Writer: Zeb Wells, Artist: Patrick Gleason, Colors: Marcio Menyz, Letters: VC’s Joe Caramagna
Recap: Spider-Man 33 picks up after Peter was stabbed and injected with Norman Osborne’s sins. Peter dons the black suit and chases Kraven 2 across the city, terrorizing him. After following the same path and meeting the same folk, the story ends in a graveyard. Remember? This throwback will take many fans back to an all-time Spider-Man classic. The issue ends with Spider-Man burying Kraven 2, after giving him a rifle to end it all.
Glenn: In a deprivation chamber/isolation tank this is actually a really great issue. The dual narrative and nods to Kraven’s Last Hunt are done well without trying to out do that previous story, the creeping dread Claven feels as the roles between him and Spider-Man are reversed is executed well and for a ‘darker’ take on the character it works very well. As usual, good guy Norman is distracting, and I have a feeling he’s going to be our solution to this particular issue. Without the baggage attached to how I feel about good guy Norman, having a fight between him and Peter where they’re on the opposite sides of morality is appealing because it’s at least different.
On a larger scale, the whole set up for this issue is very, very stupid. Like I said last issue, the run is weighed down by an astonishing stench it may never shake. Is it unfair to judge what here is a strong issue on how we got here? I don’t think so. Comics are so serialised that it’s hard to look at one piece without the larger part of the hole in mind. This issue’s main problem story wise is the baggage brought by the last 10 issues or so.
Steve: I agree with Glenn here. The story was fun. It was a tight, quick read basically following the same story as Kraven’s Last Hunt. This time, though, Spider-Man is the bad guy. I will have to say that I was pleased to see Vermin- very cool nod to the past. The narration here was great. Wells was smart to keep it short and simple so it didn’t take away from the flow of the story. Too much dialogue or narration would have bogged this down and taken away the momentum and tension of the issue. On its own, this story was brilliant. In context, at least we are moving quickly to the ultimate showdown between Norman and Peter. Not that that is a good thing, but it does signal the end of this mess.
Glenn: Gleason’s doing a great job; he always does. The creepy image of Spider-Man yelling in the black suit as he urges Kraven to run is an image that helps sell the whole theme of his story. It’s odd in a way that Gleason has been drawing Amazing now off an on for 4 years now. He’s drawn more issues than someone like Marcos Martin who I consider one of the best Spider-Man artists ever and has drawn around the same number of issues as Spider-Man co-creator Steve Ditko (if it’s less I may have miscounted but it’s not far off) but I wouldn’t say people go ‘Oh Gleason’s one of the best Spider-Man artists ever’. Maybe I’m wrong and he’s doing great work don’t get me wrong, elevating issues that are far worse than this but I wonder, in 5-10 years will his work here be that particularly memorable?
Steve: Another great issue from Gleason here. His black Spidey is menacing and looks very cool. (such an upgrade from JRJR) Gleason’s panel design and flow here are excellent. He effortlessly moves from close-up facial expressions to big action sequences. The issue is frenetic and Gleason is up to the task. Marcio Menyz also deserves some kudos here. His colors, especially shadow, are on point. The whole feel of this issue is menace, not the typical light and bright Spidey. They make a great team- hopefully this art team will get to work with a talented writer when this is done.
Glenn: 3 Web Shooters – MUCH better but we need more to build up any trust and to shake off all the nonsense previous. Also, I think I was maybe in a generous mood as I read this immediately following the first issue of the new Birds Of Prey….
Steve: 3 Web Shooters – Really enjoyed this one. And, like Glenn, really liked Birds of Prey!
Next time, issue 34 and Spine Tingling Spider-Man.