Martin Li holds off his evil other half as a fight breaks out with Aunt May caught in the center. Yet another new plot thread is introduced in an already crowded series. Would it kill them to tie a few of these up?
With the shadow of Kindred’s attack still looming, the spirit of Mr. Negative returns. Aunt May is caught in the crosshairs as Martin Li wrestles with his demons. Spider-Man must stop a horde of demon warriors looking to usher in a new Negative age. Also, Peter has a heart-to-heart with Liz Allen about her husband Harry Osborn and it does not go well.
Amazing Spider-Man #58 jumps around a bit, opening with an intense battle and then moving a few hours back to show how we got to this point. It ping-pongs between these two a few times, never taking its eye off of the fight.
With the way writer Nick Spencer has been referencing “One More Day” lately, it’s no wonder that Mr. Negative plays a part here. That villain was a big part of that storyline. Although the Sin-Eater’s attacks proved mostly fruitless, Li’s condition is an interesting one. He’s managed to free himself from the evil of Mr. Negative and all that demonic energy has to go somewhere. It wants to go back into Li, but he’s resisting. This makes me wonder if it will go into someone else, creating a new version of this villain.
This issue features another heated exchange between Peter and Norman. Despite his seemingly reformed nature, you can never trust Norman Osborn. He comes across as very slimy and manipulative here and he clearly knows more than he’s letting on. He’s the only one too because everyone, including us, still has no idea what’s happening with Kindred, how Harry got those weird powers, or what the Hell is going on.
These lingering questions cast a shadow over this issue. On its own, it’s not a bad book, but because there are so many dangling plot threads with seemingly no plans to tie any of them up, it hampers the enjoyment.
The fight between Spider-Man and Mr. Negative’s forces is a high point in Amazing Spider-Man #58. Artist Marcelo Ferreira turns in some great action work, making the demons look like an unstoppable force. They’re practically suffocating the wall-crawler as more and more of them just keep coming. I’ve always liked the design for these henchmen. They’re sleek and cool and that’s definitely the case here.
Spidey’s costume gets a little beat up here too. That’s always a sign of an intense battle. It makes the webhead look tough and relentless. Inker Wayne Faucher captures that perfectly with some solid work. Letterer Joe Caramagna adds some intensity to the scene first with some choice sound effects that amplify the action and then with some bold dialogue that drives home the determination of our hero.
This issue takes place in the evening and colorist Molly Hollowell creates a nice contrast between the cool of the night and the electrifying attacks from Negative’s forces. I really like how Spidey’s costume is rendered, giving it a cloth-like appearance.
Although this was a decent issue, I am wary of more plot threads being introduced into Amazing Spider-Man. There are already so many and none of them look like they’ll be resolved any time soon. I’m reminded of how I argue with my children when they ask for more food and I know full well that they won’t even finish what’s on their plate. I tell them to finish that and then I’ll give them some more. I wish the same principles could be applied to this comic.