Review: Ultimate Comics: All-New Spider-Man #25
If you couldn’t wait another moment for Miles Morales to become Spider-Man again, then your prayers have been answered! Our young hero dons the red and blacks at the end of this issue, when character after character either yells at him or guilt trips him into just doing it already. Part of it feels anti-climactic. We knew Miles would be Spider-Man again, but I was hoping for some kind of big moment where he couldn’t help but to put on the costume again. Instead, writer Brian Michael Bendis gives us a talking heads issue, where everybody simply points out that he should be Spider-Man. Why didn’t any of them mention this to Miles over the past year if all it took was a strong talking to?
Usually I love Bendis’ talking heads issues, but this one failed to impress. It’s still a good issue, and I’m glad Miles is Spider-Man again, but I feel it should have taken something a lot more dramatic to get him to put on the costume once again.
Comic Rating: 7/10 – Good.
I guess I was hoping for some kind of big, dramatic moment. Like maybe Miles’ dad’s life in in jeopardy. Or a big super-villain is going to destroy the city. Or anything, really. Maybe he has to reveal himself to save his girlfriend, Kate Bishop. Anything would have been better than Miles simply being talked into it. The people doing the talking are all favorites of mine – especially Spider-Woman – but I guess I just wanted something more. Still, it’s good to have Miles back in costume. I want to see some quality Spider-Man action, and Bendis has yet to truly disappoint in that regard.
Speaking of which, I hope the rumors that the Ultimate Universe is going to end in the upcoming Cataclysm storyline aren’t true. Or, well, I don’t mind if the rest of the Ultimate books are cancelled, just so long as the story of Miles Morales gets to continue. And I don’t mean it gets to continue with him joining the Exiles or coming to the regular Marvel Universe. No thank you. I just want to read the uncomplicated, highly-entertaining story of the new Ultimate Spider-Man.
Also, anyone super excited for Cloak and Dagger might also be disappointed with this issue, because their one scene is just another flashback that’s more weird than good. Oh well. Still a solid comic, and the next issue will hopefully be fantastic.
Join me after the jump for a full synopsis and more review!
We open with a sad, pouty Gwen Stacy, who is totally bummed out that Miles Morales is a quitter. Aunt May arrives home to find Gwen slumped over on the couch, and she gets Gwen to open up about why it’s so important to her that Miles be Spider-Man.
Aunt May suggests they back off and let Miles make his own decisions, but Gwen isn’t having it. She whips out her cell phone and sends a text message to a certain someone.
Elsewhere, Miles and his girlfriend Kate are working on homework at school, but Miles keeps spacing out, and Kate has noticed. She asks him what’s wrong, but Miles can’t tell her. He keeps trying to change the subject back to their schoolwork, but when Ganke passes by without saying a word, she figures out that Ganke and Miles aren’t speaking. Miles tells her it’s “a dude thing” and that Ganke will work it out. Kate asks if she’s the problem, because she is convinced that Ganke has a thing for Miles.
Really? I don’t see it. This isn’t the first time such a possibility has come up, but I just don’t see it. The two are just best pals, and Ganke is totally in love with the fact that his best pal is Spider-Man. But in love with Miles? I got nothing. Bendis hasn’t drawn any looks of longing or had Ganke say anything towards that possibility. It would be fine if that were indeed the case, but the gay best friend, who also happens to be chubby, is just such a cliche. Plus, I want Ganke to hook up with Gwen Stacy, so he just can’t be gay for Miles.
Anyway, Miles tells Kate that he knows exactly why Ganke is mad – and we cut to Ganke yelling at Miles about why he’s mad. The answer, of course, is obvious: Ganke wants Miles to be Spider-Man again. Turns out the person Gwen was texting was Ganke (yes!), and she told him all about the fight at the restaurant. So Ganke just shouts at Miles that he needs to get his act together and be Spider-Man again. Even when Miles angrily and tearfully brings up the fact that his mom was killed, Ganke just retorts that his mom’s last words to him were that she was proud of him.
Before Miles can leave, Ganke brings up Cloak and Dagger, because he’s really curious where they came from – cue the cut to Cloak and Dagger’s origin sequence again.
We pick that up where the last issue left off, with Ty and Tandy waking up in the lab with super-powers. They seem none the worse for wear, but the lab is destroyed. The evil scientist in charge crawls out of the wreckage with a crazy look in his eye, and he transforms into some kind of monster. I don’t remember his name, and the fact that he randomly transforms into a monster is just weird. Again, this has probably all been covered in some other Ultimate Comic, but those other comics are terrible. The only comic I care about is Ultimate Spider-Man, and so I have no idea who this guy is or why he’s randomly transforming into a monster, other than the fact that he wants to test Ty and Tandy’s new powers.
The two teleport away, and somehow make for themselves those spiffy superhero costumes we saw last issue.
Cut back to Miles, in Brooklyn, reading about last issue’s superhero fight in the Daily Bugle. His dad finds him at the newspaper stand, and they agree to give dinner another try, this time settling for pizza back at his dad’s place. They head home, and his dad lies down for a bit while Miles goes to his room – where he finds Spider-Woman. She broke in to see if Miles had destroyed the costume she gave him, and he didn’t. She has her mask off, and she tells him that she’s finally ready to explain their connection. It’s a very well done speech, giving us a great look into the mindset of the not-quite-clone of Peter Parker.
Spider-Woman then fills Miles in on how much SHIELD knows about Cloak and Dagger. She tells him that they were created by Roxxon, an evil corporation that’s using super science to try and create new super-powered beings. They’re trying to create a new Spider-Man, a new Hulk, a new Captain America, and she says that SHIELD can’t stop them because, deep down, SHIELD has a business relationship with Roxxon. That’s why it’s important to have independent people like Spider-Man around, to do the things that SHIELD can’t. Plus, she and Miles are connected in that they’re both the result of super science gone wrong. And they need to be there to stop these evil scientist bastards from torturing people like Ty and Tandy.
Miles thinks back to his mom, and his decision is obvious. He leaves his dad a note, then busts out the costume. He’s Spider-Man again!
And that’s how it’s done.
Listen, that was a great, heartfelt speech from Spider-Woman. But it didn’t really…I dunno, I didn’t particularly feel anything. She’s one of my favorite characters, and it’s a very emotional speech, but it didn’t do much for me. Maybe cause I’m not the result of super science gone wrong. Hear that, ladies? These dashing good looks are all natural.
Anyway, like I said, this was basically an issue of people yelling at Miles or trying to make him feel guilty in order to become Spider-Man again, and it works. I know Bendis has been building a connection between Miles and Spider-Woman, but in the end, we the reader already knew that she was a clone of Peter Parker. We sort of already knew about her problems. It’s nice that she’s finally opening up to Miles about them, but they’re not a surprise to the reader, and that dulls their impact a little. And then Miles just becomes Spider-Man again for her, after a year without the costume. I guess I was just hoping for more.
But it’s still a good issue. The character work is amazing, as always. And the art by Dave Marquez just can’t be beat. Seriously, Marquez is awe-inspiringly good. This comic looks great, the characters are some of the richest in all of comics. I just wish this particular issue had more of an emotional punch, considering the seriousness of this decision for Miles.