Brandon Borzelli’s Geek Goggle Reviews
Amazing Spider-Man #601
Waid, Alberti, Mossa, Bendis & Quesada
Spider-Man 600 was good enough that I decided to see where the Mary Jane storyline was headed by picking up issue 601. What I got was a tease with regard to Mary Jane and a decent enough story wrapped around the main drama. It’s an okay issue but it introduces a rather disturbing side of Peter Parker that I found to be a real head-scratcher. I’m not sure if I’ll be picking up another issue or not at this point. I might but this issue didn’t put me over the top by any means.
peter wakes up after the wedding in issue 600 with a massive hangover. He wakes up after what appears to be a one night stand with a girl (not Mary Jane). This introduces a couple of dramatic plots for the issue. Peter gets himself into trouble with his female roommate which leaves him homeless. His drunken actions from the previous issue also leaves him with gaps in his memory, particularly the parts where he speaks to Mary Jane and sets up a meeting with her. So the issue is primarily spent with Peter looking for housing as he racks his brain trying to remember when and where he was supposed to meet MJ.
The synopsis should tell what’s off about this issue. Peter Parker gets loaded and has a one night stand. Say what? I’m not saying this is one of those “I hate you for what you did to my character” moments. But this course of action did leave me confused. I just couldn’t believe Parker would drink. Isn’t he afraid of what he might do with his powers if he’s drunk? How do you reconcile the whole with “great power comes great responsibility” stuff? If Parker wants to hook up I guess that’s cool but the drinking thing is kind of bizarre and I’m not sure it comes across as believable.
The summary also points out the other problem here. Parker spends the whole issue trying to track down MJ. They never actually face each other. That means in two issues they don’t actually converse in the comic. It’s frustrating and makes the character of MJ less meaningful in the grand scheme of things. You have all this build up for the post Brand New Day Mary Jane and not only do you get no pay off but you get a confusing resolution. That being, that it’s not clear if Mary Jane is aware that Peter Parker is Spider-Man or not.
However, the issue’s contents between the weird character usages is actually pretty good. Spider-Man gets some hatred thrown his way, Peter Parker gets some hatred thrown his way, there’s some action, humor and great artwork. It’s difficult to not like the comic and find the fun it.
Additionally, there was a backup story where Spider-Man visits an old classmate/Avengers-mate to cheer her up a little bit. It’s a good little story.
I wanted to see how Mary Jane and Peter would interact in this issue. I was hoping for a fight or some attitude. Instead, they don’t talk, Parker has a hangover and the issue still is pretty good. I’m not sure this Spider-Man story would be for everyone, but it’s decent enough that falls slightly above the “completists only” status. It’s a fairly good enough comic.
3 out of 5 geek goggles