Dan Slott has taken the idea that many were outraged over and is crafting an fascinating story. The first two issues showed some new developments but here you really get a feel for what we could see in the coming issues. The whole notion of Doc Ock trying to be a superior Spider-Man is both humorous and interesting. This is more than just Doc Ock trying to be Spider-Man. Like it or not, he's being influenced by Spider-Man's memories and sense of doing good.
This whole concept almost feels like a science experiment. While this Spider-Man may be making some strides and improvements, there will also be some repercussions for when Peter (inevitably) returns. With a more violent or less lenient approach in dealing with the villains, Peter is going to have a lot to deal with whenever he makes his way back. There will also be the public perception and those of close characters like Mary Jane and Carlie Cooper.
This issue brings some great interaction between Spider-Man and J. Jonah Jameson. There's also some interaction with Carlie that needs to be seen. Throw in the fact that Spider-Man has to face Vulture, Ock's former partner in crime, we're looking at a new sort of game. Seeing the reaction to Spider-Man's tactics from others including Peter is priceless. Spider-Man is making strides in some areas but doing highly questionable things in others. All this adds a new level to reading these Spider-Man stories.
These are the aspects of this series that I'm really digging. We've had so many (great) Spider-Man stories and this is giving us the chance to really explore who and what Spider-Man is. Whether things revert back in a month or a year, there's plenty of fallout to be seen.
Ryan Stegman continues to get better and better each issue. The level of detail he puts in and the subtle differences in Spider-Man's posture and body language is remarkable. Whether it's drawing an arrogant Spider-Man, creepy henchmen of the Vulture or flashbacks to Doc Ock's childhood, each moment has its own unique feel.
As compelling as these stories are, it is still taking some getting used to having a different Spider-Man as the lead. The scary thing is, Slott is making us start to actually like this Spider-Man. That can't be good, can it?
Last issue gave us a fun (and slightly creepy) look at Doc Ock try to navigate through Peter Parker's personal life. This issue, we're seeing the action kick up a notch. This new version of Spider-Man is a slight enigma as we're seeing Ock do things for his own good while also continuing to prove he can be a better Spider-Man than Peter was. There is quite a bit of inner conflict as we start to see Ock in a different light and you can't help but admire some of the things he's bringing to the table. Stegman is a beast in terms of delivering amazing art. He doesn't just draw Spider-Man with a slightly different costume, you can see by the way he stands and moves that there is a difference here. There may still be some outcry over the changes in this title but Slott (and Stegman) are showing there is more to this than many gave them credit for. We're seeing many opportunities to view Spider-Man in a different light and we know it can't last forever. What's important is to enjoy these stories for what they are as they are giving us something different and it's been a blast reading them. It's almost like reading Spider-Man for the first time.