Review: The Amazing Spider-Man #658

Published on April 19th, 2011

The Amazing Spider-Man! I think they were overselling it a bit , or maybe they were trying to be ironic. Spider-Man has had good days and bad in his ongoing series and sadly I have hung in there throughout all of them. More recently, we have seen writer Dan Slott take Spier-Man, a.k.a Peter Parker, down some really interesting paths. We have also seen a bevy of artists cover the book, with Javier Pulido being the most recent. Does The Amazing Spider-Man #658 take a turn for the worst, or does it just get caught up in yet another crappy web of bad storytelling for the web head? Read on to find out!

asm658Gimmicks! I don’t like them in my comics unless they serve a useful purpose and move the character forward. Lately, Marvel (like any other comic company) has had gimmick after gimmick. Johnny Storm is dead, Ultimate Spider-Man is going to die, Squirrel Girl gets hit by a car. Well, ok,  that last one wasn’t true, but you get what I am trying to say. We all know that Spider-Man is not immune to those gimmicks (cough) Clone Saga (cough) but sometimes….just sometimes, it works for him, like this case with him joining the Future Foundation.

Things seem to be on the up swing for Peter lately (see what I did there). He has finally gotten his own place. Things are going well with he and Charlie (his new girlfriend) and he has a solid job that he loves, at Horizon labs. So, of course he is waiting for the “Parker” bad luck to kick in. Fortunately for Peter, he has the new and improved Fantastic Four (The Future Foundation) to catch him if he falls and right out of the gates, Peter starts off on the wrong foot. After a little bit of a team talking-to regarding his choice of colors in his new costume, the team is off on the first of three different missions together.

Slott does such an excellent job writing Peter Parker with the Future Foundation that it is almost as if it was meant to be. He shows off the scientific side of Peter while still showing that he has plenty to learn. You clearly get the feeling that Reed Richards and Peter Parker are playing off of each other’s minds and it reminds you that in many ways, Reed is more like an older brother that Peter can look up to. It is this kind of thing that makes me see that Spider-Man joining the Future Foundation is not just this week’s gimmick, but a truly inspired choice. Slott is showing us a more inquisitive side to what has been a rather mopey superhero as of late. I guess the one thing I am not crazy about is the retro style of the art, however for some reason it really works and I think a lot of that has to do with the fact that he is working along side the Future Foundation. In any case, this issue works really well on a lot of different levels and makes me wish you saw this kind of interaction more regularly with Spider-Man’s other teammates in his solo book.

Final Verdict: If you ever thought Spider-Man needed to grow as a character, now is the time to read this book! Slott’s writing is ALWAYS par for the course.

Sheldon Lee