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Mania Grade: B-

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  • Title: Amazing Spider-Man #643
  • Written by: Mark Waid
  • Art by: Paul Azaceta
  • Colors by: Javier Rodriguez
  • Letters by: Joe Caramagna
  • Published by: Marvel Comics
  • Publication Date: September 15, 2010
  • Cover Price: $2.99
  • Series:


"the art is absolutely stunning"

By Ben Johnson     September 17, 2010
Source: Mania

© Mania

After the new telling of what actually happened between Peter and MJ in the place of the much maligned One More Day (or at least what seemed like a retelling, or something, I’m still confused) it’s time for all of us to calm down, forgive Joe Quesada and friends for screwing with everyone’s favorite lovable loser, Peter Parker... or not. But at least it’s all going in a new direction. We think. Damn. My brain is bleeding.

Anyway, issue 643 of Amazing Spider-Man is the second part of Origin of the Species series that will say good-bye to the nearly weekly release schedule and massive creative team that has delivered a huge amount of content over the last couple of years. But will it be a send off worthy of some of the great talent the title has seen over the last several years, or more indicative of the so-so quality many have complained of?

Doc Ock, now incredibly ugly, has gathered together the usual gang of Spider-Foes to hunt down the soon to be born off-spring of Norman Osbourn and the villainess Menace. He seems to believe the answers to all the world’s mysteries are wrapped up inside this little, Spock-eared baby, and he’s willing to do anything, pay anything to get it. Of course, there’s a Friendly Neighborhood Wall-crawler who is equally willing to stop him at all costs.

This latest issue takes place only moments after the birth of the little bundle of goblin powered joy. Spidey steals him and tries to escape, but (surprise, surprise) everyone from the bad guys to the cops end up chasing him trying to get the baby back. What follows is an incredibly fast paced, frenetic, chase scene through New York City’s concrete canyons.

Despite the fact that a just-born-baby would be dead by the second web swing, there is a lot to love here. First and foremost, the art is absolutely stunning. Paul Azaceta is at the absolute top of his game here. Stunning in it’s simplicity, I wouldn’t be shocked to find out this guy has been studying under none other than Steve Ditko. Of course, this wouldn’t pop the same without the outstanding coloring Javier Rodriguez lends. I swear, I could hear the buzz coming off Electro’s bolts. The issue is delivered at break neck speed and each panel adds to that feeling. Not a single page looks to be static in nature. Good show.

Cover art to AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #643 by Marko Djurdjevic

The story isn’t too shabby either. Unlike so many other mid-arc stories, I felt like I got a little meat and potatoes instead of several pages filled with nothing but action. Tons of characters get pulled into the act, but somehow it fits like peanut butter and jelly. Except for the inclusion of the now annoying Mary Jane (Not Parker) Watson. So much to love, why shoe-horn this whiny, bratty red head? Beside that, Waid handles things well, and I’m glad Marvel chose him to close things out. Of all the myriad or writers involved with the title, he has always had a clear grasp on what makes the character so special.


Showing items 1 - 5 of 5
spiderhero 9/17/2010 5:14:29 AM

I gave up on Spidey some time after Joe Quesadillia ruined the character. I piced up this issue and flipped through it and saw 2 things that promptly made me return it to the shelf: Spider-Man carrying a baby & the art. Now, the art may do it for some, that's fine. Different tastes and all that. But I can't stand this style on Spider-Man. As for the story, it's all meaningless. If you are going to wipe 20 years of stories into the dust bin, why should I care about the character now? I KNOW he'll never get the girl, so there's no point in him even dating. He'll continue to lie to Aunt May, so that relationship is static.

Ah well, I'll stop griping now.

joeybaloney 9/17/2010 8:35:37 AM


dbrock06 9/17/2010 8:38:14 AM

I agree with a lot of what you have to say Spiderhero.

I personally prefer the Mcfarlandesque type art with Spidey to the artwork in this issue.  Spiderman has become a sort of stagnant character.  Like you said.  He will always have problems dating and will never get the girl no matter who it should be MJ but that is another story.  He will apparantly never do the right thing and second guess himself.  At least in this issue there was a little witty banter from Spidey.  I am just at the point where I cannot read it anymore.  I really do not know why I do.  Is it character loyalty?  I can honestly say I am not enjoying it anywhere near as I am enjoying a lot of other books out there.   Like X-factor was ridiculously good this week.  A lot of fun and very entertaining this month.  I just wish someone could take the reigns of this title and have some fun with it.  They also need to stop with the 2-3 books a month.  Go back to once a month and maybe it will increase the quality a bit.  It's not like there are not a ton of Spidey books out there already.

robcoch 9/17/2010 1:22:13 PM

True go back to the way it was .No more 3 #s a month with so-so stories just have 1# a month with good storiesand why go back after May found out who he was ? I thought that was a good way to move the book on and make it grow.

dbrock06 9/17/2010 3:49:44 PM

oops...missed the part of the review about the end of the weekly comic.  About time BTW.



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