Following on from last years OHMU Spider-man 2004, OHMU Spider-man 2005 aims to update everyone on our webslinging hero, while filling in the blanks left by 2004's edition.
OHMU SM 2005 provides the 411 on:
Betty Brant, Carrion, Chameleon, Jean De Wolff, Doppelganger, Fly, Frederick Foswell, Fusion, Glory Grant, Hammerhead, Crusher Hogan, Hydro Man, Jackal, John Jameson, J.Jonah Jameson, Kaine, Madame Web, Mindworm, Morbius, Mysterio, Liz Osborn, Queen, Ben Reilly, Joe Robertson, Joe Smith, Spider Man, Spider Mobile, Spider Slayers, Stacy Twins, Mendel Stromm, Flash Thompson, Toxin, Charlie Weiderman
This year the characters are presented in alphabetical order rather than by character groups, which adds to the "encyclopedia" feel to the book. Some of the choices seam rather odd to me. I'm all for an annual update of Spideys adventures, and including new characters is a must otherwise you end up with nothing new. What I also like is the inclusion of Spidey villains who were missed out the first time, (this would have been due to space rather than laziness of the writer - our very own Spiderfan.org editor!). Villains like Chameleon and Hydro man are long over due for a recap.
What puzzles me is the inclusion of characters like The Fly and Frederick Foswell, who have been dead for years and haven't been used at all. This space could have been used for expanding on the Spider-man update which is only a quarter of a page.
As a whole this is worth picking up if your a Spidey fan. The profiles are well written and the characters power stats are accurate.
With a cardstock cover and glossy paper this book feels like a legitimate handbook. I'm not sure if an annual update is required, if you look at 12 months as a story year that's usually 2 stories arcs, (especially if Bendis is writing!) so do you need an update on Spidey every year? I would say that for 2005 no, but for 2006 yes. This is because Spideys everywhere now, he has 4 regular books, he's a regular player in New Avengers, as well the various limited books he appears in.
Solid 3 webs - Why? Ok is this a necessary update? Not really it does kind of feel padded out with the old villains who we probably won't see again.
Add 1/2 a web if you like the inclusion of the old bad guys. Remove 1/2 a web if your going to get the complete A to Z OHMU books when they arrive soon, making this Spidey update redundant.