Meet Andy Maguire a.k.a. Alpha, Spider-Man’s New…Sidekick?

Well, it only took Pete 50 years, but he’s got himself a sidekick. Young Andy Maguire (We’ll let you parse that one for yourselves) will find himself both blessed and cursed with strange new abilities in the pages of The Amazing Spider-Man #692. As the year progresses, he’ll take on the guise of Alpha, sidekick to your friendly neighborhood Spider-Man.

Here he is on the cover of #693.

Written by DAN SLOTT
Pencils and Cover by HUMBERTO RAMOS
FOC – 7/30/2012, On Sale – 8/22/2012

So, has Pete finally made it as masked vigilante now that he has a costumed apprentice? Does this undermine the very foundation of the Peter Parker story? We’re sure you’ll want to weigh in on this one!

Check out a preview of August’s The Amazing Spider-Man #692 by Dan Slott and Humberto Ramos!


  1. Slott’s run has been pretty great so far, so I’ll trust him on this. It’s a shame Alpha’s costume is so boring.

  2. Can’t say I’m crazy about this idea, but I guess I’ll withold judgement until I see how it plays out. Slott’s had a good run and he knows Spider-man, so hopefully he makes this work.

  3. I’ve had no interest in jumping back on Slott’s run after Smythe & now this cements my not returning. Why can’t we have Kieron Gillen on Spidey? Or even Matt Fraction?

    • It’s defiantly time for a new writer.

    • No Matt Fraction, this book needs no hammers!

    • Zeb Wells. He know how to write Peter Parker as a man and not a whiney man-child (I’m lookin’ at YOU, Slott!), and he knows how to make Spider-Man funny without being annoying (now I’m lokkin’ at YOU, Bendis!)

    • Fraction actually wrote a really good Peter in an annual a few years back before, y’know, Marvel ruined Spider-Man

    • That’s really why I would elect Fraction after his run on Invincible Iron Man is over. Fraction is at his best when there is no event tie in, when he’s just character focused. Plus Fraction has a knack for humorous moments throughout his Iron Man run & Immortal Iron Fist as well. Yet I also would think that Amazing Spider-man would be a great challenge & a great transition for Fraction. Peter’s a science geek/scientist & Tony is pretty much the Steve Hawkings of the Marvel Universe. Really I just want the old Gauntlet era Amazing Spider-Man back, y’know with better artists that connect with their writers & stories fluidly. I am enjoying Ultimate Comics Spider-Man, but its really not the same & it has definitely gone down in quality recently, IMO. So with the new movie can there be a new writer at least Marvel? It would be even more appropriate for Fraction to come aboard since 4 years ago he started his Invincible Iron Man run alongside the release of the first Iron Man movie. So now perhaps he might just ignite that same creative magic once again, at least I hope so.

  4. I would have much preferred if this guy’s name was Shinji Daniel Barnes.

  5. I have been loving Slott’s run and am very glad he doesn’t appear to be going anywhere. I am optimistic about this, I understand why people might be against the idea but it’s a relatively fresh twist that will be fun to see play out.

    Dan if you read this – please do some more Mysterio, you write the hell out of that guy!

  6. Goddammit, Slott! Ugh, this better be like a 1 to 2 story arc kind of thing. Even if it’s a short or long term thing, I doubt this’ll stick for very long.

  7. I love the idea of Peter mentoring a young hero that gets powers in a similar way to his origin. If Slott does this right it could be golden. I’m intrigued. Peter interacting with young heroes is always great because he’s the model for a lot of them.

    • It’s VERY similar to Spider-man’s origin, down to the cheesy “true believe” spouting, omniscient narrator. The twist, of course, is that the kid gets powers and it’s Peter’s “fault”, so now Parker has to become the kid’s super-powered babysitter. Could be good. Could be bad. We’ll see where it goes.

      Parker particles? Derivative, but it could be fun. Again, if handled well, it could open the door to good stories / new ideas.

    • Me too, but that’s the storyline I’m expecting from Spider-men. Slott’s been hit and miss from arc to arc for me. That said I’m interested to see what he does with it.

    • Isn’t that what he’s already doing with Miles in “Spider-Men”?

  8. I’m skeptical, but if you told me that they’re going to give everyone in Manhattan spider powers two years ago, I would have scoffed. Shows what I know.

  9. Who wants to bet this character has a spin off series by Christmas? That’s canceled by new years?

  10. You’d think Spider-Man’s sidekick would be somehow bug-themed. Like Mosquito Kid or the Human Fly or something.

    • Not really. Peter’s not involving insects in his experiment, so he wouldn’t adopt a bug-theme. The only reason to do so would forever put the kid in Spidey’s shadow simply because he’s the sidekick.

