Spider-Man and Flash continue to battle it out, only for Flash to escape. Peter and Anna plan a dinner date with Jonah Jameson Sr and Aunt May, but Flash stops by. Peter has a plan to help out Flash but has ulterior motives.
The last issue left off with Spider-Man standing over Flash, with the symbiote in pain from the fire and sound onslaught Spidey fired down upon him. This issue picks up where issue #22 left off. The reader is treated to a short, but very satisfying battle between the two as Flash does anything he can to escape. It's a quick and fun start to the issue, which reads great as is, but I'm sure it will read even better in trade.
Writers Dan Slott and Christos Gage don't keep everything focused on Peter. He jumps over to to Mary Jane as Captain Watanabe approaches her with a text from Carlie, who's been abducted by the goblins. It hints at the fact that Peter isn't exactly Peter. I like the fact that Slott and Gage still has some of the other characters in the Spideyverse searching for the truth.
Aside from fighting crime in a superior way, Peter Parker is solving problems in a superior way. He's helping out Aunt May with his intellect and inventiveness as well as Flash Thompson. While this version of Peter may be pompous, brash, and a bit meaner, he's become a character I sincerely enjoy. It's something completely new and interesting and makes for an extremely great read.
A few kinda spoilers here. What you thought was going to happen, when this story was announced, happens here: Superior Venom. We only get to see him briefly, but the design is very cool. It mixes elements of Superior Spider-Man, classic Venom, and even a bit of Flash Thompson's Venom, mainly in the eyes. I can't wait to see him in action next month.
Dynamite artwork from Humberto Ramos with Edgar Delgado on color and Victor Olazaba on ink. This is some great storytelling through art. Ramos keeps every page fresh with interesting page set-ups and layouts, and the reader will never feel like their reading the same style of page, over and over. I really enjoy what Delgado does with colors here too. It's a perfect compliment to Ramos' art and his shading is fantastic.
Although it was only a minor part of this issue, I'm not "all in" when it comes to the goblin side story. While it really does take a backseat here, the scene really took me out of story and was a bit of a distraction from the rest of the awesomeness.
Part 2 of Darkest Hours delivers and is an extremely exciting start to a story line. Fans of Venom and Flash Thompson will really be on board here as this version of Spidey continues to battle it out with him. The writing and art are on a whole other level. This is a series, whether you agree with how this volume all starter, you should be reading. It keeps getting better and better. If that doesn't win you over, then how about the fact Miguel O'Hara is still in it?