Nick Spencer and Mark Bagley are taking us on a Sin-Eater ride as the character’s being revived for the latest story arc that also involves new villain Kindred. The creators spoke a bit about the new arc at the “Marvel’s Next Big Thing” panel which offered some insight into why Spencer is using the character. I didn’t love the special one-shot, which introduced the character to new readers and showed us how he got revived, but I’m open to a classic villain getting a new direction. In Amazing Spider-Man #45, Spencer and Bagley show us how they’ll be integrating Sin-Eater into Spidey’s life, and it involves Overdrive.
First and foremost, I have to say I’m biased when reviewing this book since I grew up on Mark Bagley’s work, which continues to be incredibly iconic and nostalgic for a reader like myself. His work continues to be great and he continues to be my favorite Spider-Man artist. His ability to draw the character with rippling, but not too big of muscles is unparalleled, plus the mask, Peter himself, and the agility of the character are all on impressive display.
He’s backed up by inkers John Dell (and Andy Owens) and color artist David Curiel. The colors do a lot to amp up a scene, be it Spider-Man’ getting his tingles, or an explosive moment splashed in red behind it all. There’s subtle detailing by Curiel when it comes to Overdrive’s face under his mask that’s quite good too.
This issue made me a believer in what Spencer is trying to do with Sin-Eater and his new place in Spider-Man’s life. The character seems to have new powers, a new direction, and an almost equal place to enact justice in an opposite way than Spider-Man would go about doing it. Considering Spidey spends a chunk of this issue trying to save Overdrive, a killer and villain who doesn’t deserve saving, it shows the lengths Spidey will go to save anyone. Meanwhile, Sin-Eater is enacting a kind of justice we haven’t seen since the Punisher. It creates an interesting juxtaposition between Sin-Eater and Spider-Man that will be interesting to explore as the series progresses.
This is also a comic book about Carlie Cooper, who has made appearances in previous Spidey books by Spencer. Spencer is clearly a fan of Spider-Man, history as he’s using characters that matter in his history. Her place in the story seems to be a robust one and it’ll be interesting to see how it dovetails with Kindred, who continues to be in the background pulling the strings.
Overall, I think this is a great start to the Sin-Eater storyline. I’ve been slowly wondering when this series would get back into a groove after its stellar first story arc and it’s fairly obvious this arc may be a return to something well worth investing your time in. “Sins Rising” is shaping up to be a haunting and worthy story.