Posted January 14, 2013 by Mikael Angelo Francisco in Comics

COMIC BOOK REVIEW: Scarlet Spider #13

Writer: Christopher Yost
: Khoi Pham

The newest issue of former killer Spider-clone Kaine’s solo ongoing sees him pitted against, as the hyper-detailed cover by Ryan Stegman suggests, a pair of bloodthirsty werewolves.

This is the first part of the newest arc, focusing on Kaine’s adopted protege from the first year of this title, Aracely.  At this point – 12 issues in, give or take – we still know next to nothing about this mysterious girl, aside from the fact that she might be psychic and is one of the few people who can put our hotheaded protagonist in his place. Chris Yost’s writing has yet to grow stale. If you told me a decade ago that Kaine would not only have his own solo title but also become a beloved hero to me, I wouldn’t have believed you. This is a book full of pricks, jerks, and psychopaths, and yet, despite these circumstances, Yost manages to make the reader care about them. I’m glad Yost is taking over Avenging Spider-Man - he definitely has an affinity for writing Spider-Men who don’t do things the way Peter Parker does.

The weak link in this issue, unfortunately, is the art. While the illustrations are fantastic during the most crucial parts of the book (especially at the end, which is a cliffhanger among cliffhangers), the book seems to lack a definite consistency. In some panels, things look messy and muddled; in others, things look too clean. Khoi Pham’s usually an adequate artist, but for some reason his work in this issue seems to be a bit lacking. Maybe it’s because there are a lot of colorists for this issue, or maybe it’s just because I’ve gotten used to the art quality I saw in the Maximum Carnage tie-ins.

All in all, though, this is still a decent issue, and a nice break from all the crap happening in Peter Parker’s life (or should I say, body). I cannot stress this enough – you really should be reading Scarlet Spider. It’s almost on the same level as Hawkeye.


Yost and Pham deliver yet another solid issue of Scarlet Spider, and while I admit I still miss Ryan Stegman on this title (though I’m glad he’s on Superior Spider-Man), this title remains one of the best books Marvel has on the shelves these days.

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Mikael Angelo Francisco