90s, Marvel published a controversial “Spider-Man” story-arc known as “The Clone Saga,” in which it was revealed that Peter Parker was a clone of a man named Ben Reilly. In light of the revelation, Reilly became Spider-Man for a time, while Parker took a seat on the bench. Eventually, fortunes were reversed, Parker was revealed as the original while Reilly was the true clone, and all went back to normal(ish).
The Daily Bugle article teases numerous aspects of “The Clone Saga,” from the very obvious subject matter of cloning technology, to the author of the Bugle piece (Ken Ellis was a journalist featured during the “Clone Saga” run), to the identity of the professor teaching “Introduction to Live Cloning,” Miles Warren — better known to readers as Jackal, one of the key villains in the “Clone Saga” story.
Is this just the latest example of how the “Amazing Spider-Man 2” viral marketing campaign is weaving a web that includes multiple aspects of the Spider-Man canon, or is it more than that? Unless the “Amazing Spider-Man” sequel clocks in at five hours, there’s no way the movie can fit in all of the various elements teased in the Daily Bugle stories. But what if Sony is using this as a platform to set up the future “Spider-Man” spinoffs? We already know “Sinister Six” and “Venom” are on the way, but could a Ben Reilly-focused “Clone Saga,” or “Scarlet Spider” movie, be on its way as well?
What do you make of the “Clone Saga” tease?