A Look Back at Amazing Spider-Man #382 (1993)

Disclaimer: This is my original work with details sourced from reading the comic book and doing personal research. Anyone who wants to use this article, in part or in whole, needs to secure first my permission and agree to cite me as the source and author. Let it be known that any unauthorized use of this article will constrain the author to pursue the remedies under R.A. No. 8293, the Revised Penal Code, and/or all applicable legal actions under the laws of the Philippines.

Welcome back superhero enthusiasts, 1990s culture enthusiasts and comic book collectors! Today we go back to the year 1993 and explore a part of the Marvel Comics universe through one of the many tales of the Amazing Spider-Man comic book series.

In my previous retro review, Spider-Man gets involved not only with the Incredible Hulk but also with Doc Samson who has a history of treating the green giant and carries a strong sense of responsibility towards him. Something, however, infected Samson and eventually the Hulk which leads to a new wave of destruction in New York City which itself is still recovering from the chaos of Maximum Carnage.

With those details laid down, here is a look back at Amazing Spider-Man #382, published in 1993 by Marvel Comics with a story written by David Michelinie and drawn by Mark Bagley.  

The cover.

Early story

The story begins with the Hulk (note: infected with the gamma virus which is driving him to violence) striking the pavement hard causing Spider-Man and Doc Samson to move away. After a quick exchange of words with Samson regarding the virus, Spider-Man jumps towards the Hulk and hits his face in an attempt to stop him before he causes any more damage to the city.

Doc Samson desperately tries to contain the Hulk by choking him only to be grabbed and get thrown to a solid structure nearby. Now down on the pavement, Samson notices the Hulk jumping in towards him…

Quality

Mary Jane Parker in trouble with her acting career.

This story is indeed a solid and satisfying conclusion to what was started in issue #381. Not only does this comic book showcase a battle between Spider-Man and the manipulated Hulk, it also highlights Doc Samson’s importance not only as a supporting player but also as a scientist struggling with his responsibility over helping the Hulk. There is a strong sense of burden you will sense in Samson who himself caused a lot of damage when he was infected with the virus before the Hulk got infected by it.

The presentation of the virus/bacterium as the factor behind the chaos is a believable concept that highlights what would happen if people carrying gamma radiation in their bodies get infected by it.

If you are looking for fun, there is a lot of action here with lots of dynamic looking images crafted by Mark Bagley. Yes, you will see action and incidental moments between Spider-Man and the Hulk here and there, with Samson also getting a notable share of the spotlight. How the conflict concluded was cleverly done and ultimately surprising. This is something you readers will have to discover for yourselves.

Conclusion

As Doc Samson goes away, Spider-Man takes on the Hulk.

Amazing Spider-Man #382 (1993) is a well-paced and satisfying conclusion to the events that started in the previous issue. At the time of its release, the comic book highlighted a modern crossover between the Hulk and Spider-Man with Doc Samson inserted as a functional third participant. The concept of the gamma virus/bacterium works well here and added a more science fictional layer to the plot. This comic book is pretty entertaining and the suspense really built-up nicely towards the climax.

Overall, Amazing Spider-Man #382 (1993) is recommended!

+++++

Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below, share this article to others and also please consider making a donation to support my publishing. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me with a private message. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me on Twitter at  @HavenorFantasy as well as on Tumblr at https://carlocarrasco.tumblr.com/ and on Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/authorcarlocarrasco

A Look Back at Amazing Spider-Man #384 (1993)

Disclaimer: This is my original work with details sourced from reading the comic book and doing personal research. Anyone who wants to use this article, in part or in whole, needs to secure first my permission and agree to cite me as the source and author. Let it be known that any unauthorized use of this article will constrain the author to pursue the remedies under R.A. No. 8293, the Revised Penal Code, and/or all applicable legal actions under the laws of the Philippines.

Welcome back superhero enthusiasts, 1990s culture enthusiasts and comic book collectors! Today we go back to the year 1993 and explore a part of the Marvel Comics universe through one of the many tales of the Amazing Spider-Man comic book series.

In my previous retro review, Spider-Man became the new target of The Jury, a team of armored mercenaries founded and led by the father (note: a prominent and powerful man) of one of Venom’s murder victims. Spider-Man was perceived to be responsible for bringing the living alien costume into the world which eventually resulted in the creation of Venom (note: Eddie Brock bonded with the same symbiote) who went on to cause havoc and killed a lot of people.

With those details laid down, here is a look back at Amazing Spider-Man #384, published in 1993 by Marvel Comics with a story by David Michelinie and drawn by Mark Bagley.  

The cover.

Early story

The story begins inside a certain government building in New York City scheduled for renovation. A heavily restrained and drugged Spider-Man was about to have mask taken off by one of The Jury members when their founder General Taylor intervened and insisted that they keep their honor. Spider-Man is up for questioning and scrutinization in a makeshift trial by The Jury. As the webslinger is not in the proper condition to stand trial, Taylor (in his capacity as the judge) declares a 30-minute recess.

Elsewhere, Peter Parker’s wife Mary Jane received bad news from her boss that her role in the TV show Secret Hospital will be reduced to a recurring role. This troubles her deeply as it means reduced income for her at a time when her marriage with Peter continues to go down. Spider-Man’s lack of quality time with her keeps taking its toll on her…

Quality

Spidey on trial!

