Review: Amazing Spider-Man #4 – Silky Smooth
The Amazing Spider-Man Original Sin tie-in starts this issue. Where most of these tie-ins have focused on personal retcons to the origin stories of their character, the story we get here makes an origin retcon that introduces an entirely new character to the fold of the Amazing Spider-Man narrative. Silk is officially off to a start in the Marvel universe.
As we found out in the first issue of this new volume of Amazing Spider-Man, there has been a girl who was also bitten on the day Spider-Man received his powers. We’re given an insight in Amazing Spider-Man #4 as to why she has been out of the picture over the many years of Spider-Man’s existence. Holding back on spoilers, it turns out that Ezekiel has been holding her captive and as the issue reveals, all for a seemingly very good reason.
The issue starts off with Peter in Parker Industries working on new technologies as part of his ongoing effort to help using Doc Ock’s legacy (a very Peter thing to do). That’s when he’s called out to help the Avengers deal with The Orb (as seen in Original Sin). The bomb goes off and the rest picks up from there.
Silk is fascinating character. She compliments Spider-Man in several ways. Where Spider-Man is the physically stronger of the two, Silk has him beat in speed and reflexes. She also has the added ability to shoot webs naturally from her fingertips; an ability with a lot of potential that she puts to very cool use in the issue. Her costume is pretty awesome.
Silk is a bit two dimensional this early on but we’ve hardly had time to get to know her. Silk feels to me like the X-23 to Spider-Man’s Wolverine. She’s everything he is but with a sharp edge (literally in the case of her webbing, which is barbed!). It’s a great first impression and the issue’s cliff-hanger promises to shake up Spider-Man’s ongoing events for the foreseeable future. It’s a steamy one that fans won’t want to miss.
While the issue spends a good amount of time playing with Silk, it finds just enough space to develop the Black Cat subplot moving against Spider-Man. It’s not much, but enough to keep that going while the attention is focused on the Original Sin events.
Edgar Delgado’s colours pop from the page; they give a very comic feel to the book. The art by Humberto Ramos does very much of the same, but a strong feel for the moment lets the art express strong emotions in the facial expressions of the characters.
Where all of the Original Sin tie-ins for the most part have been fun, a lot of them feel like they can be carried or dropped after the event is out of the way, few of them really feeling like essential reading. The events started by Dan Slott in Amazing Spider-Man #4 however cannot be painted with that same brush. There’s no great drama to be had here, but it’s a fun issue with a quick pace, and one that will likely worth something down the line when Silk inevitably becomes a permanent Marvel character in her own right. Whether that’s as a hero, a villain, a sidekick, a lover, or a hater, only time will tell. This is a strong debut though and I look forward to getting to know her in the issues to come.