Review of Amazing Spider-Man #677

Jan 16, 2012

Review of Amazing Spider-Man #677

Jan 16, 2012

There’s a scene almost halfway through Amazing Spider-Man #677 that has me scratching my head a bit. Maybe it did the same for you. The scene in question is the one where Spider-Man goes to solicit the legal and extra-legal advice of his lawyer (and superhero) friend Matt Murdock, and ends up not only calling him Daredevil in broad daylight but continuing to press the matter after it’s clear that Matt is trying to stick to his “I’m not Daredevil” routine.

I can’t fathom why Spidey 1) wouldn’t stick to proper “fellow costume in civvies” protocol and 2) wouldn’t know that while the word is out there, Matt has legally been cleared of all Daredevil allegations (if that hadn’t been the case he would have been serving a pretty stiff prison sentence for Shadowland right now). This scene bothers me, although it’s also admittedly quite amusing. And, it’s the only questionable scene in an otherwise pitch perfect issue.

Spider-Man calls Matt Daredevil in public, panel from Amazing Spider-Man #677

Secret identity woes aside, I absolutely loved this issue. The plot is solid enough, with the Black Cat being framed for a crime she didn’t commit (she was with Spider-Man at the time) and Spidey soliciting Daredevil’s help to solve the puzzle and clear her name. The true magic of this issue, however, lies in the details. The banter between Matt and Peter is absolutely spot on, and I loved little details like the two of them discussing the best route to get to the Chrysler building and challenging each other to a chicken race while jumping off a sky scraper. Mark Waid excels in not only reminding readers of why Spidey and DD are so good together, but just how good they can be when done right. Bravo, Mr Waid.

Spidey and Daredevil jumping off a building, panels from Amazing Spider-Man #677

Emma Rios’s art impressed me greatly as well. It’s got a stylized, slightly psychedelic (yes, that’s the word I’m going for) look to it that is much more hit than miss, though there’s a panel here and there that looks ever so slightly off to me. Her greatest achievement this issue is the spectacular scene of our two heroes rushing down the side of the Chrysler building which shows off her knack for portraying movement on the static page. The art has an energy to it that seems just right for these two heroes and the beautiful colors by regular Daredevil colorist Javier Rodriguez make us Daredevil fans feel right at home.

If Daredevil #8, coming out this Wednesday, manages to come even close to this, we’re in for a spectacular finish!


  1. R.M. Hendershot

    I blame Spidey’s lapse in tact on memory problems–maybe Mephisto erased some of his memory of Daredevil’s issues along with his marriage. Certainly Spider-Man has seemed a bit brain-damaged ever since. *Shakes fist at all parties responsible for Brand New Day*

    Or maybe he’s just giving Matt a hard time. I do remember a comic from the ’90s where Matt served Spider-Man with a subpoena by stepping in front of a truck, in blind-man mode, so that Spider-Man had to save him. They do mess with each other a bit.

  2. Aaron K

    I’m a little surprised that Emma Rios hasn’t gotten a gig as a regular artist on an ongoing Marvel title yet. Her work on STRANGE (written by Mark Waid, no less), SPIDER-ISLAND: CLOAK & DAGGER, and even SHADOWLAND: ELEKTRA was great stuff. And yet I have to suffer through Whilce “Everyone I Draw Looks Like a Zombie” Portacio art on JOURNEY INTO MYSTERY. Life isn’t fair.

  3. AP

    I had a similar feeling about Spidey calling out DD in front of Kirsten, but it was pretty funny so I let it go. This was such an awesome issue! You hit all the points of what made it so great Christine, but I want to second how great Waid did writing DD and Spideys relationship. He gets across all the great subtleties of their relationship but in an exciting way that moves the plot along. A great, fun read. So thankful that Waid is writing DD.

  4. Simon

    Reading this issue, did you get the impression that what happens here is going to be essential to the plot of Daredevil #8? I don’t think I’ve bought a Spider-Man comic since I was about 12, but this does look pretty good.

  5. Christine

    @Simon: If you don’t want to pick up Spidey, you’ll learn all you need on the recap page of DD #8. Having said that, you really should pick it up. I thought it was great, even better than DD #8 (which I hope I’ll get to reviewing tonight).

  6. XRE

    Spider-Man here. Gotta tell ya…this issue was far from pitch perfect. Waid is one of the all time great comic book writers and his run on DD was strong to say the least…Waid is an awful Spider-Man writer though. He fundamentally does not understand the character and this issue is a prime example.

    The scene you highlighted as bothering you is a microcosm of how Waid tends to handle Spider-Man. As an incompetent, immature hardluck Loser with a capital ‘L’. This is not the character, merely a frequently thrown out and perpetuated misinterpretation of him. Or at least when it comes to the modern character as opposed to say Silver Age stories when writing standards were different and the character was much younger and less experienced.

    Spider-Man wouldn’t be so dense as to compromise Matt’s identity like that. Spider-Man’s own life turned to Hell when his identity went public and his girlfriend and wife have been killed/threatened by single villains who know who he is.

    I appreciate Spidey compromised DD’s identity in early DD stories, but when it came to Silver Age Marvel, honestly it’s better to treat each character within the confines of their own series. Stan Lee essentially wrote alternate versions of characters whenever they guest starred, making them bigger jerks than they usually were because he was trying to contrast DC’s more chummy heroes and because he discovered the novelty of heroes fighting one another. So Daredevil comic books Spider-Man in a sense is not really true to Spider-Man comics Spider-Man. And Given ASm #677 is a Spider-Man comic book it should be looked at within that context.

    And within that context Spider-Man would never act like this towards Matt. Even if you do bring up the Silver Age stuff where he inadvertently blew Matt’s identity, he was younger then and not a friend or ally to DD. After decades of maturing and where he attended Karen Page’s funeral and asked Daredevil to help his friend Black Cat when it seemed she might’ve been raped, this makes no sense.

    From a Spider-Man perspective the plot also has numerous problems. In the immediate prior story he was entirely over Carlie Cooper whom he is hung up on as the perfect woman and attempts to hit up Black Cat for rebound sex. This is also not in character. Spider-Man systemically doesn’t enter into sexual encounters unless he is in a relationship with someone and/or has deep feelings for them and thinks there might be a strong possibility for a relationship. This is not the case with Felicia in this issue and he is downright pathetic and creepy about it.

    Whilst it is true he and Felicia had a ‘friends with benefits’ relationship shortly before this story, that too was an example of then modern Spider-Man just not getting the character. Spider-Man’s origin revolves around him feeling guilty for letting a burglar go free. And yet Felicia is a burglar. That is her profression. But he continually let her walk in that and this story because…he had the hots for her. This is toxically OOC for Peter.

    I also found the DD/Spidey relationship to be problematic because DD sees to hold Spidey in lower regard than he ever has before and it certainly doesn’t line up with the long friendship the pair have shared.


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