I’m a little bit torn about this issue of “Astonishing Spider-Man & Wolverine.” Jason Aaron’s story has been a little hard to pin down and this issue doesn’t do much to settle things down. It just gets weirder. Even though some things are clarified a bit, it’s still unclear what’s really going on and why. And there’s only two issues to go. On the other hand, Aaron reintroduces my favorite villain ever on the final page. So I’m sort of tempted to give this comic five stars for that fact alone.
But, alas, I probably shouldn’t. While the first few issues found some fantastic moments in which to settle a time-lost Spider-Man and Wolverine, this issue seems a bit uninspired. Logan finds himself in the midst of Peter Parker’s wrestling career, and Peter is trapped in a scene that seemed deleted from “Origin.” Neither are as cool as facing down a Planet-sized Doctor Doom with a gun loaded with a Phoenix Force Bullet. Aaron also clarifies a bit exactly what’s going on with these time jewels and who exactly is wielding them. (That leads to some delightful disregard for any rules against past and future versions of the same person coming into contact with one another.)
Adam Kubert is also in fine form here, especially in designing antagonists Czar and Big Murder’s arsenals and accessories (the Kanye shades are a delightful touch). In the Logan’s Past sequences, he even replicates the look of the Kuberts’ work on “Origin,” undoubtedly with help from colorist Justin Ponsor.
Aaron has focused squarely on creating little more than a fun, classic, team-up story, and on that level it works splendidly. Logan and Peter have had plenty of great opportunities to play off of each other. But it’s still a little vague around the edges. Clearly it’s all going to be straightened out by the end, but this issue spins the wheels just a few pages too long.
Like I said, though, I can’t get too mad after that last page reveal, and now I’m really looking forward to seeing it all explained.