Spider-Verse team-up continues with new teams – and one of them is quite unique.
I will first tell you that I’m not a fan of Ultimate Spider-Man the cartoon (not many are apparently), but I love Miles and Spider-Gwen, so it was a mixed feeling I got when I opened this book.
Gage manages to highlight the best areas of each of the heroes, but some basic problems of the characters prove problematic.
The artwork is nothing to rave about sadly – through the first part is more due to the inherent atmosphere of that world, while the second manages to hold its own but doesn’t stand out.
First up is Miles and Ultimate Cartoon Peter travelling to the 60s world of the first Spider-Man cartoon – with undefined and block artwork that does bring in a tinge of nostalgia for those who have been exposed to it.
It’s not anything much more than a clichéd story – initial confusion, then team-up and beat the baddies of that world.
What is interesting is how aggravating Ultimate Peter is even on the comic book page with his cutaway gags and lowbrow humour. Gage tries to make him the lowest denominator of the group, but using his bag of tricks leads to some frustration.
The artwork may be of interest to those who are marvelling at how far animation has come – but for the purpose of this issue, atleast Miles and Ultimate Peter should have been more well-defined to contrast with the newcomer, and it fails in that department.
The second story is more close to the heart of classic Spider-Man followers. In this world, Peter broke down when Gwen died and killed the Green Goblin before taking on Osborn’s mantle – thinking it just punishment for him having ‘killed’ Gwen.
Lady Verna and two of her ‘pets’ manage to knock out Gwen and capture Peter – but a bomb both kills him and robs Verna of his life force. Before dying, he manages to convince himself (and tries with Gwen) that he was able to bring Peter Parker back to life by finally reclaiming his ability to be the hero.
It’s a little sad that Gwen remains a plot device throughout the entire issue though – and is left with angst having failed to save Peter again.
Both stories have their highs, but some below par artwork and half-baked ideas leave one feeling cheated, especially in the second segment.
Gage though does intoduce some interesting themes which should have been explored more.
So, I give it 6.0 out of 10.
+Some interesting themes explored
+Manages to invoke nostalgia for bygone Spiderman days
-Artwork fails in an overall scheme
-Gwen becomes a plot device