In June, Spider-Man will just be recovering from his world-wide battle with the Sinister Six, but that doesn’t mean Marvel – or writer Dan Slott – will be cutting ol’ Peter a break. Nope, as announced last night at WonderCon, our favorite web-slinger jumps right into his next deadly battle in Amazing Spider-Man #688 called “No Going Back,” with artist Giuseppe Camuncoli in tow. The story finds vampire Morbius trying to cure one of Spider-Man’s arch enemies, The Lizard, while The Lizard has a few deadly plans of his own.
To find out more about the story – which features variant covers by J Scott Campbell, Shane Davis, Matt Clark and Adam Kubert – we chatted with ASM Assistant Editor Ellie Pyle, who also let us know how this ties into a certain blockbuster movie:
MTV Geek: Ellie, this is the first issue post the Ends of the Earth arc… I know you can’t spoil what happens there, but what kind of place is Spidey in going into #688? Can’t you all give the guy five minutes to rest?
Ellie Pyle: Nope! Absolutely not! In fact, ASM #688 picks up right on the heels of Ends of the Earth and our epilogue Avenging Spider-Man #8 by Dan Slott and Ty Templeton. ASM #688 begins with Spidey’s return to New York… If there’s a New York left, I mean.
Geek: We’re picking up on threads from the recent point one issue, and I know we’ll see Morbius, and The Lizard, and of course Spidey… But how about Kid Uatu The Monster Hunter?
EP: Dan has done a really excellent job of giving each of the Horizon scientists their own personality. I love that any time one of them shows up it is always very specific to the scene and the story. So I can only hope Uatu will show up and demonstrate the verb from of “VanHelsing” again.
Geek: Let’s talk about The Lizard here… This is the newer, deadlier, mind-controllier version. What’s he after? What’s his motivation here? Does he even want to ever be human again?
EP: As we saw at the end of Shed, there is no Curt, only Lizard. The human part of Doctor Connors died with his son Billy. Now he’s just the Lizard and has no interest whatsoever in becoming human again. He’s on a quest to bring out the Lizard brains in other people, free them, as he sees it. So if Morbius wants to save him, he may have to do it by force.
Geek: How about Morbius? Does his quest for a cure for The Lizard maybe stem a little bit from his own problems curing himself, he said psychologically?
EP: Oh my yes! He’s totally projecting. Morbius believes that he and the Lizard are both monsters and maybe, if he can bring Curt Connors back there will be hope for him as well.
Geek: And then there’s the title, “No Going Back.” I’m guessing this is a reference to the classic Sir Mix-a-Lot song, “Baby Got Back?”
EP: Have you looked at his tail? It’s soooooooo big…
Geek: It also maybe implies, well, a lot of things; from the permanence of a cure, to Morbius’ curse, to Lizard murdering his own son. What does it mean for those characters – and more importantly, for Spider-Man?
EP: Spider-Man is one of those characters who remembers every mistake he’s ever made and those mistakes continue to weigh on him, from not preventing Uncle Ben’s death to failing to save Billy Connors. But one of the things that makes Spider-Man so amazing is that he keeps moving anyway. There is no going back so all you can do is fight your best fight when the next challenge comes along. And I think Dan has a really great sense of what that means for Spider-Man as well as what Morbius is trying to recapture and what the Lizard may not be able to, even if he wanted to.
Geek: Giuseppe Camuncoli is doing the art for this story, and I loved his work on the Spidey in space arc. Clearly he brings a lot of good humor and creativity to the table; what can we expect during “No Going Back?”
EP: Giuseppe Camuncoli has been a joy to work with on Spider-Man thus far. He really thinks about every single panel and not just what the characters are doing but why. Plus, he’s just great at super hero action! And with inks by Klaus Janson and colors by Frank D’Armata , this pretty much as good as comics get!
Geek: Lastly, I realize this isn’t exactly analogous to the movie that is, totally coincidentally, coming out at the same time and has Spidey fighting the Lizard, but I have to ask: how many jokes about “The Social Network” will there be in this arc?
EP: Someone will get unfriended! Someone’s relationship status will be complicated! I mean when you look at this arc in the context of these characters’ full timeline… Quick, hit your refresh button!
SPIDER-MAN: NO GOING BACK begins in Amazing Spider-Man #688, hitting comic book stands in June from Marvel! Check out three pencilled pages, plus the full cover below!