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Thursday, April 3, 2014

Focusing on What You Do Best

In "Growing Pains," Issue 2 of "Ultimate Spider-Man," once Peter Parker gains his superpowers, he tries out his new abilities. One place he does so is the school Basketball court. Using his enhanced strength and reflexes, he surprises the coach by making shots that would have previously been beyond him.  

Then he notices Flash Thompson chatting up the girl he loves, Mary Jane Watson. He hurls a basketball across the gym. The ball slams into his rival's head.

Needless to say, Flash is not amused.

Flash refuses to calm down, and catches up with Peter after school.  

While the basketball throw might have been instinctive, Peter doesn't really want to fight Flash. Peter tries to evade the blows, and raises his hands to ward them off. Then Flash punches Peter's outstretched palm, and crumples to the ground. Suddenly, it's Peter Parker who grew up on a high-gravity world; along with his increased strength and agility, his hand is as hard and unmovable as stone.

This incident is one of several that helps Peter realize responsibilities accompany abilities.  Even if a career in professional Basketball lay within his grasp, he has more to offer the world than he can ever contribute on the court. So, while he can do much more than he could before his transformation, he decides to focus on what he can do best. For him, this means rededicating himself to his studies, running density tests on the molecular adhesive his father was developing before he died, and keeping the streets of New York clean of nefarious villains. Hmm…an incredibly strong molecular adhesive? I wonder what he could do with that?

What do you do best?

Dragon Dave

Related Dragon Cache entries
Stan Lee's First Spider-Man Story

"Growing Pains" was written by Brian Michael Bendis and Bill Jemas, penciled by Mark Bagley, inked by Art Thibert, colored by Steve Buccellato, and lettered by Richard Starkings and Troy Peteri. You can read about more of Peter Parker's transformation into Spider-Man, and his first battle with the Green Goblin, in the seven-issue compilation Ultimate Spider-Man Vol. 1: Power And Responsibility

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