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Peter Parker: The Spectacular Spider-Man #312 Review

Comic Books

Peter Parker: The Spectacular Spider-Man #312 Review

More Morlun! More Miles! More Melodrama! Peter is knee-deep in Spider-Geddon now — is it any good?

Peter Parker’s first foray into Spider-Geddon was a bit of a letdown. Faced with what is often hyped up as one of his most fearsome, powerful foes, Peter danced circles around the vampire Morlun and came out scathed but relatively go-lucky in an inconsequential feeling issue. Luckily, this follow-up fixes almost everything wrong there to great effect.

What’s it about? Marvel’s preview reads:

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“In the first round with Morlun, Spider-Man barely survived, and one of his most valuable possessions didn’t. The cavalry isn’t coming. Is there anywhere else to turn? You KNOW Peter Parker is desperate if he’s asking J. Jonah Jameson for help!”

Boy howdy do Sean Ryan and Juan Frigeri deliver on a desperate feeling Parker, too. It’s an energy that bleeds through everything in this issue – from the first page where Morlun is sucking away his life force to the very last. He does things that border on un-heroic (but never tip that delicate scale) in the name of self-preservation: cutting and running when Miles shows up to bail him out, elbowing J. Jonah off a bridge to protect him from an incoming Morlun and more. It’s a tightly scripted affair that actually feels like Peter on the run and scared rather than the previous issue tried and failed to do, and it totally works.

Peter Parker: The Spectacular Spider-Man #312 Review

That’s a new take on liposuction! Credit: Marvel Comics

Throw in all the fantastic, but not tone shifting, one-liners and colorful, dynamic art from Frigeri and colorist Jason Keith and baby you’ve got a stew going! It’s a pretty fun, flighty issue that clips along at a decent pace and gives a good, grounded insight into the inner workings of Peter’s mind when he’s not on top of things. Miles gets a good shot or two in on Morlun, too – and it’s all rendered, again, beautifully and with the kind of kinetic physicality that makes Spider-Man books feel so fluid and fun when they’re at their best.

Peter Parker: The Spectacular Spider-Man #312 Review

Marvel Comics

It’s not perfect of course, as Morlun’s writing still feels a little off – like he’s re-introducing himself and his worth and purpose to these guys who he’s spent an entire lifetime hunting and fighting – and J. Jonah Jameson still feels a little shoehorned in and convenient. But those issues are largely inconsequential in the larger scope of a good issue. Especially, one that ties into Spider-Geddon this well as it perfectly sets up a motivation and arc for Miles over there and removes Peter from the equation, lest we want to focus too squarely on him.

An all around good, quick, and dynamic Spider-Geddon tie-in that corrects course from its debut in a fantastic way.

Peter Parker: The Spectacular Spider-Man #312
Is it good?
A great Spider-Man story that finds the right balance between fun and serious, Parker's place in the larger Spider-Geddon happenings feels cemented and sensible through this issue brought to life in equal measure through snappy writing and dynamic art.
The hits Peter and Miles land on Morlun are second only to the hilarious one-liners: "I don't go around calling you Lesser Criss Angel" killed me.
The whole thing still feels slightly too indebted to Spider-Geddon rather than in service to it, Morlun in particular practically reintroducing his entire plot-line in short feels off.

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