Three months into Ben Reilly’s newest tenure as Spider-Man, and we haven’t seen what the other Spider-Man thinks of him. That changes in Amazing Spider-Man #81, as Miles Morales meets Ben Reilly.
Saladin Ahmed, Carlos Gomez, Bryan Valenza, and Joe Caramagna put the two Spider-Men face to face. It doesn’t go how anyone expects.
A plant monster is tearing through Brooklyn. Thankfully, the Beyond Corporation is happy to help with their one-and-only Spider-Man. Unfortunately for Ben, Brooklyn already has a Spider-Man, and he’s not going to be able to deal with Miles Morales easily.
Ahmed really had two things to accomplish and does them pretty well. Giving Ben and Miles common ground quickly establishes a story rooted in its characters. Though the villain is bland, it doesn’t need to be complicated because the actual bad guys are clearly Beyond, which is becoming more clear by the moment. In that second goal, starting to show more that Beyond’s motives are less than pure, Ahmed helps the overall story along. It’s not deep but it’s fun.
Gomez’s line work is very solid. He’s doing more to make his work stand out from typical house style. His characters are more expressive than I’ve seen in the past, and I really enjoyed what he did with Ben and Miles, giving both Spiders distinctly different ways of moving and interacting with their environment. Valenza’s colors are bright and appealing. Really, the only downside to the visuals are the weird new costume Miles is still in, which the team at least depicts well, even if it’s not very good.
The Beyond era continues to be a lot of fun, and I hope that carries on from here.
Amazing Spider-Man #81 is available now from Marvel Comics.
A team-up is sometimes all you need. It’s a pretty simple and straightforward story, but the creative team at least makes it feel like a lot of fun.