Saturday, January 7, 2012

Amazing Spider-Man: the Gauntlet v4: Juggernaut

I'm a pretty easy target for some stories, and this trade has been on my must-read list for some time. It has Juggernaut, Roger Stern, and a classic re-print that I've wanted to read for years. So yeah, this is the trade that convinced me to power through some of the weaker Spidey trades over the last few months.

I knew I'd be interested in a Spidey-Juggernaut fight, but Stern doesn't totally deliver on that promise. Instead, classic Marvel concept "Captain Universe" shows up with a great new design and a pretty petty sense of revenge. The opening moments don't really lead to any payoff (the car left three stories up is pointless), but that's OK, the real story works well.

Juggernaut spends a lot of the story flat on his back, the recipient of a Cap Universe-style beatdown. When he does come around, he doesn't really act like the villain of the piece. Again, it works well with what we've seen of Juggy over the last few years. This is a guy trying to find his place in the world, not trying to take it over any more. He gets a nice sense of redemption too, as he cleans up a mess he made years ago the first time he tangled with Spidey.

How in the world is Lee Weeks not on a regular book? This guy's style is fantastic, his design sense is top-notch, and the "acting" on his characters is wonderful. I love the new Captain Universe look, and Juggernaut gets a bit of a makeover this issue to great effect too. From the way he handles the few scenes involving Spidey's current supporting cast, his art is perfectly capable of looking "modern" when it has to. This is a great-looking book.


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