Amazing Spider-Man #698 (Marvel Entertainment)
by Dan Slott & Richard Elson
This issue is quite Shakespearean in tone, and by that, I mean it’s much ado about nothing. The big reveal at the end of this issue (which I won’t spoil) has a lot of readers talking and boosted demand for the comic book. And honestly, I don’t know why. It’s kind of a ridiculous concept that lacks any real tension, as any major change to the title character’s status quo is bound to be temporary. But more importantly, it’s hardly the newest idea for a super-hero plot. I was immediately put in mind of the premise behind DC’s Silver Age event from 12 years ago, which was wisely crafted as a fun, fleeting diversion rather than a serious story, as is the case with Slott’s plot (hee, rhymes). To give credit where credit is due, Slott’s script is pretty accessible even though it’s founded on several recent changes in Spidey’s world in recent years. Accessibility is a smart move for this issue, as the publicity it’s generating is bound to attract new or lapsed Amazing Spidey readers.