Monday, July 30, 2018

Amazing Spider-Man #2 Review - Marvel Monday

The Spencer Formula 

Writer: Nick Spencer
Art Team: Ryan Ottley, Cliff Rathburn, Laura Martin
Marvel Comics
Release Date: July 25, 2018
Cover Price: $3.99

Amazing Spider-Man just underwent a huge change last issue, with a new 'Fresh Start' relaunch, and we already have number two on our doorsteps.  I was OK with issue one, the art was awesome to look at, but some of the jokes, to go along with a few of the developments in the story, has me a little iffy right now.  For everything I like, Mary Jane/Peter, there are things I don't, Boomerang as a new roommate for example.  Let's check out issue two and see if the up's beat the downs here ... join me.

Issue two begins with Spider-Man starting things off taking out a few more of Nick Spencer's favorite C-list villains. It's mostly told through a beginning sequence of narration highlighting how things are beginning to look up for him ... mostly because he has M.J. back in his life at the moment.  It seems my trepidation about the rug being pulled out from under Spidey fans and the relationship are for naught ... at least for now.

From there we pick up from the cliffhanger of the last issue, Peter was greeted by the Lizard in a classroom at the Empire State Campus. We learn this is all part of a greater experiment, with the Lizard now seemingly having his transformation under control, unable to hurt people in his Lizard form ... again, at least for now. Peter ends up accepting a position to work alongside Dr. Conners doing 'science things', from there joining the class, and running into some old equipment he, and longtime Spider fans, will be familiar with.

It ends up all seemingly being more good timing for Peter, and all other company involved to come to an agreement because the lab is quickly stormed by the team of Black Ant and Taskmaster. Thankfully Spidey comes to the rescue, of course putting an end to the mission of the two mercs, but with a huge twist ending I'm not 100% sure I'm ready to deal with again just yet ... but that's for everyone to decide on their own and will definitely intrigue new readers a ton more I feel.

Overall, the new relaunch of the 'main' Spidey title continues to be a bit of  a mixed bag for me. While I love the decision thus far to pursue the MJ and Peter relationship, I don't find Spencer's brand of humor, and pet lineup of C list villain featurettes, as enjoyable as some people. The cliffhanger last issue really grabbed my attention, but the same didn't happen here, which could lead to only a few fairly predictable directions. I just hope those paths aren't pursued again.

Ryan Ottley, Cliff Rathburn, and Laura Martin are all doing a bang up job on the Amazing Spider-Man title so far with some very dynamic art and fun action scenes.  The style is really growing on me already and I look forward to more work from this team for a long time to come on this title.

Bits and Pieces:

Amazing Spider-Man issue two follows the formula and style of the first issue too closely for me, resulting in more of a mixed bag. I love MJ and Peter back together for now, and the art continues the long trend of great art on the Amazing Spider-Man title, but Spencer's style and reliance on his go-to tricks aren't really hitting home with me, with his humor walking the line of consistently below average.


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