Peter Parker: The Spectacular Spider-Man #1
Written by: Chip Zdarsky
Pencils by: Adam Kubert
Colors by: Jordie Bellaire
Review By: Eric Gahagan. He is the operator of Morning Comics on Instagram check him out @morningcomics
Chip Zdarsky and Adam Kubert kick off a new Spidey title where the web slinger returns to his roots patrolling the friendly neighborhoods of New York City. We have a much lighter, humorous, more street level book here, making it a great spot for new readers to jump on board. It is clear on a first read that the goal of this book is to bring a lot of fun stories with plenty of cameos of both heroes and villains from the entirety of the marvel universe. All quips, humor and cameos aside the story also doubles down with threads of a cool and complex mystery.
What You Need to Know:
In this first issue we have Peter Parker explaining how he would like to get back to old times sticking up for the little guy in the streets rather than jet setting around the world as we see him doing in Amazing Spider-man. We see a funny opening sequence that at first glance looks like yet another serious toned re-telling of the Spider-man origin story only to have Johnny Storm interrupt Peter joking that we have all heard this origin a thousand times before. He even cracks on the repetitive nature of the power and responsibility theme. The way Zdarsky messes with the reader here going from serious to joking immediately put a smile on my face and set the tone for what to expect out of the rest of the issue.
What You’ll Find Out:
Peter parts ways with Johnny and hits the streets to fight crime where he comes upon a nice young lady named Rebecca London in trouble with a couple of thugs. Peter steps in to stop the masked robbers from stealing Rebecca’s bags when embarrassingly his web shooters malfunction. In a really fun scene the robbers are taken down by and unseen force and Spidey thinks that maybe his spider powers now include some crazy cool mind control. This idea is quickly put to rest when Ant Man returns to full size revealing that he was the one that took down the criminals.
What Just Happened?
During the fight Spidey and Ant Man find a mysterious Stark phone that has somehow been hacked. Who could possibly hack a Stark phone? We find out that Ant Man’s helmet has been malfunctioning. We also Learn hat Rebecca is a standup comic who is new to town and that she has quickly taken a liking to Spidey. Ant man Clues Spidey into a character named The Mason who is in the business of fixing and upgrading super hero Tech. The pair head to the Mason’s lab where they find Sam Wilson getting a tune up on his wings. The Mason reveals that he is, in fact, the brother of one of Spider-man’s biggest foes The Tinkerer. The Mason fixes Spidey’s web shooters, and Ant Man’s helmet showing off his skill set. Spidey enlists the help of Uatu Jackson now Mason’s lab assistant, to help learn more about the Stark phone. Uatu tracks down another hacked Stark phone still active and located in Chicago.
Spidey takes off to Chicago saying “A nice little low stress tech mystery is just what the non-doctor octopus doctor ordered.” With that in mind Spidey tracks the phone down to a plain looking home in an ordinary looking Chicago neighborhood. Readers are treated to a cool splash page reveal that raises more questions as to what is going on here (NO SPOILERS!).
Meanwhile Johnny Storm impatiently waits back in New York as he and Spidey were supposed to meet up for dinner. Johnny in his smooth ways of course comes across a young lady who is revealed in the splash page cliffhanger to have ties to Peter (Again NO SPOILERS!!!!!) which ends our main story.
We are then treated to some pretty funny back matter from the creative team and given a cool 8 page short which we are told ties into the main story line.
We find Spidey again on the streets of New York putting a stop to a pretty funny street level crime. The situation escalates when Peter’s spider sense allows him to dodge a bullet from a sniper who turns out to be Black Widow. There are some really cool fight action sequences involving all kinds of gadgets (Freaking target-locking swivel-mounted machine guns!!!).
Spidey is confused as to why his friend would be attacking him. The fight breaks when Black Widow blinds Spidey briefly with some bright Stun lights and she makes her escape.
She meets up with and Agent Mintz from Shield and we find out that Widow engaged Spider-man in a fight in an effort to collect and record data on Spider-Man’s fight patterns, movements, and spider sense abilities for Shield.
I thought this was a great first issue to this series. Chip Zdarsky really infused his comedic style of writing with really entertaining light jokes throughout the main story while at the same time dropping multiple story threads and questions that I am excited to learn more about in the coming issues. It was awesome to see Spider-Man back as the character I grew up with protecting the streets of New York. It seems the book is set up for some cool story lines and all of the cameos in the first issue I thought really added to how well I liked the issue. This was somewhat of a surprise to me as to how much I enjoyed this book as it was kind of under my radar not having picked up on much, if any buzz about it coming out. I will definitely be continuing on with this series and look forward to the next issue!
Eric Gahagan is the operator of Morning Comics on instagram