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Review: Amazing Spider-Man #690 – Dr. Connors gives Horizon a hand

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Amazing Spider-Man #690
Writer: Dan Slott
Art: Giuseppe Camuncoli [Pencils]; Klaus Janson, Daniel Green, and Giuseppe Camuncoli [Inks]; Frank D’Armata [Colors]

Curt Connors, seemingly been cured of the Lizard thanks to a formula developed by Morbius, is actually just the Lizard in Curt Connors’ body.  To top it all off, in an attempt to transform himself back into the Lizard, he’s even regrown the arm that Curt Connors’ original formula was meant to regrow.

Having distracted Spider-Man by taking advantage of Morbius’ thirst for blood, Connors begins using Horizon Labs’ top minds to try to develop a formula that can turn him back to his Lizard form–progressively transforming each into another monstrous lizard as their formulas fail.  Further complicating things is that damn regrown arm, which he continually has to lazer off to keep up appearances as it keeps regrowing.

Meanwhile, Spider-Man is battling a Morbius overcome by thirst 12 blocks away when Madame Web appears to tell him she’s had another vision (and that Silver Sable isn’t dead), and that he’ll regret it if he doesn’t return to Horizon Labs at that moment.  He still takes his time finishing off Morbius, however, and the issue closes on a cliffhanger regarding the fates of a few supporting cast members after one of them notices Connors is missing the wrong arm.

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Dan Slott’s writing remains strong here, with Lizard-in-the-body-of-Curt-Connors discovering humor (and making terrible puns about his severed arms), music, and junk food while everyone remains oblivious that he’s only Curt Connors on the outside.  I also enjoyed the back-and-forth between Spider-Man and Morbius, with Morbius trying to explain to a hero who doesn’t particularly trust him that he couldn’t control what he was doing.  The characterization of Spider-Man was a bit more stubborn and angry than we’ve seen from Slott, but it’s not totally out of character in the context of darker periods in the character’s history–and given the subplot in this issue involving Kingpin, Hobgoblin, and Tiberius Stone, things are going to get a lot darker before they start looking up again.

The art remains pretty spot on, although a lot of Camuncoli’s faces of anger/despair look like the psychotic face Romita Sr.’s Jonah Jameson would make when he was sure he was finally going to destroy Spider-Man’s reputation in early issues of the book.  Not a bad thing, but it catches me off guard every time.

It will be interesting to see how Slott wraps up this arc, especially as it pertains to Morbius going forward, and the fates of Curt Connors and everyone at Horizon Labs.

RATING:  9.0/10

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Roger Riddell
Essentially Peter Parker with all the charm of Wolverine, he's a DC-based B2B journalist who occasionally writes about music and pop culture in his free time. His love for comics, metal, and videogames has also landed him gigs writing for the A.V. Club, Comic Book Resources, and Louisville Magazine. Keep him away from the whiskey, and don't ask him how much he hates the Spider-Man movies unless you're ready to hear about his overarching plot for a six-film series that would put the Dark Knight trilogy to shame.