Comics : Timeslip: The Collection

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This story is part of a Lookback Series: What If, Whenever, Wherever...

This review was first published on: 2008.

Background...

Jim Krueger was on a roll in the late nineties. His alternate Marvel Earth X, Universe X and Paradise X titles were making the scene, along with a parade of tie-in and variant covers.

Jim's desire to present fans with a "new and different" angle spilled over into Marvel Vision, the "official Marvel fanzine". A regular "Time Slip" feature in that title featured a two-page "what if classic Marvel characters had been created by writers and artists of today." Specifically, Jim Krueger wrote the text, and guest artists provided the realisations.

The epilogue by Jim says that these "evolved into a series of prestige one-shots", though I don't know specifically what he is referring to.

In Detail...

Timeslip: The Collection
Nov 1998 : SM Guest
Summary: Alternate Spider-Man Pin-Ups
Editor:  Julio Soto
Writer:  Jim Krueger
Artist:  Mike Allred
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Review

Spider-Man appears in only one of these two-page "What If" pieces. The Origin story is almost completely unchanged from the original. All that has changed is the artwork. Presented in almost an "indie" style by artist Mike Allred, Peter's Spider-Man costume is restyled and features red spikes at knees and elbows. His webbing is replaced by a (far less practical) grappling claw on a line.

The treatment of other characters varies. Some are essentially only redrawn like Spidey. Others receive an overhaul to their powers and/or backgrounds. Quicksilver is made entirely of metal, making him a slave to his father Magneto. The Incredible Hulk is a fused man, two-headed, with Banner's head attached to Hulk's chest. The Punisher is an accountant, killing in perfect mathematical revenge to balance the wages of sin.

And on it goes...

In General...

A new Spider-Man costume, with a grappling hook. It's very hard to get excited about this as the justification for a $2.99 comic book, which was pricey for the time. These probably worked well as a regular feature in Marvel Vision, and I guess it makes sense to collect them. But a reprint of something that wasn't that interesting in the first place?

Overall Rating...

More "What If" Spidey. I've lost count of how many dozen alternate Spider-Men have been depicted over the last few decades. This one certainly doesn't stand out from the crowd. Two webs.