How did you first become involved with
The Marvel editors approached me, as they did a number of
free lancers, and said we’re going to be doing a 2099 line.
And we would like you [meaning me and other writers] to
submit a proposal on how you would do Spider-Man 2099. We
knew he was Spider-Man 2099. We knew he worked for a company
called Alchemax. Beyond that there was nothing about him
established. So I sat down and I thought, the last thing I
want to do is have him be a relative of Peter Parker.
Because that’s the obvious thing. So I created someone
completely from scratch. I made him of mixed ethnicity,
because I felt that by the end of the 21st century mixed
ethnicity is going to be more common than it is now. So I
made him half-Irish and half-Mexican because I thought that
was the most combustible combination I could come up with.
And I decided I would zig wherever Stan and Steve zagged
when they created Spider-Man. Peter Parker was a white bred
WASP. So Miguel O’Hara was a combined ethnicity. Peter was
an orphan. Miguel would have a living mother. Peter was
alone. I gave Miguel a brother. Peter had no idea how to
handle girls and was a teenager. Miguel was in his 20s and
had a fiancée. I just made the contrary move all the way.
And I submitted my proposal. A week later I get a call from
the Marvel editors and they said ‘we love your take on
Spider-Man 2099. For starters, it’s the only one that
doesn’t start with a relative of Peter Parker.’ And I went
ok, that’s interesting. They asked me if I would be
interested in writing. I said, sure. And that’s how I became
involved in it.
Did you want to write more solo stories
about other characters in the 2099 verse (like with Net Prophet
I would have liked to keep writing the series for quite some
time. Unfortunately Marvel fired Joey Cavalieri. He was the
heart and soul of the 2099 universe. When he was evicted
from the series I, along with the other writers, said ‘we’re
done. We’re not going to keep on if Joey Cavalieri is out of
What’s your recollection of the first
crossover, Fall of the Hammer?
I thought it went fairly well. We had decided we wanted to
do a big crossover, and we actually all plotted it together.
How it would play out. As a result, I think it was
reasonably well integrated. We foreshadowed it rather
nicely. We led into it well and went out of it well. It was
What were those 2099 conferences like?
The very first one was kind of a big introductory thing.
Everybody met everybody. Then we broke up into small groups.
I still remember sitting with Rick Leonardi, as he came up
with the first visualization of Spider-Man 2099. I told him
what I wanted the chest emblem to be like. And I told him I
wanted the webbing on the back. He sat there and drew it up
as I was telling what I wanted to see. It was the purest
form of teaming up on something. I wish then I had taken the
drawing. I could probably make a mint off it on ebay.
What was your take on Doom taking over
America? Was the change in the status quo a positive for your
I think it was a change. It was an interesting story angle..
What do you remember about the Avatarr
character, and how he evolved from his first obscured cameo to
his full appearance?
I kind of did something with him in Spider-Man: Edge of
Time, in which I put forward the idea that he was actually
Peter Parker. I didn’t remember that we called him Avatarr,
or that he had big bug eyes or anything like that. But he
was really supposed to be Peter Parker. A very different
Peter Parker, but that’s who he was.
I know from previous interviews you
were reluctant to do Venom 2099. Was Flipside foreshadowing the coming of Venom 2099? Or were you
perhaps trying to do Venom 2099 without actually doing the real
No, no. I was trying to do Bizarro.
What recollections do you have about
working with Joey Cavalieri?
Joey was great to work with. He was so enthusiastic for
everything we did. His support of 2099 was unilateral.
That’s why I wound up leaving the book. My attitude was if
we didn’t have Joey Cavalieri on board, then there was no
point in doing 2099. Apparently Marvel Comics agreed with
me, considering they then did away with the entire 2099
How did the Young Miguel O’Hara back-up
stories come about?
We needed some time to get the main artist ahead, so we did
the back up stories to shorten the front of the book and we
assigned somebody else to do the back stories. As is
frequently the case, back up stories are a means to give the
artist some breathing space.
You’ve revisited 2099 twice, in Captain
Marvel and to some extent in Friendly Neighborhood Spider-Man
(with Spider-Man 2211). Was there a feeling that you had
“unfinished business” with Spider-Man 2099?
It wasn’t a matter of unfinished business. I just like the
characters and I like the environment. I thought it might be
fun to revisit them. And then lo and behold, we’re doing the
comic book. So I get to revisit some more.
Looking at past interpretations of the
future often tells us a lot about the time in which they were
written. What do you think 2099 says about the 90s?
Peter: Nothing. I’m sorry, I
just don’t think it’s a commentary on the 90s. It’s supposed
to be a commentary on the 21st century. I think it really
centers on the notion, and it would be pretty hard to
contradict it, that much of the world we live in is run by
corporations. In some way shape or form pretty much
everything we do has corporate influence behind it. And in
2099 it’s just that the corporations are straight forward
about it. The world is literally run by Alchemax and other