Amazing Spider-Man (Vol. 1) #546 (Story 5)

Background

The last story in Amazing Spider-Man #546 is by Zeb Wells. He is part of this comic's fourth creative team, and we won't see him and Chris Bachalo until #555 in April. In this three page effort we are treated to the welcome return of Mike Deodato to these pages.

Story 'Harry and the Hollisters'

Harry is having dinner with Lily's father, Bill Hollister. As a DA, Bill knows all about the Osborn family and (as might expect) isn't entirely thrilled with the prospect of Harry dating his daughter. Harry says that he was in Europe "wooing Swiss and German engineers" when his father went nuts. He doesn't plan to go down that road.

Hollister is suspicious of Harry's motives in bankrolling a feasibility study in to whether he should run for major. Did Lily ask him to do it? Is Harry's interest in politics because of Lily, or is his interest in Lily because of politics? Hollister makes it clear that no amount of money will give Harry influence over his campaign or his policies.

Then Lily arrives and the discussion between the two men is at an end. Harry has attempted to convince Hollister that he is nothing like his father. Bill Hollister will evidently take more convincing.

General Comments

So Zeb Wells is dealing with the election. This is already crossing over into Slott's arc. Harry mentions his relationship with Bill Hollister to Peter in the nightclub. There are posters for rival mayoral candidates Crowne and Parfrey in the alley where the first mugging takes place. Aunt May is wearing a "Vote for Parfrey" badge. There's a big plot here, and it's the one that has me most interested.

Harry's motivations remain an enigma at this stage. This isn't the same Harry Osborn who died in Spectacular Spider-Man (Vol. 1) #200. He is more self- assured, almost arrogant - much more like the Harry from the recent Spider-Man movies. How much of this is relevant to the plot, and how much is clutter from the previous atrocity of a story arc is unclear. That's a problem that'll dog this title for a while.

That said, I like this Harry a lot. Probably more than the last time I saw him. Roll on issue #555 I say.

Overall Rating

It's difficult to do something meaningful with three pages, but Zeb Wells manages it. And Deodato turns a talking heads story into a visual treat. Four webs.