If you’re new to the post-Secret Wars Spider-Man you’re in for a few surprises. First off, Peter Parker runs one of the biggest corporations in the world known as Parker Industries and second off Spider-Man has a lot of new gadgets because of the extra funds. It’s a new feel for Peter Parker who used to be poor and down on his luck; now he’s just rich and down on his luck.
Amazing Spider-Man #17 (Marvel Comics)
So what’s it about? The Marvel summary and preview can be read here.
Why does this book matter?
Dan Slott has written the definitive Spider-Man for some time now, which included a very long (and game-changing) run with Dr. Octopus inside the costume (we reviewed the entire series here).
Love or hate the new setup for Peter Parker you have to admit it’s far different than most of the stories that came before it and that’s exciting.
Fine, you have my attention. What’s good about it?
That first panel is hawt!
This is more about the Prowler than Spider-Man who’s friends with Spidey now and no longer a villain. He’s got a super cool high tech suit and is on the straight and narrow. Unfortunately for him though, a new biomedical company named New U has ideas for many of Spider-Man’s main villains; namely bringing them back to full power to help the “cause.” This issue delves into said cause in some ways and kicks off what could be one one massive Spidey villain team up for the ages.
Amazing Spider-Man #17 is well-paced and delivers tidbits about New U, their ability to clone and Prowler’s strong personality. The latter is excellent due to appealing captions that get inside Prowler’s head and enhance the tension of the issue. Slott infuses the issue with bits of humor too (Pokemon Go is mentioned more than once) and plenty of intrigue. A new layer is added too which involves a woman who was an accidental victim of Electro. This further complicates things whilst it’s all under a New U net that must be connected to the Jackal in some way. There’s also a McGuffin of sorts as a big secret is teased concerning the threat of Spider-Man.
R.B. Silva is on pencils with inks by Adriano Di Benedetto and colors by Marte Gracia. The title has a cel-shaded sort of look that’s just cartoony enough to feel fun (a Spider-Man must) with very competent panels to enhance the action. There’s a lot of cool tech stuff too, like Peter looking over a neat hologram diagram, Prowler adjusting the temperature in his suit, and the New U tech too. The masked leader of New U is easy to read which is typically tough with masked characters. Lizard is well rendered too and looks particularly primal in his scenes. You’ve got to love the colors Gracia uses on the electricity too.
It can’t be perfect can it?
Spider-Man is missing from much of this issue though there’s a type of appearance in the opening pages that cleverly inserts the costume. Peter shows up, but it’s just not the same without his wisecracking!
One issue I had with the art is a panel with Peter. It’s only a single panel, but he looks odd and different than in other panels of the same issue. The proportions look off too as if he’s a dwarf.
Is It Good?
Amazing Spider-Man #17 sets a lot of things up and cleverly brings a big chunk of Spider-Man’s rogues gallery together. If you’re a fan of Spidey villains this issue will get you properly excited for future issues. Bottom line, this is good storytelling.