Firstly, I should say that the Michelinie-Bagley team’s concept of having The Jury as the force of opposition against Spider-Man continues to do wonders creatively in this particular comic book series. In the previous issue, the webslinger was hunted and General Taylor really invested a lot of technologies to get to him in the middle of a very bustling city. In this particular issue, Spider-Man is completely vulnerable being weakened and disoriented as he is about to be tried in a makeshift court.

Along the way, Taylor and his team were portrayed to work within their own system of justice. As no court of law in New York would recognize Spider-Man’s trial, The Jury set up their own court in a very private and unusual manner.

While the planned trial is the major event of this comic book’s concept, Michelinie pulled off a rather unusual move with the narrative. Just as the first witness points to Spider-Man for being responsible for Venom, the iconic webslinger then starts to wonder what the trial is truly all about and then the creative team unleashed a slew of flashbacks that looked back a key events published in certain comic books of Secret Wars, The Amazing Spider-Man and Web of Spider-Man through the years. I’m talking about Spider-Man’s first-ever encounter with the symbiote, how he got rid of it, how the symbiote bonded with Eddie Brock to form Venom, how Venom’s costume left a living seed that Cletus Kassady touched and became Carnage, etc. These flashbacks, all nicely drawn by Mark Bagley, conveniently served as an instant reference for readers to catch up with the current events but this was done at the expense of this comic book’s narrative.

More on the trial, this comic book raises layered questions about the concept of responsibility on Spider-Man. Could the iconic webslinger really be held accountable for whatever murders Venom committed along with the trauma he caused on bystanders given the fact that he really brought the alien costume into their world? Should Spider-Man also be held responsible for any murders committed by Carnage? This is one really loaded script Michelinie came up with and he really had Spider-Man vulnerable not only to The Jury but also to the questions thrown at him during the makeshift trial. To put it short, this is one very unusual Spider-Man tale ever told that carries strong relevance from the past.

As with the previous issues, this comic book sheds a limited amount of the spotlight on Mary Jane and Spider-Man’s Aunt May who at this stage has gotten paranoid with her suspicions about Peter’s parents. The dramatization turned out pretty good.

Conclusion

Spider-Man in a vulnerable state with The Jury.

While the flashbacks were excessive and made the narrative feel bloated, Amazing Spider-Man #384 (1993) still has lots of good stuff fans can enjoy. It has a pretty bold concept of having Spider-Man really trapped and left vulnerable for the makeshift trial. More notably, the narrative pounded heavily on the concept of responsibility in relation to Spider-Man’s past actions that led to the creation of Venom and even Carnage.

Overall, Amazing Spider-Man #384 (1993) is recommended!

+++++

Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below, share this article to others and also please consider making a donation to support my publishing. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me with a private message. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me on Twitter at  @HavenorFantasy as well as on Tumblr at https://carlocarrasco.tumblr.com/ and on Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/authorcarlocarrasco

A Look Back at Amazing Spider-Man #383 (1993)

Disclaimer: This is my original work with details sourced from reading the comic book and doing personal research. Anyone who wants to use this article, in part or in whole, needs to secure first my permission and agree to cite me as the source and author. Let it be known that any unauthorized use of this article will constrain the author to pursue the remedies under R.A. No. 8293, the Revised Penal Code, and/or all applicable legal actions under the laws of the Philippines.

Welcome back superhero enthusiasts, 1990s culture enthusiasts and comic book collectors! Today we go back to the year 1993 and explore a part of the Marvel Comics universe through one of the many tales of the Amazing Spider-Man comic book series.

To put things in perspective, the creative team behind the Amazing Spider-Man title decided to shake things up a bit by having the high-tech team called The Jury (the same team that went against Venom led by a powerful man whose son was murdered by Eddie Brock in Amazing Spider-Man #315) as the force of opposition for the webslinger.

With those details laid down, here is a look back at Amazing Spider-Man #383, published in 1993 by Marvel Comics with a story by David Michelinie and drawn by Mark Bagley.  

The cover.

Early story

The story begins in New York with the super-powered being Nova flying around which triggers an alert. It turns out, members of The Jury and their leader General Orwell Taylor have been monitoring and scanning areas of the city with several motion detectors to find Spider-Man. As far as Taylor is concerned, Spider-Man is highly responsible for the existence of Venom in their world and is therefore connected to the murder of his son (committed by Venom while escaping from prison in Amazing Spider-Man #315). Taylor is convinced that the if Spider-Man’s freedom is the price for stopping a monster like Venom, then that would be good.

Suddenly, the team notices that one of their motion detectors went offline. Moments later, a technician reaches the rooftop of the building and finds a motion detector severely damaged. Out of nowhere, Spider-Man grabs the technician and puts his life in danger by moving him off the edge using his fist and strength to carry him. Spider-Man pressures him for details…

Quality

The Jury’s hunt for Spider-Man is really entertaining to read!

