Comics : Spider-Man: Breakout #5

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This review was first published on: 2005.

Background...

On the trail of Roz Backus, Crossfire and his crew find her, and incapacitate Spider-Man. The U-Foes are hot on their heals, and are trying to stop Crossfire before he gets to Roz. Spider-Man is trapped at the Controller's mercy...

In Detail...

Spider-Man: Breakout #5
Oct 2005 : SM Title
Editor:  Axel Alonso
Writer:  Tony Bedard
Pencils:  Manuel Garcia
Inker:  Raul Fernandez
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 Reprinted In: Spider-Man: Breakout (TPB)

Spider-Man has one of the Controller's discs on his face, as Controller makes him hold a gun to his head. Crossfire tells him to keep him alive, as long as Controller feeds off Spidey's strength. Crossfire interrogates Roz, but she tells him that what he's looking for isn't with her.

Spider-Man's cell phone rings, and Crossfire picks it up for him. Peter tels him it's Roz's father calling, so Crossfire explodes on the phone, telling the caller that his "daughter" has only five minutes to live. On the other end, Captain America realizes that Spider-Man's asking for help, so him and Iron Man get going.

Back at the Haven House, Vapor takes out Mandrill, who was relaxing with a ton of women in the laundry room. Before Mandrill can alert Crossfire, X-Ray takes him out. Iron Clad and Vector show up and Mandrill tells them where Crossfire is.

As Crossfire tries to find out where the chamber is that he's looking for, Controller tells him to reveal just what they're after, once and for all. Crossfire reveals his previous partnership with Vector, and how they worked on a chamber to nullify powers permanently. As Controller and Crossfire discuss the plan and why he kept it from the team, the U-Foes show up. Iron Clad tackles Controller, and the two go crashing down to street level. Vector takes out Crossfire. Roz tells Vector that she destroyed the chamber which Vector was going to use to try and cure himself or at least minimize his powers to a more manageable state.

As Controller fights Iron Clad, all those people he was controlling are freed from his influence, including Spider-Man. As Controller pummels Iron Clad, X-Ray shows up and blasts him, knocking him down. Vector freaks out, and knocks Spider-Man out of the building. X-Ray begins to engage Spider-Man, cutting his web, when Captain America's shield flies through his body, injuring X-Ray. Spider-Man tries to reason with Vector, as Vapor tries to cool him down as well. Vapor leaves to pick up Iron Clad and X-Ray, and Vector uses his powers to destroy the building which Roz owns. Spider-Man and Roz managed to escape, as Captain America and Iron Man look on. Roz is taken into custody, as well as Crossfire's crew. As Iron Man, Captain America and Peter talk about what happened, Peter ruminates that he could get used to being part of a team like this.

In General...

I must admit to being a bit disappointed by the conclusion to this mini-series. It wasn't quite what I was expected, and I even felt a bit underwelmed by the ending. It seemed to be a bit short on the payoff for this otherwise extremely enjoyable series, although this issue was still fairly enjoyable in and of itself.

Crossfire and the Controller finally have Roz and Spider-Man as their captives, as Crossfire finally tells the Controller, and the reader, just why both Crossfire and the U-Foes are really after Roz, and what they both hope to get out of her. I must admit that it was an intriguing revelation, and made sense as to why both groups would be after it, and how their motivations reflected their character. The best part of this issue is seeing the U-Foes finally take the fight to Crossfire's gang, and hurt them badly. The U-Foes have really been played up in this series, and developed into fairly interesting characters, and this issue really does them justice. The villains in this series have been really handled well, and given more credit than perhaps they ever had been given before, by showing that even the "lamest" of some villains can end up being compelling to read about it.

The issue ends fairly quickly, however, with a pretty quick fight between the Avengers and both the U-Foes and Crossfire's gang, and therein lies my few qualms with the issue. The U-Foes escape, Crossfire's gang is captured, Roz turns herself in, and Cap and Iron Man pat Spider-Man on the back for a job well done, and Spidey realizes maybe he can get used to being an Avenger? Five issues for THAT? It felt like a bit of a letdown there, especially as the current arc of Amazing Spider-Man has the same feeling and general message to it.

The art in the issue by Garcia is solid work, especially on the U-Foes. The colouring by Sotomayor really makes the art stand out, especially on the U-Foes, as the colouring really makes them eye-catching and distinct. My only qualm would have to be with Captain America's mask on his nose, as well as Iron Man's faceplate, which looks broken and odd.

Overall Rating...

As a whole, the series is a good read, although this issue in particular isn't the strongest issue by far, with an ending that feels too forced and a bit unsolved.