Thursday, May 05, 2005

Spectacular Spider-Man 23 - 27

Throughout most of Paul Jenkins run of this iteration of Spectacular Spider-Man I've found myself either let down by the story arcs or baffled by the illogic of many of the character interactions. With this arc, Jenkins steps away from writing (except for issue 27) in order to let some of the events from the Sins Past story arc in Amazing Spider-Man be addressed. I didn't read Sins Past so I felt like I was missing out on part of the overall story, but even if I did have the overall story, I still don't think that would have saved this arc from being pretty... boring.

So there's a couple of kids that the Green Goblin had with Gwen Stacey who are now teenaged (I'm guessing) because they aged mondo fast by having Goblin blood in their genes. It sounds pretty contrived and stupid to me... mostly because it is, but this is a superhero book so maybe it should get a free pass... or not, because it's contived and stupid.

One of the kids (the boy) turned into the Gray Goblin. Just what the Marvel Universe needed, another goblin. Hobgoblin, Green Goblin, Gray Goblin, Purple Hobgoblin version II, etc. His sister, however, managed to turn out normal for the most part. She tries to commit suicide so the authorities in Europe call Peter since Sarah had a crush on him and wanted to make babies with him.

Mary Jane gets all jealous that Peter runs off to Sarah's rescue so she decides to fly over there and check up on him. The entire time Peter has been over there, Sarah and him have been going on quasi-dates "getting to know each other better". Mary Jane, upon arrival, just happens to stumble in to the mansion Peter and Sarah are staying at as Sarah kisses Peter. Soap opera drama ensues.

During all of this horribly boring and cliched romantic hulaballo, there's some drug running and a kidnapping to deal with, but that all takes back seat to the more important "relationship drama" of Peter, Sarah, and MJ. It really bored the hell out of me and it really makes me glad I ignored the whole Sins Past story arc.

Oh, one side note, Peter uses his Spider-Man powers while not in costume, in the middle of a crowd, TWICE, while he's over in Europe. Did Peter suddenly develop the superpower of ultra-stupidity? He thinks that no one in Europe will remember him. Man, if I saw some guys swinging with webbing out of his hands, I'd whip out my camera phone or something and take pictures. Peter = idiot.

Now, issue 27 is the complete antithesis of the arc preceding it. Jenkins returns to write the last issue of the series and it's a darn good one. I have a feeling he had written it a long time ago since it's a winter/Christmas story, but it's still good. Peter goes to visit Uncle Ben's grave and the majority of the issue deals with Peter conversing and bonding with the ghost of his dead uncle. It was actually a very tender and touching issue that almost completely made up for the mess that was Sins Remembered. It's a wonderful stand alone story, so go give it a look. It's one of the better Spider-Man stories you'll read for a while.

Art: 3
Story: 2
Overall: 2.5

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