This is definitely one of the more engaging Amazing Spider-Man stories I read not only from 1993 but from the 1990s in general. In my view, putting Spider-Man up against The Jury is a stroke of genius on the part of the Michelinie-Bagley team and at the same time it was a sound relief after reading so much about the presence of Carnage and Venom on this particular monthly series (note: the Maximum Carnage crossover chapters and Amazing Spider-Man #375 being linked with the Venom: Lethal Protector limited series).

When it comes to The Jury, Michelinie crafted a script that justifies Taylor’s team to pursue Spider-Man after they failure on getting Venom. This shows that Taylor has acquired information about Venom’s origin being the result of Spider-Man bringing home with him the symbiote (alien costume) from his time on a far-away planet (as seen in the Secret Wars series). Creatively, this results in a very convincing portrayal of Taylor not only as a grieving father but also as a very tactical leader who uses vast intelligence and resources to achieve what he believes is justice and the means for achieving the greater good. As for The Jury’s armored members – Sentry, Ramshot, Screech, Firearm and Bomblast – Michelinie did not simply portray them as straight-forward, mission-focused people here. One of them shows hesitancy which added a nice layer of division and human weakness within the team which is felt in action-packed encounter with Spider-Man.

Being the target of The Jury, Spider-Man at this stage is deeply troubled even though the Maximum Carnage disasters are over. He is portrayed to be very disturbed by the alarm signals of his Spider Sense whenever he gets near one of the sensors of The Jury which is a unique display of his special ability.

Those of you who love superhero spectacle will find a lot to enjoy here! Mark Bagley’s art on emphasizing action and stunts is fantastic to look at as The Jury pursues Spider-Man within New York. There are lots of dynamic shots, flashy high-tech images and really intense superhero action complete with collateral damage!

To be clear, this comic book is not simply all about the webslinger and Taylor’s team. There are some scenes here building up on Aunt May’s suspicion about Peter Parker’s parents which added suspense to the narrative.

Conclusion

As usual, Peter Parker does not have enough quality time for his wife.

Amazing Spider-Man #383 (1993) remains a very solid and highly entertaining comic book to read from start to finish. The Michelinie-Bagley team really delivered the great stuff as they launched a new concept having The Jury hunting Spider-Man in successful fashion. The Jury is clearly a very formidable team that gave Venom and Spider-Man a lot of trouble. The notable thing here is that this is only the first chapter of a new storyline with focus on Spider-Man’s responsibility with the murderous Venom (and all the victims he made).

Overall, Amazing Spider-Man #383 (1993) is highly recommended!

+++++

Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below, share this article to others and also please consider making a donation to support my publishing. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me with a private message. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me on Twitter at  @HavenorFantasy as well as on Tumblr at https://carlocarrasco.tumblr.com/ and on Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/authorcarlocarrasco

A Look Back at Amazing Spider-Man #381 (1993)

Disclaimer: This is my original work with details sourced from reading the comic book and doing personal research. Anyone who wants to use this article, in part or in whole, needs to secure first my permission and agree to cite me as the source and author. Let it be known that any unauthorized use of this article will constrain the author to pursue the remedies under R.A. No. 8293, the Revised Penal Code, and/or all applicable legal actions under the laws of the Philippines.

Welcome back superhero enthusiasts, 1990s culture enthusiasts and comic book collectors! Today we go back to the year 1993 and explore a part of the Marvel Comics universe through one of the many tales of the Amazing Spider-Man comic book series.

To put things in perspective, 1993 was another busy year for the iconic Spider-Man who not only had four monthly series of his own but also appeared in the Venom: Lethal Protector mini-series, the 14-part Maximum Carnage crossover and in Marvel’s major crossover The Infinity Crusade. As expected, Spider-Man survived through those storylines.

With those details laid down, here is a look back at Amazing Spider-Man #381, published in 1993 by Marvel Comics with a story by David Michelinie and drawn by Mark Bagley.  

The cover.

Early story

The story begins inside the airport in New York where the incredible Hulk/Bruce Banner himself had just arrived from Scotland. Due to his tremendous size, his physical presence easily distract the people around him. Dr. Leonard Samson surprises Banner and informs him of an upcoming scientific demonstration and the scientists behind it have developed something that could have ramifications for people who got exposed to gamma radiation. Samson explains that there is a radiation virus that releases repressed emotions. The Hulk rejects Samson and leaps to the air above towards an unknow destination.

At a school yard in lower Manhattan, two kids bully another kid into giving them his lunch money. Spider-Man suddenly arrives to stop trouble and immediately the two bullies ran away…

Quality

Quality time between Peter Park and wife Mary Jane.

I can say that is one of the more interesting crossovers between Spider-Man and the Hulk who at this stage in Marvel’s comic book history retained his intelligence and personality while in his huge, green-skinned form. Adding variety to the crossover was the presence of Doc Samson who was already an established and notable supporting character in comic books featuring the Hulk.

Set after the events of Maximum Carnage, the Infinity Crusade and Hulk’s time in Scotland (as told in Incredible Hulk #407), this story shows life in New York gradually normalizing. The peace, as it turns out, was only temporary as the big-time scientific demonstration in this story leads to a series of unfortunate events that compels Peter Parker to take action as Spider-Man.

