Amazing Spider-Man #4
Writer: Dan Slott
Artist: Humberto Ramos
Having recently regained control of his own body, Peter Parker discovered that he now owned his own company. Amazing Spider-Man #4 opens with the webbed wonder applying some spidery know-how to his new role in his civilian life. Namely, he has invented “Anti-Electro Netting” which looks an awful lot like webbing. In typical fashion, Peter has to leave in the middle of a test run in order to attend to super hero business. A major fight has broken out in the city (as seen in Original Sin). The Watcher is dead and his eye is being wielded by his assumed killer, The Orb. The villain claims that the eye has become a bomb and allows it to go off. Rather than exploding in the literal sense, it unleashes a power that floods the minds of everyone nearby with secrets. Shocked by his new found knowledge, Spider-Man flees the scene. He heads immediately to the location of a woman he never knew existed until now, the mysterious Silk, who has powers similar to Peter’s. She has ties to Ezekiel and speaks fearfully of the vampiric Morlun (both characters introduced during J. Michael Straczynski’s run on Amazing Spider-Man). After Peter calms her down, she webs herself up a costume and leads Spidey in a chase across the city. Meanwhile, the Black Cat causes mischief at Parker industries, in an attempt to get back at Peter for things that Doc Ock did while in control of Spidey’s body. When we catch back up with Silk and Spider-Man, she has lead him to her parents’ home only to discover that they no longer live there. Peter attempts to comfort her as she deals with the realization that she is alone, only to anger her, leading the two to argue and eventually come to blows. In the heat of the moment, something unexpected happens.
Silk has been teased since the first issue of the current run of Amazing, and now we finally begin to learn a bit about her. In creating Silk, Dan Slott is sort of “tacking on” to Spider-Man’s origin without actually changing it. This is similar to what J. Michael Straczynski did in his run on the book, so it’s interesting to me that Silk is being connected back to characters that he created. I’m glad that the tie in to Original Sin didn’t sidetrack the book too much, but gave it easy access to a plot point that had to happen eventually anyway. It’s also fun to watch as Slott continue’s to examine the ramifications of Peter’s time away from being Spider-Man.
Fluid and dynamic. Two qualities that should be obvious obvious for Spider-Man art. Coincidentally, two traits that Humberto Ramos executes flawlessly. There’s also something to be said for the leanness that he gives our hero, making him seem long and lithe. When you see him, you know he can move fast. That leanness does seem to carry over to all of Ramos’s figures though, sometimes making it appear that the Marvel Universe is overpopulated with oddly skinny people. At least when we see the Hulk and Thing during the fight with The Orb, they seem appropriately brawny. I really like the rougher, heavy-pencil approach that Ramos takes for the cover to this issue. He used it for the flashback to Spidey’s origin in #1, too, so I was a little surprised that he didn’t use it again for the flashback scene in this issue. It looks great anyway.
All in all, another solid issue of Amazing Spider-Man with minimal impact from the Original Sin event.