There are a few things every Spider-Man fan looks for in a great Spidey comic, and simply put, Non-Stop Spider-Man #1 has them all. Written by Joe Kelly with art by Chris Bachalo, this book has the energy, the wit, and the incredible art to satisfy even the most jaded Spider-Man fan. Out this Wednesday, fans who want a lighter and super fun take on Spider-Man who cracks wise in the most dangerous situations will need to pick this book up. And another copy for their friends.
Originally slated for June 2020, Non-Stop Spider-Man finally makes its debut with so much energy, “non-stop” is an understatement. Seriously, this book opens with Spider-Man literally smashing through a window fifteen stories up and immediately quipping like the super-positive Spidey we know and love. As Spider-Man plummets, he thinks about what just happened via captions all the while reminding us how many stories he has to go through before he hits the ground. This leads to a “Big Brain Play” and a turn in the action from dangerous plummet to fight scene.
Bachalo outdoes himself with crazy layouts increasing the energy of each panel. Customary of Bachalo in some of his work, panels seem to end abruptly, which creates a sense of chaos as if the story is carrying on off the page where we can’t see. Along with inks by Tim Townsend and colors by Marcio Menyz, the art exemplifies the danger Spider-Man is in throughout the story, yet he continues to joke. Another neat effect is how elements like webs or broken glass break the borders of panels here or there, blending into the white gutters. Again, this creates chaotic energy that enhances the scene.
Props to Bachalo for making Spider-Man so bendy too, which is seen in scenes with Peter Parker too. The agility of Spider-Man is on full display here and you’re reminded thanks to Bachalo’s pencils the bendiness of Spider-Man is a power in itself.
Also great are sound effects and motion effects, which pop in at the best moments. Letters by Travis Lanham have a great placement to drive your eye in the right direction or enhance the slow recollection of a moment, or the speeding up of one. The sound effects litter this book and also create another layer to the action that goes beyond the art.
The story is good too. Ignore the fact that Kelly has mastered the voice of Spider-Man here, or for that matter another character in a surprise backup story, the captions help to remind us Spider-Man’s mind is always working different angles. They may not be logical or even the right angles, but he’s always thinking and thinking very fast. The action is non-stop, but so is Spider-Man’s mind. This plays into the bigger plot and mystery. A quieter scene early on helps inform us of what is really going on, which leads to the cliffhanger that ties things together. It’s an interesting plot and one with a strong and meaningful purpose.
Added to this is a backup I won’t spoil in the slightest, but rest assured it’s important to this series and sure as heck is fun. The art in this backup is sharp and quite good too, but what do you expect from a master.
Do not pass on Non-Stop Spider-Man #1. It’s so abundantly good, and a shock to the system on top of the addictive chaos of the book itself. Non-Stop Spider-Man is edge of your seat high-octane stuff if your seat were teetering on the front of a rocket.
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