The tale was nicely structured and the creative team took its time to build-up the story concept, the character motivations and execute the superhero spectacle at an overall medium pace. There is simply no boring scene nor any wasted moments. The appearances of Samson and the Hulk in this Spider-Man tale were nicely integrated and they each had their own impact on the plot. There is a lot of stuff here that fans of both Spidey and the green giant can enjoy.

When it comes to the art, I found Mark Bagley’s take on the Hulk distinctive and intriguing to look at. The final shot of this comic book is a must-see.

Conclusion

Hulk and Doc Samson at the airport.

While there clearly is no villain, Amazing Spider-Man #381 (1993) still turned out to be a fun read complete with a fine crossover between Spider-Man, Doc Samson and the Hulk. Apart from the lack of space for character development, nothing here felt half-baked with the executions of the storytelling and the spectacle. This is a fun read and it was also a modern take on the personal encounter between Hulk and Spidey during the 1990s. This comic book has something enjoyable that fans of the two Marvel icons won’t find in any of the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) movies and shows.

Overall, Amazing Spider-Man #381 (1993) is recommended.

+++++

Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below, share this article to others and also please consider making a donation to support my publishing. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me with a private message. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me on Twitter at  @HavenorFantasy as well as on Tumblr at https://carlocarrasco.tumblr.com/ and on Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/authorcarlocarrasco

A Look Back at Web of Spider-Man #90 (1992)

Disclaimer: This is my original work with details sourced from reading the comic book and doing personal research. Anyone who wants to use this article, in part or in whole, needs to secure first my permission and agree to cite me as the source and author. Let it be known that any unauthorized use of this article will constrain the author to pursue the remedies under R.A. No. 8293, the Revised Penal Code, and/or all applicable legal actions under the laws of the Philippines.

Welcome back superhero enthusiasts, 1990s culture enthusiasts and comic book collectors! Today we go back to the year 1992 and explore a part of what was back then the 30th anniversary celebration of Spider-Man

In what was back then a unique approaching to celebrating the anniversary of an American icon, Marvel Comics published not one but four specific Spider-Man comic books that had holographic covers and more pages than the usual. Each of those special comic books were from a different Spider-Man monthly series. Back in 2020, I published a retro review of one of those gimmick cover comic books from the Spider-Man monthly series.

With those details laid down, here is a look back at Web of Spider-Man #90, published in 1992 by Marvel Comics with a story by Howard Mackie and drawn by Alex Saviuk.  

The cover.

Early story

The story begins inside an office in Los Angeles. A hat-wearing businessman has several varied figures of Spider-Man near him and recalls the time when the iconic hero participated in one of his events as the Masked Marvel. Moments later, the businessman’s wife arrives and together they departed in a limousine.

At the South Bronx in New York, Spider-Man chases a speeding car with one of its passengers firing a gun at him. Suddenly, his spider sense bothers him a lot and when he looks around, he suddenly sees Galactus standing with members of the Avengers, the X-Men and the Fantastic Four lying down helpless on the ground…

Quality

Spider-Man on the set of an entertainment project. It’s a lively reminder about how sickening Hollywood (AKA Commiewood) can get.

To make things clear and without spoiling the plot, this story deals with illusions and the distortion of reality. Quite ironically, the said distortion made it a challenge to follow the narrative and I can say that a good amount of the spotlight was on the businessman. Spider-Man is clearly the protagonist here but it made sense for the creative team to focus a bit on the businessman (who has been doing entertainment showcases for a long time) to justify the core concept about the conflicts between what is real and what is imaginary.

In relation to the illusion aspect of the story, you will get to see established Spider-Man arch-villains such as the Green Goblin, the Hobgoblin and Venom taking on the superhero himself. As the creative team focused more on providing a great amount of spectacle, there clearly was no room left for character development on Spider-Man. Don’t expect to see Peter Parker in dramatic moments nor see him interact with the established supporting characters.

If there is any moral lesson to learn from this comic book, it would be this – living with a powerful delusion (the result of personal obsession mixed with the personal failure to separate illusion from reality) can lead you to the wrong directions in life.

Conclusion

To justify the 30th anniversary celebration, distorted flashbacks into Peter Parker’s past were presented here.

Web of Spider-Man #90 (1992) does not have much depth for those who seek engaging storytelling. That being said, the story itself is not memorable nor would it leave a long lasting impact on you. This comic book was made to entertain readers with lots of action and wild fantasy images that eerily justify its concept about illusion and reality conflicting each other. In fairness to the creative team, the said conflict was consistently visualized and there were some dialogue that related to it in a somewhat philosophical manner. The comic book’s entertainment value is satisfying enough although it does not justify the holographic cover that was part of the gimmick with celebrating Spider-Man’s 30th anniversary. As for who was the main antagonist of the comic book, I simply encourage you all to read and find out for yourselves.

Overall, Web of Spider-Man #90 (1992) is satisfactory.

+++++

Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below, share this article to others and also please consider making a donation to support my publishing. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me with a private message. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me on Twitter at  @HavenorFantasy as well as on Tumblr at https://carlocarrasco.tumblr.com/ and on Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/authorcarlocarrasco

A Look Back at Harbinger #22 (1993)

Disclaimer: This is my original work with details sourced from reading the comic book and doing personal research. Anyone who wants to use this article, in part or in whole, needs to secure first my permission and agree to cite me as the source and author. Let it be known that any unauthorized use of this article will constrain the author to pursue the remedies under R.A. No. 8293, the Revised Penal Code, and/or all applicable legal actions under the laws of the Philippines.

