Writer: Joe Kelly
Artist Ed: McGuiness
Inkers: Mark Morales & Walden Wong
Colourist: Jason Keith & MAtt Yackey
Editor: Jordan D. White and Nick Lowe
Peter is determined to kill itsy Bitsy. Can Wade stop him from making this Grave mistake? Let’s find out
Here we are once again back at a core mythology issue. Returning are the main team of Joe and Ed as we head toward the end of their fantastic run on this title. This issue does seem to be setting the final stage so let’s jump right in and as always (but particularly as we head to the end of this run) “Spoilers ahead all ye who enter here”.
Spider-man is heading out to Kill Itsy Bitsy after she has killed multiple people in Spider-man and Deadpool’s name. Deadpool, learning the truth behind Isty’s origin and that she is a tool by Mephisto to corrupt Parker’s soul, follows in an attempt to save his friends morality. Peter showing he means business stops by Parker Industries and picks up the Superior Spider-man suit to tackle Itsy. Using a nuclear ray on his backpack to inhibit her healing factor Peter takes the lead in this battle. As they fight Deadpool arrives to stop Spider-man but is distracted by a trap Spidey left in Deadpool’s daughters room that is set to broadcast a location beacon to all of Deadpool’s numerous enemies if he doesn’t get there to dismantle it. Deadpool takes off to save his daughter but returns quickly claiming that the Spider-man he knows no matter how over the edge would never put an innocent girl at risk. Deadpool’s faith in Spider-man is rewarded but as Peter goes to place the killing blow on Itsy it becomes apparent that he is going to have to go through wade to do it.
Wow. Not only is this a return of the main team but also it is a return to form of the book as a whole. I do think it’s sad that changing teams and filler issues has broken up this amazing run. It would have been great if this story could have been told straight. Still better to get it than never get it at all. It is also the first story since it has become official that Joe and Ed are wrapping up their run. It is hard for that light not to take impact not only they way they wrap up this story, but their run as a whole.
What I really like here is that in this issue it is very Peter focussed. While a lot of the stories are about the two leads more often than not Deadpool takes centre stage. Here as we focus on Peter’s internal struggle and we see that from his point of view. I haven’t really had much of a chance to talk about this in past reviews but one of my favourite things in a Spider-man comic is what I call “over the edge “ . Based on my memory of an old Overpower card game image of a Battle damaged Peter looking furious. This image captured my imagination. To this day I still love Battle Damaged variants of action figures. I love the idea of Peter being tipped over the edge and not holding back. The reason I like is that it is slightly out of character for Peter to be that angry but it is actually not that out there when you think of how much Peter has gone through and endured. It makes him more human to me that at the worst times anger does get the better of him. These are the times I think of him becoming unstoppable too. Think of the Kingpin fight in back in black as a great example of this. Peter becomes DANGEROUS. Part of what allows me to enjoy this side of Peter is the fact I know he will be able to pull back when the time comes. No matter how tempted he might be he will come to his senses when it truly matters. Great writers though will leave with the sense of “maybe he won’t next time “ . This issue is almost all “over the Edge” Peter so I was lapping up nearly the whole thing.
I loved the twist of thebooby trap in Deadpool’s daughters room. This might go down as one of my favourite SM/DP moments. Hell it is one of my recent favourite Spider-man moments across the board. It shows Peter is still smart. He anticipated Deadpool and a weakness, which is no easy find. Deadpool in this moment is every Fan-person when he returns yelling at Spider-man “I know you… you won’t do this”. One of Peter’s greatest flaws is how he underestimates how much faith other characters have in him. Of course there was no trap their. Spider-man was bluffing to get Deadpool away. Our fandom is rewarded here like Deadpool’s. Knowing even that even over the edge points, there is certain things even spidey wont do but a part of you had doubt is top notch characterization. There is also a nice symbology here as Spider-man won’t kill Deadpool’s daughter but Itsy Bitsy has claimed to be the Daughter of Spider-man and Deadpool. Foreshadow?
Now I am a fan of Dan SLott’s Supriour Spider-man run. So I was pleased to see that used to great effect here. Practically the use in the book is for the spider-arm canon. Symbolically for it is used to show a darker Spider-man capable of pushing things further. Also it is just nice to see it again as aesthetically I do like the costume
So now we know Mephisto’s end game is to get Peter to kill… it begs the question of why? Does the man Peter killed already not count. Does killing someone mean your soul will go to Mephisto or just Hell? Does “justified” killing count. I have faith in Joe so I’m sure as we see more of the Big M’s game plan we will understand more.
I want to run through an airport and scream at the boarding gate “I LOVE YOU ED McGuiness ART” . I truly do. It is my happy place. I have stated it in many reviews. Once again I do have to give credit for Ed’s uses of Juxtaposition between the two leads and villain, breaking the page in a way to showcase all of them.
I really dug the cover here being homage of Maximum Carnage. It is a classic image despite what you think of the story within the pages it is a powerful image and great piece to tribute here.
All in All
This was a great issue. I probably wouldn’t recommend it as a starting point for anyone but great for anyone who has stuck with the title or is looking to return after TDDU crossover of last two issues.