“More fun than a punch to the tic-tacs!”
Hello friends – George Berryman here, coming out of review retirement momentarily to share my well-informed, completely biased and not at all humble opinions on Amazing Spider-Man Family #1.
It’s a troubling time for Spidey fans right now. We’re more divided than the North and South during the Civil War and we wind up debating sales numbers on Amazing Spider-Man more often than actually talking about the stories. So when Marvel bothers to put out ‘Neutral’ material it’s something both sides can enjoy. Enjoy these small cease-fires when they appear.
First off, It’s important to note that Amazing Spider-Man Family #1 has a printing error that, from what I can tell, made it into every issue. I’m not sure what that does to its collectibility since it’s present in every issue printed. Somehow eleven pages of a OMD/BND/Brandnewverse story made it into the issue, directly after the excellent Mr. & Mrs. Spider-Man story by Tom DeFalco and Ron Frenz. I promptly removed the pages and sent them on to Spider-Man editor Steve Wacker to confirm the printing error and hopefully ensure that this never happens again! Cross your fingers.
Minor Spoilers Below!
Weighing in at a hundred pages and $4.99, this book’s big enough to roll up and smack a hippie with. It’s worth it at that price, too, especially for the great J.M. DeMatteis/Alex Cal story that kicks things off and for the aforementioned DeFalco & Frenz Mr. & Mrs. Spider-Man story. DeMatteis’s story isn’t necessarily earth-shattering or chock full of hot Spidey vs. Villains action. Instead it focuses on Peter Parker’s life not long after Uncle Ben’s death, and how he evolves from a fun loving kid who was seeking adventure into a hero trying to save and help people. It was a pleasant little heart warmer.
Next up is the Mr. & Mrs. Spider-Man, which DeFalco & Frenz kick off with a melee between Spidey, the Lizard and a bunch of sewer gators. The story has a very strong theme running through it of family (as if the name of the issue hasn’t already established that fact for you) including Peter & MJ, the Connors family – and even the Lizard’s family, which is a little freaky. And even better it’s Spidey as he was meant to be – married to MJ – and that’s what’ll keep me coming back. Well coming back quarterly, anyway.
Moving past the Brandnewverse printing error we come to a reprint of Amazing Spider-Man #300, which I already have multiple copies of. But some Spidey fans may still not have this one in their collection, so no damage done really. For those of you scoring at home without a program ASM #300 was a significant issue for Spidey and the Eddie Brock flavor of Venom – this is the first time they go toe-to-toe.
I guess I should mention that there’s an “Amazing Spider-Monkey” story in the book from Karl Kesel. Now normally I like Kesel’s work but the whole Marvel Apes thing seems misguided to me. I didn’t like it when DC did it first with JLApe (almost a decade ago) and seeing the former House of Ideas digging through DC’s trash for book ideas is kind of sad. Seriously, why not just bring back Peter Porker, the Spectacular Spider-Ham? Anyhoo, your mileage may vary!
3.5 out of 5 Webheads. Amazing Spider-Man Family #1 loses a full point for the Brandnewverse printing error and another half-point for the Amazing Spider-Monkey. The rest is very enjoyable.
Thanks for reading Spider-Fans and have a Crawlspastic day!