Superior Spider-Man #30 Review: AndrewRoebuck’s take

Superior_Spider-Man_Vol_1_30The identity of the Goblin is revealed, or so we think.

“Goblin Nation, Part 4”
PLOT: Dan Slott
SCRIPT: Christos Gage
PENCILS: Giuseppe Camuncoli
INKS: John Dell and Terry Pallot
COLOR: Antonio Fabela
LETTERER: Chris Eliopoulos
EDITOR: Nick Lowe

MAIN PLOT: Starting the exact moment last issue left off, Otto and Spider-Man 2099 are in battle with the rogue Spider-Slayers. After taking a few out The Goblin begins to unravel his latest plan telling him that the only way he can save Ana Maria is to abandon Spider-Man 2099 to fight the slayers on his own. 2099 calls his bluff but Otto is already long gone reminiscing about his failure stating he is not the master planner. He wonders to himself what would Peter do as he races towards the Goblin underground. Meanwhile Jonah is sowing the seeds of his own destruction as he tries to deal with the fallout from the Spider-Slayer mishap. He attempts to blame Oscorp for the deadly mishap but is debunked when a reporter gets in contact with Liz Allan who promptly lets the public know she did not endorse the early deployment of the machines.SUPSM2013030-int3-2-02e71 Switching to Allan’s perspective we see her interrupted by a tired looking Normie Osborn claiming to have forgotten something inside her office, Allan exclaims she is busy running a company and cannot be interrupted. All the while behind her back she hides a GOBLIN MASK…dun dun dun.

Peter Parker inside of Otto’s mind is living the last few issues of Amazing Spider-Man still under the delusion that he is Otto. In a triumphant scene it is Peter’s final act in Amazing Spider-Man #700 that saves him. He is flooded with all of his heroic memories, and even his downfalls. With a renewed sense of self Peter is back, ready to reclaim his mind.

Meanwhile Otto has his internal monologue interrupted by Menace who leads him to their hostage. Amy Chen the little girl Otto rescued way back in Superior Spider-Man #8. For a moment Otto hesitates, when a new and improved Peter Parker pops up and tells him to jump. Otto saves the girl and Peter demands his mind back telling him he will do whatever it takes. Otto agrees and without a fight he goes back to Parker industries. It is here Otto removes all of his memories, and relinquishes control back to Peter. Otto is now gone, with naught but a tear remaining. Peter the real Peter then goes to his closet and grabs the classic red and blue costume. Stating “now its my turn”.

STORY: Holy crap this issue is Amazing, Spectacular, Sensational, Web Of – okay maybe not Web of but you get my point this is a damn fine issue. It encapsulates everything that has made Superior such a fun read, and delivers some huge surprises. I did not expect Liz Allan at all, no one expected Liz Allan. Everyone was guessing all kinds of crazy theories and we never once saw what was right in front of our eyes. This is a big deal, Liz has been in Spider books from the very beginning this is a Lee Ditko, issue #1 character. While the timing is off for her to be the sole Goblin for all of Goblin Nation she still clearly had a large role in this event. With her past characterization this isn’t an unbelievable reveal. I recently read Spectacular Spider-Man #200 and in that book she was very mentally unstable. Liz Allan has always had a tough life, and it is believable that eventually she’d snap.

While I could talk for pages on the Liz Allan reveal I do need to give some space for the tragic end of Otto as Spider-Man. He had a good run, and he did accomplish some fantastic feats. The idea of him wiping out all of his memories to fully sacrifice himself for Peter is truly touching. It shows that deep down Otto knows that what he did to Peter was wrong. His biggest tragedy however is dying without ever seeing the end of Goblin Nation. He doesn’t go with peace he goes with the knowledge that Ana Maria is still in danger, and that all of his accomplishments have been undone. It is a tragic end to a tragic character. It was interesting

 for him to give Peter an honest view of himself, and an honest view of Parker. He really speaks to the core of the Spider-Man mythology. This issue also makes a lot of my complaints in previous reviews seem sort of silly as it all ties together really well.

The only miniscule complaint about this issue is the fact that Iron Man is berating Cardiac for Illegal medicine practices. HEY TONY…THAT THING IN YOUR HEART? YEAH THAT IS EXACTLY THE TYPE OF EXPERIMENTS HE IS DOING FOR THESE PATIENTS. It’s just there to set up an Amazing Spider-Man story down the line. Along with this it seems that Jameson is finally going to stop being Mayor. I figured that this was only going to be temporary but it is curious to think with Jameson will go from here. He can’t really go back to being a newspaper publisher, so where does Jonah go from here?

