Sunday, May 13, 2007

Allowing For Growth

First off, thanks to all the commenters from yesterday's post. I think that's a new record for comments for this blog. Hurray!

Seeing as it's Mother's Day, I suppose it's appropriate to do a post about moms. Last year I talked about one Mary Jane Watson-Parker, and since I was pleased with her parenting in this week's Amazing Spider-Girl, by gum, I might as well discuss her again.

Mary Jane's had an interesting character arc since the end of the last series, up to now. It was her concern over her family that got Peter to finally(!) hang up the webs (until the next time he thinks May needs help, anyway), and May as well. But as concerned as MJ has been over May's safety, that didn't stop her from giving May the costume so she could go protect her friends in Amazing Spider-Girl #2. Despite her worries about her daughter's safety, MJ is proud of her daughter for saving lives, and encouraged it - that time.

Of course, Mary Jane thought that would be an one time deal, while May has continued to throw the costume on and fight crime and save her friends. And when she found out, that scared MJ, and so she's been distant with May the last few issues. She knows Hobgoblin is still out there, and she really doesn't want May running into him. But even at that time, with MJ and Peter having both expressed disappointment that May was out doing the Spider-Girl thing behind their backs, I think they knew May wasn't going to quit the costumed hero work. That's why there's been distance; MJ has been trying to come to grips with that, and she's needed time to work through it. The abrupt emergence of Sara Hingle's mutant powers just gave her an extra push.

It's made Mary Jane realize that children are going to grow and change, and it won't always be something the child chooses, but even if it is, the best thing the parents can do is be supportive of them. And that's what MJ's realized. May was going out there as Spider-Girl against her parents' wishes, so it's obvious how seriously May takes it. Given that, Mary Jane wants May to give it her all, and not be held back by because she's worried about lying to her parents, which are the same doubts Mayday's been having for the last several issues (Lovely how that works out, isn't it?).

It's been an interesting arc, from my standpoint. MJ went from allowing her fear of May being hurt controlling her decisions (not that it isn't reasonable given Mayday's profession), to deciding the best option is to fully support May's decision.

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