With Civil War II (nearly) over, it’s time for every other event to start setting itself up. We had the Death of X X-Men story start last week, which I reviewed, that will lead into the next big event Inhumans Vs X-Men. With Dead No More, we see the return of Miles Warren aka The Jackel, who absolutely loves making clones of Spider-Man, his villains, and his closest friends. I’ll avoid spoilers for the most part, this is a longer issue with 2 stories inside coming in at 30 or so pages but I’ll only review the first story since the second story is a spoiler of the end of the first.
What can I say, we’ve been here before… sort of. We’ve seen numerous stories with the Jackel cloning Peter and trying to create his own Spider-Men. We’ve had him create clones of Peter that went on to turn their back on Jackel and save the day, and we’ve had him create an island full of spider powered individuals. As far as this story goes, it doesn’t stray too far from the Jackel, he creates clones with some new discovery and he’s got it out for Spider-Man. The writing feels natural and like classic Spider-Man, we’ve got Dan Slott writing so the book will feel very familiar for Spider-Man fans. I’m also ecstatic to see some great panels with Anna Maria Marconi, my favourite character introduced in The Superior Spider-Man, working with Peter/Spidey.
Now with the art, we’ve also got a very classic heavy line work style, tons of detail and crosshatching, even if everyone looks like their faces are as swollen as boxers after 9 rounds. This issue uses a lot of drab earth tones contrasted on with highlights for the beginning of the book, which fits the tone as it starts with the funeral of Jay Jameson Sr. Once the action hits in this issue we definitely see the art shine with fantastic spreads of the newly gender bent Electro and the overly burly Rhino charging in. With it’s drab blue backgrounds Electro really energizes the pages she’s on.
This first issue does what it needs to do to setup what could be an excellent Spider-Man story, we’ve got classic villains, old and new friends, as well as some intrigue into what the Jackel’s plans are this time around. As almost all the Marvel books are promising dramatic change and status quo altering events, it’s no shock to see Spider-Man follow in the same footsteps. With Dead No More, I feel there is hope to have some new developments that compliment some of the more radical changes in Spider-Man’s life in and out of the spidey suit.