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Exclusive: Spider-Island and MC2 Spider-Girl Return in SECRET WARS

Christos Gage & Paco Diaz and Tom DeFalco & Ron Frenz join in on the fun.

The Secret Wars announcements continue! Today we have a double dose of Spider-action. Christos Gage and Paco Diaz are teaming up to revisit Spider-Island. If that wasn't enough, each issue will also feature a return to the MC2 universe as Tom DeFalco and Ron Frenz return to Spider-Girl and her family.

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  • · The Spider-Queen has turned Manhattan into an island of Spider-Madness and Peter Parker has lost, thanks to Spider-Scribe CHRISTOS GAGE (AMAZING SPIDER-MAN, SUPERIOR SPIDER-MAN) & rising star artist PACO DIAZ (WOLVERINE, SCARLET SPIDERS).
  • · With Spider-Man defeated and captive, does Flash Thompson, A.K.A. VENOM stand a chance?
  • · All this, plus visit the MC2 patch of BATTLEWORLD! Mayday Parker and her Spider-Family are back courtesy of classic Spider-Girl team TOM DEFALCO, RON FRENZ & SAL BUSCEMA!

40 PGS./Rated T …$4.99

We had a chance to talk to the creators to find out more about each story.

Chirstos Gage on SPIDER-ISLAND

COMIC VINE: What can you tell us about this SPIDER-ISLAND story?

CHRISTOS GAGE: It takes place in a Manhattan where the Spider-Queen (villain of the original Spider-Island story) triumphed. She rules an island of people her Spider-Virus turned into huge mutant man-spiders, with her Spider-King (a transformed Captain America) by her side. Pretty much every human being in her kingdom is a spider-monster, loyal to her...except a stubborn resistance force of uninfected, led by Flash Thompson, a.k.a. Agent Venom. Flash is tormented by his failure in the final, decisive battle of New York's champions against the Queen, in which he was unable to save his hero, Spider-Man, who was lost in the fight and is presumed dead. Though the Venom symbiote is vulnerable to the Queen's sonic powers, Flash is determined to redeem himself, or die trying. And he has a plan...a way to turn old allies from pawns of the Queen into free-thinking beings. But in this world, there's no cure for the Spider-Virus. It's too late. The only option is to transform the subjects into something else...and that's how Capwolf, Lizard Hulk and other bizarre twists on familiar characters come into the story!

CV: How does it compare to the recent Spider-Island story? Does it continue or veer off from a certain point?

CG: More "veers off", and in my head, I know where. But we want this story to be completely accessible to people who haven't read the original, or may not remember it too well. So all you really need to know is the good guys lost, and almost everyone in Manhattan has been turned into a half-human, half-spider, completely loyal to the Queen!

CV: When did you come up with the idea for this story, back during the original or when you were getting ready to jump into this one?

CG: When Nick [Lowe] approached me about doing this one. I know what some of the other Secret Wars stories are about, and the common thread they have is a lack of limits. You can go nuts and let your imagination run wild. It reminded me of the old-school WHAT IF? tales. Accordingly, it was pretty logical to start from a place where the good guys lost and the Queen runs Spider-Island...but as for where it goes from there, I just threw off the shackles.

CV: What's the tone of the story?

CG: There's definitely a post-apocalyptic feel to it...that came about naturally, since 99% of New Yorkers have been turned into giant spiders. But I also didn't want it to be super-depressingly dark. Spider-Man stories, to me, have an element of hope to them, and I wanted to preserve that. Hopefully there is also a tone of, "I can't believe they did that!" So, although it's been ages since I watched them, maybe a feel of such classic movies as Escape From New York and The Warriors...where you're in an environment where everyone is out to get you.

CV: Will other characters besides Flash Thompson get a chance to jump in the spotlight?

CG: Yes! Some you've seen before in other settings, like Capwolf. Others are new twists on classic characters, like the Lizard Hulk. And there'll be a few who remain in their familiar state. Plus one very important figure we won't see until later.

CV: Were you given any restrictions or characters you couldn’t use for the story?

Nope. I mean, uncharacteristically for me, I didn't try to put Devil Dinosaur in it, but that can only mean I got to do something else equally nutty. The great thing about Secret Wars is that you can do almost anything. As the advance images show, just because one title is using Venom or the Hulk or Captain America doesn't mean there can't be a different version of those characters in ours. That's the fun of it!

CV: Does the Spider-Queen have the same motivation in this story? Is Jackal around?

CG: Spider-Queen's motivation remains the same: to transform and completely control every denizen of Spider-Island, and kill any she can't rule. She is very close to reaching her goal. As for the Jackal, in the original story, the Spider-Queen appeared to kill the Jackal when she no longer found him useful, and that is the status quo here. But readers know he survived in the original tale. So anything's possible.

CV: If Spider-Island became a reality in your neighborhood, how would you cope with it?

CG: Mobilize a band of hardy survivors and...who am I kidding. I'd be the first to go.

DeFalco & Frenz on SPIDER-GIRL

COMIC VINE: Where will this fit in? Another timeline, after the events of Spider-Verse?

TOM DEFALCO: This story will fit in after the events of Spider-Verse.

RON FRENZ: The newly christened Spider-Woman and her alternate universe Uncle Ben are the entre' characters to the wonderment that is our MC2 universe.

CV: Will we see May deal with the aftermath of losing her father?

TD: May will be dealing with the loss of her father and her decision to change her name to Spider-Woman--a decision that may not exactly go as planned.

RF: Spider-girl will indeed be dealing in every way with her new status quo.

CV: How's it feel coming back to Mayday's world?

TD: I loved all the time I spent with May and the MC2 Universe and it is a real and unexpected pleasure to have the chance to see my old friends again.

RF: May's world has undergone a seismic shift thanks to Dan Slott and Editor Nick Lowe. We're just hanging on for dear life and waiting to see what Spider-Girl and her fellow A-Next characters have to say about it.

CV: Any hints as to what we can expect in the story or what villains might arise?

TD: You’ll see Hope Pym (who I’m told will be appearing in the upcoming ANT-MAN MOVIE) who made her first appearance in A-NEXT… plus a few more familiar faces.

RF: We'll be dealing with the MC2 versions of characters that are about to explode on the worldwide stage.

CV: Even though the stories all focus on Spider-Girl as a teen, have you ever thought what her adult life might be like?

TD: Absolutely!

RF: Yes.

CV: What's your favorite thing about working on Spider-Girl?

TD: I love the characters and it is a privilege to work with master craftsmen like Ron Frenz and Sal Buscema.

RF: The BEST thing about working on Spider-girl and shaping the MC2 universe as a whole has been the wonderfully creative partnership with the Legendary Tom DeFalco! I couldn't ask for a BETTER "other half" of my brain.

Don't miss SPIDER-ISLAND when it goes on sale!