Amazing Spider-Man #4 Review: AndrewRoebucks Take


It’s all been leading up to this. Who is Silk, and what will she hold for the future of Spider-Man?


WRITER: Dan Slott
PENCILER: Humberto Ramos
INKER: Victor Olazaba
COLORS: Edgar Delgado
LETTERER: Chris Eliopoulos
EDITOR: Nick Lowe

PLOT: The issue begins with Peter testing out some anti-electro equipment in his lab, which is going well till he gets an Avengers alert on his phone. He swings off into action stating happily to all of his cohorts that he is no longer mind controlled. Then the watchers eye explodes and Peter gets the secret revealed that another person was bitten by the spider. He goes to where Ezekiel hid her from the world, and frees her. She then comes out they have a small fight in which it’s established she’s better than him in all ways but strength. She reveals she was hidden from the world in order to prevent Morlun from coming back and killing everyone. Peter explains Morlun is dead, and she swings off happily to enjoy her new life. She makes up a quick dumb looking costume declares herself as silk, and the pair venture out to her old apartment where her family lived. Meanwhile on some random planet place Morlun stands up and makes some dumb speech about returning to kill the spiders. It’s revealed her parents have moved away, and Spider-Man says he fought Morlun twice and killed him both times. She attacks Spider-Man again, they fight, and then they kiss for no reason at all.

Oh, and the Black Cat sneaks into Parker Industries to kidnap Sajani.

STORY: Now I have been relatively kind to Slott’s run in the past, it has some great issues, and some interesting storylines. I’ve loved Learning To Crawl, and Superior was an enjoyable romp. So know when I say this is one of the amazing-spider-man-4-preview-1-101526worst Spider-Man issues I’ve read in a long time it’s not the words of a hater, but a critic.

THIS ISSUE IS BAD FOLKS, THE ONE MORE DAY TYPE OF BAD, THE TYPE OF BAD THAT MAKES YOU WISH FOR THE NINETIES BACK. Silk makes no sense, her costume is dumb, her abilities problematic, and her abilities are the same route crappy storytelling premise that Spider-Man suffers from in spades. Her powers are better than Spider-Man’s in every way, it’s almost like they’re opposites. You know who else was invented with this premise: Venom, Carnage, Toxin, Scorpion, Morlun, Scarlet Spider, Kaine, Superior Spider-Man and countless others. Spider-Man already has established rogues gallery villains that are better than him in abilities. It is a boring storytelling trope that adds nothing to the story. On top of this they make the truly asinine plot device that makes them “kiss” at the end of this issue. I don’t care what mystical mumbo jumbo “drew” them together it has no place in this storyline. With Original Sin we finally get a Venom Spidey can make out with.

Also we get the true problem with Slott’s characterization of Spider-Man, he doesn’t separate the two personas. When Peter is at his lab he acts exactly the same as he does as Spider-Man there is no real separation. Spider-Man jokes yes, but when the Avengers call for a serious world ending crisis he doesn’t go out happily, he puts on his game face. Spider-Man uses jokes as a way of easing tension, and angering his enemies but his use of humor shouldn’t define him as a character. The revelation that Silk exists should not be the impetus for him to completely leave The Avengers and focus on his own needs. They keep saying Spider-Man is back, but my Spider-Man left a long time ago.
amazing-spider-man-4-preview-2-101527ART:The only thing saving this book from an F is the semi-decent artwork. The artwork doesn’t offend you as much as the story, but Ramos draws the weirdest web duck feet I’ve ever seen. Best panel of the issue is the Watcher’s eye exploding which I’m pretty sure is lifted directly from Original Sins #2.

ODDITIES: The Hulks lip, what is the deal with the Hulk’s lip it looks so weird, and off kilter. How did Morlun end up in some weird Space Planet? Why wouldn’t Morlun just finish the job with Spider-Man if he was still out there? Why would Silk make him more angry? Why does Morlun suck so bad? Why did they kiss? Why Why Why Why Why Why why!!!!!!!



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(11) Comments

  1. Al

    @#3-Excuse me ‘Luke’ But the Sentinel tie in issues were actually fucking awesome issues which provided excellent action and character moments for Peter and Ben as they bonded. Yeah something like that WOULD be awesome. When the 90s were on form they kicked ass. As for the rhyme and reason of the event, umm Onslaught attacked New York city...Spider-Man and his friends kinda LIVE there.As for reviewing the start of the arc WTF is he supposed to do? Give it an A on the basis that it’s not yet complete. He HAS to go issue by issue because that’s all the content he has at any given time.Peter Parker jokes but he isn’t quipping like he would as Spider-Man.I will thank you but many people here DID rage when they did what they did with Felicia.

  2. Shifter

    Dan Slott created the character of Silk...I doubt he created her just to kill her off.However, I'm beginning to suspect that OMD was done in the first place so that what's happening now could happen.Don't tell me that Dan Slott didn't have this Silk character in mind when OMD was put into effect and he took over as writer soon after.You have look, personality, and background to consider to form characters...and that takes time...sometimes even years.

