By Brian Michael Bendis, Oscar Bazaldua, Brian Reber
“Sinister Six Reborn” continues in classic Bendis fashion, setting up for an inevitable confrontation in the next issue. Rooted closer to home, it’s nice to see the series taking some time to flesh out more on its individuality. But while this issue does bring up some interesting character development in Miles as a hero going forward, it does little to serve as more than an interstitial between two more important chapters.
The return of Aaron Davis, Mile’s uncle last seen in the Ultimate universe, is a shift that’s been long overdue. With a series that’s been heavily involved with an event, a crossover, and fighting classic Peter Parker villains, having a plotline that’s so connected to the main character is a breath of fresh air. It truly feels like a semi-continuation of the stories told in the previous series. It also helps to add to the argument that Miles is more than just another Spider-Man.
Miles’s own struggle with this statement is also a very interesting problem. He wants to be more than somebody else’s title even though he’s done a lot of good with it. Legacy aside, why would a kid with superpowers even consider living a normal life? It’s a problem that’s unique to a younger hero that hasn’t been focused on much because the secret identity is a part of the standard superhero checklist.
Some much needed time is also spent with the villains. While previous incarnations of the Sinister Six have been either bloodthirsty or comical, this version does seem to have a more practical edge to them. Each member has their own reasons for being there and they aren’t friends. Most of their time together involves some type of conflict making them far more appealing. We will have to wait for any actual cooperation between them though.
Even with all that said, there are still pacing issues present. Pretty arbitrarily Miles gets a new power and the high school part of his life doesn’t mesh well to the point of being irrelevant. Somewhat newly introduced girlfriend Barbara, for instance, doesn’t speak a word. There’s also some pretty naive dialogue between Miles and Ganke. They’re supposed to be kids making their way life but Miles not knowing how he gets his web fluid is a little much. But the biggest problem has to be that nothing really happens. In terms of plot, most of this issue feels as if it could be skipped over.
Artist Oscar Bazaldua works well depicting costumes, armor, and vehicles. Not much particularly stands out in this issue in this regard though since it is on the lighter side. Color artist Brian Reber does a good job, in particular his contrast between the docks at nighttime and the shiny reflective nature of a S.H.I.E.L.D. storage facility.
While the initial reveal was fun, the promise of Marvel Legacy hasn’t quite translated effectively yet into Spider-Man. In many ways, it’s business as usual with some oddly paced scenes and additional threads being introduced with no pay-off in sight. While there are redeeming qualities and a lot to be interested in how Miles is his own person, you won’t find much more here than what’s already been set up.