A new player has hit the town - a mysterious warrior named Thanatos, who has a grudge against Alchemax perhaps stronger than Miguel's?
Tyler Stone visits Dana's office at Synthia to discuss business opportunities, inviting her to dinner. Meanwhile, back at Alchemax, Miguel witnesses an explosion in the Virtual Unreality department. Miguel helps out and finds Jordan Boone, the pretentious scientist, lying on the floor wearing an armature device. Jordan offers no gratitude to Miguel for helping rescue him, and reveals nothing as to why his experiment blew up.
Thanatos hovers on his craft outside of Synthia, spying on Stone's conversation with Dana. Miguel receives a call from Tyler and Dana whereupon Dana cancels her dinner date with her fiancée. Suddenly, Thanatos crashes into Dana's office. Tyler makes sure Miguel sees the event on the screen. Thanatos takes the two outside to his craft making quick work of the defending flyboys. Spider-Man arrives and negotiates to replace Dana as a hostage.
Back at the apartment, Lyla is acting more and more strange. Inundated with a room full of bleak news reports, Lyla actually sheds a tear. Having the equivalent of a nervous breakdown, Lyla falls apart and disappears.
To release his hostages, Thanatos demands access to Alchemax for one hour. When they arrive at Alchemax, Thanatos insists on being taken to the Virtual Unreality program office. There, Jordan is trying to restart his failed experiment. Guiding his mechanical arm into another dimension, Jordan pulls an organism out and into containment.
Thanatos storms the lab, and knocks Jordan into the portal of the other dimension. While Spider-Man tries to save Jordan, Thanatos draws power out of the portal saying he's acquiring the power of the Heroic Age. Spider-Man saves Jordan, but in process also extracts someone else - a man exclaiming, "I'm back!"
This felt like a slightly off the beaten path storyline. I know - after a dozen issues, is the path really that beaten down? Well, for me, the episodic clash with a talkative arrogant villain seemed to be a bit monotonous considering the vast universe of 2099 to explore. But, Thanatos was an interesting character to add to the mix, and it didn't require a slugfest to advance the plot. Here, Spidey just finished declaring his war against the company that gives him a paycheck - and now he has to defend it from someone more extreme! There are so many egos clashing into each other in this comic, it's a regular riot.
Four webs. A fine issue that kept my interest and piqued my curiosity.