Marvel Comics 2017
Written by Peter David
Penciled by Mark Bagley
Inked by John Dell
Coloured by Jason Keith
Lettered by VC’s Joe Caramagna
After a misguided turn as a supervillain, Ben is looking to get back on his feet. But things haven’t been easy for him. With no resources, he went to Las Vegas and asked for help from the mother of one of his NEW U patients, Cassandra Mercury, as singer and casino magnate. She was hardly happy to see him…
I hate to say this but it’s the nature of the beast when it comes to Marvel and that’s that I don’t feel like A. this series is going to last and B. I want Kaine to come out of it with a series of his own. I say that because well let’s face it in this day and age with everything Marvel spouts in public if this makes it past six issues i’ll be shocked. Doesn’t matter that Peter David is writing it, which is a strong reason I am, or his success at the company it’s about bottom line and it’s never given a chance to see what it could be.
Now i was pretty critical of the first issue of this, I for one am tired of the revolving door deaths that are way too prevalent in comics. Besides Kaine is my Scarlet Spider and I was kind of sad that a new Clone Saga, tres original (NOT), brought him back to reclaim the name. Though I will admit I might have been a tad hastey. With issue two in the books and the characterisation, plot development and characters involved I think i’m in for the long haul. Ben is an opportunist and that he’s an aspect of Peter and Kaine adds a dimension to this I wasn’t expecting. Plus Kaine is after Ben so there’s that bonus as well.
Peter is fleshing these characters out and giving them their own unique personalities, motivations and desires. I like it actually and the fact that Ben having Peter’s memories and his scientific knowledge well maybe he can actually do good if he applied himself, and god knows he needs to do something about Cass’s daughter if he hopes this new life he’s seeking will get off the ground floor.
Mark and company do some solid interior work here. I’ve always been a fan of Mark’s and his eye for storytelling, utilising page layouts through their angles, perspective and the way he uses backgrounds or doesn’t depending on what is going on in the panel. He’s an accomplished and riveting storyteller and I enjoy seeing him bring these characters to life even if they’ve got that disease that seems to be eating away their faces.
Well this is more interesting than I was initially prepared for. I wanted to hate it because it’s Ben but I can’t. Peter’s writing and the way he can craft a tale, see structure a story, simply doesn’t allow for those feelings. Instead I now hope that this series stays far away from the reality of the Marvel Universe, Peter Parker and that mishegas that is Secret Empire and instead just continue on telling this fascinating and little more than slightly odd story.