Thursday, 1 March 2018

Ultimate Comics Spider-Man, Volume 4 Review (Brian Michael Bendis, David Marquez)

Miles continues to learn the ropes (or should that be webbing?) of being Spider-Man as he encounters the tiresomely inevitable Spidey rogue, Venom, and realises that With Great Power Comes Great Tragedy… 

Volume 4 is another homer for Brian Bendis and co. in their amazing Ultimate Comics: Spider-Man run! I really enjoyed seeing the Ultimate versions of familiar characters like the mercenary Betty Brant, the embarrassingly chic Ben Urich and the surprisingly likeable Jonah, whose crusty exterior has softened in the wake of Peter Parker’s death. 

Ultimate Maria Hill is an NYPD homicide detective and I loved her scenes with Miles. She knows he’s Spidey but she’s also not about to ruin his life either, instead giving him wisdom and direction just when he needed to hear it - POWERFUL Maria Hill! Ganke and Miles’ scenes remain effortlessly charming and well-written and it was fun to see Gwen and MJ team up with them. 

Though being the main focus of this book, Venom is once again the weakest link. This character has never been good and he’s as one-note here as he always is. The reveal of the Symbiote’s host was unimpressive and his practically non-existent motivation was weak at best. Venom’s just here to do contrived stuff to make MIles question his future as a superhero. The ending too is a bit abrupt. 

David Marquez and Sara Pichelli’s art was spectacular as always though Venom looked absurdly ‘roided out. Apparently Ultimate Venom is basically Hulk dipped in black oil! 

Venom bullshit aside, once again there’s nothing but goodness to Ultimate Comics: Spider-Man. That’s four books in a row - I think that means this is the best Spider-Man series I’ve ever read!

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