Reviews of trade paperbacks of comic books (mostly Marvel), along with a few other semi-relevant comments / reviews.

13 June 2008

Spider-Girl, v. 7: Betrayed

Collects: Spider-Girl #34-8, 51 (2001, 2002)

Released: November 2006 (Marvel)

Format: 144 pages / color digest / $7.99 / ISBN: 9780785121572

Despite the name, there seems to be a singular lack of betrayal in Spider-Girl, v. 6: Betrayed.

Betrayal of any of the protagonists, anyway. Writer Tom DeFalco spends the book amiably advancing plotlines — the second Spider-Man, Spider-Girl’s new power, Normie Osborn’s career plans, Raptor’s rehabilitation, Phil Urich’s aspirations. It makes for a surprisingly low-key volume, especially given the incipient gang war.

Spider-Girl, v. 6: Betrayed coverAnd DeFalco’s setting up even more plotlines, with Flash and the Black Cat’s daughter Felicity in Midtown High and their difficulties with their son, Gene. A former Spider-Woman and surprise reveal comes to see Peter about the new Spider-Man. The soap operas at May’s high school are a little tiresome; other than May’s relationships (none at the moment) and the amusing Moose / Courtney pairing (dimwit Moose thinks dumpy Courtney is Spider-Girl), I just don’t care.

This volume also includes a fill-in issue, #51, by Sean McKeever and Casey Jones, about a freshman with a crush on May. He writes her a mash note just before his family moves away (to Northern Plains — Wisconsin, one supposes, this being written by McKeever). Mostly forgettable, even the fight between Spider-Girl and a female Electro.

And that’s the problem with this volume, in a nutshell. Nothing’s really at stake, there’s a lot of fighting, and I can’t be bothered to care about the villains. Funny Face and Crazy 8 are a little too “wacky” for me, and Mr. Nobody is a little too knowing of the conventions of the genre. Canis is interesting, though, in a Lobo Brothers rip-off sort of way.

Pat Olliffe provides his usual level of art; having to spends so much time on Crazy 8 and Funny Face doesn’t’ do him any favors, although Felicity and Felicia Hardy are impressive (and not in a cheesecake way, either). There is a color separation problem on several pages late in my copy of the book, although it doesn’t interfere with the comprehension.

Unless you’re thrilled by Funny Face, Crazy 8, and more Phil Urich Golden Goblin, the surprise Spider-Woman revelation is about the only outstanding moment in Betrayed.

Rating: Spider-Man symbol Spider-Man symbol Half spider symbol (2.5 of 5)

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

Here we disagree again. I love Spider girl, may be one of my favorite books, but I dont think the art hit stride until Ron Frenz came on board. Oliffe's art, while extremely competent, has always struck me as a the best way i can put it.

12:44 PM  

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