The Amazing Spider-Man #51 Review

by Harlan Ivester on October 28, 2020

Writer: Nick Spencer
Artist: Patrick Gleason
Colorist: Edgar Delgado
Letterer: VC’s Joe Caramagna
Publisher: Marvel Comics

                It’s good to feel like we’re really in the thick of it in Spencer’s Amazing Spider-Man. Issue #51 doesn’t have any pivotal plot points, or at least as far as I can tell right now, but it’s a solid read, nonetheless. Spencer continues building the tension higher and higher for the pending confrontation with Kindred. I can appreciate that he’s putting so much effort into making this feel like a genuine threat for Peter. However, I think this script could have used a little more breathing room, so maybe another .LR issue would have helped. Without spoiling anything, there’s a detour in this issue that is over so quickly and seems to accomplish nothing, it left me wondering what the point of it was. That aside, this chapter does still give us some good moments for Peter that reminded me a lot of J.M. DeMatteis’s work on the character.

                I have to make note of another moment where it feels like Spencer and editor Nick Lowe might not have been on the same page, because there’s an editor’s note explaining a reference to a previous issue, and then a wide panel dedicated to recapping that reference anyway. I’m glad it wasn’t a full page or more of recap like I’ve complained before, but the note would have been fine by itself, especially since the referenced events don’t really have anything to do with what’s happening now.

                If I ever forget to mention how glad I am that Patrick Gleason is the artist for this story, punch me. This is probably my favorite of his work that I’ve seen. His pages depicting more standard events are good, of course,  but since this issue involves the Sorcerer Supreme, Gleason gets to play with the trippy stuff. He nails it. The action, the monsters, acting (with or without a mask), etc. I’d be remiss if I didn’t also mention his paneling – very mindful of the page as a whole and how it all feels as a sequence of events.

                My only problem with Edgar Delgado’s coloring is that his Spider-Man teeters on the edge of orange sometimes. That’s it, though. He very organically makes each panel varied in tones, adding not just to the setting, but the moment as well. Certain filters and layering effects are added to those trippy sequences that I mentioned before, and they do so much to make them pleasantly disorienting.

                Amazing Spider-Man #51 is another excellent chapter. Each time I think the tension has peaked, it gets higher still. There is a strange detour, but the story otherwise nails the feelings and beats that Spencer is going for. Gleason and Delgado give this book a lot of reread value with awesome action, acting, and shading.

Our Score:


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