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'The Amazing Spider-Man' #17 introduces the Insidious Six
Marvel

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‘The Amazing Spider-Man’ #17 introduces the Insidious Six

‘The Amazing Spider-Man’ #17 is set entirely in Limbo as Peter Parker tries to make the best out of a wacky situation.

The Amazing Spider-Man is in deep with the Dark Web event, which is obvious from the very start of the latest issue. The Amazing Spider-Man #17 is set in Limbo, where Chasm, aka Ben Reilly, sent Peter Parker. He also sent J.J. Jameson, who is trying to make the Limbo Daily Bugle function. Things are totally not normal in this made-up New York set in Limbo, and that’s apparent from the colorful demons that permeate the comic. It’s the wackiest issue in the Dark Web event yet, but can that wackiness sustain your attention?

Written by Zeb Wells, if you thought the previous issues featuring inanimate objects talking thanks to demon power was weird, you ain’t seen nothing yet. The Amazing Spider-Man #17 opens with two demons headed to work. A rather strange, wrinkly demon is trying to play the part of a businessman, but a shark demon wants none of it. Soon that shark demon is getting pulverized by Peter Parker, who happens to be heading to work at the same location. We soon learn the Daily Bugle, and all of New York in Limbo is thanks to Chasm, which doesn’t make a ton of sense, but then again, the entire issue is quite ridiculous.

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The general energy of this issue is heavy on the lunacy of shows like The Muppets. They talk and act not out of any purpose. They’re all weird and erratic just because. The plan Chasm has is a tough one to figure out, but one can assume his lack of memories and newfound evil is enough explanation for most. A recurring joke in this issue is how bad demons are with names. They can’t get Peter or Jameson’s names right, yet they’re pretty confident in their terrible attempts. I can’t say this joke holds up the third or fourth time, but it’s certainly a valiant attempt.

There’s a key scene with Chasm and Peter, and later Goblin Queen and Chasm, that seems to suggest Chasm is off his rocker and trying his best to steal Peter’s soul. Given how topsy-turvy and weird everything is, you’ll just have to agree that it makes sense and move on or lose your sanity in the process.

Amazing Spider-Man #17

They remind me of a Saturday morning cartoon.
Credit: Marvel

Most of the entertainment in this issue stems from the weird demons being all kinds of weird and the reveal of the Insidious Six. As far as this new villainous team, think demonic Sinister Six, but goofier. Quite honestly, the design of each is quite fun and ridiculous in its own way. Ed McGuinness draws the heck out of these weirdos, and they practically steal the issue. We get to see them revealed and then fight Spider-Man, leading to a wacky and silly cliffhanger.

The pencils are paired with the excellent colors by Marcio Menyz and inks by Cliff Rathburn, and they’re a delight. Really all of Limbo is a delight to look at with every page looking incredibly rich with good depth, lighting, and weirdness.

The problem with this issue is any danger Peter and Jameson are in is negated by the silly demons. Limbo has been depicted as scary or downright hellish in the past, but here it’s silly and off the wall like Gremlins 2. You can accept the heroes are trapped, but aside from being annoyed, the stakes don’t seem very high. Pair that with Chasm’s rather bad plan, and this issue feels more like a silly aside. On top of all that, Peter isn’t scared or even threatened by Chasm at one point. He’s just enduring a rather dumb situation in Limbo.

If you’ve enjoyed the outrageous and over-the-top silly demons in the Dark Web event, you’re going to love Amazing Spider-Man #17. It’s filled with wacky demons living preposterous lives, but any semblance of a dramatic story or high stakes is missing here. Instead, take in McGuinness’ great art and wait for the other shoe to drop in the narrative’s next issue.

'The Amazing Spider-Man' #17 introduces the Insidious Six
‘The Amazing Spider-Man’ #17 introduces the Insidious Six
The Amazing Spider-Man #17
If you've enjoyed the outrageous and over-the-top silly demons in the Dark Web event, you're going to love Amazing Spider-Man #17. It's filled with wacky demons living preposterous lives, but any semblance of a dramatic story or high stakes is missing here. Instead, take in McGuinness' great art and wait for the other shoe to drop in the narrative's next issue.
Reader Rating1 Votes
8.7
You can't beat these visuals from cover to cover
Designs throughout are great from the various demons to the Insidious Six
There seems to be no stakes or danger for our heroes
Chasm's plan doesn't make a lot of sense
7.5
Good
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