The End of The Superior Spider-Man begins here. Can Otto withstand the onslaught of the Goblins? Or will he be just another crumpled Spider in the Goblins Wake.
Writer: Dan Slott
Pencils: Giuseppe Camuncoli
Inks: John Dell
Colors: Antonio Fabela
Letterer Chris Eliopoulos
Cover: Giuseppe Camuncoli
Assistant Editor: Ellie Pyle
Editor: Stephen Wacker
THE STORY: Thirty One days after the Goblin war of last issue a sad Spider-Man stares into the burning remains of his city wondering what could possibly have gone wrong. This question is soon answered as Spidey sees the Brooklyn Bridge which has been marked by the sign of the true Goblin..THE GREEN GOBLIN. We then cut to Peter Parker wandering around his shattered mind-scape with naught but 31 memories in which to keep him company. Peter spies Otto studying the death of Gwen Stacey, when he suddenly gets an idea; he heads to an old memory of Otto and Peter fighting and attempts to jump into Otto’s memories. Needless to say it doesn’t work exactly as he planned….Peter gets sucked into his past and loses focus of himself deep within Otto’s subconscious.
In the real world Otto has begun obsessing over his Spider-bots (much to the worriment of Ana Maria) and realizes that the cameras on the Spider-bots have been HACKED. He decides to visit Uatu Jackson the creator of the facial recognition software used in the Spider-bots as Spider-Man (after he continuously ignores his traditional forms of communication). He then works on discovering the bug in his system with Uatus help. Once discovering the bug they trace it back to Goblin’s secret lair, Green Goblin obviously planning for this confronts Otto and they sit down to have a nice little chat. Green Goblin reveals that he is well aware that Octavius has gained control of Spider-Man and even goes so far as to compliment him on his well-executed plan. He offers Otto partnership but Otto will play second fiddle to no man and flips the table in frustration. Green Goblin blows him up! Okay well he actually blows up his hologram, it is revealed that Otto is using his Stunneresque (now a real word) technology to transport himself there. The Goblin proving once again he plans for everything decides to destroy Spider-island. HOLY MOLY things are sure heating up now! Oh and Jameson wants to make sure Otto knows the Spider slayers were his idea…presumably by recreating his first Spider slayer by having his face on it.
SLOTTS PLOT: Now this is the kind of issue I’ve been eagerly anticipating. It has Otto finally realizing his faults and seeing his life crumble around him. His over exuberant attitude has come back to bite him in the rear. This issue is like Slott read my mind he gave me everything I could want from this meeting. From the first appearance of the Green Goblin in Superior Spider-Man I knew he would eventually confront Spock with the knowledge he was Otto. I had the panel of the Green Goblin saying “Octavius” etched into my mind long before this issue. We all knew it had to happen; no one is more apt to destroy Spiders life than a Goblin. All the complaints I had about the Goblin fight last issue were corrected in this one. Although now I just really REAAAAALLLLY hope it is actually Norman under the mask. The Goblin sign on the Brooklyn Bridge is the Goblins way of letting Otto know that while he may have taken Peters mind, the Goblin took his heart. Two of Spider-Man’s biggest foes having a conversation just gets me super excited. A battle of the wits is always superior to that of brawn.
I loved the writing of some Spider-Man side characters this issue. Uatu is fantastic as he plays the role that Curt Conner’s used to play, the scientist character that Spider-Man depends on for guidance and support. Whether Otto would ever actively admit it or not without Uatu he would never have found the Goblin that quickly. It is nice to just see him ask for help for a change without acting all SUPERIOR. Ana Maria is as always delightful in this issue although she doesn’t do much, asides from act in an Aunt May role worrying about Otto’s health; still it’s nice to see her while she is still around as I fear one of the major consequences of this story will be her death.
The only real flaw I had with this story is Jonah’s small subplot with the Spider-Slayers. I never thought I would say this but seriously haven’t we had enough Spider-Slayers give it a rest. Jonah seems awfully keen on recreating the moniker that stole his Wife’s life a few issues back and has given him a lot of problems in the past. Although to be fair Jonah has always been one of Spider-Man’s biggest foes so with his insistence that Otto must know it is he who has made the Spider-Slayers it will give us the rare chance to see Green Goblin, Doctor Octopus, and J. Jonah Jameson (Spider-Man’s top three villain’s) duke it out in one awesome issue.
The fact that this story takes place 31 days after the last issue leaves future Spider-Man writers an ample opportunity to revisit this lost month in the Superior Spider-Man saga. I wouldn’t be surprised if in five or ten years we get a mini-series or flashback issue exploring this unforeseen month in Otto’s history. It was a nice little present for future writers of the series. Another little number related trivia Peter has 31 memories left, and they specifically mention that this is a story 727 issues in the making. This is leading me to believe that once Amazing Spider-Man reaches issue twenty they will count Superior’s numbers as Amazing and make an Amazing Spider-Man #750 issue.
ART: Camuncoli does some great work in this issue, redoing classic Spider-Man scenes, and weaving in a lot of detail into the splash pages. Asides from Ryan Stegman I think that Camuncoli has consistently delivered the best artwork on the series, and am glad to see he is going to help finish it off. There were no inconsistencies in his work and on the whole it was beautiful and engrossing.
ODDITIES: Spider-Man being dropped into Otto’s mind in a trippy panel which gave me horrifying flashbacks to Marvel Knights Spider-Man. Otto brooding at the top of a building while watching the city burn…..you know Otto you could like I don’t know STOP some of the crime. Otto refers to Kingsley as a coward, under what basis can he claim that? Have they even met before? Sure Kingsley does plenty of fakes but he is never one to turn down a fight. Unless perhaps Otto is mistaking Macendale’s run as the Hobgoblin with Kingsley’s because Macedenale was most definitely a coward. THIRTY-ONE MEMORIES….that leaves out at least 696 issues of Amazing Spider-Man (although at least two memories shown Wheatcakes last issue, and the Burglar are from Amazing Fantasy 15 so there may be even MORE issues of Amazing lost) no longer remembered by Parker. Is this Slotts way of only leaving in the Spider continuity that he likes? If this lack of memories carries over to Amazing it will make Spider-Man team up books a lot more meaningful as it will essentially be his reintroductions to most of the Marvel universe.
BEST BACKGROUND CHARACTER: Yeah if you thought that Eight Ball was ridiculous last issue wait till you get a look at this week’s background character. THE UNICORN….yes you read that right THE UNICORN. First appearing in Tales of Suspense #56 this Iron Man villain has the ability to shoot out of the blaster in his helmet which kind of looks like a horn…I guess. SERIOUSLY! THERE HAVE BEEN THREE OF THESE GUYS AND THIS IS THE FOURTH….how….why….in this age of Brony culture a villain like the Unicorn is destined to make his comeback. Let’s just hope we get to see this guy in action in a later issue. The Unicorn can be seen this issue (along with Eight Ball) in the full page introduction of the Green Goblin.
ON THE NEXT SUPERIOR SPIDER-MAN: STUFF EXPLODES, SPIDER-SLAYERS FAIL, AND PETER DISCOVERS THE HIDDEN 32nd MEMORY OF HIS BATTLE WITH THE HYPNO HUSTLER. Oh and the Unicorn and Eight Ball team up to demolish the entire Marvel Universe.