Saturday, January 1, 2011

Astonishing Spider-Man and Wolverine #4 (of 6)

Happy New Year, everyone!

For any comic book to be great, it takes a simple combination of great story and great art.

This mini-series Astonishing Spider-Man and Wolverine has loads of great art, courtesy of the pencils of Adam Kubert and the digital inks of Mark Roslan. The layouts are imaginative, the characters are real and expressive, the backgrounds are detailed and the action frenetic.

But the story just doesn't hold together well at all. Part of the problem is the length of time between issues - it's been three months since the last installment. The other problem is that the story is just loaded down with crazy, unconnected events.

In the first issue, Spider-Man and Wolverine are dealing with a bank robbery when they find themselves thrown into the distant past. Since then they've bounced around in time, into alternate realities, and in this issue, they find themselves showing up in each other's past.

To make matters even more confused, a never-before-seen, time-traveling character shows up who is somehow central to the story - and the big bad is revealed on the final page.

It just all feels like a story that's being made up as it rolls along.

The comic is worth buying for the art - but until the story starts making sense, it'll never make the grade as a "great" comic. It's only halfway there.

Grade: B-


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