Comics : Amazing Spider-Man (Vol. 1) #566

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This story is part of an Arc: "Kraven's First Hunt"
     Part 1 / Part 2 / Part 3

This review was first published on: 2008.

Background...

A girl has shown up, hunting Spider-Man, tracking him like prey. However, she mistakenly thinks that Vin Gonzalez, Peter Parker's newest roommate, is Spider-Man. To this end, she tried to eliminate Peter Parker, as he's close to him, as a roommate, and also framed him for a murder, getting Vin suspended from the Police Force, and also performed identity theft on him and got his funds frozen and left him with loans being called in. She then attacked him in the apartment, made him put on the Spider-Man costume and knocked him out, then reviving him at a different location, and claiming that she'll be the girl who killed Spider-Man...

In Detail...

"Identity Crisis!"
Amazing Spider-Man (Vol. 1) #566
Sep 2008 : SM Title
Arc: Part 2 of "Kraven's First Hunt"
Editor:  Stephen Wacker
Writer:  Marc Guggenheim
Inker:  Mark Pennington
Cover Art:  Phil Jiminez
Breakdowns:  Phil Jimenez
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Articles: Kravinoff, Ana

Vin tries to explain to the mysterious girl who has him hostage and in a Spider-Man suit that he's got the wrong guy, and that he's not actually Spider-Man. The girl explains that she tracked Vin to the apartment, and found the costume inside. She admonishes him for lying, and for not putting up more of a fight.

Meanwhile, back at the apartment, Peter freaks out a little about Vin's predicament, with his life turning to nothing all around him, and decides to put on the webs and go out for some web-slinging, to clear his head and calm himself down a little. However, he soon discovers that his costume and web-shooters are missing. He begins to suspect that perhaps Vin is gathering an anti-Spidey possee...

Peter calls Matt Murdock, who doesn't believe that it's really Spider-Man on the phone. To convince Murdock, Peter webs his face and shows up outside Murdock's office window. He asks to borrow Daredevil's costume, as a little favor, and Matt says that representing him in his lawsuit would constitute a little favor. They talk about the favor for a moment, and the costume's eyeholes.

Meanwhile, the girl slaps Vin awake, and tells him she's made a mistake, as she doesn't know the source of his powers, and shows him the next best thing, a needle of MGH. As she puts the MGH into him, Vermin shows up, upset at the intrusion into his "home."

Meanwhile, Peter, in the Daredevil costume, heads to the police station. He tries to find Vin, after "proving" that he's Daredevil with an easy acrobatic stunt. He finds out about a girl getting MGH similar to Spider-Man's powers, and claiming that she had him trussed up. Daredevil intimates that he believes Vin is innocent of recent charges.

Vin, with MGH in his veins, escapes his bonds, as the girl fights Vermin. She re-traps Vin, which allows Vermin to escape. Vermin escapes, and finds Peter as Daredevil, looking for a lead on Vin. The two engage in brutal physical combat.

The mysterious girl lets Vin go, as he starts running for his life, as the Hunt begins! Peter fighst Vermin valiantly, until the latter finally bits down on his neck and he approaches fading consciousness.

In General...

For the most part this is actually a pretty solid issue, some nice characterization and dialogue, a good predicament that Vin is put into, and so its up to Peter to don a costume to jump into action and save him. One issue I had with the issue, or maybe its just my copy, is that it seems to end very suddenly, with no "to be continued", etc, just ending with the caption "Sorry". For those with the issue, you'll know where that is, and hopefully can advise if I'm missing a page or not, otherwise its a badly concluded issue because it happens so suddenly that it makes you feel like you're missing a page or something.

The main plot is actually fairly interesting, although the villain is still not characterized, she's still just a cipher, and there's a MAJOR coincidence here which is almost too much to take in and enjoy. Considering the character who makes a sudden reappearance here hasn't been seen in a long, long time, it just seemed very sudden and convenient that he just so happens to show up at this time, just like he was in his most memorable storyline as an antagonist.

But for all the flaws of the issue, its still fairly strong, with some nice characterization of Spider-Man by Guggenheim. Even Vin gets some great characterization, which I really appreciated as I'm really coming to like him as a character, even with his bad day last issue. The storyline is fairly interesting, it has a nice sense of urgency to it, for Vin, but I just wish we'd get some more characterization for the villain of the piece. And "Daredevil's" appearance was a great touch, a nice play on what would have happened in the Silver Age quite easily.

The artwork is by Jimenez this issue, and I must admit that its a step down from last issue. Its still fairly good, but there are a number of panels and facial expressions which are unfocused and lack detail and definition. Its almost distracting. And then there's other panels which are fantastic, examples of how talented he is as an artist. Which leaves the art feeling a tad uneven and inconsistent. It might also have been that instead of Lanning on inks, we have Pennington on finishes.

Overall Rating...

A good arc, an interesting amount of character development, and plus a little hint as to continuity as it was during Kraven's Last Hunt post-OMD. Script was stronger than the artwork, but in general still entertaining and interesting.