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The Spectacular Spider-Man, Vol. 6: The…
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The Spectacular Spider-Man, Vol. 6: The Final Curtain

by Paul Jenkins

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A mixed bag of stories here, but the two best are pretty special. The first, longest and most unremarkable storyline is about a plot by Doctor Octopus. The story is a bit obtuse, and it's not even real clear here what Ock's goal is. Even the art here is mediocre. The next unremarkable story tries to be more, at least; it's about Spider-Man's guilt-driven attempt to help a former super-villain fallen on hard times, the Mindworm. Not a bad effort, it just falls into the trap of maudlin emotion-wringing. But the other two stories are true gems. The first is about Ben Grimm's regular poker game with other heroes, $20 ante, winnings to go to charity. Spidey is a guest at this one, and of all people, the Kingpin buys his way in and ups the ante. Basically, he just lusts for a chance to beat the heroes without getting the crap beat out of him. The heroes agree, the game proceeds, and even in a title known for offbeat humor, the grins here are pretty fine. The last story is the cream of the crop. Peter visits Uncle Ben's grave for Christmas, and has a heart to heart talk with the old guy. The story is believable, charming, funny, and even gives a rare glimpse of young Petey's life with his parents. The artwork shows an unusual light touch perfectly matched to the story,especially in the flashbacks. I especially loved the "Calvin and Hobbes"-esque snowmen created by Peter and Ben, and Aunt May's perpetual reaction to them. Great story. Too bad only one other story in the book (the poker game, of course) was anywhere near its league. ( )
  burnit99 | Feb 2, 2007 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0785119507, Paperback)

Paul Jenkins wraps up his five-year tenure as a Spider-Man writer and brings Spectacular Spider-Man to a close in a moving, self-contained tale that reunites him with artist Mark Buckingham. Plus, two spectacular standalone stories! First up: Ben Grimm's all-night poker games have become legendary among the super-hero set, and for the first time Spider-Man has been asked to join the table! But when the Kingpin unexpectedly deals himself in, the stakes are raised! Can the wall-crawler come out on top in this celebrity poker showdown? Then: Once he was the Mindworm, arch-nemesis of Spider-Man! But now he's a lonely, forlorn beggar, trapped in an infernal triangle of poverty, booze and dementia. How can Peter Parker help his one-time foe - and is Spidey himself responsible for his pitiable condition? And finally, from the pages of Peter Parker: Spider-Man, witness the return of Dr. Octopus in an intense three-part saga! Collects Spectacular Spider-Man #21, #22, #27 and Peter Parker, Spider-Man #39-41.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 14:21:22 -0400)

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