Welcome back superhero enthusiasts, 1990s culture enthusiasts and comic book collectors! Today we go back to the early 1990s and explore a part of the Valiant Comics shared universe through the Harbinger monthly series.

In my previous review, Sting has been suffering and was revealed to have mononucleosis. After having a nightmare, he stubbornly re-entered his family’s home in the middle of the night trying to reconnect to his past life as Pete Stanchek. He eventually learned something harsh about his estranged father and went on to visit him in the hospital.

With those details laid down, here is a look back at Harbinger #22, published in 1993 by Valiant Comics with a story written by Maurice Fontenot and illustrated by Howard Simpson.

The cover.

Early story

The story begins with Archer and Armstrong having fun at the amusement of Coney Island. They eventually bump into Flamingo, Faith, Shatiqua and Kris who happens to be with her uncle named Mel. Armstrong found Mel looking familiar causing the latter to feel uneasy.

Sometime later that day, Mel visits a bar in Brooklyn managed by a local crime boss called Anthony Carino. After going through some initial trouble with Carino’s tough talking employees, Mel finally meets with their boss and told him that decades Armstrong made a move on his fiancé and then he and his buddies ran him out of town. After revealing Armstrong’s name and his presence at Coney Island, the crime boss reacts with knowledge about him. It turns out, Armstrong busted up his bar sometime in the past. Carino agreed to help Mel get back on Armstrong… 

Quality

The wild chase!

To start with, I can say that this comic book’s main feature is the crossover between the team (minus Sting) and the duo of Archer and Armstrong which also serves as a reunion in relation to their time together during the Unity crossover storyline. This time around, these established Valiant Comics characters get to interact with each other during a more peaceful time and if you remember Armstrong delivering Kris’ child (note: Magnus Robot Fighter) during the Unity storyline, there is a nice scene between the two characters talking about it. As with other Valiant works of the 1990s, the crossover element here is strong and engaging.

On the story itself, Armstrong’s past encounter with Mel sparks a conflict here which eventually pulled Archer and the other team members into a wild chase that was somewhat entertaining. How the story ended was surprising and even intriguing. If you are looking for character development regarding Faith, Flamingo, Kris and Shatiqua, you won’t find much here which is a bummer. Again, the mentioned crossover is the key feature of this comic book.

Conclusion

A reunion between Archer & Armstrong and the team (minus their leader Sting).

While it shifted the focus away from the unlikable Sting, Harbinger #22 (1993) was more about a shared universe crossover between the other team members and Archer and Armstrong. In some ways, Armstrong himself was almost the main character in this tale and what he did in the past sparked a chain of unfortunate events that involved Kris, Faith, Flamingo and Shatiqua. As this comic book was more about crossover, it turned out to be a missed opportunity for the creative team to further develop the other team members. Still, this tale delivered some entertainment value and there definitely is something being built up for further issues.

Overall, Harbinger #22 (1993) is satisfactory.

+++++

Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below, share this article to others and also please consider making a donation to support my publishing. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me with a private message. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me on Twitter at  @HavenorFantasy as well as on Tumblr at https://carlocarrasco.tumblr.com/ and on Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/authorcarlocarrasco

A Look Back at Amazing Spider-Man #268 (1985)

Disclaimer: This is my original work with details sourced from reading the comic book and doing personal research. Anyone who wants to use this article, in part or in whole, needs to secure first my permission and agree to cite me as the source and author. Let it be known that any unauthorized use of this article will constrain the author to pursue the remedies under R.A. No. 8293, the Revised Penal Code, and/or all applicable legal actions under the laws of the Philippines.

Welcome back superhero enthusiasts, 1980s arts and culture enthusiasts, Marvel Comics fans and comic book collectors! Today we go back to the 1980s and examine a small part of the Marvel Comics universe through a tale of the Amazing Spider-Man monthly series.

Back in the year 1985, Marvel Comics published their big-time limited series Secret Wars II, which saw the arrival of the powerful yet ignorant deity Beyonder on Earth. As a major publishing event spearheaded by then editor-in-chief Jim Shooter, Secret Wars II had events that impacted a certain number of regular monthly comic book series whenever an issue was released. In one of the early issues of Secret Wars II, the Beyonder converted an entire tall building within New York City into pure solid gold. As the golden building could not support its own weight, it collapsed and the authorities scrambled to secure the perimeter. Spider-Man himself gets involved by rescuing the victims and he learned something along the way (as seen in Web of Spider-Man #6).

With those details laid down, here is a look back at Amazing Spider-Man #268, published in 1985 by Marvel Comics with a story written by Tom DeFalco and drawn by Ron Frenz.

The cover.

Early story

The story begins with Spider-Man swinging high and noticing that the perimeter of the collapsed building of pure gold has been covered (with a large tarpaulin) and secured by armed personnel. People were not allowed to pass which makes them speculate about what happened. Having witnessed government operative Anderson compensating the Kingpin with typewriters made of pure gold secretly, Spider-Man is deeply troubled and decides to go home to take a rest.

