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Superior Foes of Spider-Man #13 – REVIEW

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“One time I caught him in my sock drawer, trying things on. The wrong way.”

If that quote from Silvermane doesn’t get you intrigued about Superior Foes of Spider-Man #13 then nothing will. Spencer and Lieber deal with the aftermath of the Sinister Sixteen rumble in Chameleon’s pad and Shocker’s problems with the Maggia in the latest issue of B-list baddies.

Nick Spencer continues his excellent run as writer on Superior Foes. It is a testament to the quality of his writing that this issue doesn’t have fisticuffs galore, yet the issue moves at a rapid, snappy pace. There is a balanced mix of slapstick (Mach VII’s furniture store adventure) and sarcastic quips that makes for an amusing read. But Spencer isn’t just writing humor – there is an interesting and perhaps meaningful relationship that further develops between Shocker and Silvermane (or Silvermane’s head anyway) as well as a bit of drama with a rather ambitious EMT at the scene of the Sinister Sixteen showdown.

3The art is equally strong as Lieber continues to be a perfect match for Spencer’s sharp writing style. Lieber excels in this issue in drawing the emotions very powerfully on his subjects. This is particularly the case with Silvermane. It is a tricky thing to not be able to use body language to help portray a character’s feelings, yet Lieber does so wonderfully with Silvermane’s disembodied countenance. And, although Shocker is masked, Lieber does a great job of depicting Shocker’s progress from crisis in confidence to realization that he is actually pretty smart. In fact, one could probably flip through the issue without reading a word and still get the basic gist of the issue – a wonderful credit to Lieber’s skills in bringing his characters alive via face/body language and strategically placed dramatic close-ups.

The Little Spidey-Spinoff That Could continues its unexpectedly long run, producing consistently high quality stories. This latest issue has advanced the chaos further and set up what should be a very interesting encounter with Shocker and Silvermane vs. Boomerang and his gang. I’m sure we haven’t heard the last of Hammerhead, either. Or Chameleon. Or Owl! Oh my goodness I need the next issue in my hands like NOW.

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