Amazing Fantasy #17
Marvel Comics (January, 1996)
WRITER: Kurt Busiek
PAINTERS: Paul Lee, Terese Neilsen, Alexi Taylor, Greg Loudon, & Ken Meyer Jr.
LETTERING/PUBLICATION DESIGN: Richard Starkings & Comicraft
EDITOR: Sarra Mossoff
Peter has been a busy Spider-Man, rescuing people and stopping crimes. However, Flash has taken away all of his old friends and he feels very much alone. Then he meets Joey Pulaski, a girl who gained superpowers after testing involving something missing in her DNA resulted in some kind of energy power that allows her to fly and levitate heavy objects. Spider-Man and Joey become friends, until Spidey learns she’s responsible for the accidents plaguing a new building construction, a construction (unknown to our hero) is wanted by one of his future greatest enemies, Wilson Fisk, the future Kingpin of crime! Spidey stops her, losing a friend and being alone again. Meanwhile, Spidey’s old manager gets a costumed visitor.
What they got right: You real feel sorry for Peter here. While he brings some of it onto himself, I have to applaud him for not becoming something he isn’t just to get back with his friends, especially when it means being around someone like Flash Thompson, who delights in the kid’s misery. It’s too bad this is Joey’s only appearance, as I imagine a return would make an interesting dilemma for the now-adult Peter, but considering what’s been happening over there lately, she’s better off. Also, Spidey’s first dealing with the pre-Kingpin.
What they got wrong: Look, you want to use paint (or what looks like paint) for your coloring, I don’t mind. One of the other Art Soundoff participants uses watercolor in her work and it looks amazing. But for Peter Parker’s sake would you please add some lineart? It’s like the expressions are half as good as they could be, which is better than most painted style art but it still just looks off to my eyes.
Recommendation: If you don’t get the rest of the miniseries I recommend this one. It’s probably one of my favorite Spider-tales.