Superior Spider-Man #29
Superior Spider-Man #29
The Goblin Kings brutal and personal attack on Spock continues this issue, and we see quite how far The Green Goblin is willing to go to hurt Otto. It’s often said that good heroes are defined by their villains; well The Green Goblin proves quite how dangerous he can be in this issue. Slott is fantastic at capturing the sadistic glee that the Goblin takes in hurting Spider-Man and it’s really satisfying, in an odd way, to see the hero struggling to deal with the crisis. I can finally see why Slott’s made Otto so competent at dealing with attacks. It was so that his downfall would be so sweet. When the goblin strikes its personal, whether it’s Otto or Pete, he destroys Ocks legacy and relentlessly taunts him throughout. There’s a degree of wish fulfilment in seeing Otto’s careful plans falling apart especially when The Goblin turns Otto’s oldest trick against him. However the greatest part of this issue is “Norman” explaining why he’s going out of his way to hurt Otto, it’s personally jealousy that “he” was the one who defeated Spidey. It’s petty, short sighted and spot on for the way Goblins feel about Spider-Man.
Giuseppe Camuncoli was my least favourite artist on rotation when The Superior Spider-Man began. Well now here we are at the penultimate issue and I could not have been more wrong. His work in this book as a whole has been incredible, and this issue is no different. The expressions on the characters faces are perfect, there’s the mania of the goblin, the weariness of Jonah and the acceptance of Lamaze it’s breathtaking at times.
Speaking of Lamaze, this is the real dramatic moment of the book. Without spoiling it, he makes a huge sacrifice for Spock and we see something in the character that we didn’t before. Now Slott’s been criticised, unfairly, as failing to have a compelling supporting cast. Well I would argue moments like this prove otherwise. We see that the combative and pompous man, who Spock always presumed his superiority over, was really a better man than anyone, even we the reader gave him credit for. In many ways he mirrors Ock, he’s proud and vain to a fault. However when push comes to shove he makes sacrifices, that Otto was too afraid to make, and proves himself a hero.
The real misstep of the book in my mind is having “Norman” reveal that he doesn’t know who’s under Spidey’s mask still. First of all it stretches my belief that this Goblin wouldn’t realise who Spidey is, considering that he’s actively attacking the Parker family. Second of all Carlie freely admits that she loses herself at times to the monster persona so why wouldn’t Monster spill the beans on Pete. It’s not a huge problem, especially as we still get the personal vicious attacks that have become a trademark of the Goblin. However I was hoping that we’d be back to a Green Goblin who knew Spidey’s secret. Also that cover completely spoils the books big twist.
Despite Camuncoli’s rather interesting take on the mindscape, I love the reflections in the tentacles, that whole plot is getting dull. It may be because we know Peter’s coming back but we’ve had this in the last 2 issues and I think we the readers know what’s happening. There’s no need to show us it again unless you’re going to do something new with it, it’s borders on patronising to constantly remind us that Pete’s been swallowed by Otto’s memories.
My final nitpick with the book, and that what these are really. Is that I don’t believe that all The Avengers would be completely swamped by The Goblin Army. Also there’s some inconsistency on how far the anarchy has spread in New York.
Slott continues to knock it out of the park with this book. He’s wrapping up what will certainly be considered a classic Spider-Man story with style and finesse, while still telling an engaging and enthralling story. I can’t wait to see how one of the greatest chapters in Spidey’s history ends.