Kevin Smith. Yes, it’s no secret that I am a pretty big fan of the guy. I’ve watched all of his films countless times. I’ve read books and magazine articles as well as follow him on Twitter. However, I’ve always been curious about his comic career and after reading the odd graphic novel, I have decided to give him a shot.
Spider-Man has always been primarily known as a superhero the whole family can enjoy. He’s been around for decades, been the subject of some of the biggest grossing movies of all time and has sold millions and millions of dollars in merchandise. The same can be said about Batman. Batman started off as a “goody two shoes” and had a popular TV show on during the 1960s that depicted the caped crusader as a kid friendly superhero with colorful villains and zany story lines. Enter the 1980s, Frank Miller resurrects The Dark Knight and we get a darker more violent Batman, something that has not exactly been tried with Spider-Man.
While this is not your Miller-esque darkness, it’s a tad more grey than the average Spider-Man story. Spider-Man still uses his sense of humor for his off-beat wise cracking remarks while beating up baddies, but his enemies this time around are not flying around in colorful suits and robbing banks (or stealing MJ and placing her on a high structure). No, Spidey is dealing with street thugs and heroin dealers. Accomplices in the form of The Black Cat and Daredevil stand by Spider-Man’s side as they try to take down one of the most powerful drug pushers in New York.
Smith accomplishes what he set out to do, make an entertaining Spider-Man arc and still show his unique style and trademark wit. In all honesty, this is the first Spider-Man graphic novel I’ve managed to take in, so I have very little to compare it to in terms of holding up to the work of others. However, I’ve got more than a few cartoons and movies to back me up in saying it’s pretty good. I’d like to see him give it another shot and see if lightning can strike twice.