Here is a review I did of Volume 4 of the Essential Spider-Man.  I liked it and I gave it 4 stars on Amazon.  As always this was first published by myself on Amazon and cross-posted here and to my Facebook page.  Enjoy!

So this is the next volume of the Amazing Spider-Man, it’s significantly better than the previous volume, and it brings Peter Parker and his crew into the 70’s, sounds like fun!

***SPOILERS*** ***SPOILERS*** ***SPOILERS***

So in this volume we get several of Spidey’s rogue’s gallery showing up again to battle New York’s beloved wall-crawler and he is able to thrash each and every one of them! The Lizard, The Chameleon, The Kingpin, The Prowler, and the Shocker all step up and try to throw down, but our web-slingin’ wonder knocks them all for a loop!

But on the flip side, we have a trio of guest stars in this book who show up to give Spidey a hand! Quicksilver, The Human Torch, and The Black Widow all grace these pages and mix it up with Spidey but also help him to fight crime as well!

Peter uses his fists as well as his brains to fight off his opponents, and he even manages to convince one of the villains, “The Prowler,” to give up a life of crime and go straight. This was a great change of pace from the usual standard of him just beating up criminals and having them slink off to lick their wounds and return later. It’s the true sign of a hero when someone can see a person doing something evil and talk them out of it instead of just beating them to a pulp or condemning them for life.

The stories are very interesting and they keep the reader interested! The ongoing arch with the ancient tablet was very engaging and it had me eager to find out what this tablet did and why everyone wanted it so bad. Also the two issue story arc of the Prowler was cool as well!

One of my complaints is about Robbie Robertson’s son, Randolph. He is just really annoying to read about when he’s talking about “Whitey” and “Living in the white man’s world,” or “the white man’s rules.” I know that when this was published that African Americans were treated very poorly in parts of America and we had the Civil Rights Movement going on. I get it, I really do. But I don’t read Spider-Man to hear about political things, I read it for escapism so I can relax for a bit after a hard day at work or to wind down before bed. If I wanted to hear about political issues I’d watch CNN, or MSNBC or (God forbid), Fox News.

Another complaint is Gwen Stacy. Seriously, what does Peter Parker see in her!?! She’s just annoying and she cries at the drop of a hat. I’m sure that if she was at the supermarket and one of the employees told her they were out of her favorite shampoo she’d probably drop to her knees and start sobbing in the middle of the aisle. Plus she never listens to Peter’s explanations of where he was, or why he can’t meet her for a date.

What’s also strange is that we are shown that Mary Jane cut her hair short so it’s all stylish, but we don’t see her again for like 10 issues and then her hair is back to it’s normal length. So why did they even bother showing her with it short?

The book ends with the return of one my favorite Spider-Man villains of all time, DOC OCK! He is back and is ready to put the hurt on the web-slinger!

***END SPOILERS*** ***END SPOILERS*** ***END SPOILERS***

Even with the minor complaints I had about this graphic novel, the stories were very good, the artwork was pretty good for the time and it kept me entertained, plus the price was very reasonable. The cliffhanger ending was amazing and now I am eagerly awaiting the arrival of the next volume in the series! I am so glad I picked this one up!

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