Mary Jane Watson
Mary Jane Watson was born to Philip and Madeline Watson. MJ is the second of two children with her elder sister Gayle having been born four years earlier. Due to her family’s constant moving (as a result of her father’s various teaching jobs) MJ began developing a more extroverted and care-free personality, a trait which helped her make friends as the Watson’s moved from one location to the next.
After her mother Madeline left Philip, the Watson women stayed with various relatives. One such relative that MJ was particularly fond of was her Aunt Anna, living in Queens, New York.
On the night of Ben Parker‘s murder, MJ spotted a frantic Peter running into his house with Spider-Man emerging from an upstairs windows only moments later. At this she deduced that Peter Parker and Spider-Man were one and the same. Confused by the emotions set off by the discovery, she chose to keep this information to herself.
Mary Jane Watson is first mentioned in The Amazing Spider-Man #15 (Aug. 1964), and is initially used as a running joke of the series, as Peter Parker‘s Aunt May repeatedly attempts to set her unwilling nephew up on a date with her. Parker (a.k.a. Spider-Man) consistently worms his way out of meeting Mary Jane who, aside from a brief appearance in #25 (June 1965) with her face obscured, is never actually seen until The Amazing Spider-Man #42 (Nov. 1966).
According to co-creator Stan Lee, he and Romita had intended for Gwen Stacy to be Spider-Man’s one true love, and introduced Mary Jane “just for fun”, but that “somehow, Mary Jane seemed to have all the personality, and much as we tried to make Gwen more attractive, we couldn’t!