ART: Perfect artwork that has one of the greatest splash pages I’ve ever seen. The sequence of Peter coming back is not only inspiring it’s breathtaking. I want to get a huge version of the sequence and hang it on my wall it’s that good! Along with this Camuncoli captures every page with an expertise that he has shown throughout this series. Camuncoli has been one of the standout aspects of Superior that really made the series work. He is quickly cementing himself as a Spider artist to remember.


ODDITIES: See that tear Parker collects at the end of the issue, yeah that is going to play a part in the return of Otto in a future storyline down the road…believe me. Where is the B-list villain army that the Goblins got from issue #26? They haven’t appeared at all during any of the big showdowns, so hopefully we see more of the Eight-Ball and Unicorn soon. That tablet must have some pretty terrific speakers. Is Thor shown fighting something completely unrelated to Goblin nation, or is he actually the one fighting the B-list villains? The dialogue makes it difficult to figure out just what he is doing.

BEST BACKGROUND CHARACTER: Normie Osborn whose brief appearance serves as almost a “screw you internet” from Dan Slott. I certainly had all my money bet on the wrong horse for this mystery, good one Slott.

ON THE NEXT SUPERIOR SPIDER-MAN:  The one the only, the TRUE Superior Spider-Man returns to whoop some Goblin butt!



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(33) Comments

  1. hornacek

    @31 - Did they ever explain why Norman was in the hospital? I thought I remember someone here asking (when that issue came out) why he was there instead of jail, and why there were no guards or special restraints or whatever. It's like the only person guarding was Barney Fife (look it up, kids) who was goofing off in the cafeteria, and because Norman was in a "a coma" no one thought to handcuff him to the bed or lock the window.

  2. hornacek

    @29 - do you mean the scene with the empty hospital bed with Norman's name on it in ASM #698ish? I think someone said he was still in police custody but was in the hospital for medical reasons i.e. a coma. But it's been awhile since I read that issue, but I'm pretty sure he was still under arrest and wouldn't be going to the hospital under his real name for a face-lift.

  3. Jason

    Not knowing who Mason Banks is, that's just one of the cliffhangers to draw people into Amazing Vol 3. That earlier scene where we see Norman back when Otto took over Peter's body, perhaps he was getting some plastic surgery done.

  4. Jack Brooks

    It's too bad that this whole series (which I found entertaining, even though the whole story depended on nearly everyone doing stupid things) kind of ended with a fizzle. Ock limply surrenders and fades away, we don't find out really who this Goblin is, MJ continues to speak and act wildly out of character, Carlie as Monster slaughtered scores of men but gets to just move away....

  5. hornacek

    @26 - Yeah, so now Peter has two defeats hanging over him: - Mephisto stealing his marriage and rewriting ~5 years of his life - Doc Ock killing him and stealing his life.Did Peter come back to defeat either of these two foes? No. The first one he doesn't remember, but every moment is a moment that Mephisto is laughing at his victory. And the second, he's only alive again because Otto said "Eh, you can have your life back, I don't want it anymore, it's too hard." So now every moment from here on Peter has to think "I'm only alive again because Otto let me live, I didn't take my life back from the man that stole it, he gave it to me like it was his to give."Marvel seems determined to make the readers think Peter is a loser and doesn't deserve anything.

  6. Al

    I really think Peter needed to beat Ock's ass to reclaim his life. I'm sorry but this thing is passing Otto off as a flawed character who realises his short comings and graciously hands the mantle back to it's rightful reality he was an evil douchbag.

  7. Jason

    YES!!! PETER PARKER IS BACK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Liz Allen as the Goblin? Definitely did not see that coming. Kind of curious what her motivation is - the destruction of her marriage perhaps?

  8. Jesse

    Reviewer: You re seriously underestimating Doc Ock if you truly believe he is gone. This is the guy that wouldnt accept death as his very body was withering away. Im almost 100% sure he kept some small part of himself in tact. Just a matter of time before we see it.

