When writer Nick Spencer‘s run on Spider-Man began, it was an enjoyable and fun start that felt pretty welcoming to new readers. An impressive amount of issues later, his run is beginning to wrap up and part of that is Sinister War bringing together various groups of villains for something… along with Mephisto… and Dr. Stange. Sinister War #1 isn’t so much an entry into the event and Spencer’s end-run but the continuation of years of continuity that’s almost impenetrable to new readers.
For those that don’t know the general story, there’s multiple groups of “(fill in word) Six” villains. They all seem to not get along. They either want to fight each other or are pissed about a movie made. For those that didn’t read the Mary Jane miniseries, MJ has made a film and the director is a “reformed” Mysterio. Yeah… Then there’s Mephisto doing his thing which seems like a reference to that so loved “One More Day” storyline. I’m not quite sure. There’s so much packed into the issue that not a lot is explained and there’s just a lot of hints. Then there’s the whole Kindred thing… It’s a jumbled mess.
When events kick off with a miniseries first issue like this, there’s an opportunity to ease new readers in as well as move the story along. A successful issue does exactly that. Instead, this issue just continues everything Spencer has been doing as if it’s just another issue of Amazing Spider-Man. If you’re not caught up, tough luck. It’s the exact opposite of what a solid “event” debut should be and by the end of the issue, I was turned off and resigned to wait for the new creative team to take over in a few months.
Mark Bagley‘s art is… decent. There’s a lot packed into the issue and it’s cool to see Bagley’s take on each of the characters but none of it really pops. I know folks love Bagley’s work on Spider-Man but it’s never been a style that has really hooked me. For me, it’s good, not great. Bagle is joined by Andrew Hennessy, John Dell, and Andy Owens in inks, color by Brian Reber, and lettering by Joe Caramagna. The art is really good at times and at others falls a little flat. It doesn’t help the story is choppy, the art doesn’t pick up the slack making a smooth narrative.
Sinister War #1 had me excited going into the comic. The idea of rival villain groups battling it out sounds like it could be fun and entertaining. But, the story is more a continuation of what’s been going on in Amazing Spider-Man. It’s not a jumping-on-point, just a spin-off to pack everything in and check off storylines. It’s definitely a pass for those who haven’t been reading the series already.
Story: Nick Spencer Art: Mark Bagley
Ink: Andrew Hennessy, John Dell, Andy Owens Color: Brian Reber Letterer: Joe Caramagna
Story: 5.0 Art: 7.0 Overall: 5.0 Recommendation: Pass
Marvel provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review
Purchase: comiXology – Amazon – Kindle – Zeus Comics – TFAW