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Spider-Man Crawspace Reviews: @Marvel


Here are today's Guest Reviews from the guys at Spider-Man Crawlspace for Marvel's; Superior Spider-Man Team-Up #3, Marvel Knights Spider-Man #1, Superior Foes of Spider-Man #4, and Thunderbolts #16. I have also added my rating after each review. If you have any questions about my rating or want to discuss anything just leave me a comment.


See the Review Rating Overview page for more information on how I rate each comic.


Superior Spider-Man Team-Up #3 - Infinity Part 1


The official Superior Spider-Man Infinity Tie-in!

As Thanos' forces set their sights one earth, there are few heroes left to answer the battle call.

But how many heroes do you really need when the most SUPERIOR one of all is ready to defend his turf.

Featuring the debut of an all-new Sun-Girl!

Preview



It’s an Infinity Crossover.


Plot

So for those who aren't following Infinity, the short version is The Avengers discover an ancient alien menace has made its way into known space and decide to join the Shi'ar Empire in preventing them from getting any further. While the Avengers are off-world Thanos figures this is an ideal time to strike at the Earth, with a particular focus on the Inhumans, while a bunch alien riffraff target the rest of the planet for him. This book is picking up either after or between the pages of the new Mighty Avengers title in which an alien horde descended on NYC and with the Avengers gone it fell to Heroes for Hire and few reserve Avengers like Spidey and Captain Marvel 2.0 (Monica Rambeau now using the name Spectrum) to defend the city.

Review

Basically the beginning of this book annoyed me, I hated the middle but then I really liked the plot twist at the end. So let’s look at those elements one at a time.

This book does nothing to advance the Infinity crossover at all. I suppose you could say that about a lot of crossover issues, but I had higher hopes for this one. In part because I tend to enjoy Thanos stories, and also because this book has been going nowhere so I was hoping we’d see some higher stakes and that would move things along. Instead the opposite occurred with Octo-Spidey totally dismissing the alien threat and dispatching them with ease. Ignoring how that completely undermines the gravitas of your major crossover, I don’t think that rings true to Ock. Alien invasions are so above his normal experience level he should be freaked out even with whatever confidence he’s gained the past few months as Spidey. Hell Peter ran in terror the first time he met Thanos and he is far more of a true hero than Ock will ever be, and that was after years of experience as a crime fighter. Ock wanted to run off from a group a C-list foes in the first issue of Superior but now he is dismissively battling a horde of space aliens after what is presumably a month or two at the most Marvel time as a crime fighter. I simply don’t buy it. I could buy that he would fight the threat alongside the Avengers if no one else was available but not that he would consider this threat beneath him, literally saying at one point “how vexing” it is there is a worldwide alien invasion taking up his time right now when he has better things to do.

This brings us to the part I hated. Ock meets Lumina and is super-impressed with her powers. And I’m like, ‘Dude, you just walked away from Spectrum two pages ago and she has the exact same powers!’ Actually Monica’s powers are much more diverse but at the most basic level turning into energy is her power. Now you could argue, he wants to study Lumina and Monica wouldn't go for that. And normally I would buy that argument; except he has frickin’ Electro prisoner right now! And while traditionally Electro just shoots lightening and doesn't turn into it like this girl does, in the Avenging Team-up issue (which is essentially the exact same series we’re reading now) where Ock captured Electro, Electro received a power upgrade from AIM that . . . wait for it . . . LET’S HIM TURN INTO ENERGY! So yea that whole scene was just poorly thought out.

Read the rest of the Review at Spider-Man Crawlspace

My Rating


Cover & Solicit - 3
Art, Colors & Inking - 3
Layout & Flow - 3
Story - 3
Verdict - 3 (6/10) - 
(Buy Superior Spider-Man Team-Up #3) SAVE 10%


Marvel Knights: Spider-Man #1 - 99 Problems... One of Five


From the haunted heights of a mysterious castle to the dizzying depths of the deep seas, the Amazing Spider-Man has to take on not one, not six, not twelve - but ninety-nine of the Marvel Universe's deadliest villains to save the lives of countless innocents!