At the site of disaster, several personnel equipped with laser weapons worked hard to cut down every part of the collapsed building and transport as much gold as possible onto trucks which are tasked to deliver them to a huge cargo ship at the city’s port. The authorities are concerned that the excessive amount of gold from the collapsed golden building will cause tremendous shockwaves in the world’s markets and they strive hard to keep everything secret…

Quality

Spider-Man sneaking on to the ship as he pursues answers to hot questions about what has been going on.

Being a tie-in story to Secret Wars II, this is indeed a really unique Spider-Man story that does not put the iconic hero in direct conflict with a powered villain at all which can disappoint certain readers and fans who craved for action-packed conflicts. Instead, this story was designed to be a mystery which strongly reflects the consequences of the Beyonder’s action during his presence in New York. You will get to see Spider-Man work on finding out the answers to all the questions in his head and his knowledge about the involvement of the Kingpin and the United States government were more than enough to motivate him to figure things out even though it means putting himself at risk with powerful authorities.

In terms of story structuring and presentation, the tale moved at a moderate pace and the creators took their time with the revelation of key details (clearly designed to cause intrigue with the readers) as the narrative moved forward. This is indeed an engaging read and it has aged well.

Conclusion

Spider-Man returns home tired.

Amazing Spider-Man #268 (1985) is an intriguing and entertaining read even though it does not have Spider-Man in direct physical conflict with a bad guy. The Kingpin, an established supervillain, is present in the story mainly as a background character who still has strong influence with the sinister forces present. The biggest feature of the comic book is the situation itself (local efforts on dealing with the collapsed building of pure gold while preventing the public from knowing all about it) which got triggered by the Beyonder’s reckless act of trying to help humanity by turning a building into pure gold believing that it would help all people financially and socially. As for Spider-Man himself, it is refreshing to see him work his way through in a mystery tale and this comic book has a very solid approach on mystery.

Overall, Amazing Spider-Man #268 (1985) is recommended.

+++++

Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below, share this article to others and also please consider making a donation to support my publishing. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me with a private message. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me on Twitter at  @HavenorFantasy as well as on Tumblr at https://carlocarrasco.tumblr.com/ and on Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/authorcarlocarrasco

A Look Back at Amazing Spider-Man #301 (1988)

Disclaimer: This is my original work with details sourced from reading the comic book and doing personal research. Anyone who wants to use this article, in part or in whole, needs to secure first my permission and agree to cite me as the source and author. Let it be known that any unauthorized use of this article will constrain the author to pursue the remedies under R.A. No. 8293, the Revised Penal Code, and/or all applicable legal actions under the laws of the Philippines.

Welcome back superhero enthusiasts, 1980s arts and culture enthusiasts, Marvel Comics fans and comic book collectors! Today we go back to the 1980s and examine a small part of the Marvel Comics universe through a tale of the Amazing Spider-Man monthly series.

Back in the year 1988, Spider-Man fans enjoyed and got very intrigued with the first-ever Venom storyline which climaxed in Amazing Spider-Man #300. Some of you might be wondering what happened after the 300th issue of the series.

With those details laid down, here is a look back at Amazing Spider-Man #301, published in 1988 by Marvel Comics with a story written by David Michelinie and drawn by Todd McFarlane.

The cover.

Early story

The story begins with a group of armed personnel doing a mission inside a building. In the middle of the corridor, several over-head turrets pop out and fire paint balls at the team which used shields for protection. Moments after, they communicate with an executive called Mr. Cruz by means of live video feeds. Cruz tells them they failed the test.

Shortly after, Mr. Cruz and Silver Sable meet with Mr. Pruett and discuss key aspects about the Pruett building’s security. It turns out Pruett himself advertised his building as being the safest locale in New York. Cruz tells him that Silver Sable’s Wild Pack team was fine to a certain extent but he feels much more confident if Sable herself would test building security. After some thinking about her team – international bounty hunters –, their role with the economy of her home country of Symkaria and the less-than-impressive success her team achieved recently, she accepts the contract from Pruett worth $100,000.

Meanwhile at another location within the city, Mary Jane Parker carefully decides where should her husband Peter (carrying a sofa and a large seat with his own super strength) should put furniture in their home. MJ then has to rush to attend a magazine cover photo session while Peter has to go out and check on an advanced photography course at a university…

Quality

The new couple Peter and Mary Jane Parker together with domestic life.

This is one of the more unique Spider-Man tales of the 1980s I have read. Silver Sable herself is the big feature of this comic book, even overshadowing the famous web-slinger. As this was published years before the Silver Sable and the Wild Pack monthly series launched, David Michelinie portrayed the character as a professional business woman who also happens to be a very capable physical fighter and infiltrator while carrying with her the pride of her homeland Symkaria. Through Silver Sable, you can see the richness of Michelinie’s writing and feel the uniqueness of her personality which makes her stand out among the many other supporting characters or heroes Spider-Man ever interacted with.

As a story set shortly after the climax of the Venom storyline, Peter Parker is portrayed to be in the middle of a transition having gone through college and recently getting married with Mary Jane. Even with the challenges and complications of life, he still finds himself stuck with the perceived obligations of the superhero life. There is also a sub-plot here about a white-haired man searching for him.