  3. QuilSniv

    @8- Actually, if that was pulled off well, and on Slott's track record we know that's impossible, that would make a really emotional story. If Peter found out that Cindy was pregnant, then it could possibly create some stress for him to add it on Mt. Responsibility, along with the duties of the Avengers, Parker Industries and recovering from the fumble that was Superior Spidey. Then Morlun comes along and kills Cindy when Peter is off working, and Peter, racked with the guilt of having caused Cindy's death by (sort of, he didn't know he was still alive) lying to her about Morlun dying, and having caused the death of his unborn child directly, Peter just shuts down; he gives Sajani leadership of Parker Industries while still working there, ignores calls from Avengers, and won't talk to his family in fear of Morlun going after them. And, after having a talk with MJ or another love intrest (I'd prefer MJ, but Carol Danvers would be nice) or even another pep talk from Black Widow, since she apparently "knows how he feels" from Ends of the Earth, resumes his work once again to make sure that his 'no bony dies' sha-bang becomes his trademark. Until Spider-Verse of course.Just my paragraph long take on the matter.

  4. Stillanerd

    @#6 AndrewRoebuck -- Oh, I wouldn't thing would go that far, what with Marvel's previous track record of preventing or retconning Peter fathering a child out of a belief that, just like his previous marriage to Mary Jane, him being a father would make him "too old." And with that in mind, if Cindy does become pregnant by Peter at some point in the future, then that would practically be a guarantee she'd be killed off, IMO.

  5. AndrewRoebuck - Post author

    @1 + @2 thanks for giving your points in a polite and interesting way!

  6. AndrewRoebuck - Post author

    @3 I expected a response like this which is why I decided to put my little kicker at the beginning about this being a poor issue critically. I'm not dropping the book, I'm not decrying the whole arc. I am criticizing the issue. I am all for friendly debate but the way to discuss a review is not to call someone a "raging fanboy". If you disagree with my review then write out your opinion, and have an intelligent conversation. For example last review I gave a higher grade than most, and plenty of people disagreed with me. The difference from their approach? They did it respectfully and were interested in starting a conversation, not inciting a rage.@4 Thank you Mr. Berryman you got what I was trying to say about the humor!@5 Oh god I really hope they don't make spider-babies because that might have me go insane. Good research though!

  7. Stillanerd

    Great review as always, Andrew. And very good point about the proper usage of Spidey's sense of humor. To play a little Devil's Advocate with regards to why Spidey and Silk kissed at the end, the issue does say that it's their spider-sense which is literally bringing them together. And let's remember what the spider-sense actually is--it's a natural defense mechanism which triggers an instinctive survival instinct. And guess what else is considered to be an instinctive survival instinct? Reproduction. Which mean, if I was reading this issue correctly, both Peter and Cindy's spider-sense is essentially telling them to start making some babies in order to perpetuate the "survival of the species," so to speak. Still agree with you, however, that the whole notion that some mystical, magical mumbo-jumbo made them almost immediately attracted to each other physically, emotionally, and sexually has no business being in a Spider-Man comic.

  8. George Berryman

    @3 - "Peter Parker never joked? Ever? Really? In the entirety of Spider-Man history?That's when I knew you hadn't actually bothered to really read the review. Either that or you were just ignoring what Andrew actually said about Peter and humor, which was spot-on:<blockquote>"Spider-Man jokes yes, but when the Avengers call for a serious world ending crisis he doesn’t go out happily, he puts on his game face. Spider-Man uses jokes as a way of easing tension, and angering his enemies but his use of humor shouldn’t define him as a character."</blockquote>"Stop acting like raging fanboys."This same reviewer that you accuse of being a "ranging fanboy" has actually given positive grades for the earlier issues of the ASM reboot. Including an A- for the previous issue.

  9. Luke

    For the love of whatever you love, have some patience, geez. An arc isn't going to explain all of this in a single issue and if it did, it would be a crappy exposition-fest. You don't even see how Peter reacts to the kiss and the other review already claims this is somehow "worse than Carlie Cooper". Da flying f? What called that for? What is it with you people that suddenly put your panties in such a twist? I didn't see anyone rage this much when Black Cat was "assasinated" and that was way more legitimate.Peter Parker never joked? Ever? Really? In the entirety of Spider-Man history? And if you really had a problem with that why not address it a few issues ago when he joked far more? And that was explained that he's trying his best ot undermine the "Bad Boss" image SpOck left in his employees. I suppose that no longer counts? Or is consistent characterization suddenly bad now?As for Spidey leaving the Avengers to fight their battle - that was honestly the best part. I don't care about Original Sin, I don't care about whatever happens to their cosmic crap, that never interested me in Marvel. So I incredibly appreciated that the forced tie-in angle had been gotten rid of as soon as possible. You want the 90s back? You want Onslaught Impact tie-ins when Spider-Man fights some Sentinels for no rhyme or reason? You want to waste an entire issue on that? I sure don't.You're better than that, please. Stop acting like raging fanboys.

  10. Kit Thermo

    Bring Back Ryan Stegman, His art reminds me of McFarlane and Bagley as collaboration in one. I say give Dan Slott a chance with this story line. Hell there were some issues that I did not like in the Superior Spider Man saga as well but overall one of the great spider stories ever.

  11. Big John

    Wow. . .I had a completely different reaction to this comic than you two did. I loved that we're getting the promise of seeing how Morlun comes back. I really liked the references to JMS' first story (he remains my favorite Spidey-Writer). And while I still find the character assassination of Felicia Hardy deplorable, and hope that the kiss at the end of the issue doesn't lead to yet ANOTHER post-OMD sexual escapade, this is, in my opinion, the strongest issue of ASM since the relaunch. I'm totally with you on Peter's characterization during the Avengers scene and the predictable nature of Silk's character, but I don't mind CIndy. She won me over.

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