In every generation, a teen-age romance drama series must be created
The teenage drama takes it up another notch this month.Â Will Dylan finally ask Brenda out?Â Will David and Donna end up together, or will Brian have to spend the rest of his life with Megan Fox?Â Tune it to this weekâ€™s episode of Ultimate (comics) Spider-Man #4.
Iâ€™m not one to watch One Tree Hill, The O.C., or any of those other shows Iâ€™m now too old to get why everyone’s so fascinated with them, but somehow I imagine the plot lines are a lot like the one running in the latest Ultimate (comics) Spider-Man series.Â Oh, Iâ€™m sure Rachel Bilson isnâ€™t trying to unmask Spider-Man, and Blake LIvely isnâ€™t trying to sleep with every member of the Ultimate (comics) Avengers, but the teenagers are shacking up together, and the lovelorn drama seems like something right out of Dawsonâ€™s Creek, or at least Beverly Hills 90210 – which, when it originally aired, I was still too old to understand what the big to-do was all about.
But even with Peterâ€™s new found housemate, Johnny Storm, the adjustments to the living conditions, and MJ confessing her love for Peter, even though heâ€™s now with Gwen, and Gwen saying the three can still be best friends – and letâ€™s not forget the awkward co-worker asking MJ out on a date thing, thereâ€™s still some amazing Spider-Man action to be had in this issue.Â Itâ€™s just too bad it happens so late in the game.Â The Hulk is smashing things up again, but it turns out to be another of Mysterioâ€™s illusions.Â By the time Peter figures out what is going on, itâ€™s too late as the issue has come to an end, and Mysterio has pounded the snot out of young Master Parker.
Then there is the matter of the Red Hood (not THAT Red Hood) running around fighting crime in a world where mutants have been outlawed.Â The good thing is s/he appeared just in the nick of time to save MJ from being kidnapped by some very unscrupulous fellows, which should give Peter a reason to reconsider his relationship with Gwen, or at the very least give MJ someone new to pine over for the next 20 issues or so.
While the issue may seem like a roll-your-eyes, canâ€™t-believe-they-would-go-this-route-story, there are some very nice parts to it.Â First is Brian Michael Bendisâ€™ writing. Even during the sappy bits and the uncomfortable moments, Bendisâ€™ delivers snappy dialogue that causes one to speed through the scenes.Â There may be a tad to much stammering back and forth for some peopleâ€™s taste, but it works here amongst the teenagers, and is probably what the young kids are all into these days.Â At least Bendis didnâ€™t pepper the issue with a lot of â€œso likeâ€ and â€œyâ€™know what Iâ€™m sayinâ€™â€ bits.Â The frenetic conversations do enhance the swift line drawings of David Lafuente go down easier.
Iâ€™ve not been a huge fan of the manga-esque style being showcased in this series, but I think it has finally reached a point where it doesnâ€™t annoy me as much as it has in the past.Â The one thing I think Lafuente has finally nailed is page layout, which is the second best part of this issue.Â I have no idea how double page spreads are going to read once the whole industry moves to digital comics, but Iâ€™m hopeful the e-reader of the future is large enough to allow such design to continue, as Lafuente uses the expanded horizontal format to allow the images to flow with the fast paced verbiage of Bendis.
Iâ€™m sure at one point I was begging for more personal moments between MJ, Peter, and Aunt May, but as Ultimate (comics) Spider-Man reboots and re-imagines itself for a whole new generation of readers, I think Iâ€™ve had enough of the talky-talky, and really want more of the fighty-fighty – after all, when Krystle and Alexis threw down in the pool, the show was much more interesting.Â Iâ€™m willing to give Ultimate (comics) Spider-Man four more issues, but for now, the fourth installment only earns 3 out of 5 Stars.