“There’s No Escape” (THE AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #66 Comic Review)
The Amazing Spider-Man #66
Writer: Nick Spencer
Penciler: Mark Bagley
Inker: John Dell
Colorist: Brian Reber
Letterer: VC’s Joe Caramagna
Cover Artists: Mark Bagley, John Dell, and Brian Reber
The Kingpin has won. After the events of King’s Ransom, Fisk has secured the lifeline tablet thanks to a long-game ruse by Fred Myers, AKA the Boomerang. The new leaf that Myers turned over was all a ploy for Spidey to secure the tablet for him, and now he’s back to his old ways as a criminal. Furthermore, Kingpin has used the tablet for his own will, not to bring back Vanessa, but to resurrect his son Richard, better known as the Rose. Reeling from this loss, and returning to a lonely apartment, Peter has to plot his next move against the crime boss mayor himself, alongside all the heroes he enlisted to help him, as well as dealing with the fallout of leaving TNM. With major conflicts looming over him, where does Peter go from here? Also, now that Kingpin no longer has a use for him, what’s to become of Kindred?
It’s been no secret that I’ve been greatly disappointed by this run as of late. Aside from Sins Rising and Absolute Carnage, Spencer’s take on the web-slinger in my eyes has gone downhill ever since the end of Hunted. After the Kindred reveal, I was definitely hoping things might form together, but it feels like we’re back at square one: building up to another mystery while several different stories happen at once. There were some signs of intrigue, like Mephisto appearing at the end of issue 60, but like most things in this run, we probably won’t go back to it until much later. And unfortunately, King’s Ransom and its fallout are no exception to this.
I still have little to no complaints about the art, as usual, since I’m a big fan of Bagley’s style and most of the coloring style. However, it doesn’t do much to elevate or provide any investment. Since this issue is more so wrap-up and set-up, there isn’t a whole lot in terms of character, which is fine. With issues like these, that’s a bit expected. But here, it just feels like a rinse cycle. Story happens, characters pontificate about the events, they move on, rinse and repeat, and there’s not much to sink your teeth into. Every story feels like it’s just set up and filler working towards the endgame, and that would be fine if there was investment or any big stuff to simmer over, but with King’s Ransom, it really isn’t the case, especially since it cheapens everything with Boomerang beforehand, even if he says “oh wait it wasn’t all fake though.” It feels like a cheap twist that presents itself as smart and meta, but just like Kindred, it feels like it’s super hesitant to make a change to the status quo, or if a change is made, it’s the safest one. Safe doesn’t always equal bad, but in a run that teases massive changes, I’d say it does.
All in all, especially with the ending of this issue, I have no clue where this run is going anymore, and not in a way that’s cool due to unpredictability. Nearly everything important and different about this run that was set up has been either undone or cheapened, and it makes me worried about where other elements will go, such as the relationship with MJ. I’m not sure if the upcoming Sinister War is going to be the end of this run, as it’s looking to be Kindred’s big comeback and has been possibly teased to be the end, but I really hope it is. I want to know the answers, I want this story to wrap up, and I wanna see a new take on the character. To sum up this run in a nutshell, it’s like a CW superhero show: starting out the gate like gangbusters, only to snowball into a mess of stories, characters, and events that feel disconnected and unplanned.
Summary Good art, but a disappointing wrap-up to a disappointing story that serves as a disappointing end to the Boomerang story arc, and I'm unsure about where this story is going anymore.