If you read more than one Spider-centric comic from Marvel, chances are you’re aware that everything’s being tied back to “Spider-Verse” right now. Spider-Woman #2 is no exception and introduces us to Jessica’s new mission to help stop the Inheritors. However, this issue feels like it’s setting the stage for things to come and is incredibly light on plot and characterization.
Jessica’s story is being launched off of the craziness surrounding “Spider-Verse,” which so far makes it harder to connect with this comic and understand what the point of it is. It’s not completely bogged down by this intricate plotline; it’s just a bit dull. Even though there are a few attempts at comedy throughout the issue, the jokes are stale and don’t generate chuckles. In addition to this, newcomers to Jessica’s character aren’t learning much about her and I’m still not sure how Spider-Man expects this new mission to be both successful and useful. There is not one panel that deepens my understanding of Spider-Woman or sparks a desire to connect with this character, which is a problem when this series is just starting out and needs to find ways to rouse readers.
As in issue #1, Silk and the frenzy that comes with this loose cannon make another appearance here. Thankfully, this issue does seem more concerned with Jessica Drew than Cindy Moon. Unlike the premiere issue where it was all about Silk and her story, this most recent one portrays the ways in which she interacts with Spider-Woman. It feels more like Jessica’s series and not the other way around. However, while Cindy is not dragging the book down, she’s not enriching at all either. If her panels were cut out of this book, it would have next to no impact on Jessica’s journey. It feels as if she just pops in to plug her upcoming solo series instead of actually doing something relevant for Spider-Woman’s series.
Though the issue itself isn’t particularly exciting, the twist that comes on the last few pages does put Jess in an interesting position for issue #3. This development is pretty obvious about halfway through the issue due to some heavy-handed foreshadowing. Yet, it’s still a shocking twist given what we know about the Inheritors. It’s one of the more fascinating panels of Spider-Woman thus far and adds some complexity to an otherwise flat issue. It doesn’t teach us anything new about Jessica, but it may very well prove to be a key point in the upcoming “Spider-Verse” comics, and that’s better than nothing.
Despite the fact that the plot hardly goes anywhere, I’m once again impressed with D’Armata’s coloring. Each world that appears is new and easily transports me to the places being featured. It really helps with visualizing these new locations and understanding them in a different way. There is more life to the issue because of his work, and so far this spot-on coloring is one of the highlights of Spider-Woman.
Overall Spider-Woman #2 isn’t great, but it isn’t awful; it just feels like filler to set the stage for issue #3. At this point, Jessica’s story could either become engaging or utterly boring, but I don’t think this issue gives any indication of which way it will go. In the grand scheme of “Spider-Verse” it lacks the drama we’ve gotten in other comics, and as a solo series, it doesn’t expand our knowledge or understanding of Jessica Drew at all. It makes me very apathetic to both Jess and her series as a whole, so that all that I am left thinking after finishing issue #2 is ‘so what?’