Peter Porker Reaches New Levels Of Annoyance In Spider-Ham #1

by James Ferguson

Peter Porker, the Spectacular Spider-Ham has helped save the multiverse with a number of other spider-themed heroes and he won’t shut up about it. Even in the midst of battle against Moletron, he’s pre-occupied with sharing his interdimensional adventures than actually fighting, much to the dismay of the other heroes. It seems saving one world just doesn’t do it for him anymore.

It looks like the only time this Earth was at peace was when Spider-Ham was off on his adventures. Everyone was better off because the multiverse was save, Peter Porker was happy, and the rest of us could enjoy some peace and quiet for once. Seriously, everyone really hates this guy. Writer Zeb Wells puts in just the right amount of insults so you don’t feel too bad for him, but they do get pretty brutal (and oddly specific) at times, especially by the end of this first issue.
Letterer Joe Caramagna crams a tremendous amount of insults into just a few panels. It feels overwhelming and that’s the point. These characters are finally unloading on this pesky and troublesome thorn in their side after so much anguish so it should come across like a tidal wave of words.

The thing is, it’s all warranted. Porker is not a great hero or a great friend. He’s an annoying mooch, but you kind of love him. He’s basically a cartoon character after all, so that lovable mischievous quality is perfect here. Artist Will Robson captures the reactions to Spider-Ham perfectly. Everyone he encounters ends up with a very similar facial expression. It’s a blend of disgust, irritation, and anger. This is amplified when they realize that nothing they say will get through to the guy.
Robson mixes the cartoonish antics of this world with some solid fight choreography. There’s an Avengers level threat breaking out in the early part of Spider-Ham #1 and it’s met with an Avengers level battle. The panel layouts are varied, adding an intensity to the action while still giving enough time for Spider-Ham’s jokes to land.

The whole issue has an almost faded look to it, like an old cartoon. Colorist Erick Arciniega plays up the bright, colorful nature of this world while leaving room for the big scary earth-shattering stuff to have its ominous tone. This comes into play more by the end of the issue where a genuine interdimensional threat rises.
The overall premise of this series was spelled out in the solicitation information for the first issue, so it’s not much of a spoiler that Spider-Ham will soon be teaming up with Peter Parker from Earth-616. Even though we knew where it was going, it’s still a pretty fun ride and I’m developing a further love for this wacky character. He’s certainly my favorite spider who was bitten by a radioactive pig.
Spider-Ham #1 from Marvel Comics is currently available at your local comic shop and digitally through ComiXology and Amazon Kindle.


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