In 1985, Marvel published the first issue of The Web of Spider-Man. As the third Spider-Man title at the time, it ran for 10 years before the events of the original Clone Saga caused it to be canceled and renamed The Web of the Scarlet-Spider.  Is it ironic that we have come full circle?

112_WEB_OF_SPIDER_MAN_1.jpgThe Web of Spider-Man #1
Published by Marvel Comics
Cover by Pasqual Ferry
Zombie Cover by Micro Pierfederici
Diamond Code: AUG090447

Kaine in Echoes
Written by J.M. Dematteis
Art by Val Semeiks and Dan Green

The Spectacular Spider-Girl in Angels & Devils
Written by Tom Defalco
Art by Tom Frenz and Sal Buscema

The Last Stand of the Fabulous Frog-Man
Written by Sean McKeever
Art by Stephanie Buscema

Like many Marvel titles, it has been a while since I picked up a Spider-Man book. As a matter of fact, the last one was the shortly after the conclusion of One More Day, and I was more than a little curious about this new Web of Spider-Man title. You see, back in the day, the first Web of Spider-Man was a regular read for me, and I was curious if this new anthology style title would measure up.

Split into three stories, it has been reported that this series is supposed to be a place to tell the stories of Spider-Man’ supporting cast and his villains, especially in preparation for the upcoming Gauntlet storyline. We jump right into to the mix with the first story, Echoes, starring Kaine, of the infamous Clone Saga. Not only does this story, by one of the original Clone Sage scribes J.M. Demattis, give us an update on the status of Kaine, but it also leads us into a new storyline in Spider-Man 608. It seems that Kaine’s degeneration is killing him, and as he reflects on his past, he discovers what he needs for his future. J. M. Dematties sets an interesting story, and there are appearances by Ben Rielly, Jackle, Peter Parker, and even Kaine’s lost love Louise. Val Semeiks’ art here has the feel of many past Spider-Man titles, and reminds me a little of Alex Saviuk of the original Web of Spider-Man series. I enjoyed the story and the update on the character, and if you plan on reading Amazing #608 you might want to pick this one up, as Kaine reappears in it.

The second title is, in my opinion, the gem of the book. It features the return of May “Mayday” Parker, aka Spider-Girl! Again, I just did not read much Spider-Girl, but the little title that could was one that I always felt was just good old entertainment in the vein of the older Spider titles. This one picks up, presumably, from Amazing Spider-Man Family #8. I cannot be sure of that, but it is nice to have the page worth of catch-up that we are provided with. It gave me a lot of information, especially in regards to April Parker. The last time I read Spider-Girl, I believe that she had just begun to stalk May.  Things start off here pretty grim, as May is chained after being beaten almost to death by Tombstone, April has killed Tombstone, and The Black Tarantula proposes a deal with The Don that could end the gang war. Oh yeah, and by the end of the story, Spider-Girl is wanted for two murders. Add in the return of an old enemy and you got a bang up book. If you are still upset about One More Day, check this book out, since Peter and MJ are still married here; its kinda nice to at least see that some. Tom Frenz and Sal Busema deliver the great art of this issue, and if anything gets me to pick this book up again, it will be Mayday Parker!

The last story is a quirky little tale by Sean McKeever and Stephanie Buscema, granddaughter of Sal Buscema. Featuring the return of Frog-Man and introducing, The Tenacious Tadpole, there is not a lot to say with this story. Sean McKeever is at his irreverent best here, and I laughed out-loud more than once. The moral of this story is that anyone could be someones idol. Stephenie Buscema’s art threw me at first glance, but once I got into the story it just seemed as normal as could be. I’m not saying a lot about this one, but don’t take that as a dis. I enjoyed the story, there is just not a lot to talk about, its just a cute, fun story. Great ending after the heavy subject matter of the first two stories. I actually would read this one to my daughter.

So, there you have it, the first issue of the new Web of Spider-Man series. Taking into account that they are using this as a building block for future Spidey stories, and it is the new home of Spider-Girl, this may be one to watch out for. All three stories have good art, and each has a little something different for everyone. As a general rule, the anthology as a format doesn’t normally last long, and seeing what just happened recently to the Amazing Spider-Man Family book, I have to wonder how this one will last. Personally, I love anthologies, give me multiple stories to read in an issue and I am in comic heaven. That being said, I am giving Web of Spider-Man #1  4 out of 5 stars.


The Author

Stacy Baugher

Stacy Baugher

Back in February of 2008, Stacy Baugher wrote his first article for Major Spoilers and started a solid run of work that would last for over two years. He wrote the first series of Comic Casting Couch articles as well as multiple Golden Age Hero Histories, reviews and commentaries. After taking a hiatus from all things fandom he has returned to the Major Spoilers fold.

He can currently be found on his blog, www.stacybaugher.com , were he post progress on his fiction work as well as his photography and life in general, and on Twitter under the handle @stacybaugher . If you're of a mind, he also takes on all comers with the under the Xbox Live Gamertag, Lost Hours.

He currently lives in Clinton, Mississippi with his understanding wife, and two kids.

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  1. October 18, 2009 at 7:50 pm — Reply

    At least there’s one book that features one of my favorite couples still together.

  2. ykw
    October 19, 2009 at 3:00 am — Reply

    Only disappointment with the book was the announcement that there were no further Fabulous Frog-Man plans. With the White Rabbit scheduled to make an extended appearance soon in the ASM mothership, it would only make sense for her longtime nemesis to be a part of the proceedings.

  3. td
    October 19, 2009 at 10:07 am — Reply

    While I agree that these types of anthology/background books generally don’t do well, I wouldn’t compare “Web” to “Family.” My understanding is that “Web” replaces “Family” and the occasional “Extras”–more a lateral move, not a cancellation of “Family.” One thing that has disturbed me, though, is that I’m starting to see what I call “X-Men Creep.” We often go through these purges of X-titles to “simplify” the X-universe and cut the number of titles back, but proliferation always creeps back in. Wasn’t part of the deal of the thrice-monthly Spider-Man that there would not only be one Spider-title, now with plenty of room to develop various aspects of the character and the Spidey-universe without all the different titles?

  4. October 19, 2009 at 3:06 pm — Reply

    Great review. I believe Stephanie is Sal’s grandniece, John is her grandfather.

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