  9. Enigma_2099

    Peter: Well, time to start trying to fix the s***storm you've made of my life, Otto ol' boy! That should last me a good comics run. I wonder if Felicia will agree to help out with that? Then I'll go check on Mary Ja...... who the heck is this Ana person that keeps calling me?*facepalm*

  10. irishfan

    nature of art i suppose, everyone has their own interpretation personal and true to them, the mature and open minded part of me says that while i do not share your opinion i thank you for sharing your interpretation and world view with me. While the fanatical part of myself says, your wrong.hope the next issue works for you, bad ending's have an extra stomach punch given the time invested, a lot of punches next issue i would suspect. Peter is either going to beat the shit out of a woman or a kid or an old man, punches and issues of concious, great character to be sure.

  11. hornacek

    @19 - It didn't have to be a physical altercation between the two, but, it just doesn't feel like Peter beat Otto. It's like they're two football teams and Team A won because Team B didn't show up and had to forfeit. Yes, it counts as a win for Team, but they didn't actually beat the other team. I wanted a battle between the two of them - physical, mental, emotional, whatever, but Peter had to triumph over Otto and prove himself the better man. This way ... it's like Otto gave him his life back as a gift. It's not a gift, Otto stole it from Peter, Peter shouldn't be accepting it back from Otto like Otto is doing him a favor, he should be taking it from him, he should be ripping it out of Otto's hands.

  12. irishfan

    hornacek exactly otto gave up, peter wouldn't, character. sacrafice, suffering, grace under pressure peter is acknowledged as the better spiderman. I taught it would happen at the penultimate moment with the green goblin with his hand around superiors neck or something with otto admitting he could not beat the goblin, and then handing the reigns over, happened a bit earlier than i presumed but nice, nicer than what i was guessing.Had to be resolved with character, thats what the book is about, what is peter parker to spiderman if it was solved with strength or magic or science it would just prove that peter is smarter stronger or has better friends than otto. This way its something more.

  13. Stillanerd

    Oh boy. Based on the responses I'm seeing here and elsewhere, you guys are really not like what I have to say about this issue. Nevertheless, great job as always Andrew. Although, I wouldn't count out Normie as the Green Goblin just yet.

  14. SpiderHam

    #11It genuinely warmed my heart when Otto shed a tear, even though I spent the first half of this series hating him, watching him accept that the only responsible thing to do with his power was to bring Peter back. I also liked how during the train rescue sequence, Otto and Peter's roles were reversed from issue #9.My only gripe with the story was that Spider-Man 2099 has been a complete non-character since his introductory story, he's added absolutely nothing to Goblin Nation.

  15. hornacek

    @14 - Yes it's a win for Peter, but it doesn't sound like he "beat" Otto, it sounds like Otto gave up. I don't want Peter to reclaim his life because Otto gave up and handed it back to him, I wanted him to fight for it and take it back.To quote Apollo Creed: "Man, I won! But I didn't beat him!"

  16. irishfan

    hornacek. its a win for peter because aside from strength and agility and intelligence he has this mad constant sorrow thing and sense of responsibility to others that when push comes to shove drives him to give 100%Superior spiderman had the strength and the agility and the intelligence but also a strong sense of entitlement that when push came to shove he gave up.any battle or contest was one of character.

  17. Gary

    " See that tear Parker collects at the end of the issue, yeah that is going to play a part in the return of Otto in a future storyline down the road"Doubtful. If you notice, in the double splash page when Ock's memories are being deleted and he's walking with Peter and telling him about why he's doing this, in the corner you see him sitting in the chair as his memories are being erased, and when he starts to think about Anna Maria a tear runs down his cheek. That tear was shed before Ock was gone. So I think it's just a tear.If anything sets up Doctor Octopus' return in a future story it's his body missing from his grave (shown the issue when Carlie was first captured by the Goblins). The crazy thing about that is when he died in that body, Peter had both his and Otto's memories. So if Otto somehow is resurrected in his old body, it will be with both the memories of Otto Octavius and Peter Parker.

  18. Jack Brooks

    It sounds like Liz was just holding a Goblin mask, not wearing it. Normie is exhausted? Maybe from all the antics of Goblin Nation. Why isn't it likely that Liz found the mask?

  19. Gary

    #8Agreed. Otto erasing himself and giving Peter his life back was a better ending than Peter having to fight Otto. Otto finally learned what it truly meant to be a hero in those final pages. When he realized being a hero meant giving up everything for other people. He gave up Anna Maria so Peter could have his life back and save the city. Because Otto accepted the only one who could do it was Peter.And I teared up a little when Otto looked back at Peter and told him he knew Peter would save Anna Maria, because he was the one true Superior Spider-man.