Going into the plot itself, Peter Parker could not contain himself from going out again in full costume and web-swinging as Spider-Man as he finds Mr. Cruz a suspicious figure. While it looks like the right thing to do for any superhero, it shows weakness in Peter Parker’s struggle to balance his life. The use of irony is nicely portrayed here.

Conclusion

This is how Silver Sable looked like in the late 1980s.

While the good-versus-evil element of the story is very subtle, Amazing Spider-Man #301 (1988) still succeeded in engaging and entertaining me primarily due to David Michelinie’s very solid storytelling and characterization. Unsurprisingly, Michelinie’s script is brought to life with Todd McFarlane’s fine art from start to finish. Don’t expect Spider-Man nor Silver Sable get to fight some dangerous villain in personal combat as the plot is more about suspense and intrigue laced with some twists. Still, there is plenty of superhero action to enjoy here and McFarlane’s art remains impressive. Silver Sable is very well defined in this comic book and by the end, you will get a solid grasp of herself and her background. This comic book is a must-read before you jump into the Silver Sable and the Wild Pack comic book series.

Overall, Amazing Spider-Man #301 (1988) is highly recommended.

+++++

Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below, share this article to others and also please consider making a donation to support my publishing. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me with a private message. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me on Twitter at  @HavenorFantasy as well as on Tumblr at https://carlocarrasco.tumblr.com/ and on Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/authorcarlocarrasco

A Look Back at Spider-Man 2099 #10 (1993)

Disclaimer: This is my original work with details sourced from reading the comic book and doing personal research. Anyone who wants to use this article, in part or in whole, needs to secure first my permission and agree to cite me as the source and author. Let it be known that any unauthorized use of this article will constrain the author to pursue the remedies under R.A. No. 8293, the Revised Penal Code, and/or all applicable legal actions under the laws of the Philippines.

Welcome back, superhero enthusiasts, 1990s culture enthusiasts, Marvel 2099 fans and comic book collectors! Today we revisit the Marvel 2099 franchise within Marvel Comics’ shared universe during the 1990s. Specifically speaking, we take a look back at one of the early tales of Spider-Man 2099.

In this retro comic book review, Spider-Man made it back to his home after encountering Vulture 2099 and seeing the low life and inhabitants of the people living in the old City of New York far below. His return, however, is not joyful not only because of the growing tension between Miguel O’Hara and the people his connected with but also because his mother suffered a health-related attack.

With those details laid down, here is a look back at Spider-Man 2099 #10, published by Marvel Comics in 1993 with a story written by Peter David and drawn by Rick Leonardi.

The cover.

Early story

The story begins inside a hospital room. Conchata O’Hara is slowly recovering and near her are her sons Miguel (Spider-Man) and Gabriel as well as Dana. Conchata starts to feel and move restlessly but for Miguel (who heard his mother call his brother Gabriel a good son), she was just acting. Conchata then gets up from her bed and Gabriel encourages his brother to talk to her. Miguel responds saying that their mother hates him because he reminds her of his father – George O’Hara. Dana and Gabriel tell him to talk to her…

Quality

Spider-Man takes on the local authorities. Does this make him a criminal or a social justice symbol? Read the comic book.

To put it straight, this comic book tells the story of the O’Hara family complete with flashbacks from key points of the past. Unsurprisingly, Peter David’s writing is very rich and in-depth with details which made it a compelling read in my experience, and it should be more engaging for readers who passionate follow Spider-Man 2099 and his civilian life as Miguel.

Without going too far with the details, I can say that this comic book explains why Miguel has a very uneasy relationship with his own mother who in turn is close with Gabriel while also resentful of George. As this is a Spider-Man 2099 story, you will see Miguel do his best to make his mother understand his views and himself better no matter the rift between them. There is also a notable superhero-related twist within the Miguel-Conchata interactions that readers who have troubled relationships with their own mothers (especially those who engage in idolatry which is foolish and unholy) will find strongly relevant personally. Miguel’s own personal assessment of his 2nd life as Spider-Man alone deserves your deep attention. Again, Peter David’s writing here is literally solid gold in terms of richness and characterization.

Conclusion

A quick look at the past of the O’Hara family.

While there is no good-versus-evil conflict for superhero enthusiasts to look forward to, Spider-Man 2099 #10 (1993) is a highly engaging, character-driven story that highlights Miguel O’Hara on a very personal level while also having enough space to explain to readers why the O’Hara family relationships are strained. There are even flashbacks that nicely dramatized the past and the one scene in which Miguel goes out in public in full costume as Spider-Man will make you wonder what the protagonist really believes in and where he plans to take his life to. Peter David’s writing here made all the difference.

Overall, Spider-Man 2099 #10 (1993) is recommended!

+++++

Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below and also please consider sharing this article to others. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. If you want to support my website, please consider making a donation. Feel free to contact me with a private message. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me on Twitter at  @HavenorFantasy as well as on Tumblr at https://carlocarrasco.tumblr.com/ and on Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/authorcarlocarrasco/.

