By Matt Kindt and Marco Rudy
Let me be a fanboy for a minute –the previous volume of Marvel Knights Spider-Man was some of the best written Spidey in the past 25 years. It’s seriously that good. Seriously, buy the trade or get the single issues, since they don’t command a high price.
Now that we got that out of the way, we have some high hopes for this new iteration of the Marvel Knights line. It has quite a legacy to look up to, but let’s try to look at it for what it is, instead of what it isn’t. With that in mind, Matt Kindt does a great job of offering us something different.
Superior Spider-Man has its pros and cons, but it doesn’t do anything special. It’s so sloppy and uninspired at times. That’s why Matt Kindt’s story feels so fresh and exciting. It’s definitely out there and you get a sense that this story is weird for weird’s sake (like Grant Morrison). Luckily, all the weird seems to gel well. Spider-Man walks into a trap, gets poisoned, and spends the rest of the issue fighting an odd set of villains in some sort of psychedelic hallucination. It doesn’t sound like much, but there is so much to take in. Arcade is a bright spot of the issue –he has a creepy Riddler vibe and looks rad as heck.
The best part of this issue is the artwork. Wow, what a trippy ride. These are the kinds of pages that you want blown up and hung in your nerd cave. Peter Parker looks like Mike D from the Beastie Boys, but Parker’s appearance in comics has always been open to interpretation and it’s never a bad thing to look like a music legend. 8-bit art is becoming more popular, so adding this style to Spidey’s showdown with Arcade is a perfect fit –these are the best pages by far. Marco Rudy’s color art is also particularly mind blowing.
If you’re sick and tired of the Spidey status quo, this is the mini-series for you. The story is crazy and isn’t afraid to take chances, while the art is wild and some of the most beautiful comic book pages of the year. The abstract direction may not be for everybody, but anybody who loves something a little different should eat this right up.