Marvel Action: Spider-Man #3 – Review

‘Peter Parker has signed up for an internship at The Daily Bugle, with the hopes that he’ll get the chance to interview Tony Stark in person – the perfect opportunity to pick the brains of another super hero. But he has a lot of competition, like Miles Morales and Gwen Stacy. After Peter finds out that Miles has spider-powers too, they begin working together to handle the escalating mutant animal problem – in secret from Gwen. But Gwen has a secret or two up her own sleeve, and she’s not about to be left out…’

It’s been an enjoyable slow build-up in Marvel Action: Spider-Man, of the series slowly introducing the three spider-heroes to each other and letting them discover that they’re not the only heroes like themselves, rather than just throwing the three of them together in the very first issue. Like all good team-ups, it’s better when we get to know the characters a little first, and get to see them gradually brought into the same story, rather than some kind of unexpected event that happens to them all at the same time.

Gwen probably has the best introduction of the three characters, and this issue is really her first chance to shine in the series so far. Having been built up over the first two issues as a strong-willed young woman who isn’t afraid to go after what she wants yet remains somewhat in the background in her civilian persona, it’s nice to see her step out as a hero for the first time. Especially as she proves that she is just as capable as her male counterparts.

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This issue also sees the introduction of The Lizard to the series, something that I had suspected was coming since we saw Dr Connors in the first issue, and the enemies they team were facing were mutant animals. Despite it not being a surprise to find Connors behind everything that’s been going on it was still great to see the Marvel Action version of the character, and his design looked very good. Sticking close to the classic Lizard design artist Fico Ossio added spines and spikes to the character, a choice that made him different enough from previous versions, and lent him a deadly edge.

Despite not getting to beat the bad guy and bring him to justice the new trio worked really well together, and we got to see how each character differs and has their own strengths. Their shared love of science and using their practical abilities to solve the problems of the mutant animals only went on to highlight how similar they all are, and how good a team they can make. That being said, I do hope that their apparent need to try and out-quip each other gets something of a tone down in future issues.

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The final page reveal – that Tony Stark had planned for the three of them to end up working together, so that they would discover that they are all spider-powered heroes –  was a neat touch. It showed that the kids weren’t crazy in their idea to talk to Stark, and that he does have a good grasp on being a hero and knowing what they need, in this case each other.

With the team now together I’m excited to see where the series goes from here, to see if they continue to work well together or end up in conflict, and what new takes on bad guys the series will give us.

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