A Look Back at Spider-Man 2099 #8 (1993)

Disclaimer: This is my original work with details sourced from reading the comic book and doing personal research. Anyone who wants to use this article, in part or in whole, needs to secure first my permission and agree to cite me as the source and author. Let it be known that any unauthorized use of this article will constrain the author to pursue the remedies under R.A. No. 8293, the Revised Penal Code, and/or all applicable legal actions under the laws of the Philippines.

Welcome back superhero enthusiasts, 1990s arts and culture enthusiasts, Marvel Comics fans and comic book collectors! Today we go back to the wild 1990s and explore the far future of 2099 within the Marvel Comics shared universe through one of the tales of Spider-Man 2099.

In my previous retro review, the futuristic Spider-Man got involved with his era’s version of Vulture (Vulture 2099 to us readers). It turns out, Vulture 2099 is not your typical evil supervillain but the leader of a group of violent radical people who are willing to dominate society with a destructive mindset even though there are other opposing groups around them. And then Spidey 2099 realized something very wrong about the Vulture which leads to a big battle between them.

With those details laid down, here is a look back at Spider-Man 2099 #8, published in 1993 by Marvel Comics with a story written by Peter David and drawn by Rick Leonardi.

The cover.

Early story

The story begins with Spider-Man 2099 and Vulture 2099 crashing into the interiors of the ancient St. Patrick’s Cathedral located in old New York City (underneath the modern city). Unsurprisingly, the people inside the cathedral got very surprised about the unexpected entry of the two fighters.

Elsewhere, Miguel O’Hara’s brother Gabriel helps Kasey with her head. She tells him that she saw Miguel but Gabriel does not believe her. Suddenly, members of a gang knock on the door and Kasey opens it.

Inside St. Patrick’s Cathedral, the fight between Spider-Man and Vulture continues. Spider-Man remembers that he has lapsed as a Catholic and he feels very uneasy about the trouble he and his enemy are causing inside the old church structure. Vulture suddenly throws a wooden bench at Spidey but breaks open a glass window and then goes outside. Upon looking outside, Spider-Man notices a group of Vulture’s gang…the Freakers.

Quality

The battle between Spider-Man 2099 and Vulture 2099 is intense and very compelling to read.

Here is the good news about this comic book…the story here is a fitting conclusion to what happened in issue #7. The conflict between Spider-Man and Vulture here was carefully crafted and there were several key moments or scenes the provided readers some breathing room to grasp and understand the society of 2099 New York as well as the conflict between the downtown social groups who are deprived of the higher standard of living many miles above them. In some ways, the social divisions portrayed in this comic book is a sad reminder about modern day America and the many radical groups or gangs of people who divide society on race, ethnicity, social class, gender and ideology.

As expected, there is a lot of action executed in the fight between Spider-Man and Vulture of 2099 but there were pauses in between. This is not surprising considering how Peter David crafted the action-packed battles Spidey 2099 had with other enemies in the comic books released before this one. Without spoiling what happened, I can say that the battle between the two was nicely built-up and the conclusion turned out very satisfying to see.

Still on the story, Peter David added some layers of complexity into the conflict that easily made things much more difficult for Spider-Man 2099 on a personal level. I’m talking about his brother Gabriel and Kasey getting involved in the gang war against the Freakers.

Vulture 2099 is once again a standout opposition figure here. Not only is his ability to fly and cause chaos above his obsessed Freakers below is symbolic, his distorted, hardcore beliefs are reflected with his unrelenting use of violence as he fights Spider-Man. Not only that, he turns out to be very philosophical thanks to the rich dialogue Peter David came up with. It is also here that the futuristic Vulture is opposed to God and being the socialist-indoctrinated person he is, he easily blames Alchemax for God’s absence. This should remind you that through Vulture 2099, evil comes with fatal attraction that people could not realize until it is too late. The futuristic Vulture has a lot of common with the evil leaders of Black Lives Matter, Antifa, the Democratic Socialists of America and the long-time regime of Iran. Lastly, I should state that radical socialists are always wrong about God and they often live with distorted perceptions about Him. Vulture 2099 qualifies as a woke figure of 2099 and ultimately wokeness is foolishness.

Speaking of sub-plots, this comic book emphasizes Tyler Stone on how he handles ambitious projects of Alchemax that he believes will benefit people. His interactions with Dana here also sheds light about his very own obsession about the future of humanity.

Conclusion

Spider-Man in trouble with the Vulture’s gang members.

With rich writing, notable in-story details and a very well designed conflict between the futuristic Spider-Man and Vulture, Spider-Man 2099 #8 (1993) is both very engaging and entertainting to read from start to finish. It is a great pay-off to what was built-up in issue #7. Very notably, the conflict between Vulture 2099 and the protagonist is great to see and it is clear that Vulture is not a disposable supervillain but one of the most definitive forces of opposition against Spider-Man 2099. Of course, as comic book history turned out, Vulture 2099 made it in the crossover comic book event between classic Spider-Man and Spidey of 2099. Along the way, the creative team succeeded with expanding the lore of 2099 and the social underclass of New York.

Overall, Spider-Man 2099 #8 (1993) is highly recommended.

+++++

Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below, share this article to others and also please consider making a donation to support my publishing. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me with a private message. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me on Twitter at  @HavenorFantasy as well as on Tumblr at https://carlocarrasco.tumblr.com/ and on Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/authorcarlocarrasco