Spider-Punk’s second issue continues to flesh out this alternate Earth and its myriad of characters, as the creative team delves deep into the punk and fun aspects of this story while building something huge in the background. This is exactly the type of story that we need in times like these, hitting all the relatable notes while leaving room for so much more.
Norman Osborn might have been defeated but the Spider-Punk and his Spider-Band still have their hands full with Kraven and the Hunters as well as the debut of Earth 138’s deadly Taskmaster. Spider-Punk #2 puts a focus on the hardcore punk-inspired action as well as the corruption that runs far deeper than the Spider-Band could have ever assumed.
Cody Ziglar carries on the great tradition of comics that can be super fun, and full of action but also tackle very relevant topical issues all at the same time. Take all that and wrap it up in a fantastic artistic package from Justin Mason, Jim Charalampidis, and Travis Lanham and you have a winning book in hand. The resurgence of Nazis and fascism is something we’re all having to endure day after day in this society, and that’s very much what Spider-Punk and friends have to face here. Seeing them beat down Kraven again as well as Taskmaster is so great that the words satisfying don’t even do it justice.
There is a ton of great dialogue and quips that are flying around rapid-fire, as Ziglar nails all these characters both those that we know and those that are newer. One of the best things is the fact that the entire main cast is made of heroic characters of color, with Kamala Khan/Ms. Marvel joining the party in this issue. We do not get enough books that take the effort to give us casts like this and getting one this fun and powerful is the best.
Also, can’t argue with a conclusion that sends the team on a cross-country road trip to stop the machinations of the (presumed) dead Norman Osborn.
Once again, we have an action-packed issue with art that is smooth and quick with all the right kinetic energy to it, making each action beat flow into the next from panel to panel and page to page. Making use of white/negative space is one of my favorite paneling aesthetics, and it works so well here. There are a lot of visceral action sequences where blows can be felt because of how they are framed or because of the choice to switch to silhouette to really hit home what happened. Much of that is also aided by the well-placed and right in the thick of things SFX that are found across the pages.
Boosting it all as well are the really bold but also muted colors, giving us bright pops of green or blue or other colors while also making them shadowy for added weight and depth. The last issue had lots of yellows and oranges for outside and this time we get a ton of blues that fit the coolness of the night and also the fact that the community center is dark after the battle.
Lanham’s letters play with colors too as we have the bright red bold coloring added to certain words, giving them a punch-like emphasis. All the font is also jagged and slanted to give it a different flavor than we normally see which fits the whole punk/different feeling for this series. All of that is found in the aforementioned SFX too, making sure that there isn’t a way you can miss these big bold sounds that are connected to the person, action, or object in question.
Spider-Punk #2 is now available.