Comics : Amazing Spider-Man: 3D Activity Centre (Parragon/Scholastic)

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This story is part of a Lookback Series: The Magic of Color

This review was first published on: Jun 2014.

Background...

This hardback square-spine folder collection is the sibling product to the Marvel Super Heroes 3D Activity Centre (Parragon/Scholastic). Both have an external hard cardboard cover, with a spiral ring-binder inside.

This book is available in the UK (published by Parragon) and in Australia/NZ (published by Scholastic). U.S. fans can buy on Amazon and have it shipped to them from the UK.

In Detail...

Amazing Spider-Man: 3D Activity Centre (Parragon/Scholastic)
Aug 2012 : SM Title
Find ISBN 9781445459936
Summary: Activities, Press-Out Playset & Games
Publisher:  Parragon Book Service, Ltd., Scholastic Australia, Inc. (Australia - ISBN 9781742834672)
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The book itself is 10.25" x 11.5". It has "filofax" tabbed section separators.

The first of the five sections is "Story". It is a 24-page simplified re-working of the The Amazing Spider-Man: An Origin Story , greatly reduced in terms of the amount of text, with greater emphasis given to the lovely artwork which has been re-used here. Some of the pages have been converted to 3D for use with the supplied red/blue glasses. While it's decidedly dumbed down from the source material, it's still very attractive on glossy paper.

Section two is "Activities". This also is a decent enough section, with 32 pages of colouring and activity pages. The paper is adequate quality and there's some full-color components on some of the pages to add variety to the black and white line art. As usual in this series, nearly of the activity/coloring material is shared with many of the other Parragon/Scholastic books as featured in the Spider-Man Color/Activity (Parragon/Scholastic) and Spider-Man Color/Activity (Scholastic Australia).

Section three is "Press & Play". Here is a press-out cardboard "Mobile", some press-out "bookmarks", some stencils, and some press-out game pieces and a giant dice to play with the supplied board game.

So far so good. But then... just like the Marvel equivalent book, we come crashing into a creative brick wall. The glorious, high-quality production quality disappears and we get... to sections featuring nothing but blank pieces of paper.

Yep. The "Make-Your-Own-Adventure" in chapter four is... clean white pages. And not even very many of them. But that's not the end of it. The final insult is that section five "Scrapbook" is exactly the same!

In General...

This marks a new low in "Activity Books". Blank pages does not make an "Activity Book". It makes an "Art Pad". It makes "Stationary".

Overall Rating...

The rest of the product was doing OK. But the sudden stumble into "100% Do-It-Yourself" territory cannot be justified by any stretch of the imagination. Especially for a book with a cover price of £13 ($22 USD).

My disappointment and resentment for this blatant rip-off can only be redeemed with a rock-bottom half-web rating. I am "The Consumer", and vengeance will be mine.