A bunch of costumed thugs have been making waves for Miles Morales lately. Every time he gets close to them, they blow up their stash of strange drugs before he can investigate. This is somehow linked to Ultimatum, the mysterious new villain that’s showed up to ruin Miles’ day. Also, it’s not much of a spoiler because it’s on the cover, but his uncle Aaron is involved too.
We knew a confrontation between Miles and his uncle was brewing. Aaron had made a deal for a new suit in order to save his nephew, but that put him on the hook for a job. I’m bummed that it was spoiled by the cover because it would have been a nice cliffhanger to end the issue on.
In any case, these are just a few of the problems facing Miles right now. He’s also run out of web fluid and his mom could be having a baby at any moment. I’m a little confused by the first problem. Sure, he can make his own and he’s run out of supplies, but couldn’t he text Peter Parker and ask him to send some over? They live in the same city. It shouldn’t be that hard.
The lack of web fluid takes away one of Miles’ biggest advantages in combat and getting around in general. It’s funny to think of how much the web shooters are taken for granted. Writer Saladin Ahmed puts the character into some funny positions, like being forced to take the subway, all the while trying to juggle the many things he’s got going on. Oh, I almost forgot that he’s on probation at school because he missed a bunch of days. He can’t really tell his teacher that he was kidnapped.
All of these obstacles are a nice mix of normal teenage stuff and super heroics. It’s what gives Miles Morales: Spider-Man a refreshing take on the wall-crawler, putting the character through some stuff that Peter experienced when he was coming up, but with a whole new set of obstacles, not to mention a new diverse perspective. Letterer Cory Petit brings all of these thoughts and insights to life in Miles’ internal narration, presented as pieces of the journal the character has been writing for class.
The artists change up in Miles Morales: Spider-Man #11 with Ze Carlos handling the first eight pages and Ig Guara finishing up the issue. I’m not a fan of switching artists in the middle of an arc, let alone a single issue as it can be a little jarring. The exception to this comes when there’s a reason for a different style in a story, but that’s not the case here. The closest we get is a transition from day to night, but even that is not all that seamless.
Both artists are very talented, delivering some great action sequences. Carlos has Miles with the web shooters while Guara has him without. This presents a very different approach to the fights as Miles has to completely change the way he enters combat.
My favorite part of this issue comes when the gang members cut out the lights and switch to night vision. This takes away Miles’ invisibility, another big advantage. Colorist Dono Sanchez-Almara, aided by Protobunker shift everything to a red hue, like we’re seeing the action through the goggles. This complements Miles’ black and red costume and makes for a really exciting scene.
Much of Miles Morales: Spider-Man #11 serves as continued groundwork for where this story arc is going. We’ve got more moves by Ultimatum, Uncle Aaron’s criminal deal paying off, and the impeding arrival of Miles’ new sibling. All of these work together to form a powder keg of drama.