SYMBIOTE SPIDER-MAN #2 sticks the landing, maintaining the high standard set by the first issue. Like SYMBIOTE SPIDER-MAN #1, this week’s issue is full of action, humor, and excitement. In fact, Marvel might have a new hit series on their hands. (Fortunately for them, the series coincidentally features a villain making his on-screen debut this year.)

Peter David’s clever story structure, use of juxtaposition, witty character dialogue, and fast-paced storytelling shine the brightest. But everyone on the team deserves accolades for their baller work on this thrill-ride of a second issue. Greg Land, Jay Leisten, Frank D’Armata, and Joe Sabino work in unison to deliver mostly epic visuals throughout the story.

Symbiote Spider-Man #2
Image Courtesy of Marvel Entertainment

A New Villain Debuts in SYMBIOTE SPIDER-MAN #2

The first few pages of SYMBIOTE SPIDER-MAN #2 follow Mysterio going on a recruitment mission. Taking down Spider-Man is no easy task, so Mysterio seeks out an extra pair of hands. Specifically, Mysterio seeks out Alan Jennings, the best stuntman in Hollywood. Conveniently enough, Alan also happens to be a mutant with super-strength comparable to Colossus.

The rest of SYMBIOTE SPIDER-MAN #2 plays out as you’d expect. Mysterio sets a trap, Peter indulges him, and then Peter faces off against Alan Jennings, AKA: Hardrock. Then, in an unexpected twist, Peter is defeated! But the issue doesn’t end there.

Symbiote Spider-Man #2
Image Courtesy of Marvel Entertainment

Before Hardrock can finish the job and put a bullet through Spider-Man’s symbiote-covered skull, the alien costume attacks! Immediately, the symbiote lunges itself at Hardrock, seemingly ending his life. Lastly, after witnessing Hardrock’s death, Mysterio offers to help Kingpin capture the symbiote.

SYMBIOTE SPIDER-MAN #2 is Entertaining

Peter David knows how to keep readers engaged. SYMBIOTE SPIDER-MAN #2 makes that abundantly clear. After all, he kept me entertained, and I’m a tough man to please. In true Stan Lee fashion, every page reveals new information or changes the trajectory of the story. Writing like this keeps the pacing quick, and the story lit.

Symbiote Spider-Man #2
Image Courtesy of Marvel Entertainment

Additionally, SYMBIOTE SPIDER-MAN #2 is hilarious. Admittedly, the Rey Mysterio reference might be a tad niche, but as someone who grew up watching WWE, I liked it. I especially liked the way David juxtaposes Spider-Man’s and Mysterio’s perspectives from one page to another.

Symbiote Spider-Man #2
Image Courtesy of Marvel Entertainment

In terms of characterization, David knocks it out of the park. Thanks to his many years of experience writing the character, David portrays Peter Parker perfectly. Even Peter’s way of speaking comes naturally to David. I couldn’t help but hear Josh Keaton’s spectacular Spider-man voice as I read each of Peter’s word balloons.

Also, introducing new villains is always a plus. The more lore the merrier! Though Alan “Hardrock” Jennings’ tenure as an antagonist was short-lived, I greatly appreciated his introduction. Hardrock was a cool character — cool enough to see through some of Mysterio’s illusions!

Illusionists Illustrate SYMBIOTE SPIDER-MAN #2

Symbiote Spider-Man #2
Image Courtesy of Marvel Entertainment

It might be nitpicking, but there is one visual detail in SYMBIOTE SPIDER-MAN #2 that could be improved. Despite Hardrock’s entrance being awesome, I wish he had a more memorable design. Most of Spider-Man’s most iconic villains were designed wearing green because the color clashes with the red in Spidey’s outfit.

By comparison, the all-black look that Hardrock sports in this issue doesn’t contrast Spider-Man’s costume very well. Then again, considering Hardrock dies about four pages after his big entrance, giving him an iconic design would probably be a waste.

On the bright side, everything else in the comic looks great. Meticulously detailed splash pages featuring Spider-Man and Mysterio stand-out, while Mysterio’s illusions and Hardrock’s aforementioned entrance pop with color. In addition to excellent figures, inks, and colors, there are also several well-composed page layouts.

Symbiote Spider-Man #2
Image Courtesy of Marvel Entertainment

For example, check out this awesome zig-zag panel structure of Spider-Man swinging. Spider-Man’s movements follow the letters and gutters symbiotically, creating smooth eye-motion throughout the whole page. Overall, the art in SYMBIOTE SPIDER-MAN #2 is sleek, and stylish.

Final Thoughts…

SYMBIOTE SPIDER-MAN is the best Spider-Man title on the stands. Granted, the series is only two-issues long at the moment. But both issues are fast-paced, imaginative, colorful, and fun reads with memorable action sequences, and engaging dialogue. Each one leaves me wanting more.

In conclusion, go buy SYMBIOTE SPIDER-MAN #2.

SYMBIOTE SPIDER-MAN #2 BY PETER DAVID, GREG LAND, JAY LEISTEN, FRANK D'ARMATA, JOE SABINO, AND DEVIN LEWIS
Art
Characterization
Plot
Summary
SYMBIOTE SPIDER-MAN #2 is fast-paced, imaginative, colorful, and fun. It engages readers with memorable action sequences, and engaging dialogue. Every page left me wanting more.
97 %
Satisfying Sequel
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