Comics : Amazing Spider-Man (Vol. 3) #14

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This story is part of an Arc: "Spider-Verse"
     Part 1 / Part 2 / Part 3 / Part 4 / Part 5 / Part 6 / Part 7

This review was first published on: Mar 2015.

Background...

The Inheritors have almost everything they could ever want: The Other has been defeated and its blood taken, the Scion is in their clutches, and they managed to capture Silk in a sneak attack. They know their prophecy is close to being fulfilled, but they have also lost their father, Solus. The Spider-Army have also decided that this is the time to bring the fight to the Inheritors and are looking to end this, once and for all.

In Detail...

"Spider-Verse: Web Warriors"
Amazing Spider-Man (Vol. 3) #14
Apr 2015 : SM Title
Summary: Spider-Verse Conclusion
Arc: Part 6 of "Spider-Verse"
Writer:  Dan Slott
Pencils:  Giuseppe Camuncoli, Olivier Coipel
Inker:  Cam Smith, Livesay, Wade von Grawbadger
Cover Art:  Olivier Coipel
Lettering:  Chris Eliopoulos
Colorist:  Justin Ponsor
Executive Producer:  Alan Fine
Publisher:  Dan Buckley
Chief Creative Officer:  Joe Quesada
Editor In Chief:  Axel Alonso
Editor:  Nick Lowe
Assistant Editor:  Devin Lewis
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Issue
Review

On Loomworld, Gwen and Jessica are in the middle of a battle with Verna and her Goblin clone army. Apparently in the surprise of the battle last issue, Cindy was already captured by the Inheritor twins. At this time, the Spider-Army arrives and Pete predictably freaks out. Gwen tells him she can handle herself and he backs off, finally earning a little respect from her.

Meanwhile, the Inheritors are finishing their preparations for the ritual. Daemos is still shaken by the death of Solus (and he’s back to saying that Solus would outlive him), but Jennix reveals that he has Solus’ “essence” in a crystal, which is what he had been using to create his perfect clones. Until he can re-create his facility, this is all the remains of Solus, meaning that technically, the prophecy about Solus is true. Morlun has had enough of their talk and begins the ritual by spilling the blood of the Other across the Great Web. With this act, the Other no longer exists and will no longer find a host anywhere. The Master Weaver informs Morlun that the Spiders are coming. He sends off Verna and the Twins to take care of them.

At the gates of their mansion, the Inheritors prepare for extermination, but Peter calls in his reinforcements: Miles and his Web Warriors! Back in the main hall, Morlun cuts the captured Cindy Moon, preventing any new spider totems appearing by chance. Once Benjy’s blood is spilled, no more totems will arise ever…but thankfully Peter, SpOck, Spider-Ham, and Uncle Ben arrive! Spidey knows Morlun’s been avoiding him, but the latter brushes the claim off. Daemos seems to make short work of SpOck, but Mayday arrives to stop his attack. Uncle Ben, on the other hand, uses the Master Weaver’s web to flee the scene. Guess SpOck’s speech didn’t do as much as he thought…

Outside, the Spider-Army continues their assault, but the Inheritors are unfazed. In fact, their confidence grows as Karn, the exiled Inheritor, finally arrives home. However, because of the events of Spider-Verse Team-Up #3, he’s not exactly looking to help his family out. Realizing all the pain he’s caused, he’s looking to fight for the side of good and the prospects of the Spiders finally seem to be looking better.

Back inside, Morlun seems to be losing as well. Cindy taunts him with the fact that the web is healing, but Morlun is unperturbed. He goes to add Benjy’s blood to the web, but is in for a surprise: Spider-Ham! When the Spiders first burst in, Uncle Ben grabbed Benjy and took him to a safe dimension, while Ham pretend to be Benjy. With his plans falling apart, Morlun begins to panic, while Peter’s confidence grows. He calls in his other back-up, Miguel, Lady Spider, and a freshly repaired Leopardon! Mayday grabs the Solus crystal. After the death of her own father, she begins to squeeze when she learns what it holds…

Morlun attempts to regain his composure and SpOck finally grows tired of not doing what he considers the best option/what is literally the worst thing he could do: in one swift motion, he kills the Master Weaver! Morlun snaps, but this moment finally brings clarity to Mayday and she stops herself from destroying “Solus”. Morlun attacks Spidey and begins to finally feed on him, but Pete has one final trick up his sleeve: he uses his teleporter and drops them both in Earth-3145! Morlun knows this will kill them both, but Peter offers him protection in the form of Ezekiel’s fall-out shelter. The other Spiders save Pete and in some off-panel action, manage to capture the other Inheritors and drop them in the dimension as well. Spider-Ham tells Mayday if his father was like him, he’d be proud of her, bringing her more peace. In the corner, Cindy holds Peter, who’s literally feeling drained. We get one last unsettling joke about their pheromones as closure to Spider-Verse proper.

