Amazing Spider-Man #568 (***1/2)
I don’t know many people that read this book. Why? Because OMD was terrible. Not only was it terrible, but it also offended many readers. Let’s have Spider-Man, a beloved child icon, make a deal with the devil! Sorry, I had to say it. So a lot of readers like me haven’t even given this title a shot. Recently, Billy put this book on his top ten stating “if you’re not reading BND because of OMD, you’re only hurting yourself, brother” (Who does he think he is, Hulk Hogan?). Thanks to Billy, I finally gave this book a shot. Well, Billy and the fact that Marvel really really really wants you to buy this issue.
Think about it: Dan Slott is writing (I’ve heard he’s the best BND writer), John Romita Jr. returns to Spidey (I’m in the “I love his art” crowd. Oh and does this mean Millar is the reason why Kick-Ass is late?), Mark Waid (insert unfunny quip here) writing a 10 page back-up, Adi Granov (This is obvious I suppose, but I guess this means Favrau is why Viva Las Vegas is late?) drawing that back-up, and look at that Alex Ross (Um, I like Alex Ross?) cover!
First off, I have a few questions. Why are these BND villains so crappy? They all look like a bunch of z-level villains. Also, I thought no one knew Spidey’s identity, but it seems from this issue’s conclusion that someone does. As I said earlier, I haven’t read any of these BND issues, so I expected to be a little confused. I wasn’t though. This is fantastic given this title’s intended audience, new readers and kids. I’m glad this issue accomplishes its objectives. It’s nice to see a good book that kids can enjoy as well.
I don’t know too much about Dan Slott, but his writing is excellent here. He writes Spider-Man incredibly well. His Spider-Man is actually funny and made me laugh out loud a few times. This is hard to accomplish in comics, but Spider-Man should be able to make you laugh. This is the first issue of the arc so this issue is mostly set-up, but it seems like Slott is building a story that shows a lot of potential.
Of course, Slott has a little help from his friends. I love Romita’s work and I’m pleased to say that his work is quite impressive here. Of course it’s no secret he draws Spidey well, but his interpretation of the new Thunderbolts are truly impressive. Also, those aforementioned crappy BND villains look better than they should.
The disappointment in this issue lies in the 10 page back-up. This issue is a dollar more than usual because of this tale and it’s unneeded. Mark Waid brings us a story that contains impressive gimmicks and at a first glance it appears to be quite cool. But sadly, this just covers up what I’ve heard called “writer masturbation”. This back-up could have been summed up in a sentence. And really, all the important information is pretty much included in the main story. I would have preferred Waid had written something original, rather than try to unnecessarily add to the main attraction. However, I always enjoy seeing Granov’s art.
Overall, I’m glad I picked this up. It’s well written and it looks great. It’s produced by some fine creators and I get to find out in one week what happens next. It’s okay people, reading BND will not burn your face off.