  11. *yawn*

  12. So funny how Slott divides opinion so drastically. A lot of people wouldn’t give him the time of day, then there’s his fans who swear his run on ASM is the greatest ever written. I like his stuff for the majority and I think he gets the character. ASM is one of the few comics I get where I know I’m guaranteed some humour and a few laughs, which is great in this world of modern “dark and gritty” comics.

  13. tripleneck tripleneck (@tripleneck) says:

    This isn’t what I want to read about in a Spider-Man comic, but I’ll give it a try. I don’t think the blame/credit for this character is necessarily Dan Slott’s. I always suspect that big moves like this are editorial driven. If Marvel are trying to get a new character to ‘stick’ they have to force it into the main continuity that readers care about. If Alpha was introduced in his own series, I probably wouldn’t buy it. But since I buy AMS anyway, I’m going to be reading about him. Maybe, just maybe, I’ll end up caring about Alpha. My prediction is that he’s an important part of Spider-Man’s story for a while and he’ll be moved out into his own title which will sink or swim on the merits of the character and/or his creative team. After Alpha has been ‘promoted’ he probably won’t appear much or at all in AMS and I won’t have to think about him anymore.

    However, if Alpha is going to be a permanent sidekick a la Robin to silver age Batman that effectively turns Peter Parker into a ‘single dad’ and that’s seems pretty dumb for a company that un-married the same character because they didn’t think it was relatable for younger readers.

  14. Spider-Man spent 50 years WITHOUT a sidekick… Why give him one now all of a sudden? Tsssskk come on Marvel, go swim in your pools of money and just leave one of the most beloved character in superhero fandom alone! 0_o

  15. I’ll be rooting for this simply because this is the same thing most comic fans refuse to accept and then complain about the repetitive nature of comics. They are introducing a new character and changing, likely only temporarily, the status quo of the most established hero in their universe. Just once let’s see if we can have something new be accepted and embraced by the general audience as opposed to immediately belittled, only to have everything in the MU be the same-old same-old that we always whine about. If it turns out to be of poor quality, then so be it. It will go away deservedly. But if there is refusal to accept it before it even happens, then why bother buying any big two comics? In theory you already own the stories you want to read about Spider-Man. To clarify, iFanbase, I am not directing these comments at any of you, but rather the larger comics-buying market, so no offense is meant towards your initial opinions.

  16. it’s like no matter what Marvel does, people will complain. If they try something new, people complain that they should “leave Spider-Man alone!” But if they DON’T try something new, we get snarky comments about how everything is boring and Marvel is out of ideas.

    I have enjoyed Dan Slott’s run on Spider-Man. He writes him very well, and always gets his character right. There are certain aspects I don’t totally agree with, but at least he has a clear vision and has tried to do something a little different while still staying true to the roots of the character. I think over all his run has definitely been entertaining and a success for me. WHile there are small details I may not like, the over-all picture I am very pleased with and there hasn’t been a single issue I didn’t enjoy and feel I got my money’s worth with.

    I am definitely interested to see how this plays out and have faith it will be good.

  17. Honestly if the Internet was around when Amazing Fantasy #1 came out I bet we’re scoff at the solicit for Issue #15.
    “Spider-Man? Sounds derivative. Hate the costume. Blah blah blah.”

    I wish Marvel would seriously consider Not running press on their flagship titles. Amazing Spidey has pretty much been rolling along in its own universe for over a year now. Why not keep the story a secret for a year and see what happens?
    Would the print orders seriously drop that much? Would the lack of foreknowledge create a buzz, word-of-mouth among fans that would spur 2nd printing or maybe digital sales?

  18. It’ll certainly make things interesting.

  19. Wait! This never happened in the 80 or 90’s! No wonder people don’t like it! Don’t worry guys, maybe he’s a clone or a symbiote.

    Seriously though, I’m all for people taking any Marvel books off the beaten path. And Spider man with a partner who isn’t Leap Frog sounds like something new.

    • If you want Spider-Man with a partner just read Avenging Spider-Man dude… It’s been a great title and the sidekick question even came into topic in one of the issues.

  20. The story looks like a blend of Spidey’s origin and the Hulk’s, so it’s hard to say they’re doing “something new.” But, give it a shot – Spider-Island was great, Ends of the Earth has been really good, and it’s got Ramos on art, so it will look good.

