Fighting Your Uncle Will Lead To An Awkward Thanksgiving In Miles Morales: Spider-Man #12

by James Ferguson

Miles was already stressed between school problems and the impending arrival of his new sibling (seriously any minute!) so the last thing he needed was an encounter with his uncle Aaron. This isn’t a chance meet up at a local hang out. Aaron is suited up as the Prowler and he’s about to assassinate a mob boss if Miles doesn’t do something.

The beauty of this conflict is that Aaron is only in this situation because of Miles. The guy was desperate to track down his nephew when the kid was captured, so he got a new suit in return for a favor. Unsurprisingly, that favor has been called in and Aaron has to cross a line if he wants to make good. Otherwise it will be his life on the line. Writer Saladin Ahmed has presented quite an intriguing premise here.

Much of Miles Morales: Spider-Man #12 is spent with this skirmish that starts between the title character and Aaron and extends out to include Man-Mountain Marko, who jumps into the fray to defend his boss, the would-be target. I already knew artist Javier Garron was extremely talented, but he really outdoes himself in this issue with all these fight scenes. Every page is unique with different angles, panel layouts, and compositions. Garron bounces from big splash images to close-up shots as Miles leaps all over the page.

Cory Petit’s letters amplify the action. They’re placed in the perfect spots to add to each blow. For example, there’s a huge whoosh that appears along Marko’s arm as he swings and misses at Miles.

Although both Miles and Aaron are masked, some of their emotions can still be seen on their faces. Miles has a look of heartbreak and reluctance. He doesn’t want to fight his uncle, but he will if he has to. That’s the right thing to do. Meanwhile, Aaron is concerned, yet determined with a grimace on his face as he doesn’t want to hurt his nephew, however he needs to fulfill his half of the contract. Plus, the target is a criminal so he doesn’t see it as a loss.

Garron’s talent for art direction is incredible. The images flow from one to another in seamless transitions. One that really stands out comes when Miles shoots his last web. We see him standing tall on the left side of the page with a burst of webbing in the middle that whimpers out on the right. It wasn’t even strong enough to make it to its target. Although these are three separate panels, they move like one, guiding your eye along.

I really like the new look for the Prowler suit. It’s sleek and modern, like a stealthy Iron Man suit. There’s a small cape that has a strange effect to it, like it could blend in with anything around it. This could be like an invisibility cloak. Colorist David Curiel gives this a shimmering tone, like your eyes can’t quite focus on it, which is kind of the point. Although this issue takes place at night, the colors are on full display in a vibrant burst. Everything is very clean and well-defined.

Things were already tense for Miles and this issue just added more fuel to the fire. He now has a tense journey through the city in an effort to keep his uncle safe, but he’s completely out of web fluid. (Seriously, why can’t he just call Peter Parker and ask to borrow some?) His mom is going into labor and he should be there. His super hero life just crossed into his personal life and things just got even crazier.

Miles Morales: Spider-Man #12 from Marvel Comics is currently available at your local comic shop and digitally through ComiXology and Amazon Kindle.

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