Last issue, while in a fight with the Green Goblin (with some help from the Human Torch) Spider-Man heard from Liz Allan that she needs to find Peter Parker; because Aunt May has had a heart attack! Spider-Man leaves the fight to go to his Aunt's aid. But the crowd and media don't know that he has a good reason and thinks he's just turned chicken. Now Spider-Man must face his tattered reputation...
We start off with a splash page of Jonah Jameson on TV saying how much of a coward Spider-Man is! You know, the usual 'Menace', 'Traitor' and 'Coward' bit Jameson does. Meanwhile in Queens, three teens are breaking into a car with some difficulty. But then they see Spider-Man swinging down towards them; but the teens aren't scared! They say he's gone soft and he's nothing to worry about. But they've got a suprise coming! They try to hit Spidey but fail so the wall-crawler quickly beats them up and leaves up handing from a lamppost.
Meanwhile on a news channel, the presenter is talking about whether Spider-Man has turned coward. He shows an interveiw he has with the Fantastic Four to see what other super-heroes think. The Fantastic Four (well, Reed Richards really) aren't really sure what to think of him. They don't really know who he is under the mask so they're not really so sure of him. Then the news presenter goes back to the studio where he interveiws J. Jonah Jameson on what he thinks.
Of course Jonah says he's a menace (Jonah REALLY likes that word doesn't he?) and a vigilante acting outside of the law and he's through in this town!
Scene switch to the residence of Peter Parker and his recovering Aunt May where Peter is taking care of her. Peter tells her to take it easy for a while then goes upstairs. He see's an old box full of Uncle Ben's stuff then starts to think about he's the manof the house now. He has to take care of his Aunt May now.
Meanwhile at the Fantastic Four's headquaters The Human Torch is saying that Reed shouldn't have said what he said about Spider-Man in that interveiw. Reed says that he didn't know they were going to sully Spider-Man's reputation with that story. (That sentence made me go look up what sully meant. I've never heard of it before!). Torch decides that he's not going to let people mad mouth a good guy (the good guy being Spider-Man) like that so he 'Flames On' and flies out to contact him. He leaves a giant fire message in the sky saying "Spider-Man, rendevou at last place we met". Peter see's the message and thinks he would love to explain to Torch why he ran off ("and tell him how to spell rendezvous right" murmurs Pete in little letters) but he decides that he's the man of the house now, and his Aunt May needs him, he's going to have to give up being Spider-Man to take care of his responsibilities at home.
Later, after waiting for a long time, The Human Torch decides that Spidey's not coming and wonders what's going on with him. The next day, Spider-Man's out swinging...? Wait a sec! Didn't he like, two pages ago (well four including the advertisements)say he was going to quit? That lasted long! Oh! I see, he's now thinking that here he was thinking about quiting being Spider- Man when Spider-Man could solve all of his problems! (Really? ALL of his problems? I can think of a lot of problems that don't have spider-powers as the answer to them. Spots, advanced algebra etc.) Anyway, Spidey swings through the window of a trading card factory and asks if they could make trading cards of him (and of course give him some money!). But they say that no one would buy them! Spidey's unpopular now! So Spider-Man just swings off in dissapointment.
On the street below, Sandman is walking along the sidewalk (like most criminals do) looking at a trading card of The Thing beating him up. Sandman's angry at this then see's Spider-Man swinging off and sees this as an opportunity to take out his frustrations so chases after Spidey. While on a rooftop Spider-Man's spider sense goes off and see's the Sandman ready to attack! They fight; Sanman throwing lots of sand hammers and sand maces while Spidey easily jumps out of the way. Without thinking, Sandman hits a water tower and the water leaks out! Spidey thinks Sandy's defeated by the water by he is just weakend so the battle continues! They smash through the side of a building and into a kids bedroom. The kid isn't there so while under some rubble Peter gets an idea! He quickly changes back to his normal clothes and acts like this is his room that Sandy's just broken into. Sandman asks where Spider-Man went and Peter says out into the hallway. Sandman goes out there then realises that he's been tricked. That the kid is really Spider-Man! He goes back into the bedroom to see Spider-Man far away swinging off, out of reach.
Later, Peter decides to give up being Spider-Man. He hides his costume in a box in the attic then goes downstairs to see his Aunt May's wheelchair folded up! He goes into the kitchen where he see's Aunt May baking cookies! Aunt May says she's feeling better. Peter says "But...i thought you were sick" and Aunt May says that Parker's don't give up and aren't quitters. Peter walks out of the room and says to his Aunt May: "I'll be right back, Aunt May. I've got to go get somethin I left in the attic."
This story is a definite improvement over the last two issues! Much more interesting fight scenes, better dialouge and an improvement on the art! Maybe it wraps up a bit cutesy at the end but I don't really care. The rest of the story is good! Marvel Age: Spider-Man have finally 'cured' their problem of short and boring fight scenes. And they even included some good character moments as well! Like the Fantastic Four, Johnny Storm writing a message in the sky scene. I liked that.
Also, I liked the art in this issue, but not just pencilling, the inking and the colouring imporoved as well. One tiny little problem with the pencilling though, in SOME scenes Peter looked too grown up. But besides that the art was top notch this issue. Good stuff all this issue really.
The only reason this issue doesn't get a full five is because of a that small problem with the pencilling (and I do mean small) and maybe it ended a bit too cutesy. But besides that, great stuff. 4.5 Webs.