Miles Morales in Marvel comic's 'Ultimate' line, will soon replace Peter Parker.
After battling evil-doers in an alternate comic book line, Morales, a popular biracial version of Spider-Man is getting a promotion to the official Marvel Comics universe.
The first issue of the relaunched Spider-Man hits comic stores, tablets and smartphones this fall with more fanfare than a typical new series, because the hero under the mask is Miles Morales, the teen son of an African-American father and Puerto Rican mother, the New York Daily News reported.
"Many kids of colour 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," writer and co-creator Brian Bendis was quoted as saying.
"But now it's true. It's meant a great deal to a great many people," he said.
Miles Morales takes the lead. (Photo courtesy: Marvel.com)
The character has been around since 2011, replacing the murdered Peter Parker in Marvel's offshoot Ultimate line and gained a sizeable following, but the real Spider-Man has kept patrolling the company's main titles.
When news broke that Marvel and Sony were rebooting the cinematic Spider-Man, social media erupted in pleas to have Morales instead of Peter Parker as the friendly neighbourhood hero.
It did not happen on the big screen but when the publisher opted to fold its Ultimate line this summer in their event series Secret Wars, Morales landed a permanent home - alongside a mentor in the grownup, genuine Peter Parker.
"Our message has to be it's not Spider-Man with an asterisk, it's the real Spider-Man for kids of colour, for adults of colour and everybody else," said Bendis of the series which is drawn by artist Sarah Pichelli.
The move is part of a recent push across the industry to add a little more colour of a different variety to the splash pages of superhero books to appeal to a much more diverse readership.
Marvel has already surprised fans by introducing a female Thor and having an African-American hero, The Falcon, taking over the mantle as Captain America. And one of the publisher's breakout hits in the last two years has been Ms Marvel, a Muslim teen girl.