  20. Gary

    I thought it was great.I loved the moment when Otto finally accepted that he wasn't worthy of being Spider-man anymore. It was after saving the little girl when he was being read the riot act by Peter that he realized he wasn't better than Peter. He was almost willing to let the little girl die out of fear that if he tried to save her he might get hurt or killed and be unable to save his girlfriend. But when he realized Peter was willing to sacrifice everything (including exposing himself and risking the possibility of being erased again) to save the little girl, that was the moment he realized he needed to let Peter have his life back. Otto's final moments were the most heroic thing he's done since becoming Spider-man. And you guys talk as if Otto isn't going in peace and is leaving knowing his girlfriend might die, but that's the opposite.Otto died knowing that Peter Parker would be able to undo everything he caused and he knew that Peter Parker would be able to save the person Otto loved most.And I loved the panel when Peter woke up in his body and wiped Otto's final tear from his face. And the silent panels of him putting on the costume was the icing on the cake. Otto died a hero, no matter how "anticlimactic" it looked.

  21. hornacek

    Peter relives Doc Ock's last days and it makes him remember that he's Peter Parker ... so he's right back where he started as Ghost Peter? Seems like a busy-work plot to give Peter something to do until he's needed in the main plot.Peter gets his body back, this should make me feel great! And yet it feels ... hollow? I didn't read the issue so I'm just going by the review, but it sounds like Otto basically said "Here, I beat you but you can have your body back, I'm done with it" so it doesn't seem like Peter won in the battle to reclaim his life, Otto just gave up. This doesn't sound like a win for Peter. He needed to win in the battle with Otto. A win by a forfeit is technically a win, but in this case, it doesn't feel like it.It reminds me of something Kevin said years ago about the deal with Mephisto - even if Marvel had Peter and MJ get married again it wouldn't be right because there will always be that deal with Mephisto hanging over them - Peter HAS to reverse the deal, otherwise Mephisto wins.

  22. SpiderHam

    The climax of the issue got me. I was hoping to see Pete and Otto throw down in the mindscape again, but that ending was actually really beautifully done. The full page spread of Pete in the classic costume at the end is pretty damn cool too.

  23. Dapperfex

    I'm fairly certain that Peter was kind of just holding the tear at the end there, mulling and reflecting over the events that brought him and Otto to where they are now. I was kind of hoping for a more drag-out-smack-down ending to Supes Spider, with Peter beating and back handing him to take back his rightful place as Spider-Man, but it was a very interesting close to Otto and his character so I can say I still enjoyed it. As for the Gobby reveal, it didn't really hit me at first. I don't think I even realized it was Liz till I read your review after finishing the issue. Then it kind of just came up and tapped me on the shoulder. Still a little bewildered by it. Not really nay or yay on it, but it's certainly an interesting route to take. Looking forward to more from Team Spider over at Marvel and the crawlspace reviewers, of course.

  24. ryan3178

    Well said, I agree with pretty much everything you said. As I pointed out in my review, I just can't take the Avengers written like that (Iron Man especially). However, what happened with Otto putting Peter back in charge by erasing himself. That was a fine moment. I think Liz just discovered who the Goblin really is and that's why she was hiding the mask. Its a final red herring but one that will play in the final issue next month. Too bad we have to wait almost a full month to see how all of this is going to end.

  25. TheOfficialRossatron

    Wait...if there's no more Doc Ock, how's all the damage he caused to Peter's life gonna be restored to normal ?!

  26. Phantom Roxas

    So… Otto sacrifices himself, giving Peter his body back? I was kind of expecting as much, but it's still lame. Sounds like he got off easy.As for Liz being the Green Goblin, that's probably a last-minute red herring. I'm still expecting it to be Normie. Which will also be lame.

  27. Adam T

    I went into this book thinking at least 1 of 2 things should happen.1. The goblin reveal 2. Peter's returnIf neither happened I was going to be mad. Happy to say I agree with Andrew. Great issue.

  28. Nick Katzenberg

    Ock giving up the mantle was so forced and anticlimactic. At least have Anna thrown off the bridge or have him trapped under a bunch of rubble before you make him punk out like that.

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