Peter Parker is back!
Oh, you didn't know he left? You mean, you didn't know Doctor Octopus was all up in his head and had taken over his life for the last two years? No one told you that in a last ditch move, a dying Dock Ock managed to transfer his conciseness into Spider-Man's, and quickly took over Peter Parker's brain, then his whole life--to the point where Ock decided to become a "Superior Spider-Man
" to everything Parker ever was? You mean you never heard how, yeah he was a jerk about everything all the time and it all fell apart in the end and Parker managed to finally succeed in getting his life back after expunging the Doc "forever", but Otto Octavius really made some improvements in Parker's life? Yeah, that was good.
Then allow me to bring you up to speed, as quickly as I can.
Oh wait - I pretty much just did that.
So, yes, that was the last two years our time (only a few moths in Marvel Comics time), The Amazing Spider-Man
monthly comic was "canceled" and replaced With Superior Spider-Man
and it was a fun ride, Dan Slott and Humberto Ramos delivered a smart spin on the "Villain In The Head Of Our Hero" concept/trope. Now, this week, oddly enough the same week a little movie called The Amazing Spider-man 2
hits theaters; Marvel releases an all new The Amazing Spider-Man
Slott starts us off by laying some quick groundwork for the series ahead with a brief flash back to when that radioactive spider bit young Peter. We see that the dying bug din't just go off and die after all, no contrary to what you were led to believe all theses years, it bit another person before it croaked: an as yet unnamed girl who was traveling in his class group. Then it dies, end of flashback, end of that story… for now, because next, we jump right into modern day Spidey-antics.
After every big name comic book character death, eventually, there should be a fairly joyous return, and we find Peter doing just that in this issue. He couldn't be more happy to be free. The smart aleck, sarcastic slinger of webs is back and he's taking down some small level bank robbers like it's an old reflex. He might be butt naked except for his Spidey mask and undies made of webbing, but, hey, there's perfectly good explanation for that.
The clock rolls back four hours earlier and Peter is giving a statement to a small group of reporters, explaining away events he "wasn't" around for. Things that happened while he was struggling to get control of his own mind again. A struggle that only happened hours ago, so he's doing his best to roll with everything thrown his way in the wake of Otto's activities. Activities the world thinks he knows full well about, but he really doesn't. Left with little choice, Parker officially "cuts all ties" to Spider-Man. It's in the best interest of him and his company, Parker Industries.
What? He has a company? Yes, Peter is surprised too. One of many things Otto did to improve Parker/Spidey's life that he's adjusting to. Otto may have tarnished Spidey's reputation and even created tensions with The Avengers, but he got Parker that PhD he'd sorta given up on, he set up Parker Industries to benefit from Pete's scientific discoveries and Otto's own cybernetic tech, tech that got old Aunt May walking again, designs worth billions and oh yeah, he also had a new girlfriend.
It's with her, Anna Maria Marconi, that we leave the story on quite an uncomfortable cliff hanger. While she makes two big discoveries before the end of the tale, she has no idea that the man she loved no longer exists, that there even was a Doctor Otto Octavius inside Peter Parker. It seems Otto was about to make a big relationship move and it'll be interesting to see Parker talk his way out of this one.
This could seem like a lot going on, referencing things that you don't know about - but that's Peter's problem also, he'll be playing catch up too, so you shouldn't ever really feel lost.
In wrapping up The Superior Spider-Man
era, Dan Slott has positioned this book for himself quite well; he has enough elements of conflict to keep things busy for a while. I didn't even mention Mary Jane or J.J. Jameson's story lines. Slott has proven to be deft at crafting long term plots that come loaded with unexpected turns. He does it again here.
Ramos' art has always leaned a bit more towards cartoony influenced style, than "gritty, real" comic art, and as always, it brings speed to the action scenes and velocity to Spidey swinging through the city - but it's the overall tone that he brings to the book that keeps it fun. Even in the simplest of moments. Fists fly and face's crunch but he creates a playfulness that is a graphic reflection of Peter/Spider-Man's sarcastic wit.
Slott and Ramos keep Spider-Man fun, as he should be, and Parker up to his eyeballs in life problems, as he should be. Those two aspects are as important to the character as his two web shooters.
All in all, it's worth the price of admission and a great time to jump on board.
I give it 3 out of 4
The book is $6.99 but let's break that down because there's some extras for your extra money.
There are 7 little bonuses, teases, and character update stories. First is the opening flash back I mentioned earlier which, due to the art alone, is far too short. Then we learn that Superior Spider-Man
in a bad way and he's none too happy. Next, we see he left Felicia Hardy AKA Black Cat
in a bad way; she's none to happy. There's a brief breakdown of the Spidey gadgets. Next comes a preview/tease of Spider-Man 2099
, a future era Spidey (non-Parker) who's now trapped in present day. Then we touch base with "Kaine" the Parker/Spidey evil clone trying to be a good guy living in Texas - don't ask. After that, we dive into a prelude to a new Amazing Spider-Man 1.1
book that will reexamine the origin of the web headed wall-crawler. Closing out the book, because they now an opportunity for new eyeballs when they see it, Marvel tosses in all of INHUMANS #1,
a group, nay, a whole class
of characters they've wanted to make stick for quite some time now.
Find your local comics shop HERE
! Or, download the digital "Special Edition" HERE
Keep Up With PopWrapped On The Web!