The Extremely Late Review
Writer: Marc Guggenheim
Penciler: Marco Checchetto, Luke Ross and Rick Magyar
Inker: Marco Checchetto, Luke Ross and Rick Magyar
Story Title: Who Was Ben Reilly Part Two
Kaine vs. Peter. Peter catches a cab. Flashback with dino D.N.A. Raptor takes hostages.
Overall this wasn’t a bad issue. I would go so far as to say that I liked it. I still don’t have the emotional connection to the Clone Saga that would make me giddy like a school girl like I would be with other characters and storylines but I can see where fans of that storyline would dig what is going on here.
The fight between Kaine and Peter was the highlight of the issue though I will admit that I am such a sucker for fisticuffs. This scene was well paced and Guggenheim managed to nail down the Spider-Man banter. I have to say that the catching a cab gag made me chuckle. Maybe I have been so burned on this title lately that anything remotely resembling good would get me going but in all honesty the writing and art really came together in this scene. It was made all the better by Peter telling the passenger to not forget to check their belongings and ask for a receipt.
Speaking of pacing I was quite taken with the scene in Peter’s apartment where he was looking for Michelle. Sure it had the same stupid “Michelle’s abusive and man that’s funny because a woman hitting a man is humorous” vibe but at the same time I thought Guggenheim wrote some good dialogue between Peter and Michelle. You could see Peter’s concern and you could also see by the end of the scene that she began to realize that he wasn’t just trying to mess with her. I know that Michelle as a character has been damaged, possibly beyond repair but there was a glimmer of hope for her here.
I know someone will come along and screw it up so I am not getting my hopes up.
I still hate Screwball. I really do. I see no point to this character and all it does is date this story for future readers. I am curious what readers ten years from now will think of this. Maybe they’ll look at it like contemporary readers look at some of the dated elements from the nineties. This is Marvel’s way, though, so I guess I can’t complain about the current references too much. Screwball, however, is just useless to this story. Unless something happens later to bring her into the actual plot I see no reason she had to be in this issue.
I actually enjoyed this issue, which surprised the heck out of me because I was expecting things to go further south. I don’t think this was a good thing though because if a book has your expectations so low that even an average issue makes you happy something is wrong across the board. I managed to get emotionally involved in the story though, which was cool. The flashbacks were used to good effect, especially towards the end of the issue. I can’t say that I am looking forward to the next issue but at the same time I am kind of curious how all of this is going to go down.
3 out of 5 webheads.