the amazing spiderman

my collection of Spiderman comicbook-titles has always been sporadic at best, with primary focus on ART rather than STORY, thus far (witness my heady years collecting all-McFarlane-issues and subsequently whatever issues with John Romita Jr.) tis only of late, during the inane "Civil War"-period when i picked up Spiderman again (altho the dismal Spiderman 3-movie did hamper this endeavour) even when he donned the disasterous Scarlet-Iron-Spider armor (*urgh*) til his subsequent unmasking of his true identity to the world (*slaps-palm-on-forehead*)

and nothing could've compared to the delightful and poignant surprise that had phantom-slapped me across the face and kept me near-breathless, when i started to pick-up Amazing Spiderman "regularly" - when i saw Peter had donned his all-Black Spidey-suit (sans-Venom symbiote) in the current "Back In Black"-story arc (details here) ... /// READ MORE HERE / STORY-SPOILERS AHEAD

J. Michael Straczynski has crafted an exceptional story, with a very "real-world" (as any comicbook-superhero real-world setting it could afford) setting and premise, putting Parker thru his life's trademark turmoil, this time pitting him against the Kingpin of Crime, Wilson Fisk. the stakes have gone up to the deadly-edge; when Aunt May falls victim to a sniper's rifle and currently lies near-death in a coma. discovering it was Fisk who had ordered the hit, Peter confronts Fisk in his prison, circa Amazing Spiderman #542 (Part 4 of 5)

and i have begun to really enjoy Ron Garney's art, powerful in it's deceptive "simplicity" (versus the gazillion cross-hatching-styles of some current hyper-detailed artists, which i still enjoy tho LOL), packed with emotion and resonance (which sadly the movie lacked desperately) ... witness the brutality of a topless Peter Parker beating The Kingpin to a pulp, and the full-out bitch-slapping (!!!) in full frontal view of Fisk's jailhouse inmates ... and Parker did what Daredevil could not have done; and laid low the mighty Kingpin...

and within this storyline unfolding, so too does the character evolution of Parker, a man fueled by his inner demons of responsibility and accepting them, and of what he has to do, to keep his family and loved ones "alive" .. some may say (including myself) that this smells too much of a "story-gimmick" to notch-up sales, with an "all-new grim-n-gritty Spiderman" ... which is not necessarily far from the truth, mind ... but in essence, is but the "logical" next step in Parker's life, especially after his unmasking, as deftly crafted (and fully appreciated by myself) by Stranczynski (IMHO) - or maybe tis of my own latent revenge-fueled wish-fulfillment, eh?

with great power comes great responsibility ... but with that, an even greater responsibility to protect your loved ones" .... which so happens to lead up to the next story-arc, "One More Day" (read more on CBR) ... and i can't help but feel a twinge of sombre and dread, with the inevitable possible fate of Aunt May, as seen from this single image:

... seems our intrepid hero never gets a break, and we are but benefiting from his pathos, IMHO - and i am so looking forward to finding out more about how Peter Parker's life is going to turn out ... *heh*

[comic covers via]