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'Amazing Spider-Man' #40 is just entertaining enough
Marvel

Comic Books

‘Amazing Spider-Man’ #40 is just entertaining enough

‘Gang War’ continues with key scenes that elevate Tombstone and the big villain.

“Gang War” has heroes splitting up, gangsters killing each other, and all of New York in turmoil. At the center of it all is Spider-Man, who is basically the leader of vigilante heroes in a city that has outlawed them. In the latest chapter taking place in Amazing Spider-Man #40, Tombstone joins the good guys, and Madame Masque continues to grow in power!

The name of the game of this issue is gangsters making moves. That includes Tombstone’s kid, The Rose, and a surprise return for a major villain on the final page. These moves are sprinkled across the issue, mostly packed with fight scenes. In this issue, Spider-Man and She-Hulk team up with Tombstone, and Madame Masque makes a statement.

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Madame Masque might have the strongest scene of the entire issue. John Romita Jr. draws a heck of a statement moment for her as she lets two people fall to their deaths. This leads to henchmen switching sides and her power growing.

Meanwhile, the real character work lies with Tombstone. Zeb Wells has focused on the character for some time, as he was a major factor earlier in his run. Now, he’s come to grips with the fact that leading a gangster army isn’t in the cards for him anymore. It’s clear he’s up to something, and it’s fun to decipher what that could be.

Amazing Spider-Man #40

I just think these two are fun.
Credit: Marvel

Outside of these story beats, this is mostly a fight comic with table-setting fringe. Romita gets to draw some killer scenes with a lot of characters on the page, and his dynamic style suits these moments. Seeing Spider-Man fling himself into a pile of tracksuit gangsters or stand amongst some rather haunting masked men is a sight to see.

Something that doesn’t work is Beetle, who seems to be going darker and more evil just because. Simply putting on a scary mask isn’t enough, and yet the story seems to suggest it is for the story’s sake. It comes off as too easy and unbelievable. She couldn’t have possibly gone this dark simply because she lost her fiancé, right?

Amazing Spider-Man #40 is an interesting issue, although it doesn’t pack the wallop one would expect from a major crossover event issue. It’s problematic that the most interesting characters aren’t Spider-Man but ancillary characters who are B-Listers at best in the history of Marvel Comics. If you accept those terms of the story, it’s fun enough.

'Amazing Spider-Man' #40 is just entertaining enough
‘Amazing Spider-Man’ #40 is just entertaining enough
Amazing Spider-Man #40
Amazing Spider-Man #40 is an interesting issue, although it doesn't pack the wallop one would expect from a major crossover event issue. It's problematic that the most interesting characters aren't Spider-Man but ancillary characters who are B-Listers at best in the history of Marvel Comics. If you accept those terms of the story, it's fun enough. 
Reader Rating1 Votes
8.8
A beat em up battle with some dramatic moments with villains
Tombstone and Madame Masque have good scenes
Beetle's turn from bad to evil seems unearned
Spider-Man doesn't seem to be the main character. At all
7.5
Good
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