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Write Off 6: Origin of Spider-Man

The first Write Off was all about Star Wars. The second Write Off was all about parents. The third Write Off was all about secrets. The fourth Write Off was all about unlikely team-ups. The fifth Write Off was all about death.

The sixth Write Off will be all about the origin of Spider-Man. Every participant will write their version of Peter Parker’s classic origin, whether you include the whole thing (the radioactive spider bite, Uncle Ben) or choose to focus on one particular element (and not even necessarily including the elements I previously indicated). The key here is that we’ll all be working not merely from the same topic but the same story. It’ll be a chance to see where participants compare and contrast in their approaches, so that the focus isn’t so much on the characters they’ve chosen to write, but how they choose to write a particular one, at a particular point in his life. And because this is such a well-known story already, it’s a chance to see just how creative you can get. Expect to write a script of anywhere between 5 and 10 pages.

Participants will PM me (YoungDuke) directly, with your script in the PM itself, not as an attachment but as the body of it. I’m going to give us a big window: entries are due by the end of May, giving everyone three full months to work on their scripts.

Sound good?


Sounds good to me!

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And we are using the Spider Man story as the source material? Even if we choose not to include the famous events, those events would be happening in the world we are creating (off panel?) In other words, we are not re-inventing how Peter Parker became Spider Man…

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Correct. Any deviation would need to be explained directly in your script, presumably as the whole point of your story. This also means if you go that route it would be your only deviation, rather than trying out a host of alternate ideas. The idea is to play with the facts.


Heyyyy @Tony_Laplume and others! First I would like to say thanks for stepping up to the plate and doing this for us Mr. Duke. Annnnd, I’m super excited to participate in this one. I look forward to doing a character case study book, rather than a subject. Very refreshing!



This is super exciting! Definitely want to contribute to this! I’ve only really read Bendis’ Ultimate Spiderman: Miles Morales and Spider-Man: Blue by Loeb!

Any recs to check out for more reference?!

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Any of Dan Slott’s material. Any of the classic material, 60s and 70s, that sort of stuff. But Bendis is a great place to start. Go back and look at his Ultimate Peter Parker.

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If it’s a version of the classic origin, presumably at least a passing familiarity with Amazing Fantasy #15 would help, too?


Here’s a list of versions already in print and/or the movies:

  • Amazing Fantasy #15 (Stan Lee/Steve Ditko)

  • Amazing Spider-Man Annual #5 (Stan Lee/Larry Lieber)

  • Amazing Spider-Man #50 (Stan Lee/John Romita)

  • Amazing Spider-Man #94 (Stan Lee/John Romita)

  • Amazing Spider-Man #181 (Bill Mantlo/Sal Buscema/Mike Esposito)

  • Amazing Spider-Man #200 (Stan Lee/Keith Pollard/Jim Mooney)

  • Amazing Spider-Man #354 (Al Milgrom/Mark Bagley)

  • The Amazing Spider-Man: Parallel Lives (Gerry Conway/Alex Saviuk)

  • Untold Tales of Spider-Man #1 (Kurt Busiek/Pat Oliffe)

  • Amazing Spider-Man #38 (J. Michael Straczynski/John Romita, Jr.)

  • Trouble (Mark Millar/Terry Dobson)

  • Spider-Man: Chapter One (John Byrne)

  • Ultimate Spider-Man # 1-7 (Brian Michael Bendis/Mark Bagley)

  • Spider-Man: Blue (Jeph Loeb/Tim Sale)

  • Spider-Man: With Great Power (David Lapham/Tony Harris)

  • Amazing Spider-Man #1.1-1.5 (Dan Slott/Ramon Perez)

  • Spider-Man: Season One (Cullen Bunn/Neil Edwards)

  • Spider-Man (2002)

  • The Amazing Spider-Man (2012)


Impressive research :smiley:

I’m amazed there are that many versions of the origin story.

Actually, no I’m not surprised at all. Origin stories are usually the most interesting to tell (it’s all downhill from there).


A lot of those stories don’t retell the origin really though, so much as embellish and dance around the edges of the origin to add extra details here and there to the origin story, or to the early days of the character.

In terms of retelling the origin and making it ‘your own’, I think Ultimate Spider-Man is a good example. It takes the basics of the story and updates them, both in terms of the detail within the story, and in how the story is told.

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No doubt. But entrants also won’t have multiple issues to retell the story, so the brevity in a lot of them is worth noting.


Oh absolutely. The original origin was, what, ten or eleven pages? I reckon you can beat that. :slight_smile:


Decompression in action :smiley:


Are Peter’s dead parents still former SHIELD agents in current continuity?

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Whatever Slott may have done would be the current model. I personally would consider that ample wiggle room, as there does not seem to be a definitive Parker narrative.



I don’t know if I scared a lot of people off who normally participate in the Write Offs, based on my participation in past Write Offs, writers who would normally be chattering away in a thread like this. You have nothing to fear. Probably as “host” I have no right to comment on scripts this time. My job is to create the topic, accept scripts, and then post them. That’s it.

Anyway, there’re three months ahead.


I don’t think that’s true. Your opinion is still just as valid as anyone’s. And even when your opinion has been out of step with others’, it’s still been just as valid as anyone’s. None of us are professional fiction editors who can claim any special insight, it’s all about how peers perceive the work, so the wider range of different opinions the better.

I couldn’t find the time to properly read all the scripts last time (hey, critical reading of 50+ pages of script is a big job, all you people who did it should be proud of yourselves) but I’ll try to join in again this time.

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It does seem to cause a lot of problems, though. In this case, I don’t want it to be a distraction.

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