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Sunday, February 1, 2009

Whatever You Want: Something Blue

Spider-man: Blue

By: Jeph Loeb and Tim Sale

Some of the best books I have read while trying to catch up on comics have been the ones where it shows just how human my favorite super heroes can be. Spider-man: Blue is just one of those stories. Not only is it a book by a great creative team, but it shows the depth of Peter Parker's emotions for Gwen Stacy.

It starts on Valentine's Day. Most of the book is edited in voice over, which changes the tone of the book from a typical Spider-Man book to Peter fondly recalling the events that led to him and Gwen Stacy falling in love, or as he says how they "almost didn't fall in love." Most of this story bounces between him fighting a bunch of his old villains: Green Goblin, Rhino, the Lizard, the Vulture, and, last but not least, Kraven and the sweet awkwardness of Peter Parker's regular life. He's dealing with moving out of Aunt May's house, getting a motorcycle, and becoming the object of affection for both Mary Jane and Gwen. And that's where things get sticky. He's still the same bookworm that he always has been, but he has not one, but two hot girls fighting for his affection. One of my favorite scenes in the book is where he is in bed with a cold (lying on a rooftop in the middle of a New York snowstorm isn't good for any one's health). Mary Jane comes in with her homemade soup and is feeding it to him when Gwen comes in with Huck Finn, a book Uncle Ben used to read to him as a child. The tension in the air is so thick you could cut it with a knife, and, before he can think of anything to dispel it, Peter has to make like he needs rest (which he does) to get rid of the girls so he can go after the Vulture again.

I'm rapidly becoming a big Spider-Man fan, or at least a big Ultimate Spider-Man and single story fan. He never takes himself too seriously which I find to be endearing. I don't know if it's just the way Jeph Loeb and Tim Sale work together to tell a wonderful story or what it is about this book, but it tugs at even the hardest heart. Even going into the book knowing that Gwen Stacy is no longer around, by the time you get to the end, there are tears in your eyes. Even if you don't like Spider-man all that much, the last three pages of the book tie everything together in one heart string tugging move. I think that my comic knowledge would be lessened had I never read this book; of course, I can say that about a lot of books (it's almost like Scott saying that he liked a book). I'm really glad that Marvel is reprinting this and Daredevil: Yellow as hard covers. I hope they do the same for Hulk: Gray and finally get Captain America: White out so I can read it.

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