Comics : Spider-Man Coloring Book (China) CB-2704
This review was first published on: Jun 2012.
I must confess I harbour a secret affection for these rip-off Chinese coloring books that sell for a couple of bucks in the lower-grade discount stores around town. The owners of these stores and the creators of the books both have zero interest in quality, and zero respect for Marvel's intellectual property. They'll crap all over Spidey's good name if there's ten cents profit to be made.
Now, that may appear to be a "Bad Thing" from some angles. But just pause a moment. Without that complete disregard for all decent things, we would be deprived of such fascinatingly awful books as this one here, which is so gloriously entitled "The Biggest Enemy is An Oneself".
Spider-Man Coloring Book (China) CB-2704
Year 2011 : SM Title
As soon as I saw that incompetent fragment of Chinglish, I knew that book must be mine, at any price! Or more specifically, for two dollars.
"The Biggest Enemy is An Oneself"
Oh, what glory!
Unfortunately, that's the low point. Following this awful nadir, the rest of the book is merely "very bad". But let's be more specific. The coloring book is soft card, magazine sized at 8.5" x 11", and came pre-wrapped in a cellophane bag.
While the front cover promises a "Spider-Man 3 Movie" connection, the interior is comprised of 16 slightly greyish pages with the exact same 16 images which appeared in the previous two coloring books I found (i.e. Spider-Man Coloring Book (China) S-002 and Spider-Man Coloring & Sticker Book (China) JQ-813D). And I do mean the EXACT same images. No variation at all.
Specifically, the exact same artwork features: Spider-Man, Peter, MJ, Silver Sable, Lizard, Doc Ock, Lizard, Talon, and Maximum Shock.
The same printing errors also appear! "Spider-Man" is printed backwards as "Nam-Redips" at least twice. Talon is "Nolat", and Maximum Shock is "Kcohs Mumixam"!
Oh, this is ghastly! First there's the ludicrous title and the irrelevant front cover. Then there's the dirty grey pages and the made-up characters. Finally there's the complete duplication of the previous two books' content, including the back-to-front captions.
Honestly, if I was paid to make this book worse, I really don't know where I would start. What else could possibly be ruined?
In difficult economic times such as these, with all of our jobs at risk from cheap Chinese imports, it's so very important to have something positive to hold onto. So may I suggest to you that given this evidence of the quality of Asian goods, perhaps one day people will realise eventually that price isn't everything.
We can only hope. In the meantime, here's half a web for a colouring book that has defined a new low-water mark.