SPIDER-MAN: BLACK AND BLUE
Writers: Daniel Quantz, Roger Stern, John Rhett Thomas, Mike Fichera, Marc Sumerak & Chris Eliopoulos
Pencillers: Jonboy Meyers, Ron Frenz, Chris Eliopoulos
Publisher: Marvel Comics (Marvel Age)
Rating: 3.7 / 5
Note: This magazine collects Amazing Spider-Man #252, Marvel Age Spider-Man #3, Marvel Spotlight: Spider-Man , Spider-Man: Back in Black Handbook and Franklin Richards: World Be Warned #1.
What a random mess of randomness.
We get three stories and a lot of other stuff. In the first story, we get a Marvel Age retelling of the first appearance of the Sandman. In Amazing #252, we see the Earth debut of the symbiote costume that will eventually become Venom, as Spider-Man and the Lizard return from the Secret Wars. In Franklin Richards, we get a couple of silly stories with Franklin messing with gravity and a force field. Everything else is non-fiction material, including a look at Steve Ditko’s Spider-Man art and some handbook entries for characters not featured in these stories.
Amazing Spider-Man #252 is a classic. There’s nothing remarkable about the issue by itself, but it is one I’ve read multiple times and love, knowing what it eventually leads to. Peter Parker is wearing the freakin’ Venom symbiote, and loving it, not realising what will happen in a few years’ time. Amazing. The art in the Marvel Age story is quite pleasant, too.
The collection is quite random. There’s no connection between the two Spidey stories, there’s no connection between anything and the Franklin Richards story, and most of the non-fiction material has nothing to do with the specific stories included in the magazine. The Richards stories are also very, very predictable, boring and not as funny as they think they are.
The entire 3.7 points go to Amazing #252. This magazine, if you can get your hands on it cheaply, is well worth it for that issue – the rest is no big deal, and not worth the effort to track down the magazine for the benefit of reading them.