Reasons why The Amazing Spider-Man (2012) is more accurate than the previous movies.
Spiderman (2002) presents a Peter Parker who (as pointed in a previous post) has been watching, and admiring from afar, his neighbour Mary Jane Watson. She is an aspiring actress who lives with her abusive father and works as a waitress to make ends meet. M.J. seems to return Peter’s affections in an equally disturbing way (watching him every night while she’s taking out the garbage). She is aware of her looks but does not flaunt them, and she certainly does not make fun of Peter for not looking as conventionally beautiful.
Mary Jane Watson in the comics is almost the polar opposite. Starting from the way Peter and M.J. meet, the story in the movie is completely misgiven. In the comics, Peter is invited to Gwen Stacy’s party by Gwen herself, much to Flash’s disapproval. He accepts the invitation as an opportunity to finally get things going with his love interest. However, he immediately cancels on her, as he remembers that Aunt May has set him up on a date with “the nice girl next door”, as his thought bubble informs the audience that he’s already blown off this date several times. Gwen is obviously annoyed by this, but still defends Peter when Flash jumps on the opportunity to “trash-talk” Peter.
Peter eventually meets M.J., and even from her very first appearance it is obvious that she is not like Gwen. Despite being described as incredibly beautiful, she also appears to be rather arrogant and self centered, proof of that being her well known phrase “Face it tiger…you just hit the jackpot!” Despite that, Peter starts dating M.J., much to Gwen’s annoyance. However, the girls eventually befriend each other.
Mary Jane is also portrayed as a person who is not willing to tie herself down in a long term relationship, and that combined with her overall superficiality, which Gwen does not share, drives her relationship with Peter to an end and restores Peter’s romantic feelings towards Gwen.
Those are all qualities (and character development) that movie M.J. does not share. The only common thing comic book and movie M.J. have is that they both date Harry Osborne, and the break up has a majestic impact on him. While comic book M.J. realises, a little too late, the true consequences of her lifestyle, movie M.J. seems to have only one emotional level.
In The Amazing Spiderman (2012), Gwen Stacy is portrayed rather accurately in comparison to the comic books. She is sweet, intelligent, outspoken but only when the situation calls for it, not for shock value. She is the one who pursues things with Peter. Peter’s reaction to Gwen acknowledging his existence (as he’s been fawning over her for quite some time) is also rather accurately portrayed, as well as his over protectiveness over her when his secret is finally out.