Anyone Else Notice Some Parallels?


As I mentioned in an earlier blog post, the relationship between Frank Douglas/Black Harrier and Sawyer Vincent/Red Raptor was never meant to mirror Batman/Bruce Wayne and Robin/Tim Drake (or Dick Grayson, or Jason Todd, or Damian Wayne), as many readers assume. A closer template to Frank was Tony Stark, and to Sawyer was Peter Parker. And, at the time I wrote Sidekick in 2014, the relationship between those two characters wasn’t a very important one in the comics. In fact, it still isn’t.

Despite knowing each other for forty years (in real time), Spidey and Iron Man hadn’t spent much time together except for the few years in the early 2000s when they were both Avengers, until they eventually ended up on opposite sides in the comics version of Civil War. Also, by that time, Peter was a fully-grown adult in the comics. So, for me, exploring a relationship between an older Tony Stark-like character and a teenage Peter Parker-type was new territory and I thought it was an interesting dynamic with which to work.

Then Captain America: Civil War was released shortly after Sidekick came out in 2016, and we got a brief glimpse of the relationship between Tony and Peter, which most fans really seemed to like. Fast forward to Spider-Man: Homecoming a year later, and the relationship was being more fully developed…and started to remind me a lot of the one between Frank and Sawyer. [Please note that I am NOT, in any way, shape, or form, suggesting that anyone who had anything to do with those films was copying or had even read my book. It was just an interesting parallel.]

Now that Avengers: Infinity War is in theaters, fans really seem to be enjoying the evolving relationship between Tony and Peter, and the ending appears to be one of most viewers’ favorite/least favorite parts. Of all the deaths in the movie, that one seems to be the one that really gets to people and tugs at their heartstrings. And it’s certainly better than any relationship between Batman and Robin that has ever been depicted in film or television.

I guess what I’m trying to say is: I think I made the right call.


~ by christophervalin on June 9, 2018.

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