Spectacular Spider-Man (Vol. 1) #237

Background

In Spider-man #71, Peter Parker apparantly died in his hospital bed while his wife Mary Jane and genetic duplicate Ben Reilly stood by helplessly. This issue picks up where that one left off ...

Story 'Little Deaths'

The issue begins just after Peter is declared dead by his doctors, and goes for several pages without any dialogue before we finally see a close up of Peter's hand, which suddenly begins twitching uncontrollably. It turns out that Peter did not in fact die, but instead his powers (which were thought gone after the conclusion of Spider-man: The Final Adventure) have slowly begun to return and taking their toll on Peter's body.

Shortly after, Ben swings around town looking for the perpetrator of a recent crime spree (for that story, see Sensational # 8) and encounters the Lizard. A battle ensues, and in a scene that cuts back to the hospital we see that Dr. Curt Conners (the Lizard himself) has not transformed. The question arises: if Doc Conners is in one place, how can the Lizard be in another (heh ... maybe it's his clone).

The battle reaches the hospital, and a now semi-powered Peter Parker joins the fray, dressed in hospital clothes. The issue ends with the battle about to be joined again. See "Onslaught", in Amazing Spider-Man #415.

General Comments

I was disappointed in the fact that not much in the way of characterization was done in this issue. We don't really get to see Mary Jane react to her husband coming back to life, or even how the hospital staff handles the situation. The whole thing seemed a bit forced (and rushed) to me, but that's just my opinion. I enjoyed the issue, though, and I'm glad to see Peter back with his powers.

Overall Rating

Not bad in terms of action and drama, but not so great in characterization. The art wasn't bad, but it didn't knock me out, either. Basically, an average comic. But worth reading.