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Avenging Spider-Man #11 Review

3

Get ready for the Spider-Man team-up you've been waiting for. Actually it's Peter Parker. And Aunt May. It's an anniversary issue giving us some insight into the Parkers.

The Good

If there's any hero that carries the huge burden of guilt, it's Spider-Man. For this fiftieth anniversary issue, we get some reflection over the death of Uncle Ben. It may be something we've seen Spider-Man talk about but we don't often see him talk to Aunt May about it. We know about the guilt Peter carries but we haven't seen much of the days after the death of Ben. This was the moment that defined who Spider-Man is today. He was completely self centered after gaining his powers and it was Ben's death that made him the hero he is today.

This issue also continues to show what a rock Aunt May is. In her conversation, she starts to reveal a little too much information but it adds to the fun of the story. This issue may not change the direction of Spider-Man but it serves as an important reminder to who he is. He does get a little more closure just because Aunt May is such a strong character. And of course there's the part about him trying to explain to her why he blames himself for Ben's death.

There's also a GREAT cover by Chris Samnee and Javier Rodriguez.

The Bad

I normally dig Steve Dillon's art but it just wasn't a good fit for this story. You always get a lot of expression from the way he draws characters' eyes but the first time we see Peter out of costume is almost startling. For an issue without a lot of Spider-Man action, the art became a big distraction in this story.

It's understandable to have so many 'anniversary' issues this month but there's been too many. We've been seeing "point 1" issues for Spider-Man series that haven't been published for a while. Most of them have just been 'okay.' All of these 'okay' stories make this feel like just another anniversary story. That's unfortunate because with an art style that was a better fit for this story, it could have had the chance to shine.

The Verdict

It's Spider-Man's fiftieth anniversary and we're getting a load of anniversary stories this month. Zeb Wells takes the opportunity to showcase a team-up with Peter Parker and Aunt May. Spider-Man is the hero he is today because of the death of his Uncle Ben. This is something that we all know. While Peter has expressed his guilt many times over the years, we get a touching look at how he is still trying to deal with the burden and his attempt to fully convey this to Aunt May. Steve Dillon is a skilled artist but his style wasn't the best fit for an issue that was lighter on the action and more about the dialogue between Peter and May. It's unfortunate that we've had so many anniversary issues this month as this one could easily get mixed among the others. It's a touching story that shows how important Spider-Man's origin is as well as the need for Aunt May in his life.

10 Comments
Posted by Master_Thief

Once again nice review!

Posted by ArtisticNeedham

GRR! I am getting upset at my local store. I saw the cover, the comic is in plastic so I can't read it or glance at it, and I bought it thinking the inside would look like the outside. They need a new system.

Posted by danhimself

it seems like you're holding the fact that there were to many Spider-man anniversary issues against this issue

Edited by Night Thrasher

I found this to be one of the better AvSM issues to date. Wells did a masterful job of characterizing Uncle Ben. To me it seemed as if Dillon's artwork was a nice fit because it was more subdued a personal for a story that required a softer approach than the standard heavy pencils the series has been using so far. As far as having too many Spider-Man comics, I partially agree, but I'll concede the point when DC fans admit there are too many Superman and Batman books. I would probably rate this issue at 4/5 because it added more to the Uncle Ben character than the standard " Peter misses Uncle Ben because he was great and he was partly responsible for his death" story.

Posted by GBrutality

the thing i don't like, and i've noticed it over the past few years, is this sort of snippy aunt may. she was always an extremely sweet and concerned maternal figure for peter. now it seems they just make her always have some sort of comment or something to say that is along the lines of witty, no nonsense lady because that's the general consensus of the modern mother character. which is all well and good, but aunt may was never really like that and i don't know, i miss that aspect of her. she would make a slight comment for peter's usual lateness but in an 'oh dear' sort of way, not in this 'why even bother expecting him' passive voice. and her implying the sex thing was even extremely lowbrow in the way that she would never say that. period. that's just my two cents.

Posted by TheFizz

This issue was horseshit. The art made Peter look like a junkie and Aunt May was pretty crass and out of character.

Did not like this at all.

Posted by Gordo789

I usually like Steve Dillon as well and it just wasn't working in this issue. Peter looked straight up WEIRD in almost every panel. Besides that, the dialog was good enough, but compared to the last two issues (which were RAD) with Captain Marvel this just didn't do it for me.

Posted by InnerVenom123

I really was hoping this issue would have Pete tell May he's Spider-man.

That's the only thing lingering from OMD that I don't like.

It was handled so damn perfectly when she found out.

Posted by Deranged Midget

I thought it was a pretty good issue, definitely heart-warming but nothing exactly special. I love the humour between Aunt May and Peter though.

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Posted by NXH

@ArtisticNeedham said:

GRR! I am getting upset at my local store. I saw the cover, the comic is in plastic so I can't read it or glance at it, and I bought it thinking the inside would look like the outside. They need a new system.

Same here. I could've sworn Stefano Caselli was doing the interiors, instead of Steve (Can't draw teeth for s***) Dillon. His style doesn't fit with Spider-Man. In fact, his style doesn't fit with anything. Sorry Steve Dillon fans.