Monday, May 28, 2012

Astonishing Spider-Man & Wolverine TPB

So yeah. I thought this was going to be a straight-up team-up book, with a big name writer and artist combining two huge names. Most of my suppositions were correct. This is NOT a straight-up story. Instead, it features a notorious but confusing villain that often stars in weird, niche books. Don’t get me wrong, the villain works, and I absolutely love Spidey’s reaction when he learns who’s involved. But it’s an odd choice to team up these two characters and put them in such strange, strange situations.

This book is full of crazy Jason Aaron ideas. Robotic Devil Dinosaur. The Phoenix Gun. Time traveling drug-dealers. And the ORB! I love that guy! (And he gets a headband and everything!) Even the Time Variance Authority shows up. So Aaron clearly knows his Marvel U, but again, what an odd choice. Maybe I was just confused on the whole “Astonishing” brand. Accessible this is not.

In the end, I half wonder if the greatest thing to come out of this mini is the return of Wolverine’s brother, Dog. He gets bumped into the present during the proceedings, and I’ve got to think Aaron has plans for him. (And it is great seeing Adam Kubert use the Origin style again. This fits right in.)

There’s a long bit about a new love interest for Spidey, and it is tragic and in character, it is another strange storyline. I do like that at the end, Spidey and Wolverine might actually like each other. All they had to do was live for a year in the old West.

Kubert’s design work is great. Evil planets, alternate costumes, and even the Phoenix gun all have nice, iconic looks. His bedazzled Spider-Man is pretty darn special, in particular. The design for Czar and Big Murder is a little odd (and sort of dated, I think), but they are funny. But they’re a little hard to take seriously.


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