If you’ve read my review of Batman: The Long Halloween, then you know it’s no secret that I absolutely adore Jeph Loeb and Tim Sale. In my eyes, they’ve never put out a less than stellar book and the creative team are some of the best in the industry.
Teaming up once more they continue their colour signature series with Spider-Man at the helm.
Throughout this review, I will be dissecting Spider-Man: Blue from beginning to end to let you know whether it’s worth picking up. There will be heavy spoilers so it may be worth skipping to the score and coming back to this review at a later date if you want to remain unspoiled.
With that out the way, let’s dive into Spider-Man: Blue!
‘The Story Of How We Fell In Love’
Told mainly in flashback, Spider-Man: Blue recants the story of how Peter Parker and Gwen Stacy fell in love. Tonally tragic due to the circumstances that caused Stacy’s demise, the book is somber throughout and this dower tone instantly grabbed me and reminded me of all the loved ones I’d lost. It’s completely relatable even if the events themselves are supernatural and Loeb should be applauded for his ability to make the extraordinary seem ordinary.
After seemingly defeating The Green Goblin once and for all in the book’s opener, Parker meets Stacy at a hospital when visiting the injured Norman Osborne. Their first date is a blast and the feeling of two star-crossed lovers leaps off the pages reminding me of what it was like to be young without a care in the world.
Told simply, it’s exhilarating to see someone at the height of happiness and whilst we know deep down that this can’t last for the young web-head it’s still a joy to read which instantly elevates the book above most from the introduction alone.
A Day In The Life Of…
What the book does best is that it chronicles Peter trying to balance both aspects of his life. On one hand, he struggles with money and his love life with Gwen and on the other, he struggles with the criminal onslaught that New York is known for. It’s a fascinating insight to what it must be like to take the law into your own hands and also allows the book to be perfectly paced in terms of bouncing between huge action set pieces and the more mundane. Both aspects compliment one another perfectly and I loved watching Peter whizzing about the city on a motorbike on one page and battling the Rhino on the next.
What the story excels in is painting out the complicated life of Peter Parker and it’s something that keeps the plot moving at city swinging speed.
‘You just hit the jackpot’
Life doesn’t get any simpler when Mary Jane Watson arrives on the scene and she creates a love square between herself, Peter, Gwen and Harry Osborne. In hindsight, we know how this will turn out of Loeb and Sale still do an expert job in keeping the rote love story fresh and invigorating.
One of the most interesting character arcs is that of Flash Thompson’s. Originally a school bully, throughout the book we see him turn into an upstanding citizen due to the inspiration of Spider-Man. It showcases how the Web Heads drive for good often outshines all of the negative press around him and this obviously reflects into Peter’s personal life as well.
Gwen and MJ slowly become obsessed over the character and it’s interesting watching the two battle back and forth for his affection.
The story all comes to a head with Kraven The Hunter invading a party that Peter and Harry Osborne are throwing and whilst it feels slightly underwhelming the true story was never in the action. The drama in the final chapter and sentiment that Peter uses when thinking about Gwen and all the good times that he had with her far override the disappointing villain reveal. It may bring a tear to your eye reading Peter’s final thought on their romance but that speaks volumes to just how deeply Spider-Man Blue has the potential to affect those who pick it up.
Spider-Man: Blue continues the consistency that Loeb and Sale are known for and is a standout Spidey story that beautifully encapsulates the characters rich history and redrafts it in a New and exciting way.
This book is a classic and should be required reading for all fans of the Web Head.
Brilliant from beginning to end it gets a…