Mary Jane (Peter's wife) is presumed dead, while Pete is trying to get his life back on track after this tradgedy and recent struggles with the Green Goblin.
Really, this story is fairly easy to sum up. Randy takes Pete out to a club, for a covert double date with Jill Stacy and Glory. Pete is unimpressed. Meanwhile Pete's night out is interruppted on several occassions by a mysterious cat that is being hunted by a couple of goons. These encounters mean Pete has to make excuses every now and then to ditch his friends and become Spidey. In the end Spidey beats the goons and the cat ends up with Pete and Randy at the end of the night.
Overall, I get the feeling that this is an unimportant issue and that Mackie is just buying time for his 'swan song' story arc. On the plus side Mackie does get some things right.
Mackie does the right thing by giving Peter some time with his supporting cast, just about half the book! Which is a lot when you think of recent issues. He also brings up some interesting struggles for Pete, with Randy trying to set him up with Jill, while he is still very much in love with Mary Jane. And Pete reveals that the idea of getting with Jill is almost like incest! This brings up something I think I mentioned in the review for ASM#24. Mackie seems to have totally changed the character of Jill Stacy for no good reason! I mean I recall an issue of Peter Parker: Spider-man not too long ago, where Mackie seemed to be setting up Peter to have an affair with Jill. Anyway.... The other pluses of this issue, besides the character interaction, is the two goons. They're not terrific, and they're a pretty obvious rip off of Chip n' Dale (the Merry Melodies squirrel duo), but at least they're a little different from the norm. And I love the scene where they open the back of the truck to reveal an awesome array of weaponry.
Now for the bad side.... The cat. The action in this issue centers around a cat, that may/may not have special powers and may/may not be significant. There was talk among the PPP staffers here that the cat is actually Alison Mongrain's and is a pre-cursor for the return of baby May. But, unfortunately, I think true to Mackie's style, this will turn out to be another stupid sub-plot that will be totally forgotten. This means that Mackie wasted at least half the book in my eyes, the only thing that made the scenes with the cat half-interesting was the bad guys banter and eagerness to use their guns.
In the end I think the issue is very forgettable, the good character moments we do get are being done much better over in Peter Parker: Spider-man and the cat plot is boring, pointless and guaranteed to amount to nothing.
One web for the semi-good character stuff. And one for the Chip n' Dale clones, as machine-gun toting bad guys.