Ron Zimmerman, writer for the Howard Stern Show, came with a bang to Marvel Comics. It's unknown to me what the guy did to get such a wide array of comics to write, when lots of other writers would kill for just one of the many chances he got. This is part of Marvel's (2001-2002) strategy to bring new blood into the business, and bringing "TV People" in at least boosts the sales. Of course, if the stories are good, like Scott Levy (the wrestler known as Raven) and Brian Azzarello's Tangled Web #14, it's all good, if not, well... blame the guys who had the idea of giving a guy 5 stories to write instead of just one.
Zimmerman's first story was a Punisher one. I haven't read it, I've read general criticism, and even Zimmerman admitted that the story was somewhat confusing for him(!) when he read it... I also read that it was a last minute fill-up, so let's cut him some slack. After all, a learning curve is a learning curve, and nobody gets it right at first (well, most people don't anyway). His second story, in Tangled Web #13, re-vamps Alyosha Kravinoff, son of Kraven, and is met with general critic acclaim. That one I've read, and I think it was very good, setting aside the obvious continuity problems. Sort of a redemption for him.
His third attempt? A 3-part story running through many Marvel titles, featuring Jay Leno. Of course, the whole idea for it is to be funny. Let's see if it is...
|Reprinted In:||Spider-Man Annual (UK) 2004|
Also in Deadline #2, Ultimate Spider-Man #22 and Thor #49.
Our story starts with Peter calling Aunt May telling her that he probably won't be home for dinner, because J.J.J. wants him to stay and work. This immediately throws this story back to the time when Peter worked in the Bugle. Jameson tells Peter that one of his sponsors wants Spider-Man in a commercial with Jay Leno, and since it's a big sponsor, and since J.J.J. wants to avoid featuring in Leno's jokes in the Tonight Show, Peter gets the job of finding Spider-Man for the commercial. Meanwhile, Leno is drinking beer with his NY friends. He specifically asked for Spider-Man to be in the commercial because he knew that he'd never show up, so he and the crew could have a couple of days off.
Spidey is swinging through New York, and he stops a couple of muggers while making NYPD Blue jokes. He arrives at the set, much to Leno's surprise. They sit on the hood of a purple Ferrari (good grief!), which gets smashed by a falling stage light.
So far the story's not bad, but it's not interesting either. Let's be generous and call it mediocre.
Two and a half webs, just to be on the safe side.