After a very long break (two issues of Marvel Action Avengers have been released in the gap) Marvel Action Spider-Man finally returns to continue the story of Spider-Man, Miles Morales Spider-Man, and Spider-Gwen meeting and teaming up in this new universe.
Thanks to a handy catch-up on the inside front cover readers can jump straight back into the action, as Miles has to process the fact that Spider-Man has discovered that he has powers. Instead of just having Peter remove his mask or come out-right and tell Miles who he is, the episode teases the reveal, having Peter chicken out of going through with it. It’s a good choice, especially as it helps to remind the readers that these aren’t the adult versions of the characters that we’re used to seeing, but teenagers that are still figuring out how to be heroes.
The main body of the book is given over to Miles teaming up with Spider-Man to investigate another of the mutant animals that they had previously encountered, which leads them to a mysterious abandoned lab and giant mutant raccoons. Any Spider-Man fan would immediately make the jump to The Lizard as soon as mutant lizard DNA was mentioned, but the appearance of Dr Kurt Connors makes it even more obvious that the story is probably going to end up with our heroes facing off against the iconic Spider-Man villain.
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This second issue has a much bigger focus on action than the first, spending more time on the fight with the mutant raccoons than it does with the characters, and their journeys. As such, it doesn’t feel like it has as much depth as the first issue, and it seems to come to an end very quickly. When you add in that Gwen Stacey is only on the last two pages, and only in four panels, it does feel like a let down after such a strong start. Hopefully, the next issue will return to the character driven story that made the first issue more of a pleasure to read, giving the story arc the conclusion that it deserves.
Thankfully, the artwork by Fico Ossio remains stunning, with the relative simple art style that was established in the first issue. Uncomplicated, yet containing wonderful detail, it evokes the look and feel of Mark Bagley’s Ultimate Spider-Man work. The final page reveal of Gwen in her home-made version of her costume is particularly pretty, and is a look that I can’t wait to see more of in issue three.
Marvel Action: Spider-Man #2 is now available from IDW Publishing.