Spider-Man is time traveling in Chip Zdarsky’s latest story arc but not to the future — to his past! Witness Jameson attempting to make his younger, angrier self listen to reason, Spider-Man attempt to make his younger, angrier self listen to reason, and…you get the picture.
So what’s it about?
The official summary reads:
Peter Parker, his sister (?) Teresa and J. Jonah Jameson take a trip back in time! The massive events of issue #300 presented them with a problem so huge that the only solution is way back in the past. The biggest challenge here won’t be keeping Jameson from changing the future, but it’s up there!
Why does this matter?
Teresa exploring her birth with Nick Fury should be on everyone’s radar as it appears Zdarsky is exploring whether or not she really is Peter’s sister. On top of that, this issue is Green Goblin centric. Time to fly, baby!
Fine, you have my attention. What’s good about it?
This young Peter fights back.
Zdarsky is clearly having the time of his life writing this series and having older versions of Jameson and Peter reflect on their younger selves. Take for instance Peter’s observation on how much easier it was to beat the bad guys, or how he remembers old battles fondly. Jameson has been more reasonable than ever so it’s fun to see him watch his younger self act like an unhinged maniac.
The problem is Peter and his future cohorts are screwing with the timeline, which this issue explores in a real way. It’s alluded to by young Peter that the time travel maybe changing things, which leads to one hell of a final few pages. I won’t spoil it, but Green Goblin basically gets to take a shortcut in potentially killing Spider-Man for good.
The Teresa subplot is a tantalizing element of the issue too. She’s hell-bent on finding out the truth and you get the impression Zdarsky might be messing with Spider-Man history. Being a time travel story does make the reveal suspect, but it matters to Teresa so it still works.
The art by Joe Quinones (colors by Jordan Gibson and inks by Joe Rivera) continues to pace the story well, with flourishes of angled layouts here and there. The last few pages stand out as some of the best Quinones has done on the arc so far, as they capture the fear and total loss of control of the situation for Spider-Man. A home break-in is scary enough and Quinones makes you feel the danger.
Sure he is…
It can’t be perfect can it?
My issue with the story continues as it seems incredibly inconsiderate of Peter, Jameson, and Teresa to be changing this dimension’s history. The final few pages only increase that as Zdarsky appears to be going down a road that’ll have our version of Peter Parker regretting his actions, but then again they are on a mission to save Earth. It’d be nice if the heroes at least mentioned their acts are dangerous to this world.
Is It Good?
The time traveling caper continues in entertaining fashion with stakes raised ever higher. The premise of this story arc is so good you may even forget why they went back in time at all.