The worst boss in the world.
J. Jonah Jameson, the self-aggrandizing publisher of NOW Magazine and New York City’s THE DAILY BUGLE, was quick to publicly lambaste the misunderstood hero Spider-Man on the pages of his tabloids. Most of his photos of the elusive wall-crawler were provided by freelance photographer and frequent whipping boy Peter Parker. In an ethical paradox, Peter Parker was secretly Spider-Man: Parker was selling “news” pictures of himself to the miserly Jameson. The fact that James used the pictures to accompany hatchet-pieces about Spider-Man seemed to assuage Parker’s already-heavy burden of guilt somewhat.
Created by Stan Lee and Steve Ditko in SPIDER-MAN #1 in 1963, Jameson took what could have been a one-issue appearance and stretched it out for fifty years and counting. Forever chomping cigars, bellowing “PARKER!” and pounding his fists, JJJ alternates between buffoonish, moments of occasional menace and even rarer heroism. Mostly a straw-man blowhard, he is sometimes surprisingly human and sympathetic. In one early internal monologue, we learn that Jameson’s hatred of Spider-Man stems from his own feelings of jealousy: Spider-Man is genuinely admired and seeks no reward for his good deeds. Jameson is shamed by Spidey’s selflessness and devil-may-care attitude. Despite all his worldly success, Jameson seems most proud of tarnishing Spider-Man’s reputation.
In recent years, Jameson has actually ascended to the position of mayor of New York City. This has given him a bigger pulpit from which to attack his hated rival, and greater height for him to fall on his face.
Christmas comes a little early in tomorrow’s installment of MIGHTY MARVEL MAY!