Marvel Adventures Spider-Man #17


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Marvel Adventures Spider-Man #17


  • Words: Peter David
  • Art: Mike Norton
  • Inks: Norman Lee
  • Colors: Guru eFX
  • Story Title: Hair of the Dog That Bit Ya
  • Publisher: Marvel Comics
  • Price: $2.99
  • Release Date: Jul 6, 2006

Are you ready for Flash Thompson, Werewolf by Night? No? Well, your kids might be.

The Marvel Adventures line of comics is directed at a younger audience than most. With that in mind, Peter David, Mike Norton, and company pay homage to a classic style of storytelling that any child with an imagination would enjoy reading. Having dealt with the slings and arrows of being a high school nerd, mostly slings and arrows in the form of Flash Thompson’s various torments, Peter Parker wonders if he isn’t doing his all to save the bully from a fate worse than death. You see, Flash is bitten by a werewolf and Spider-Man has to save him before the sunrise or the poor boy is doomed. But Flash is a mean, self-centered bully. Will Spider-Man save him? Does he even want to?

Peter David proves his virtuosity with this comic. Over in X-Factor, he keeps a dark, mysterious tone and complicates the stories as well as the character’s lives with intrigue and moral questions, and it is always a fascinating read. Here, he keeps the stories self-contained, gives clear lessons in morality, and shows that he can write just as well for children as he can for a more mature audience. His Spider-Man is a young high school student, new to his powers, and constantly battling questions of right and wrong. In this issue, David has Spider-Man question his own integrity, teaching his readers an important lesson about right and wrong without becoming too preachy. He also keeps the jokes coming and the action high, surely grasping the attention of all youthful readers.

Mike Norton’s pencils on this issue are brilliant and hint at a more innocent time in comics. They are reminiscent of an older, almost Kirby or Romita Senior-esque style with a slight touch of the manga kids seem to be fond of these days. The artwork is not too detailed, and may even be considered simple, but children are not looking for extravagance or different takes on old favorites. They are looking for drawings they can understand and images they are used to. Not only are Norton’s pencils and Norman Lee’s inks working well together to make an intelligent children’s comic, but Guru eFX makes the colors pop so that you don’t want to put it down.

If you are fond of Ultimate Spider-Man and think your ten-year-old might be if it weren’t for all the death, serious issues, and cussing, Marvel Adventures Spider-Man might be the comic you’re looking for.

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