Graphic Novel Review: Amazing Spider-Man: The Parker Luck

Amazing Spider-Man: The Parker Luck

Amazing Spider-Man: The Parker Luck - Credit: Archant

Accept no substitute! The return of Peter Parker...

(Panini Books)

The original is back! Having been violently evicted from his own body by the mind of Doctor Octopus (Otto Octavius), Peter Parker has triumphantly regained control, and he’s got a lot of catching up to do…

This is very much a back-to-basics Spidey story, offering a strong entry-point for new readers while also setting events in motion for the future.

Peter has to extract himself for a relationship formed by Octavius with brilliant scientist Anna Maria Marconi, who has deduced his secret identity, re-establish his credentials with the Avengers after they fired him, catch up with old friends and family, and also come to terms with running his own business, Parker Industries…

There’s also the menace of movie villain Electro to deal with, teamed-up with Peter’s former lover and partner the Black Cat, who is out for revenge after Otto-Spidey ruined her life and sent her to jail, and long-time adversary J Jonah Jameson has a new platform to vent his spleen against the wallcrawler – a TV talk show!

But perhaps the most crucial event to unfold in this collection is a side-effect of the Original Sin crossover, in which long-hidden secrets of the all-seeing Watcher are revealed to a group of heroes, Spider-Man included.

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Some 13 years ago, a teenage Peter was bitten by a radioactive spider, gaining incredible powers as a result. But what if he wasn’t the only person to be bitten? And what has happened to the other spider-powered human in the years since?

It’s an interesting approach, and the introduction of Cindy Moon as Silk offers a nice foil for the usually lonesome Spidey, while also setting events in motion for the forthcoming Spider-Verse crossover epic.

After the last couple of years with Doc Ock operating as the Superior Spider-Man in a remarkable run of stories, this return to the status quo comes tinged with disappointment at the loss of such a great interpretation of the character, but nothing lasts forever, so it’s a case of looking forwards rather than back.

And the future does indeed look bright for the web-slinger… The looming menace of Morlun, one of the only foes who ever came close to annihilating Spider-Man once and for all, and the debut of Silk are both welcome additions to the narrative, and thankfully Peter isn’t going through the same old motions now he’s back in charge of his life.

Dan Slott continues to prove his merits as one of the all-time great Spidey-writers, ably assisted by artwork from Humberto Ramos. If you’ve been hankering for old school Amazing in contrast to Superior, then this is definitely the Spider-Man you’ve been waiting for. But if you’re still missing Otto’s arrogant antics, it might take a bit longer to get comfortable with the return of the original…