Spectacular Spider-Man (UK Magazine) #206

 Posted: Jul 2011
 Staff: The Editor (E-Mail)


This long-running UK Magazine started out by running reprints, but these days it offers a brand new "out of continuity" Spider-Man story every three weekly issue. This is Spidey's primary UK non-reprint magazine. He also appears in the pre-school Spider-Man & Friends (UK Magazine), along with occasional guest appearances in Marvel Heroes (UK Magazine).

The Spider-Man story occupies eleven or twelve pages of this 32 page publication, and is aimed at a pre-teen/early-teen market. The plots for these stories feature classic Marvel characters and villains. While they often echo plots from the mainstream comics, they do so in their own special style.

After a few years of erratic quality at best, this title is finally producing some half-decent material. Too bad that Disney (the new owner of Marvel) has announced its intention to pull the plug on all non-U.S. original stories...

Story 'Mean Streets'

  Spectacular Spider-Man (UK Magazine) #206
Summary: 4-Aug-2010
Publisher: Panini Magazines
Editor: Patrick Bishop
Writer: Ferg Handley
Pencils: John McCrea
Inker: Lee Townsend

Peter Parker is having trouble relaxing at home. He feels a storm-a-brewing, and so he heads out on patrol as the web-slinging Spider-Man. He eventually stumbles over the trouble he's seeking, in the form of his good friend Daredevil lying flat out in an alleyway out in the Hell's Kitchen district of Manhattan.

Spidey and DD are close buddies, they even know each other's secret identities. Unfortunately, they stupidly feel the need to use them in conversation all the time. For example, Spider-Man leans over Daredevil and asks... "Matt, what happened here? Who did this to...?"

"That'd be us, wallcrawler..."

Specifically, that would be the Enforcers (Ox, Montana and Fancy Dan, plus "The Eel") all hyped-up with extra super-powers.

Hang on, see what Spidey did there? Clearly, the Enforcers overheard what Peter said. Including Daredevil's real first name. Now, was that a clever thing to say then? Me thinks not.

Well, the Enforcers hand Spidey a beating until he is forced to grab Daredevil and make a tactical withdrawal to an unprepared position. The two heroes regather their strength, and when the Enforcers catch up with them for round two, the good guys combine tactics with teamwork to turn the tide of victory in their direction.

Defeated and threatened, Fancy Dan reveals that Doctor Octopus is behind the attack. Ock provided the Enforcers with nanobot-enhanced super-powers, and a hit-list of NYC super-heroes. Tigra and Iron Fist have already been crossed off the list, their fates as yet unknown. Daredevil and Spider-Man were third and fourth place respectively. What? Spider-Man below Tigra on the list? What an insult!

It looks like time for Spider-Man and Daredevil to track down Otto Octavius and come to the rescue.

General Comments

There's not a lot going on this issue. Essentially, Spider-Man goes out looking for a fight, and finds one. But on the positive side, there's nothing really wrong with the story or the script, except the boo-boo where Spidey carelessly spills his best friend's most important secret.

The inking and coloring team of Townsend and Offredi does a notably good job here with John McCrea's pencils, creating a punchy and stylish black and neon look that really hits the eye.

Overall Rating

A run-of-the-mill introduction issue, spoiled only by one lazy slip-up. Two-and-a-half webs.

 Posted: Jul 2011
 Staff: The Editor (E-Mail)