Hitting stores in your dimension this week from Marvel Comics, Ghost Spider #5 creeps up on us with more Miles Warren drama.
Last issue, upon returning home from school on Earth-616, Gwen was followed through her dimensional portal by The Jackal into her own home dimension, Earth-65. Blinded by his oh-so creepy obsession with Gwen Stacy, Warren is doing anything he can hunt her down and “convince” her that they are meant to be.
Writer Seanan Mcguire really expresses the stalker tones in this issue but fluctuates them between being cartoonish and realistic making Warren all the more eerie. Teaming up with Miles Warren of Earth-616 is who else but Miles Warren of Earth-65. Warren-65 is much less obsessive and creepy but still gives off sinister scientist vibes as he has discovered a way to suppress, and potentially even kill, Gwen’s symbiote.
While the last few issues have given us some down time with Gwen, this one has The Jackal as the main focus, following his perspective from the start. Almost showing us that Gwen’s time off has come to a stop and it’s time to get back to her real Superhero affairs, rather than stopping some guys with guns here and there.
As a whole, Ghost-Spider #5 does a lot to progress this first story arc for the renumber series and hastens the pace of events happening. Gwen’s still as snippy as ever and there’s a lot of fun humor in the dialogue while also bringing the overall tone to be a bit darker and resemble more of what we’ve seen in the past with this character and her constant looming theme of death.
The art team had a clever impact on this issue as The Jackal really sticks out like a sore thumb in the setting. Notably it seems artists Takeshi Miyazawa and Ig Guara put a lot of attention into detailing him more than the other characters in panel as well as Ian Herring making his big slick green head clash with the rest of the color palettes used in Earth-65’s setting. Making him not only stand out in appearance, but really show he does not belong there. Even his dark green monologues stand out over everything else, which is even more impactful thanks to VC’s Clayton Cowles.
Moving forward I am interested in seeing where McGuire takes Gwen’s story, admittedly I am hoping one day this Gwen Stacy can truly move out of the shadow of Earth-616 Gwen Stacy and the theme of drawing comparisons between the two dies down. It certainly started to feel improved on when Gwen got her own original villain in the form of The Man-Wolf, who is still out and about thanks to being mayor J. Jonah Jameson’s son. But adding in The Jackal does seem to bring these themes back around again.
Ghost-Spider #5 helps liven up Gwen’s current story but surprisingly is taking place more dominantly in her home universe. While the villain does come as the result of her attending school in Earth-616, going into this new run I imagined her interweaving more with conflicts in that universe. I am happy to see that the Man-Wolf story was not just swept under the rug after the renumber and that we still get more gorgeous Earth-65 backgrounds and settings. I definitely recommend keeping up with Gwen’s adventures still for any fan of her series. She’s still my favorite web-head of the bunch.
How do you feel about Gwen Stacy of Earth-65’s constant comparisons and themes revolving around Gwen Stacy from Earth-616? Do you share my gripes? Or do you want to see more of it? Lend a voice in the comments and let us know!