Fear Itself: Spider-Man #1

 Posted: Aug 2011
 Staff: Adam Rivett (E-Mail)


In Fear Itself, the Serpent has risen and the world has gone mad with fear!

Story 'Day One'

  Fear Itself: Spider-Man #1
Summary: Spider-Man appears
Editor: Stephen Wacker
Assistant Editor: Ellie Pyle
Writer: Chris Yost
Artist: Mike McKone
Lettering: Joe Caramagna
Colorist: Jeromy Cox

New York City. Hour Six of the Fear!
Robert Chistansen, CFO of Roxxon Oil, fears that those people who will lose money due to his company’s fake accounts will come for him. Karen Anderson, heavily pregnant, has her worst fears realised when her husband leaves her. John Russel, unemployed and in fear of eviction, arms himself. Naveed Moshtaghi, a cab driver in New York, is in a crash! He steps out to be confronted by the other driver and a group of New Yorkers believing he is a terrorist! They set upon him but Spider-Man arrives in the nick of time, swinging him to the safety of a nearby rooftop! Spidey is afraid, just like everyone else, but fights against it. He calls Aunt May but the cell phone network is down… Spidey knows he can’t stop what is happening but he can keep the city alive until someone does!

Hour Eleven of the Fear!
Robert calls his wife and prepares to jump from a window. Karen starts going into labor! John loads his gun. Spider-Man continues to save everyone he can. The fear tries to grip him but he won’t let it…

Hour Fourteen of the Fear!
The Daily Bugle decides to get out there and do their jobs. Spidey barely stops a man smashing a van into a police station, cushioning it with his webbing. He gets the man out as an explosion rocks the van! The police blame Spidey and start firing on him!

Hour Twenty of the Fear!
Robert waits for them to come. Karen starts walking. John fires on anyone in his street. Spider-Man is going to cry. He arrives at Aunt May’s apartment but she doesn’t have her phone with her. With his webbing nearly out as well, he is desperate for help…

Hour Twenty Three of the Fear!
Spidey tries to talk Robert from jumping. He is distracted by a rat and Robert falls! Spidey tries to web him but he has none left! Grabbing him as he falls, Spider-Man slows them by holding onto the side of the building and then a balcony but it gives way and they crash to the ground! Spidey lands head first on a car and Robert lands safely in some garbage!

Robert is alive. Karen cannot go any further. John is going to kill whoever comes through his door. Spider-Man struggles up but the fear embraces him as he is attacked by hoards of rats… and Vermin!

General Comments

This is a completely brilliant comic.

Chris Yost delivers a clear direction, a clever and involving use of everyday New Yorkers and captures this sense of fear that the main title, Fear Itself, hasn’t yet. Using Spider-Man to battle against this faceless fear, knowing too well that Spider-Man is familiar with all forms of personal and emotional fear, and combining it with his No One Dies mantra, might seem obvious but Yost takes these elements and delivers a story with style. With references to supporting cast, weaving the New Yorkers into the story and using the one Spider-villain that has been built on fear, Yost has a firm and glorious grasp on Spider-Man.

Mike McKone has always been a favourite of mine but never hit the consistency necessary to be without criticism. Here he does. Every single page is stunning in its realism, simplicity, emotion and storytelling. He easily breaks up pages and allows for real space.

Overall Rating

Utterly brilliant and raises the bar high for all future tie-in minis.

 Posted: Aug 2011
 Staff: Adam Rivett (E-Mail)