Recommendation: Marvel’s History of Spider-Man

Marvel recently started covering the history of Spider-Man. I’ve been following along as they do this series with various characters. Most recently, they covered the Hulk and Black Panther. It’s a good look at where these characters started and where various writers and artists took them throughout their history. With Spider-Man: Homecoming on the horizon, now is a great time to dive into some Spider-Man comics and learn more about the character. The easiest way to read the comics they go through is likely Marvel Unlimited. It gives you access to thousands of comics and with Spider-Man having such a long history, you won’t be lacking for things to read.

While I’ve mainly just kept track of these character histories and haven’t actually read along as the posts come out, that might change with this one. Only two installments have been released and Marvel doesn’t give a schedule for when the posts come out. However, this is plenty to start with and I plan to do so soon.

Review: Batman #22

Batman #22

Batman #22 continues “The Button” storyline with part three. This issue is full of emotion for Batman, which isn’t something we necessarily get with him. The feelings are always there; he just suppresses them instead of showing them. When he sees his father and vice versa, it’s a stunning moment. That moment alone is sufficient to make this a great crossover event. Thomas’ sincerity before Bruce leaves just adds to that, too. Both men being Batman gives them each a unique perspective on the other’s life.

The Flash plays more of a background role in the majority of this episode. Bruce gets to fight side by side with his father while Barry fixes the treadmill. However, this is all happening because of him in a sense. He created Flashpoint and it’s nice to see DC revisit that here. Johns’ Flashpoint took place in 2011 and once Barry fixed it then, it didn’t appear that we’d be seeing it again in this capacity.

Bruce desperately wants his father to go back with them, but he refuses. Barry tries to convince him, too, to no avail. In the time stream, they run into Eobard Thawne with the button. Now I won’t pretend to wholly understand the way The Flash and Batman can time travel with Barry running and Bruce merely hanging on to the treadmill. However, without that ability, this story would not be near as interesting as it is.

Williamson takes over the scriptwriting for this crossover, but King at least helps with the story. I think they make for a good team on this issue and the art by Jason Fabok with colors from Brad Anderson compliment the writing well. This is a great looking issue and it’s because of both the writing and the art together. I really don’t think I could ask for a more enjoyable crossover between The Flash and Batman.

Review: The Flash #21

The Flash #21 brings us part two of “The Button.” Page one shows a man named Mr. Thunder yelling at the lightning. He doesn’t show up again in this issue, but it makes you wonder what his importance to the story is. From there, we see a lot more of the Batman and Flash team up. Bruce is badly beaten, but even that doesn’t sideline him. By the end of the issue, he and Barry end up time traveling together and they end up back in the Flashpoint timeline where Thomas Wayne is Batman.

Joshua Williamson gets a little wordy on some pages, but it’s worth it. The narration from Barry at the beginning isn’t wholly crucial to the story, but it adds more emotion to the current situation. Williamson also writes some great moments between Bruce and Barry. Bruce is unwilling to let Barry time travel on his own despite how injured he is. This moment and the earlier moment where Bruce is in bed and Barry is updating him really show what kind of friendship they have. Despite Barry having powers, these two have a lot in common.

The art and colors deserve a mention here, too. Hi-Fi’s coloring is outstanding as always and the art from Howard Porter is solid. If you look at the panel below, Porter uses an interesting way to draw Barry speeding off. I don’t know if I’ve seen anything quite like it. In that moment, it looks as if Barry is leaving a part of his body behind because he moves so fast. More often than not, I feel like we just see a blur.

The Flash #21 panel

This second issue of the crossover continues to bring a great story to life. They’re taking their time with solving the button mystery. As of right now, there are a few hints as to what’s going on, which Barry keeps to himself. However, there’s still a lot that’s unknown and that’s what keeps the story interesting. This story has been nothing but enjoyable for me so far. The story continues in Batman #22, which is out tomorrow.