Friday, July 19, 2013

Spider-Man: Blue - The Review

Spider-Man: Blue by Jeph Loeb

I want to start by saying, I love Jeph Loeb. He might find that a little creepy, but it's true. I've read many of his books, watched TV shows that he helped produce, and in general have consumed anything and everything creative that he's done since before I knew he existed. For goodness sake the guy wrote Teen Wolf! No, not that show on MTV, but the original one starring Michael J. Fox. I seriously must have watched that movie a thousand times as a kid and never had a clue. He's been a part of my life since I can remember and I want to offer him the sincerest of thank you's. It has been a pleasure thus far Mr. Loeb. I love you, you're work, and can only advise you to keep on doin' what you're doin'.

Now that I've finished worshiping the ground this author walks on, let's get on to the story. It's fantastic. In fact, I don't have a negative thing to say about it. The only negative thing I have to say is  the story itself is a bit negative. But that's a positive. Wait a minute...let me start over. This story is a bit sad, but that's a good thing. It deals with a part of Peter Parker's life that is particularly grim, and a part of his life that many casual Spider-Man fans might not even be aware of. It's about Gwen Stacy.

For those of you who don't know who Gwen Stacy is, just know that she is a long lost girlfriend of Peter Parker's. Why is she long lost you say? Well in short, it's because she's dead. I suppose that's a harsh way to put it, but it's not so much her death that's important, but rather the circumstances surrounding her demise. For anyone curious, I'd recommend reading "The Death of the Stacys". It was written in 1973 and is largely recognized as the end of the 'silver age' in comics. Easily ahead of its time, and very dark in tone. Spider-Man: Blue takes the essence of that story and brings a depth to it that would be hard to obtain otherwise. Jeph Loeb knows his history and it shows. By condensing the early events of Peter Parker's life, we get an inside look at just how important Gwen Stacy was in Spider-Man history, and comic book history in general.

Did I mention the artwork? It is almost as beautiful as the story itself. Always precise and never distracting, the pictures portray exactly what you need to see and have a uniqueness all their own. Parts of this book are colorized for the story and take on a particular shade of, you guessed it, blue! It's kind of a double meaning I suppose. Whether that's intentional, I can't be sure, but it's fitting none the less. If i had to pick a color to represent depression, I'd probably choose blue as well, so I can't fault them on the title. This is a sad story, but a good one. It's rich with detail, and one of the best representations of the franchise I've seen. A must read for any Spider-Man fan, and a solid pick for the casual reader too.

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