Every kid who has ever read a comic has fantasized about what would happen if the heroes in the funny books could exist in real life. In this book we meet Toby and we see what happens when super villains roam free in a city with no superheroes.
Toby manages to escape death on numerous occasions and finds the doorway to the Marvel Universe...
Toby was chased by the Trapster into Marvel U. New York. Through what can only be sheer luck, Trapster gets hit by a car AND Toby manages to get a cab. Upon arriving at the Avengers mansion Jarvis politely refers Toby to the Fantastic Four stating that they deal in parallel universes and such. He does give Toby an official Avengers pin though.
Toby meets the receptionist Roberta who is a robot. He begins to tell her that he is from a parallel universe when he stops himself and wonders why she would believe him. She seems to believe him but forces him to fill out the appropriate paper work in order to be seen. Toby wonders how he'll ever get a chance to talks to any superhero in this town when he notices a skrull reading a copy of the Daily Bugle.
Toby asks to meet Peter Parker on the roof of the Daily Bugle building. When Peter goes upstairs to meet him, Toby is standing on the edge of the roof. Toby informs him of the trouble that is going on back home and also tells Peter that he know he's Spider-man. When Peter continues to play dumb, Toby give Peter details about his life as Spider-man and threatens to jump off the ledge. Birds distract Toby and he falls off the roof and onto a giant web. Peter, clad in the black Spider-man suit, agrees to help Toby.
Back in Toby's home world, Jerry is still in his van trying to get to his ex-wife. The narrator, who seems to be Toby, wonders how people couldn't see him as anything but a loser. "There is more to Dad than we had ever imagined..."
Jerry manages to find Julie in her house and persuades her to leave. They quiet down as Wendigo walks by carrying a severed head. More carnage ensues as they make their escape. Julie wishes Hart were with her and Jerry explains that he's the most qualified guy to get her out of this mess. He's read all of their comics, has seen them beat on several occasions and know all of their weaknesses.
Julie points out Galactus and asks, "Okay. So how do we deal with that?" The book ends with Galactus saying that he's hungry.
Right from the beginning of the book the art looks weird. Not in a good way though. The facial expressions are odd and the proportions are a little off. I suspect this is to make the Marvel world look different from the real one. I don't see why this needs to be done since it only takes away from the story. The art gets a bit better in the end but not by much.
I'm starting to have problems with Jerry's rational. He thinks that he can be helpful just because he's read comic books and knows everyone's weakness. Just because you know someone's weakness doesn't mean you have the means to exploit their weakness. I know Achilles' heel is weak but I'm going to have the darnedest time getting to it.
I'm glad that Spider-man is the most accessible superhero for Toby to meet but at the same time its dumb that nobody else can seems to bother helping a boy who came out of a portal. Is that too commonplace in the Marvel U.? While I'm on the topic, did all the villains just hop into the portal that was hovering above a New York sidewalk?
Let me also point out that someone forget that Jerry's van was completely upside down when we last saw it during the Lizard skirmish. He must have the mutant ability to flip over ice cream vans.
It's falling apart. The conclusion better make up for it. Two webs.