The Amazing Spider-Man #31



AmazingSpiderman31VC-minWhilst Dan Slott’s script for “End Of An Empire” must have undoubtedly pleased the vast majority of its 54,102 strong audience with its comic book long confrontation between Spider-Man and the Superior Octopus, this twenty-page periodical’s narrative must also disconcertingly have felt like some sort of callous rebooting of everything the Berkeley-born writer has ever penned for the titular character. Indeed, with the notable exception of depicting Otto Octavius as “a mere lackey” to Steven Rogers’ glorious Hydra, this third instalment to the series’ “Secret Empire” tie-in story-arc does arguably little else but eradicate any and all traces of the international company Parker Industries; a ‘golden thread’ which has arguably been both weaved and developed throughout Peter Parker’s life since “The Superior Spider-Man” was first published in January 2013.

Foremost of these purges has to be the Chief Executive Officer’s decision to destroy “all the great work we’ve done here” and literally tear down everything to do with his global business, including the Uncle Ben Foundation. This momentous edict debatably comes completely out of the blue, simply as a result of “Doc Ock” infiltrating the corporation’s computer systems, and shockingly results in the firm’s staff literally smashing away at their desks with fire-axes, hammers and fire extinguishers. In fact, the American author would even have his audience believe that Phillip Chang would willingly destroy “all my research… [when] I was so close… [to] a perfect green energy source” just because it had the “potential [to be a] weapon in the wrong hands.”

Just as remarkable is Peter’s decision to return to his original cloth-based costume, rather than continue to use his miraculous technologically-advanced web-slinging suit. Admittedly, his most recent spider-armour is shredded to pieces by Otto using an improved version of Harry Osborn’s electro-magnetic pulse, yet surely the supposed “proficient scientist and inventor” would have accounted for this inherent weakness in his apparel with a subsequent significant upgrade or even an alternative version utilising a different unsusceptible technology?

Regardless of these perceived plot-holes however, Issue Thirty-One of “Amazing Spider-Man” is undoubtedly a joy to behold due to Stuart Immonen’s sense-shattering illustrations. The Canadian penciller must have had a blast sketching all the spider-riders scuttling across the glass-windowed side of Parker Industries’ Shanghai headquarters, whilst this comic book’s readers surely felt every single one of the blows Octavius receives during his fisticuffs with Spider-man; “You spiteful man! You won’t let me have anything!”

This article is the opinion of the author and does not represent the views of the site owner.


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For the past forty or so years I have been collecting American comics… To begin with they were predominantly black and white British reprints of “Marvel Comics Group” titles such as “Spider-Man Comics Weekly”, “The Mighty World of Marvel” and “Star Wars Weekly”; all six to ten pence editions I could store away under my bed in a large cardboard box. As a result though I was introduced to the teenage angst of Peter Parker, the discovery of a frozen Captain America by Earth's Mightiest Heroes, witnessed the dreadful rage of Doctor Bruce Banner, and even travelled to a galaxy far far away... Later I would be able to afford actual America colour comic books and supplemented my collection of “Marvel” titles such as “Conan the Barbarian”, “Howard the Duck” and “Captain America” with some “DC Comics” issues of “Batman”, “Green Lantern” and “Captain Carrot and his Amazing Zoo Crew”. There would even be time for Independent publications such as “Wildcats”, “Spawn” and “The Authority”. These days however I must admit to yearning back to the simpler times of Stan Lee and Jack Kirby, back to when both artwork and storylines were straightforward, easy to follow and super-heroes were just starting out on their adventures. A time when no-one had yet to be resurrected from the dead for the fourth time. I've written over seven hundred comic book reviews on my blog over the past few years, with them usually following my latest purchases, all wrapped up in a large brown paper bag, as well as occasional ‘flashbacks’ to some of the classic "Golden Age" issues I already own…

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