Monday, November 25, 2013

Comics Review: Superior Spider-Man #21

Written by: Dan Slott
Art by: Giuseppe Camuncoli

We last left Otto Parker on the verge of some $#!% going down. His thesis for his doctorate was accused of being stolen (from himself nonetheless) and Otto's old love, Angelina Brancale, has woken up from a coma from the news that Spider-Man killed her husband. She then fired up Otto's old virtual reality machine to bring back the super strong, super pissed, super PMS (can I say that?) Stunner! Needless to say, she's going for "Peter's" head.

This story starts off at the Daily Bugle, they've a new/old employee back, a Ms. Betty Brant! The welcoming is cut short though, as always in comic books, when Stunner breaks through a wall asking for Spider-Man. I guess using the door and asking the receptionist was just too...mainstream for her. Since the Bugle isn't on the best terms with Spidey, Robbie's not lying when he says he doesn't know. But, there's an easy way to find him, after all, she's a villain. All she has to do is commit a crime in front of one of his Spider-Bots and sure enough he'll come swinging in to see what's up. Meanwhile over at ESU, Otto is fuming from what just happened. Professor Lamaze has just accused Parker of stealing his entire thesis from Otto Octavius! (Which isn't actually COMPLETELY true......what? Otto never published his ideas!) Anywho, Otto actually entertains some violent, villain like ideas. Robot Decoy of Lamaze to retract the statement, intimidation with piranhas, etc etc etc. the funniest part about all this is, Anna Maria thinks he's just venting and doesn't actually mean any of this. Little does she know, he already sped off and was half way to his lab when he gets a call from Spider-Island. They got video of Stunner making a scene by the Bugle and decided to ask if they should send some Spider-Mechs. Otto quickly shoots that idea down, he's off to handle that personally. He shows up just in time to be blamed for the death of Otto Octavius by Otto's ex wife!

Carlie Cooper, New York police officer and ex girlfriend of Peter Parker. She's at "his" grave site with some flowers. Laying them at a grave that reads Otto Octavius. She's apologizing for not believing him hen he tried telling her the truth (see ASM700). Before she can leave, the grave gives out from under her and it turns out there's no body. But before she can crawl out and leave, a green hand covers her mouth. Back at the Bugle, Stunner ain't having no more words out of Spider-Man. She doesn't want to hear any explanations, little does she know a simple explanation would solve everything. He webs her up in his new formulated webbing so it can withstand her, and he calls out to his Spider-Bots to give him the coordinates for the signal of where Stunner is coming from. He darts off to the campus of ESU just to keep himself busy while the signal arrives. He's got some Lamaze's to deal with.

Unfortunately for Spider-Man, he's not the only one who's got some tricks up his sleeve. Angelina hits a button and I guess Stunner thins herself right through the webbing. Spidey gets there just in time to catch his girlfriend talking to Professor Lamaze. She's trying to convince him that "Peter" never NEEDED to steal information from Otto. Lamaze has seen how smart Peter is and has to understand this. Otto has a touching moment realizing Anna Maria understands him like no one else does, but before he can get more emotional his Spider-Sense goes off and a bus comes flying at his head. Oh comic book, how I love your logic. A ton of webbing goes into stopping the bus, but it can't hold out for long. Trapped under are Professor Lamaze and Anna Maria! Stunner tosses a garbage container at Spider-Man but luckily he's got those mechanical arms in his pack. Well this only pisses Stunner off more, not only do you kill her husband, but you take his greatest idea?! She rips the arms right off his back. Stunner reaches Spider-Man and starts wailing on him, all hole he's holding the bus over Anna Maria. He even yells for her to get out, telling her he can't hold onto the bus much longer.The webs are slipping and before Stunner can land the final blow, Spider-Man's Spider-Bots are able to find where the signal was coming from and disconnect Stunner. A giant collective WHEW sweeps over fans and fictional ESU students alike. After the incident, Anna Maria asks Spidey why he's being so direct with her, calling her by her first and last time a couple times while she was under that bus. It takes some quick thinking to come up with this one, but Otto reminds her that he and Peter are close friends, and Peter talks very highly of her. So he's grown to remember her name. Whew. Glad to have avoided that one. Spider-Man's conversation with Anna Maria is cut short though, he's got a Stunner to finish dealing with.

While Angelina was asleep, Spidey showed up and seemed to take away all her technology. She wakes up and starts crying as she notices all her stuff is gone, and the shock keeps getting added on when she looks up to find her old husband, Otto Octavius, standing right at the door. A quick pan over to Spider-Island as we see Spider-Man has stolen all the tech and is using it himself to create his own illusions, the first being a physical representation of his previous, younger body, the old Doctor Octopus! But wait! Theeeere's more!!! The shenanigans ain't over yet! This new, virtual Doc Ock makes a quick pit stop at a old friends apartment. That apartment belongs to a Dr. Donald Lamaze, and apparently, they need to have a talk. The next morning, Dr. Lamaze speaks to the board of ESU and retracts his entire previous accusation of Peter Parker's plagiarized thesis. And what kind of comic book would this be without a bit of insanity? Apparently, the virtual Otto told Dr. Lamaze that Peter wasn't only a smart kid, but a child prodigy AND Otto's assistant who helps come up with all of Otto's great ideas. Seems like things may be getting better for Peter Ock after all.

In the Goblin Underground, Menace has a living package for the Green Goblin. Her sister, Carlie Cooper. And with her are some of Carlie's personal belongings. One of them being a Journal where she keeps...uh oh...all her secret thoughts and her recent findings about Peter Parker and Otto Octavius. It looks like the Goblin might now know a lot more than most others did just a couple minutes ago. Does this mean the Goblin knows that Spider-Man, his greatest enemy is actually one of his greatest allies on the inside. What gears could be turning inside the Goblin's head? And, this is because I'm so damn evil, how easy is it going to be for the Goblin to turn Spider-Man back to his old Otto Octavius villain ways? It'll take some time, as the next story arc is a big deal in the Venom universe, but soon enough we'll have a huge Goblin arc on the way, and I'm beyond stoked to see my favorite super hero and one of my favorite villains go at it again! Until next week!

-Matt Milanes

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