Comics : Astonishing Spider-Man & Wolverine #2

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This story is part of an Arc: "Another Fine Mess"
     Part 1 / Part 2 / Part 3 / Part 4 / Part 5 / Part 6

This review was first published on: Oct 2010.

Background...

Spider-man and Wolverine both ended up thwarting a bank heist by The Orb—and ended up somehow lost through time, to a prehistoric age where a meteor was about to strike. Against Spidey’s warnings, Wolverine ended up becoming leader to an ape-men tribe, which altered the timeline of history—as Spidey and Wolverine inexplicably time-jumped again, they ended up in an era post-man, where the same ape men have thrived.

In Detail...

Astonishing Spider-Man & Wolverine #2
Aug 2010 : SM Title
Arc: Part 2 of "Another Fine Mess"
Editor:  Nick Lowe
Writer:  Jason Aaron
Pencils:  Adam Kubert
Inker:  Mark Morales
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Review

Peter’s giving a science lecture in costume—to a classroom full of “teenage ape creatures”. At the same time in an internal monologue, he reflects on a life of defying the laws of physics, science and common sense. He concludes that he’s tried to make the best of his life and find a few laughs along the way. The bell rings, and his class files out. Peter heads to the padlocked teacher’s lounge, which is really now what Peter calls the “Dead Weapons Office”. Inside are various artifacts from the Marvel U dug up by the ape scientists Peter's trained: Magneto’s helmet, Ghost Rider’s smashed up motorbike, a Goblin glider, etc. Peter’s friend, an apeman named Mikal, is researching the Cosmic Cube, trying to find a way to harness it’s power. An alarm rings—signaling the arrival of a major threat to the city. Pete bashes his fists on a table, thinking if he just had more time—as he does, some familiar-looking diamonds fall out of a box. Peter doesn't take notice of the diamonds and swings off to find Logan.

He finds Logan at his lair, fighting robotic contraptions for practice. They banter back and forth, and Spider-man joins in the training. Spider-man says the end of the world is coming to the dimension they’re in right now, and Wolverine says he’ll help fight when the time comes, but that’s all.

Spidey swings back to the Dead Weapons Office. He’s letting himself in when an energy blast is fired at him—he turns around to find The Orb with a nasty-looking gun. He demands to know where Spider-man is hiding “them”. The Orb kicks Spidey around, demanding the diamonds, and cryptically explaining how he’s on the run from someone named “The Minutemen”. Suddenly, a portal is opened and The Orb is dragged in by somebody. Before he has much time to process these events, Spider-man is suddenly alerted that his apemen diggers have uncovered something very important at a remote site—he goes to check it out—a glowing box with a Phoenix Force symbol on. Upon taking the box back to his lab, Spidey concludes that the box can save the planet, but doing so will mean someone will have to die.

Suddenly his spider-sense goes ballistic—the big threat has arrived: before the end of mankind, Victor Von Doom “transplanted his consciousness to the only thing massive enough to contain his massive ego: an entire planet.” Doom the Living Planet comes, releasing mechanized giant bugs that tear up the city.

Spidey goes back to his lab, casting the Phoenix Force into a bullet that will destroy planets. He thinks that whoever fires the gun will be ripped apart at a subatomic level, but that it’s what he has to do to save the world he’s in. Peter is so wrapped up in what he’s doing, he ignores his sudden spider-sense and is knocked out from behind. Wolverine is there, suited up in his yellow costume; he takes the gun and says if someone’s doing the shooting, it probably should be him, and that Peter should sit this one out, that “Jeannie and I got this”. As Wolverine leaves Spidey’s lair to take out Doom, he’s being watched from afar by a shadowy twosome, their outfits and weapons encrusted in diamonds.

In General...

As this (non-continuity) tale rolls on, coming out bi-monthly, going back to last issue becomes a must to get a handle on what’s happening. And yet, I still have little clue as to why Spidey and Wolverine are lost through time (obviously something to do with those green-glowing diamonds), who’s stalking them through time and what The Orb was talking about this issue.

Not knowing isn’t so much of an problem when the characterization is this good, the interaction between Wolvie and Spidey is this funny, and when Adam Kubert’s art is as brilliant as it is here. Doom the Living Planet (taking over for Ego) is an interesting concept as well.

Overall Rating...

I have no idea what’s going on, but neither do Spidey or Wolvie. Regardless, this series continues to be quite a fun ride.