Comics : Amazing Spider-Man (Vol. 2) #17

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This review was first published on: 2004.

Background...

Peter still doesn't believe his wife is dead. But, because of her dissapearance/death has lost his comfortable living. He also has to deal with his Spidey business as well, with the former members of the most recent version of the Sinister Six (see issue #12 of Vol.2) turning on each other.

In Detail...

"Dust In The Wind"
Amazing Spider-Man (Vol. 2) #17
May 2000 : SMURF 458.500 : SM Title
Summary: Dying Sandman, Electro, Mysterio
Editor:  Ralph Macchio
Writer:  Howard Mackie
Pencils:  John Byrne
Inker:  Dan Green
Cover Art:  John Byrne
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Articles: Electro, Glory Grant, Mysterio II (Berkhart), Mysterio II (Berkhart), Sandman

This month we see Spidey trying to get his life back on track after the recent tumultous events. He's trying to deal with the simple things, like getting a job and keeping a roof over his head, while trying not seem like seem as a charity case to his friends and family. In this issue Pete tries to get a job. As always though, fate seemingly conspires against him.

First, he helps out lady and trapped child, only to be arrested, because the building in they were was raided for drugs at the same time. Then as the police take him for questioning they are called to an emergency, which happens to be a rampaging Sandman. Sandman is dying due to a bite form Venom, but wants some payback on Mysterio before he goes. Pete gets involved as Spidey and all leads to tussle between Spidey, Sandman, Mysterio and Electro. The fight ends inconclusively and Pete finally gets to his interview and despite his delays, he is actually EARLY! (take note, this has to be almost a first in Spidey history or even superhero history). But, despite this he still doesn't get the job, because he is over-qualified...

So the sad story of Peter Parker continues...

In General...

First off, I thought this was a mostly good issue. I get the feeling that if just a bit of extra work went into character consistencey and straightening out the plot, then this would have been a great issue. I think there are a couple of elements that were made this worth reading. There was a follow up on the Sinister Six plot line and a progression in Pete's troubles after the apparent loss of his wife.

The greatest thing about this issue for me though was that I was actually surprised and taken unawares by a plot twist! The fact that Pete was early for a job interview or any appointment was a surprise. I was certain that as I read that Pete would miss out on a much needed job because of his super heroics. Though I think his reason for not getting the job was kinda dumb.

I also liked Sandman in this issue. How his meeting with Pete didn't seem forced. And how Sandy is somehow decomposing, is creepy and makes him interesting. Best of all is the way he is drawn, he is monstrous figure, but and the same time you are sorry that even a bad guy has to suffer in such a way.

Unfortunately though, as hinted at above, there are more than a couple glaring inconsistencies. I'll rein in though and only mention two. While Sandy's predicament is interesting, it contradicts other stories, even recent ones. You see the given reason for Sandy slowly dying is that Venom ate some of his sand mass. While in the recent Amazing Spider-man 2000 back up story, Sandy loses some of his mass, but just reconstitues himself with other sand. The other inconsistency is that Peter is portrayed as being quite clueless and stupid during his fight with Sandy. He also is clearly portrayed as thinking that Mary Jane is still alive at that one of his enemies has her. If this is true, why doesn't he spend each issue tracking down his enemies and searching for Mary Jane until he finds her? I know I would if I was in his place.

Overall Rating...

3 webs. An okay issue and if your not a regular reader, you probaly won't be bothered by the inconsitencies. But, if like me, you love this character and have been reading for awhile, then these continual inconsistencies will be really starting to cheese you off.