Spider-Man: Spider-Island

amazing spider-man spider-island cover
7.0 Overall Score
Story: 7/10
Art: 7/10

Different type of story

Not a big fan of telling of the story

Comic Info

Comic Name:  Amazing Spider-Man (Volume 2)

Publisher: Marvel Comics

Writer: Dan Slott/Fred Van Lente/Christos Gage

Artist:  Barry Kitson/Lee Garbett/Scott Hanna/Emma Rios/Max Fiumara/Guiseppe Camuncoli/Onofrio Catacchio/Minck Oosterveer/Stafano Caselli/Humeberto Ramos/Tom Fowler

# of Issues: 18

Release Date: 2012

amazing spider-man #670 cover spider-island j jonah jameson

Amazing Spider-Man (2) #670

Reprints Amazing Spider-Man (2) #559-560, #662-673, Venom (2) #6-9, and Spider-Island: Deadly Foes #1 (June 2011-January 2012). The Jackal has unleashed a new horror on Manhattan that could threaten the entire world. People are suddenly gaining the powers of Spider-Man, and with these powers comes “no” responsibility. While some with powers become heroes, others become villains and it is up to Spider-Man and the other heroes of Manhattan to stop the virus and save the city. Unfortunately, Jackal has some of his own tricks up his sleeve and a secret backer that could be an even greater danger.

Written by Dan Slott with additional writing by Fred Van Lente and Christos Gage, Spider-Man: Spider-Island was an event series in Slott’s long Spider-Man run. Following Spider-Man: The Return of Anti-Venom, the collection also collects Rick Remender’s Venom tie-in issues (November 2011-December 2011) and the one-shot Spider-Island: Deadly Foes #1 (October 2011) and features art by Barry Kitson, Lee Garbett, Scott Hanna, Emma Rios, Max Fiumara, Guiseppe Camuncoli, Onofrio Catacchio, Minck Oosterveer, Stafano Caselli, Humeberto Ramos, and Tom Fowler. Issues in the collection were also featured in Spider-Man: Big Time—The Complete Collection Volume 2.

Spider-Island was where I initially thought about going back to Slott’s Spider-Man after dropping it during the first part of his run. I was hearing a lot of buzz about the event series, and the series was bringing in characters that I like (like Shang-Chi, the second Spider-Woman, and Cloak & Dagger). I tried to read Spider-Island cold…and failed miserably. Returning to Spider-Island as I catch up on some of Slott’s read, I find the basic premise of the story interesting, but I’m not much into how it is told.

amazing spider-man #671 cover mary jane spider-island

Amazing Spider-Man (2) #671

The basic concept is goofy. You have the Jackal’s big plan to infect the whole city with Spider-Man powers (secretly for the Spider-Queen)…and then what? Being a supervillain, it doesn’t necessarily mean his choices are smart, but it seems like a lot of work to get to this point and the logistics of containing an infection in the New York City area is almost impossible.

This raises a comic book problem which is especially prevalent now. Comic books want it both ways. They say that old style comics are too cartoony and not realistic enough, but they continue to use characters that dress up like animals and give cartoon plots that lack logic. It feels like Spider-Island wants to be fun, but attempts to make it “real” take a lot of the fun out…likewise, the realism of the story hurts the fun of the characters involved.

Spider-Man: Spider-Island isn’t awful, but it also isn’t very impressive. I wasn’t a fan of a lot of Slott’s supporting cast and this volume relies on that supporting cast a lot. I love the character of Spider-Man, and I miss Spider-Man…I realize you can’t necessarily “go-back”, but it would be nice to find a happy medium between modern comics and the great runs of the past. Spider-Man: Spider-Island was followed by Spider-Man: Flying Blind.

Related Links:

Spider-Man:  Spider-Island Companion

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter/Instagram/Letterboxd @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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