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The Amazing Spider-Man #654 | Comic Reviews | Nerdy Nothings

The Amazing Spider-Man #654

Spider-Man #654


As Rebel Rikki pointed out in his review yesterday of Justice League: Generation Lost #19 it’s always nice when a big plot-point—or, in the case of Justice League and this week’s issue of Spider-Man, a character death—can take you by surprise. Granted, the death in this issue is hardly a news-worthy event like the recent issue of Fantastic Four, but it was still a shock, worked well for a story and led to a rather satisfying character moment at the end of the issue. Now, am I going to tell you who bit the dust? Hell no, but I do want to talk about this issue.

This is the final chapter of Dan Slott’s latest story arc which finds Spidey caught in the crossfire between the latest Spider-Slayer—working with, among others, Mac Gargan, recently freed of the Venom symbiote and back in costume as the Scorpion—and the Jameson family; Mayor Jonah J., whom we all know and love, his son astronaut John Jameson, and his father—and new husband of Aunt May—Jonah Sr.

The last chapter saw Spider-Man rushing off to Horizon labs to work on a devise to help him overcome the Spider-Slayer’s army by overriding their synthetic spider-sense, leaving his buddies in the New Avengers to handle protecting the Jameson family, and most importantly Aunt May. As the last issue closed out we saw Peter Parker getting confronted by his new boss, genius inventor Max Modell, who has claimed he knows what’s going on between Peter and Spider-Man…aaaaaand scene! Kind of a nice cliffhanger. We jump back in with this issue, and, as it turns out, Max has come to the conclusion that Spidey must’ve hired Parker to build all of his gadgets for him because, as he reasons, the odds of someone having incredible spider-powers AND being an amazing genius is just too far-flung. I loved this scene as Slott wrote it, and I loved even more how willingly Parker played along with Modell’s conclusions, and hey, he even got Max to help him finish up the device.

It’s the small touches like these and the sense of fun that comes with them that have really lifted Slott’s run on Spider-Man above and beyond. Sure, they were still present during the Brand New Day run, but with Slott as the sole creative voice on the series I really feel that he’s really taken it upon himself to impose his ideas on the title, and so far, they’ve all been golden. Having Max Modell as a resource and somewhat of a confidant for Peter may not seem like much, but I believe this will open the door for many interesting storylines or plot-points down the road.

But, back to the plot! With his device finished Spidey jumps back into action against first the Scorpion and then the Spider-Slayer, but, as Max Modell had warned him, his own Spidey-Sense has been taken out by this machine as well. And then there’s the aforementioned death-scene, and like I said, it’s not a major player in the Spider-Man universe, but their absence is bound to have some pretty major repercussions, and as Slott hints at, they may not be the ones you expect. Dan Slott has had me roped in for some time now, and this issue has only cemented that!

Bonus! Usually, I don’t even mention backup features in my reviews, heck… most of the time I don’t even give them a good reading, more of a casual glance. But this week would be the exception. Just as you sometimes catch an amazing opening act when you go to see your favorite band play, occasionally you come across the bonus story that’s worth reading. This week’s Spidey gives us an additional tale featuring a longtime character in the Spider-Man world, as well as the identity of the new, government-sponsored Venom. I loved this backup feature, not only was the character handled well, but, until I flipped through, it had never even occured to me that this character would be a candidate to become the new Venom. Of course this all leads into a brand new Venom series from Marvel, but definitely worth reading through if you’ve picked up this issue—which I obviously recommend that you do.

tags: dan slott, spider-man, venom

  • http://twitter.com/astamm78 Andrew Stamm

    And speaking of backup features… let me tell you how much I can’t wait until the “Oral History of the Avengers” backups disappear from all the Avengers titles. What a waste of space those are…

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