Matt Kindt (Mind MGMT) and Marco Rudy (Swamp Thing) bring you a defining hour in the life of the webbed wonder in a race against time and a battle against evil.

Preview



Old Pete's Got 99 Problems…


Plot

Peter Parker finds himself taking several photography jobs to make ends meet, due to the fact that Jolly Jonah currently has enough Spider-Man photos. Pete’s really struggling, the gas in his apartment has been shut off for around a month and he’s getting tired of taking cold showers. Looking for photo opportunities, he finds a “Photographer Wanted” ad that leads him to a large, creepy house. Peter’s spider-sense goes off, and once he’s inside he sees the original Madame Web surrounded by robotic little girls begging Peter to help them.

Review

Well this was different. I couldn’t wrap up the plot with a “long story short” because that is just impossible to do with this comic. This issue was really an experiment of different storytelling techniques, it’s not an average issue of Spider-Man. The panel layouts were extremely creative and artistic on every single page. Sometimes this worked for the story and sometimes it didn’t. My favorite pages were the pages where Morbius and Man-Wolf attack Peter, that art was beautiful. Although other times the pages became muddied and confused, causing me to have to look over it a few times to completely understand what was going on. Peter was poisoned and drugged a few times throughout this, so I guess that would cause my speech bubbles to flip backwards, too. As unusual and trippy as this issue was, man, it was great to have Peter back. Mainly for that first page, hearing Pete talk about his money problems and the cold showers, I ate that up. What was frustrating sometimes were his narration boxes throughout the issue. At some points I kind of wanted to just have the artwork and have Peter be silent, because we can clearly see how confused he is. We don’t need the exhaustingly repetitive narration of “Where—What—What’s going on… Man-Wolf?! Oh, he’s down, okay—What—Where—“. We get it. He doesn’t know what’s going on. But to be honest I liked this completely weird story. It’s one of those stories where absolutely nothing is going to make sense until the story is over. Not everyone is going to like that, I’m sure this issue is somewhat polarizing for people. I found myself really enjoying it, though. I liked how creepy the little girl robots were, and I look forward to seeing what the hell those things are. Something I love in a story is a real sense of danger, of impending doom. That feeling is tangible in this issue, especially when Spidey finds the battered Beetle  begging for help.

Something I will say about it though is that I hoped at some point in the issue, the confusion would let up. I liked Spider-Man being disoriented, but it’s not a ton of fun reading an entire issue that way. Every time I turned the page I had to go through, like, a three step plan to understand what was going on in the panels and that honestly gets a little tiring. Like I said before, we’re not going to completely understand what’s going on for a few more parts, but I thought Madame Web’s dialogue was somewhat cringe-worthy. It’s a widely-known trope when your psychic or pre-informed character utters exposition that doesn’t help the protagonist at all, and then throws him/her into a situation. That’s how Madame Web rolls, I understand this, but I didn’t like it. Saying things like “the wheel is set in motion” and speaking cryptically about the “riddle of the 99 problems”, what is that supposed to mean to either Spider-Man or the reader? I wanted something to make sense on one of these pages. Also, Spider-Man looked like the MTV show model in some panels. Not that that would be a gripe, but… It’s worth noting. I’ve got 99 problems and they’re all storytelling clarity.

Read the rest of the Review at Spider-Man Crawlspace

My Rating



Cover & Solicit - 3
Art, Colors & Inking - 3
Layout & Flow - 2
Story - 3

Verdict - 2.9 (6/10) - (Buy Marvel Knights Spider-Man #1) SAVE 10%


The Superior Foes of Spider-Man #4



Getting the Band Back Together!

