Thursday, 6 December 2012

The Amazing Spider-Man #697

Writers: Dan Slott & Christos Gage
Artist: Giuseppe Camuncoli

(Highlight White Areas to Reveal Spoilers)

I have been a Spider-Man fan all my life and have been enjoying this series for the best part since J. Michael Straczynski's run and although some of the stories are much better than the others and some have been poor the majority of them have been very good. I have really enjoyed what Dan Slott has been doing with the character and am really looking forward to issue 700, and can't remember being this excited reading AMS in a long time.


This issue sees Peter Parker and Max Modell (who are in possession of the Goblin Key which will open Norman Osborn's workshop) running for their lives from the original Hobgoblin (Kingsley) and the current Hobgoblin (Phil Urich). They eventually find the location of Norman's workshop and get in before the Hobgoblins get there but Osborn has a self destruct mode for anyone unauthorised to enter.


An amazing issue and a brilliant way to end this story. Slott has done a tremendous job on this series and he keeps producing brilliant story after brilliant story utilising some of Spider-Man's most famous villains. What I also like about Slott's writing is that even if the story isn't brilliant it's still near enough guaranteed to be fun. Slott also has a great understanding of both Spider-Man and all his villains in this series and I have enjoyed that he's brought a more serious and focused Spider-Man to this series.

Giuseppe Camuncoli's art was once again brilliant and although I prefer Humberto Ramos' art more I think Camuncoli's suits this story and the Hobgoblin's more. The detail in all the characters, equipment and the fight scenes is extraordinary and although his backgrounds aren't quiet as detailed as some of the other artist's the detail in the featured characters and equipment is that good you wouldn't notice unless like me you look at each page very closely.

There was also a cameo appearance from Harry Osborn this issue and although he's bald and has a beard it was nice to see him again. Harry hasn't been in the series since Origin of the Species (if I remember correctly) so it was nice to see him again and how he's changed since having Stanley to look after. I hope that we get to see Harry again sometime down the line as although he didn't usually have a big role in the series prior it was nice that Peter had someone he could talk to that he's known most of his life.

The action throughout this issue was amazing whether it be the Hobgoblin's fighting each other or them working together to fight Spider-Man. The unpredictability during the fight was brilliant and I loved the expression on Urich's face when he realises that Stone's device wasn't working was brilliant. I also liked the attitude change in Urich when Kingsley says he's going to kill Norah Winters (who he's got a drone loaded with C4 trailing) as it's hard to tell if he is angry, upset, both or neither at this (although I think he's both upset and angry).

When I fist noticed that Max Modell was going to have a bigger role in this story than he's had in the past I thought it would slow the story down but he proved this issue that it was right having him in the story as he added some humour to it whilst trying to play a modest hero at times. Due to Peter doing most of the inventing in this series it's easy to forget that the other members of Horizon Labs and Max in particular are brilliant inventors in their own rights and I liked that this issue showed that.

The Spider-Glider was also a nice touch to this issue and it made the fight between Spider-Man and the Hobgoblin's look more even and symmetric. I've never seen the glider before so now having seen it for the first time think it's very well designed and looks almost exactly like what I'd imagine the Goblin Glider would have looked like if Spider-Man had invented it.

The interaction between the two Hobgoblin's in this issue was brilliant and I loved how at certain parts during the issue they'd turn on each other showing that neither of them can trust each other whilst each time eventually realizing that they are better off working together. I also like that you can tell easily which one is which due to the way they speak and the words they choice.

Final Verdict

This was a great issue and a superb ending to the Danger Zone story. I would highly recommend both this issue and the story it'self and am really looking forward to the remaining issues between now and issue 700.

Rating: 5/5