  21. I have a feeling Alpha will be a big part in the “WORLD CHANGING” issue 700 that Slotts been talking about. Could Peter Parker DIE or get stuck in the Ultimate Universe for a while and Alpha takes charge (my guess would be the latter as I doubt they will kill him in the 616 so soon after his ultimate death)? Not sure if the powers are similar enough for him to fill that void but I doubt it’s by chance he is coming so close to issue 700.

    • If they kill Peter in 616, I will FREAK THE F*** OUT! Spider-man/Peter Parker is the best super hero EVER! He always tries to do the right thing and is unsure of his actions. In other words, he seems to be the only true good guy in comics. I haven’t liked a lot of the ways he’s been portrayed over the years, but lately they seem to be getting him right. I love the way that he seems to be the living embodiment of no good deed goes unpunished!

    • Dude… if Spidey dies in 616, there will be riots. Worldwide! 0_o

    • They won’t permanently kill the 616 Parker any more than DC would do that for Bruce Wayne or Clark. At best, we’d get a few months to year without Parker then he’d come back through magic/time travel/super science, etc.

      They can permanently off Ultimate characters all day, and no one will really care, at least not once they realize it’s an “alternate universe”, kind of the way DC can make “Green Lantern” gay and get headlines, at least until people realize that there are 32342355 green lanterns, and the gay one’s in an alternate universe to boot.

      For the most part comics have stopped being about good stories and characters and are just about grabbing attention, being “shocking” and pushing a few titles out onto suckers before they realize that it’s all just nonsense. Comics have pretty much degenerated to the point that they’re not any better than reality TV…except that they’re 4 bucks for a 5 minute read, versus an hour’s worth of free TV.

  22. Sony is teaming up with Marvel to cross promote digital cameras? =)

    it could be cool though..Slott does fun stuff with spidey and i’ll give it a shot.

    But one thing…marvel has the opportunity to create a brand new character that will be heavily promoted, and they make it a blonde, caucasian male? Missed opportunity to do something different. Kinda like the T-Wolves drafting more point guards…

  23. i’m basically fine with it, although i’m not sure how well spider-man will work with a partner. he’s always best when he’s going on the spur of the moment with no planning, having a partner generally means you have to plan for two people now. but i’m definitely interested. i only wish that alpha were bitten by a radioactive ‘a’ and given alphabet-themed powers.

  24. Does that mean that the Fabulous Frog Man wasn’t a sidekick back in the day?

  25. I feel like Alpha will be dead within the year.

  26. I read ASM and will keep reading it but not to keen on the idea .

  27. This all seems a little to late the side kick era ended a long time ago. This is just a means for marvel to do one of the following; make a new hero and give him a big push using spider-man to launch him. make a new younger, more fresh spidey villain, kill him to start a story plot but it’ll probably be unnecessary. Or just use him for a while and move him off into obscurity. Either way as long as his powers are interesting I’m in on this guy. maybe they’ll give him a back up which would be great because I feel it’s a lost art.

  28. This should be interesting, though I had to drop Slott’s ASM due to finances this past week. I’ll keep up with this though.

    If there’s anything I’m disappointed in, it’s that Alpha – a new character who’s obviously going to be promoted heavily by Marvel – isn’t a minority in some way (unless he’s gay, which is a possibility). Obviously Marvel doesn’t want to make him Black or Hispanic, because that undercuts Miles’ existence over in the Ultimate Universe. But it seems weird to me that Marvel and DC go out of their way to change their established characters or create new characters in their respective alternate universes and then, when they (Marvel) create a new character in the main universe, not only is it a White American male, it’s a BLONDE White American male. Because we don’t have enough of those in the 616. Might as well have created a redheaded White American female.

    It just seems hypocritical of them to always be spewing diversity when they change characters (which riles up fans) and then when they make a new hero to be the SIDE-KICK (however temporary) to one of the most prominent super-heroes in the world, it’s the most prototypical looking guy. I mean, they could’ve at least made him Swedish or something.

  29. Christ, could they make the new character any more boring? Aren’t there about 1000 characters like this in the MU already? This looks like Speedball v 2.0, only with a more boring costume.

    It might actually have been interesting of they’d made the typical jock guy get the powers and have Peter trying to mentor him…but instead we get science geek mentoring a slacker. Why is it that obnoxious popular kids never get super powers, or if they do they turn into villains? I mean I understand that in order to pull that off you might have to actually have an original thought, some skill as a writer and understand a little thing called a “character arc”, but they could at least try and look like they’re making an effort instead of rehashing story they’ve told 1000 times. Instead, what we get is another Power Fantasy For the Lonely. Yaaay!