Preview



Look, I’ll give you it’s starting to get convoluted, but I am a complicated man


Plot

Luke Cage and Iron Fist bust up the Sinister Six (now four). Boomerang meets with Chameleon, who gives him just 24 more hours to get the head of Silvermane, or Chameleon’s going to take HIS head instead.

Review

I keep thinking this book can’t possibly keep up the level of quality entertainment it’s been delivering in the first few issues, and it just keeps getting better. The humor is spot on here, from Overdrive trying to tell Luke Cage what an honor it is to get beaten up by him, to Boomerang referencing everything from “Breaking Bad” to “Charles in Charge,” and, of course, Speed Demon still not being able to say hardly anything about The Beetle except “Hot.” Few comics really keep me laughing and grinning consistently through all 20 pages, but the fourth issue of this one shows no signs of letting up.

This installment also has some very opposing moments for Shocker fans, delivering both the most awesome and most insulting moments of the series for the character. On the one hand, we see the Shocker get to be pretty badass in the fight between the Foes and Cage/Iron Fist. If you look at that fight, Shocker’s the only one of the Foes that actually gets solid hits in. There’s a point where he pretty much says “screw it” and just goes for broke, wailing on the two with vibro-glove enhanced punches. He does get beaten, but he’s clearly the best fighter on the team in that scene. But then on the other hand, there’s a point of the issue where the Beetle references that the Shocker warned them he has “bladder spasms” on missions sometimes – meaning he pees his pants. Now, I defended the line in issue 1 where Boomerang calls him a coward because that’s Boomerang talking and the guy talks a lot of s@#t. But this, to Superior Foes #4 p2me, is different, because not only does Beetle say that this came from Shocker himself, but she says it in Shocker’s presence and he doesn't say otherwise. Now I’m not going to harp on this too much because frankly I see this as a comedy book and as such I don’t feel like it has to have as strict an adherence to continuity and I don’t feel like it will have too much of an impact on other books going forward. But even still, that is pretty far over the top for a character that’s fought Spider-Man many times and, let’s face it, never had to ‘clean up’ afterwards. In the end, though, these two moments for the character are a pretty strange dichotomy to have in the same comic.

Read the rest of the Review at Spider-Man Crawlspace


My Rating


Cover & Solicit - 4
Art, Colors & Inking - 3
Layout & Flow - 4
Story - 3
Verdict - 3.3 (6.5/10)
 - (Buy Superior Foes of Spider-Man #4) SAVE 10%

Thunderbolts #16


INFINITY TIE-INS!

The 'Bolts ' "Perfect Plan " is going of the rails in Thanos ' wake !

One of the Black Order sets her sights on the Red Leader !

Preview



Infinity Part 3


Plot

The issue picks up with the cowardly Nobili family alerting the Paguros of the Punisher’s attack, in exchange for safe haven from Thanos’ forces. The Punisher, Venom, and Elektra are right on their tails, but when they call for back-up, they discover they are own their own.

Review

Charles Soule continues to improve Daniel Way’s run here, doing a lot to establish Deadpool as ‘tragically heroic’ and adding more to this evolution of The Leader’s power. The Leader’s entire being runs off his brain and the more you tamper with it, the more harm you bring to him (and Ross has being tampering with it since the get-go, so I expect this to come up again). He can recharge/reboot it with his “second brain” though, which exists in the coding of the internet. Comic book logic, sure, but it’s interesting to see what can be done with this.  And Deadpool once again is the hero here, killing the aliens who attempt to steal the ‘wishes’ from a coin fountain and then paying for his technically ‘free’ pizza, that he was craving for so long in a particularly warming scene recalling the bus sequence from Issue 15. And despite all this heroism, he’s still hated by those who recognize him for Deadpool and not Spider-Man.

Read the rest of the Review at Spider-Man Crawlspace


My Rating


Cover & Solicit - 3
Art, Colors & Inking -3
Layout & Flow - 4
Story - 3
Verdict - 3.1 (6/10)
 - (Buy Thunderbolts #16) SAVE 10%

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