In General...

So we’re at end of Spider-Verse and the Master Weaver has died, the Inheritors are stranded in a radioactive wasteland, and the Spiders are ready to head home. But in the end, was this one worth the journey?

This is a pretty ambitious venture and Marvel had no qualms making sure it was everywhere we turned for months. We got a lot of potential material and we got to see a ton of different Spider-Men and Women, along with a lot of familiar faces Speaking as an event overall, I wanted to see so much more. I would have loved more character interaction between established Spiders and Peter. The tie-in material did the best it could to introduce us to and build on some of these existing characters, but the main story itself seemed to lose this after the first 2 issues. A lot of the focus seemed to be on newer characters, such as Gwen or Silk, who were of course the ones getting their own personal series, but were they interesting enough to warrant that? I was surprised/impressed at the number of “known” characters that were taken out or killed: Spider-Man Noir, Spider-Monkey, Six-Armed Spider-Man…if anything, I think this may have been an opportunity to advertise potential NEW comics rather really bank on the concept of “Every Spider-Man Ever”.

As for the Inheritors…well, Morlun’s first appearance is a personal favorite for me. We had an unbeatable villain with an interesting personality- darkly comedic at times, proper/respectful, single-minded, and confident. I like how he tells Spider-Man it isn’t personal and that when he “died” all he could say was that he “was just hungry”. And despite victory being near-impossible, Spider-Man refused to hide and, perhaps even more importantly, refused to kill. It was a great story. Here, the villains are bland and very stereotypical. The whole family reads like a bad anime- Solus, the head of the family; Daemos, the powerful older brother who just wants to fight; Jennix, the smart, sadistic one; Bora and Brix, the twins who bicker; and Verna…who was just sort of there. She definitely got the short end of the story stick.

I really wish the end here had been more detailed. This was definitely an issue that should have been double sized to give a full sense of closure. There was a lot of build up to this issue and in just a standard sized story we had to introduce, begin, and finish a universe shattering ritual, dispose of all the Inheritors, and tie-up all the loose threads of random Spider-Men scattered throughout the dimensions. Amazingly (no pun intended, Slott does a pretty good job of bringing the pieces together, but we went from absolute victory to total loss for the Inheritors in roughly 3 pages. When Miles arrives with his “Web Warriors”, he mentions how this all began, which makes the reader think about what an amazing journey this all was…until you realize that even in story time these events seemed to happen rapid fire and all came together so quickly, you hardly have time to appreciate it. Things moved so fast, I had to go back and check when Cindy was actually captured! At the end of issue 13, they were ambushed and by 14 she was already subdued. It definitely threw my off writing this.

In all though, this was a pretty decent issue. I think the pacing for this whole story was a bit weird and off, but we got a conclusion that settles most threads. It is a bit odd that suddenly the Inheritors were easy to beat and I’m not entirely sure what the completed steps of the ritual mean for Spider-Man and his Amazing Multi-Versal Counterparts (Marvel, I just wrote your next season of “Ultimate Spider-Man”!), but I guess Cindy’s line of “The web is healing,” means we’ll have all those things back again soon. I think Slott sometimes forgets how to write a proper conclusion, because the last panel of this story was much like the last panel of his Ends of the Earth story- jarring and a very bizarre way to end an “epic” story-line.

Next issue we get an epilogue, so let’s see how that wraps things up.

Overall Rating...

A very fast-paced, but underwhelming, conclusion to Spider-Verse. There was a lot of potential here for some great story, so in some ways I feel like this should have been much more, but it delivered on the story we’ve been given to this point.

Footnote...

One moment of silliness- but does anyone else feel like if you take the covers from 12, 13, and 14, it just looks like the Spider-Army crashed an awkward family reunion?