If anything can be said for Dan Slott’s run on Spider-Man, it’s that he knows how to think in terms of the long run. But that doesn’t mean new readers are screwed.
Dan Slott is back, delivering a tale of Peter Parker and Mary Jane Watson’s struggle to maintain their family in the face of Secret Wars. However, references to Hickman’s massive event are non-existent. Instead, Dan Slott creates a dystopian world, reminiscent of the worlds of Orwell and Huxley, where supervillains hunt superheroes in the name of a despotic overlord. Despite the departure from the Manhattan that Spidey traditionally swings through, Dan Slott proves that he’s still more than capable of telling a story that puts the wall-crawler’s heart and determination on full display.
For nearly every massively popular superhero, chances are there’s an equally popular love interest behind that hero. Iron Man loves Pepper Potts, Superman loves Lois Lane, and Spider-Man loves…okay, he’s loved a couple people over the years. Gwen Stacy, Peter’s first love, cared for Peter but hated Spider-Man, a dynamic that would have inevitably doomed the relationship, even if the Green Goblin hadn’t sent her to an early grave. Black Cat represent the dangerous, thrill-seeking side of Spider-Man’s life. She was the opposite of Gwen: Black Cat loved the Spider but had no interest in his Peter Parker persona, a fact that Peter himself couldn’t reconcile. Mary Jane Watson, however, was what many readers consider to be Peter’s ultimate love interest, who loved both sides of Peter’s identity, and ultimately married him.
Well, it’s finally over. After six months and nearly thirty books, including set-up and tie-in issues, “Spider-Verse” has finally come to an end. After putting an end to the Inheritor threat, the remaining Spiders get a chance to find their way home and get back to their lives. But before they can do that, there’s a last bit of convoluted exposition to wade through before Peter Parker – and the readers – can move on.
After being forced to flee from the Inheritors at every turn, the army of Spider-People finally gets a chance to take the fight directly to their pursuers. This is the final battle, the last stand against an unstoppable force. Can the Spiders save themselves before the Inheritors carry out their master plan?
The penultimate chapter of “Spider-Verse” begins with the ragtag band of Spiders scattered and lost. However, having perhaps finally found a safe refuge from the Inheritors, they find a Spider-Totem tied to Peter’s personal history unlike any other. But can an army of Spider-Men fight back against the greatest enemy of all – a plot so wrapped up in itself it forgets it’s own potential?
Picking up immediately after the big reveal of last issue, part 4 of “Spider-Verse” begins with Solus, the father and apparent leader of the Inheritors, kidnapping Mayday Parker’s baby brother Benjy, proclaiming him to be the “Scion” foretold in their prophecies. After the deaths of several Spider-People, and a very literal deus ex machina, our heroes manage to escape by the skin of their teeth. But all this running is useless unless they can come up with a plan to put the Inheritors to bed for good.