Big news, True Believers. The New York Daily News reports that, in the aftermath of Marvel's summer blockbuster series Secret Wars, Miles Morales will take center stage as the face of the company's relaunched Spider-Man title. The new series will be led by writer Brian Michael Bendis and artist Sara Pichelli, who created the character in 2011, and will effectively replace the Spider-Man titles that were recently cancelled in the run-up to the event.
“It's the real Spider-Man.”
The decision to bring Miles to the fore reportedly comes as a response to calls to bring Miles to the Marvel Cinematic Universe. While Peter Parker, the original Spider-Man, will still be behind the mask for the upcoming Spider-Man reboot, Marvel is taking the opportunity to make Morales that much more important to the iconic superhero's mythos, especially as it continues to strive for diversity. “Our message has to be it’s not Spider-Man with an asterisk, it’s the real Spider-Man for kids of color, for adults of color and everybody else,” Bendis told the paper.
Miles is becoming a core part of the Marvel Universe as a consequence of the world-shattering events of Secret Wars, which sees the publisher's Ultimate imprint being folded into mainstream continuity. When the dust settles, Miles will also be inducted into the “All-New, All-Different” Avengers, right alongside the popular Ms. Marvel, the new Captain America, and new Thor. That doesn't mean Peter Parker won't be around. The Daily News reports that Parker will serve as a mentor to Morales, and all signs point to his still being active in some capacity going forward. What role he'll take as a superhero is unclear.
Making Miles, a biracial teen of African-American and Hispanic descent, the next Spider-Man is a powerful move (one that the films should replicate sooner rather than later). Echoing sentiments Dan Slott shared with The Verge, Bendis said Spider-Man's mask lets him be anyone. “Many kids of color who when they were playing superheroes with their friends, their friends wouldn’t let them be Batman or Superman because they don’t look like those heroes but they could be Spider-Man because anyone could be under that mask.”