Mary Jane "MJ" Watson is a fictional character appearing in American comic books published by Marvel Comics and created by Stan Lee and John Romita Sr. The character made her first appearance in The Amazing Spider-Man #25. Since then she has gone on to become Spider-Man's main love interest and later his wife. Mary Jane is the most famous and prominent love interest of Peter Parker due to their long history, as she is also represented in most Spider-Man media and adaptations.
Although she made a brief first appearance in The Amazing Spider-Man #25 with a plant obscuring her exterior, Mary Jane's first official face reveal was in The Amazing Spider-Man #42. Designed and drawn by John Romita Sr., her entrance is regarded as one of the most iconic introductions in comic history, owing it to its build-up, her hyper-vibrant red hair and her most famous line, "Face it, Tiger... you just hit the jackpot!" Since then, 'Tiger' has been her most recognizable nickname for Peter Parker, spanning comics and media adaptations.
Initially set up by Aunt May as a blind date, redheaded party girl Mary Jane "MJ" Watson was depicted in her early appearances as Gwen Stacy's competition. Though Peter dated her briefly before Gwen, both of them broke it off as Peter saw her flamboyance, flakiness and 'life of the party' personality as shallow and MJ was not ready to be tied down by one man. She eventually became Peter's main love interest after Gwen's death at the hands of the Green Goblin. The pair formed a bond through the grief of losing Gwen, as Mary Jane grew to become a more mature and open-hearted person. She and Peter got closer, fell deeply in love, had an on-off relationship for years and eventually married. Despite their marriage being undone due to the timeline manipulations by the villain Mephisto, Mary Jane and Peter retained a close friendship and have since temporarily resumed their romantic relationship.
Starting from her memorable debut, Mary Jane Watson has earned a place in comic polls over the years—making her the most popular "non-powered" character in the Marvel universe and one of the best known female love interests in superhero pop culture.
The character has been portrayed by Kirsten Dunst in the first installment in the Spider-Man trilogy. The character was voiced by Zoë Kravitz in the 2018 animated film Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse.