Tag Archives: miles morales

Preview: Miles Morales: Spider-Man #3

Miles Morales: Spider-Man #3

(W) Saladin Ahmed (A) Javi Garron (CA) Marco D’Alfonso
Rated T+
In Shops: Feb 20, 2019
SRP: $3.99

• CAPTAIN AMERICA guest-stars!
• Miles and Cap try to get to the bottom of the mystery of the missing kids, but it’s not quite that simple.
• A new villain has our heroes’ number, and you won’t believe how they get out of this jam!

Miles Morales: Spider-Man #3

Review: Miles Morales: Spider-Man #2

Miles is getting closer to solving the mystery of the thievery ring plaguing Brooklyn, but the Rhino has complicated matters quite a lot. Rhino doesn’t usually have minions preferring to charge alone. What’s behind this change of methodology? Plus, meet a new antagonist who may just become Miles’ most dangerous foe!

Okay, permit me to give you a bit of context regarding where my head was at when opening this comic. I’d not had the best of days. To put it mildly (professionally – thankfully all my loved ones are okay). It was the kind of day where the absolute last thing I wanted to do was come home and write about comics. The last thing. Then I read this comic, and for ten minutes I lost myself; because of Miles Morales, I forgot what was bothering me. Because of the Rhino, my shoulders felt a lot lighter.

And suddenly, I wanted to write about comics. Specifically, Miles Morales: Spider-Man #2. Now I understand that not everybody will be in the same place as me when reading this comic, and I know that technically I should remain objective and logically look at the merits of this book, but that’s not going to happen. Whenever one reads a book or comic, listens to music or watches a movie then then one will have, on some scale, an emotional reaction. And I had one with this comic; I had fun while reading it. For the fifteen minutes it took me to read this, I had forgotten my troubles and I didn’t care about tomorrow. I was happy and lost within the pages of a comic book.

At this point, you’re probably wondering when I’ll start talking about the book itself. I appreciate your patience, dear reader, and will let you know that while the first issue was fun, this was amazing. Sensational, even. The first issue found Spider-Man battling the Rhino over a misunderstanding (and without giving too much away, it’s a pretty hilarious issue), but this issue took everything that worked and runs with it. Saladin Ahmed has such a wonderful grasp of the characters within this book that each page’s dialogue a vibrantly natural feeling. The pacing is spot on; relentless, exhausting. A day in the life of Miles Morales is not for the faint of heart. Although it makes an awesome comic.

But as good as the writing is, Javier Garron and David Curiel match every beat. Garron’s layouts, choreography and kinetic figures carry remarkable weight on the page (especially Rhino). Curiel adds the cherry on top of a pretty fantastic pie with his colouring. Artistically the book is solid. Very, very solid.

Objectively, this may not be the best Spider-Man comic you’ll ever read, but it was exactly the comic I needed to read today. It doesn’t hurt that it’s also very good, but the impact for me was immeasurable. Sometimes the right comic (or song or whatever) can lift you, and Miles Morales: Spider-Man #2 has done that for me. So thank you, Saladin Ahmed. Thank you Javier Garron. Thank you David Curiel. Thank you for being the bright spot in a day that was, up until the opening of this comic, pretty shitty.

Story: Saladin Ahmed Art: Javier Garron Colours: David Curiel
Story: 9.0 Art: 9.0 Overall: 9.0 Recommendation: Buy

Marvel provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Spider-Man Into the Spider-Verse with Osvaldo Oyola & Felicia Perez. Listen to the Podcast on Demand!

Miles Morales’ feature film debut is breaking boundaries and winning accolades. Join us for a conversation about:

  • This most comic book of all comic book movies
  • “It’s like Obama’s 8 years”
  • The superpower of invisibility vs hypervisibility
  • Miles’ charter school (waiting for Spider-Man not Waiting for Superman)
  • Why did we wait so long for a brown Spider-Man?
  • “Black Panther meets The Power-Puff Girls”

Osvaldo Oyola teaches writing at New York University and serves on the executive board for the International Comics Art Forum. His blog, The Middle Spaces publishes work on comics, music and culture. You can also find images from and comments on his growing collection of both current and back issues of comics on his tumblr, Notes from Comics Collecting. He lives in Brooklyn, NY.

Felicia Perez is the Innovation Director at the Center for Story-based Strategy. She’s worked at the United Workers Congress, ACLU of Southern California & was a high school social studies for 12 years in the Los Angeles Unified School District where she was also an active union leader. She reviews films at Lucha’s Flix Picks

Review: Miles Morales Spider-Man #1

In Miles Morales: Spider-Man #1, the torch is passed nicely to writer Saladin Ahmed aka the first person not named Brian Michael Bendis to pen the solo adventures of Miles Morales, the Afro-Latino teenager who is also bit by a genetically modified spider and survives the wreckage of the Ultimate Universe to become Spider-Man in the main Marvel Universe. In couple pages with big panels from artists Javier Garron and David Curiel, Ahmed summarizes the recent adventures of Miles because he knows this might be someone’s first comic book. It’s an old school trick that along with the narration allows the book to breathe between frenetic action sequences, nascent conspiracy plotlines, and romantic subplots.

Miles Morales Spider-Man #1 truly is a great hybrid of old school and modern comic book storytelling techniques even if Garron’s art isn’t terrible, but nothing to write home about and Curiel’s color palette is just drab and “there” for lack of a better word. Nothing really pops except the black in Miles’ costumes and some energy weapons, and color is used for representation, like skin tones, apartment buildings, and occasionally shadow.

Garron’s art doesn’t detract from Ahmed’s writing, and he gets some solid licks in like a fierce mano a mano fight between Miles and Rhino where Rhino busts his webs or that his depictions of hair actually have texture. However, his faces and body movement lack the clean expressiveness of his predecessors on the title like Sara Pichelli, Dave Marquez, and most recently, the highly underrated Oscar Bazaldua. With big smiles and relaxed poses, he can show characters having a good time like Miles watching online videos with his roommates Judge and Ganke.

However, with the exception of some amazing under-the-mask facial acting in a panel where Miles watches  a young child get food at a homeless shelter, the big emotional scenes fall flat whether its his mother Rio’s concern for him after his costume gets all bloody or his budding feelings for his classmate Barbara. Ahmed’s dialogue is fairly flirty and adorkable, but there is no chemistry awkward or otherwise in Javier Garron’s artwork.

Generic art aside, Miles Morales: Spider-Man #1 thanks to Saladin Ahmed’s sharp writing of Miles Morales. He explores the difficulty of being a student and a superhero, which is par for the course in a Spider-Man story, but also spends a page dwelling on how exhausted he is after fighting crime. It’s hard to sleep after punching, kicking, and venom stinging. Ahmed also digs into Miles’ Latino heritage as he speaks in Spanish with his mom, potential girlfriend Barbara, and Barbara’s cousin Eduardo.

Miles also shares a poignant moment with his mother when she reads in the newspaper about Latino immigrants being separated from their children, and how she would cope if that was her and Miles when he was younger. This real world connection flows into the bigger plot and leads Miles to ponder if his calling as a superhero includes bring social justice and change to his community as well as stopping muggers and armed truck robbers plus the odd supervillain. Ahmed nails this feeling with the line “…I’ve never been more sure about my power. But I’ve never been more confused about my responsibility”, and it flows into the moral ambiguity of the story’s final act.

Miles Morales: Spider-Man #1 might not have flashy visuals, but Saladin Ahmed crafts a wonderful journey for Miles Morales as he deals with moral ambiguity and social injustice to go with the usual teen superhero soap opera elements of punching bad guys and romance. It’s also nice to see a hero be open about their secret identity around their family and get support from them, and so this comic evokes shades of the fantastic work John Rogers, Keith Giffen, and Rafael Albuquerque did with Jaime Reyes on Blue Beetle

Story: Saladin Ahmed Art: Javier Garron
Colors: David Curiel Letters: Cory Petit
Story: 8.8 Art 7.5 Overall: 8.2 Verdict: Buy

Marvel Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Mile Morales Returns to Swing Into His Own Solo Series this December

This December, Miles Morales returns in his own solo series written by Saladin Ahmed with art by Javier Garron and a first issue cover by Brian Stelfreeze which you can see below.

Spider-Man #1 arrives December 12, which we expected with Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse coming to theaters December 14. It’s the perfect combination of comic on the shelf timed with a movie release.

In Ahmed’s take, Miles is focus on protecting his community and city instead of universe shattering events. There’s also school, family, bullies, and attempting to have a social life. The first arc will pit him against Rhino and guest-star an unexpected character, a “big hero.”

This is the first series to feature the character that doesn’t feature Brian Michael Bendis writing (the character was co-created by Bendis with Sara Pichelli).

Around the Tubes

It’s new comic book day! What’s everyone getting? What are you all excited for? Sound off in the comments below! While you wait for shops to open, here’s some comic news and reviews from around the web in our morning roundup.

CBLDF – 66 Pounds of Hentai Confiscated by Swiss Customs – Wow, that’s a lot of Hentai.

CBR – Doom Patrol Casts The Mummy’s Brendan Fraser in Lead Role – This is some good casting.

IGN – Marvel Needs to Give Spider-Man Miles Morales a New Home – We’re expecting something in December.

The Comics Journal – Rape, Sexual Harassment Allegations Prompt Defamation Suit from Small-Press Comics Publisher Cody Pickrodt – Well that’s one way to get the word out about allegations, a lawsuit for folks to cover.

 

Reviews

Comic Attack – Coda #4

Newsarama – Cold Spots #1

Talking Comics – Crowded #1

The Beat – Coyote Doggirl

Talking Comics – Gideon Galls #6

Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse Gets a New Trailer… Plus Spider-Gwen!?

Miles Morales steps into the spotlight in Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse a new animated movie from Sony diving into the world of Spider-Man in whole new directions. And it looks like Miles isn’t the only character making his big screen debut, we’re also getting Spider-Gwen!?

Check out the new trailer above and some new photos below. Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse comes to theaters December 14, 2018.

Review: Spider-Man #240

Trade paperback copies of Brian Michael Bendis and Mark Bagley’s Ultimate Spider-Man from the local public library were what got me into comics, and the first Marvel comic I ever subscribed to was Ultimate Comics Spider-Man featuring Miles Morales. So, it’s safe to say that I was rooting for Spider-Man #240  to be a fantastic ending to Bendis’ 18 years on Spider-Man and seven years writing Miles. Unfortunately, that wasn’t the case even though Oscar Bazaldua is one of Marvel’s best up and coming artists and can fill a page or double page spread with action and emotion beats. Speaking of emotion, Bendis’ farewell letter at the end is more moving than anything except Sara Pichelli and Justin Ponsor’s final page. I’m surprised I’m saying this about a Bendis comic, but Spider-Man could have used one more issue with the return of Uncle Aaron/Helicarrier theft storyline ending in Spider-Man #240, and the next issue acting as a proper send off for Bendis’ work with Miles Morales and Spider-Man instead of this rush job/bottle episode.

After a cliched present-to-flashback sequence, Spider-Man #240 has a pretty nice fight sequence between the Champions, the new Sinister Six, and the Latverian army. Bendis and Bazaldua even make the stakes personal with both Miles and his uncle Aaron tumbling off the Helicarrier with a black and gold color palette from Laura Martin in an almost silent double page spread. But, then, it all cuts to black, and we’re back in the hospital. There’s a lot of fades to blacks and hospital scenes like Bendis was simultaneously streaming the ER and Sopranos finale while scripting his own finale. To go with this, there’s a lot of telling and not showing and a bunch of abrupt cuts in the storyline like Bendis was trying to set up a quick subplot or two at the end and didn’t resolve it.

For example, Miles is in the hospital after his battle with the Latverians because there is something up with his genetic code, but we never find out what it is even after a shoehorned Tony Stark cameo. Bendis also seems to be setting up a new path for Miles and his new writer with a connection to espionage, but cuts before the “reveal” of the Marvel Universe big shot, who wants his help. Less egregiously, he resolves a Ganke subplot with expository dialogue and hand waves the ending of the issue’s opening battle with an off panel Avengers appearance. Dialogue is still one of Bendis’ strengths, and he has a lot of fun with the banter between the Champions members (And Goldballs!) without resorting to awkward “millennial speak” like Mark Waid, but seeing Miles’ mom Rio interact with Captain America would have been way cooler than just a word balloon.

Also, Bendis and Bazaldua drop the ball when it comes to the interactions between Miles and his Uncle Aaron in Spider-Man #240, which was the through line of this final arc as Miles tries to help his uncle use his technological skill for good and not crime. Aaron disappears during the final battle and then reappears at Miles’ hospital bed in a darkly lit scene from colorist Martin. Bendis’ writing for Aaron is simple; his time with Miles over the past few days has helped him think about doing good. But then there are some really awkward visuals like a close-up of Miles utterly freaking out when Aaron touches his hand before yet another fade to black. Intentional or not, there is a dreamy quality to the hospital scenes, and it is like the Buffy the Vampire Slayer episode “Normal Again” where Buffy think she has hallucinated the past six years of her life. Thankfully, Bendis doesn’t go for “It was all a dream” cop out ending, but the hospital setting limits the type of interactions Miles can have and hamstrings the whole ending.

However, Spider-Man #240 isn’t all bad, and there is one series of scenes that made me smile. Brian Michael Bendis and Oscar Bazaldua spend a decent amount of time closing the curtain on the main constant in Bendis’ run writing Miles Morales: the friendship between Miles and Ganke. (There’s a reason that they’re the sole stars of the final Pichelli and Ponsor drawn page.) After weird medical testing talk, it’s refreshing to just listen to them talk about girls, video games, and how crazy their lives have been. After fighting supervillains and Latverians, Miles just wants to hang out and be a regular teenager. Bazaldua also includes a nice sight gag of Spider-Man (The Peter Parker one) lounging in a web hammock outside the hospital room in a great nod to Miles’ origin as taking on the dead Spider-Man’s legacy in the Ultimate Universe as well as Bendis’ 11 years of writing Peter in Ultimate Spider-Man.

Some cool flight blocking from Oscar Bazaldua, smart color shifts from Laura Martin, and every time Ganke shows up, Spider-Man #240 is an unceremonious end to Brian Michael Bendis’ time writing Miles Morales. There were some good ideas in this storyline, like the return of his “Uncle Ben figure,” Aaron Davis, but it’s squandered with start and stop subplots, and can we seriously stop with the fading to black panels. Bendis stuck the landing with Jessica Jones and Defenders as farewells to his other big Marvel creation and his work on street level and team books, but sadly strikes out in his final issue of the book that got him in the door and made him a star back in 2000.

Story: Brian Michael Bendis Art: Oscar Bazaldua Colors: Laura Martin with Matt Milla and Peter Pantazis Final Page Art: Sara Pichelli with Justin Ponsor
Story: 5  Art: 8 Overall: 5.5  Recommendation: Pass

Marvel Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

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