Spider-Verse kicked off last week and didn’t reveal much in the way of the point behind the bad guy killing spider-people off, but it’s clear after reading this issue all the answers are going to be in this series. Is it good?
Superior Spider-Man #33 (Marvel Comics)
This isn’t the most friendly of comics to read if you haven’t been following along. Taking place way back in Superior Spider-Man #19, Superior Spider-Man has the mind of Doc Ock running the show and has switched places with Spider-Man 2099 and recently discovered a trident-wielding bad guy is killing Spider-Men from different dimensions. Last issue revealed Superior is collecting Spider-Men so as to team up and defeat this jerkweed.
Guess your plans don’t always work, jerkweed.
Christos N. Gage writes a pretty solid issue here with action, plot progression and plenty of spider fun. Not wasting any time, the issue opens on Earth 2818, where a cyborg Spider-Man is being chased down by the inter-dimensional spider-slayer. We not only learn this bad guy’s name (Karn), but that he’s from some place where they collect “spider totems.” Superior Spider-Man continues to show off his arrogance and inability to get over his ego, complete with making the other Spider-Men call him Superior Spider-Man, and his planning and scheming is fun to read.
We get eight, count ’em eight spider characters in this issue, which is a lot of fun to see. It’s a bit surprising how little humor is in the issue given how many of them there are, but in its defense many of these characters are dead serious. Due to the number of spider characters and the tone of this story it’s not at all befuddling or weird to see a monkey Spider-Man, which is good. Speaking of tone, this series doesn’t feel silly or pointless. The stakes are there, and a key emotional connection between Superior and Anna Maria is still prevalent which makes his getting back to our timeline all the more important.
The art by Giuseppe Camuncoli is eye-catching and detailed. A lot of frames are stuffed too much with Spider-Men, but you can’t blame the guy; he has to show them. There’s also a bit too many diagonal panels going on, which look more to reduce the amount he has to draw than tell the story effectively. Most importantly though ,the action is clear and understandable and these Spider-Men look very tight and legit.
That’s kind of funny.
There’s a backup in this issue written by Christos Gage and drawn by M.A. Sepulveda (who drew Spider-Verse #1) which gives us a backstory on Karn. Sepulveda is a great choice for the backup as Karn is dressed in an old timey look, something like Victorian England and Sepulveda does a good job with that sort of look.
The story is interesting, mostly because of the spider character who weaves literally destiny, and it gives the character that extra tragedy he needs so we don’t think he’s some mindless killer. Why he must hunt spiders is a bit silly—dude, just throw out the family if they cast you out—but it gives us enough to go on to continue reading.
I wonder if that’s Peter under there.
Is It Good?
This is another good issue that delivers in all the ways you’d hope. As far as events go the progression is phenomenal and everyone should be able to find something to enjoy. That is, if you’ve been following along. New readers may want to read the back issues for this one!