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FCBD 2019: Spider-Man #1 review: Venom, carnage, and the love of pizza

Absolute Carnage starts here!

It’s that special day of the year when publishers offer free comics, everyone is hitting up their comic shop on a Saturday, and Marvel Comics teases big stories to come. It’s free comic book day! Marvel is releasing two books, one focused on Spider-Man characters and the other focused on Jason Aaron’s Avengers and Gerry Duggan’s Savage Avengers. The Spider-Man FCBD book should be on everyone’s radar thanks in part because it’s the beginning of Donny Cates and Ryan Stegman’s event “Absolute Carnage” which kicks into high gear in August.

So what’s it about?

The official summary reads:

Everyone knows Miles Morales, who rose to fame in Marvel’s acclaimed animated sensation Into The Spider-Verse – and with a second feature film arriving this year, Peter Parker will once again suit up to save the world with his web-slinging super powers! In a special FCBD story, creators Tom Taylor, Saladin Ahmed, and Cory Smith take these superstar heroes of the Spider-Verse in a shocking new direction, with a story that will build to one of Marvel’s most fantastic and epic tales later this year!

And prepare for absolute terror within the pages of FCBD, as an original Venom story by Donny Cates and Ryan Stegman sets the stage for what will become one of the most fearsome events in the Marvel Universe…

Nearly a year after the epic red-hot arc of the Red Goblin, Venom’s dynamic creative team is bringing you a story that’s been brewing since classic Spider-Man tales like Amazing Spider-Man #252, The Spectacular Spider-Man #90, Marvel Team-Up #141 – a saga so big and so absolutely action-packed, it will deliver the most dramatic story in all of FCBD history! Fans will be well aware by the summer of 2019 that “everyone is a target”…and the 1st Saturday in May, Marvel invites you to experience the threat for yourself!

Why does this matter?

This book comes with two different stories. The first is a very serious and darker look at Eddie Brock’s place in the universe and how he connects to Absolute Carnage. The second is Saladin Ahmed and Tom Taylor teaming up on a fun and light story about Miles Morales and Spider-Man coming to blows over…pizza!

Fine, you have my attention. What’s good about it?

Time is of the essence!
Credit: Marvel Comics

This free comic knocked my socks off with interesting twists, fun superhero storytelling, and a nice reminder that Spidey characters are in a good place with the creative teams. Frankly, I’d have paid for this book gladly due to the punch it packs. Go get it, and hurry, it’s well worth reading.

The opening story by Donny Cates and Ryan Stegman gives us new info on what Eddie Brock is up to, presumably after War of the Realms, and it’s not the best place. He’s in prison and very much worried about what Carnage is up to as the page above details. Cates and Stegman have always been good at dropping huge twists and reveals on readers and this one has a doozy. What is revealed is so huge I think many will be hoping it’s August already. The quality of art by Stegman, inker Frank Martin, and Colorist Clayton Cowles is as high as ever with some haunting imagery and a wicked full page spread of mayhem.

The second story in this book is a huge shift in story type focusing on Miles and Peter’s obsession with their favorite pizza places. Cory Smith draws a good issue here with a strong focus on costume detailing. The age-old question of where the best pizza in New York is taken up and both Miles and Peter are quite passionate about it. This is a story that reminds us they may be superheroes, but they’re just like us.

Sick tat man!
Credit: Marvel Comics

It can’t be perfect, can it?

It’s free, each story feels the right length, and each story delivers on what they’re trying to accomplish. If I had any gripes at all it’s that the very first panel in the Miles/Peter story looks a bit awkward and that’s splitting hairs.

Is it good?

Don’t delay, head to your nearest comic shop and grab this. Each story offers something different and both are masterfully crafted.

FCBD 2019: Spider-Man #1
Is it good?
Don’t delay, head to your nearest comic shop and grab this. Each story offers something different and both are masterfully crafted.
The opening story is dark, twisted, and will get you pumped for Absolute Carnage
Great lighter story finishes things off
It's free!
One panel looked a bit awkward...I'm splitting hairs here!
Buy Now

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