This UK kids magazine is one of three regular Spidey magazine offerings from Panini. Spider-Man & Friends targets the 4-10 year old market, while sister publication Spectacular Spider-Man (UK Magazine) aims at the pre-teen and teen crowd. Finally, their Marvel Heroes (UK Magazine) hits the same mid-teen crowd but with a video game/movie angle.
But let's get back to Spider-Man & Friends. It features a distinctively drawn semi-Manga style kiddie Spider-Man, his cousin Spider-Girl, plus early school versions of Hulk, Wolverine, Beast, Storm and Captain America along with guest appearances from many other big name Marvel heroes and villains. Toy tie-ins are also available, plus in 2009 they produced a hardback annual.
Published every four weeks, this UK magazine features a toy taped to the front of each issue. Inside you'll find a four page Spidey & Friends story with three panels per page, captions of 8-20 words per panel. Then there's some nice simple kids puzzles, some coloring, a couple of competitions, and a page or two of Spidey merchandise. It's similar to the formats used for the older kids' magazines, just pitched for a much younger target audience.
Is this story "Buried Treasure"? Well, let's bring it to the light and see.
This week's wholesome fun activity for the junior super-team is treasure hunting, on the beach with a Doc Ock's metal detector! Unfortunately, all the guys can find is rusty trash. What a disappointment. Ock disappears, while Spidey keeps searching, somewhat forlornly.
Suddenly, *&#$ gets real! Captain America has lost his shield, Spider-Girl can't find her web-shooters, and Thor has lost his hat... the funny one with the wings on it.
Now Spidey is searching in earnest, and indeed, he does find the misplaced super-hero accouterments hidden in the sand. Who could have hidden them? Can you guess?
Yeah, Ock did it. What a villain! He thought it would be funny to watch the team try to find them. Actually, it was kind of fun. They heroes take it in turns to hide stuff and find it.
So, explain to me how you steal the web-shooters off somebody's wrists without them noticing? That really is a super-power!
A bit silly, I guess. But in context of a kindergarten story book, what can you expect? Three webs.