Strap on your detective boots and put on your spider suit as the crimebusting, Private Eye Spider-Man of Earth-90214 returns this Wednesday in Marvel Comics’ five-issue mini-series, Spider-Man Noir #1.
Before joining Spider-Man Noir of Earth-90214 on his detective case, a little backstory is needed. The title page (seen above) does give you some info, yet not all. During 2018’s Spider-Geddon Spider-Man Noir was killed by Morlun. Alas, you can’t keep a good spider down as he was resurrected in Feburaury’s Spider-Verse #5. While you’re picking up Spider-Man Noir #1 at your LCS, make sure you pick up those titles to learn more.
Death and resurrections in comics, you got to love them, huh?
SPIDER-MAN NOIR IS ON THE CASE
For the first issue in the series, Margaret Stohl brings the reader right into the action with her writing. Instead of taking time to explain everything about Spider-Man Noir, she uses the above title page to explain all that’s needed. This effectively gives her the full page count to tell the story she wants, instead of catching readers up. This works out for the better as all the reader really needs to know is Spider-Man Noir is a Private Eye that’s not afraid of using a gun. Plus, within the first page, she can set the state of the world with a radio broadcast.
One massive factor of Spider-Man Noir that should stick out is the speech pattern. Detective/noir stories usually have a specific jargon, that people recognize. Stohl perfectly understands this lingo and the rhythm that the dialogue needs. Stohl’s dialogue has a music-like ebb and flow between characters that read smoothly. While reading Spider-Man Noir #1, you’ll be reminded of old Detective movies, for all of the best reasons. Furthermore, there is one story beat that was equally hilarious and well done containing an egg.
During the first page, Spider-Man Noir is peeling an egg but receives the call of action. Pocketing the egg, he takes on a few speed happy robbers. Once finished, he remarks that keeping the neighborhood friendly “ain’t over easy,” then proceeds to eat the over-easy egg in the next panel. This dry humor is fantastic and seen throughout. Yet the joke is amplified by Juan Ferreyra’s visuals.
A BUSY AND DANGEROUS CITY
If anyone was tasked with the art department for Spider-Man Noir #1, it had to be Ferreyra. Ferreyra’s art has fluid movement to it that never feels like too much or little. Instead, it helps pace the story along while you turn the page.
Nonetheless, that isn’t the only reason his art makes perfect sense for the series. His lines are solid, helping the characters pop off from the busy background, which Spider-Man Noir #1 has a bit of. Furthermore, each action scene is fluid, lively, and moves along amazingly, whereas the backgrounds can be explained the same. Ferreyra adds the right amount of details to make the world feel alive, while not to busy.
Keeping the noir trend, Ferreyra colors Spider-Man Noir #1 with heavy blacks and whites compared to other colors. This expands to the usual white-colored panel lines. Instead, Ferreyra uses a pure black to keep the noir trend. Not all objects are colored as such, though. When he wants to highlight a person or object, he adds a bright color that stands out. This can be seen with Mary Jane, Aunt May, the dead victim, and his spider-sense, to name a few. Like all other Spider-Men and women, this version has a spider-sense. It’s used once, yet, Ferreyra colors it red and has it surround his face. It may sound simple, but he makes it gorgeous.
WORDS OF MYSTERY
As with most Detective tales, Spider-Man Noir #1 has a bit more dialogue. Furthermore, the darker shades of colors Ferreyra uses means the usage of pure white bubbles may look weird. Luckily VC’s Travis Lanham combats both of these in his lettering. During the heavier bits, he is able to flex the lettering around while putting indents in some to make others fit. For the color aspect, Lanham changes the bubbles inside color to a grey shade that matches the ton of art. The same can be said for the various sound effects seen throughout.
A GLOBETROTTING CASE
Spider-Man Noir’s first issue starts Spider-Man of Earth-90214’s newest case on a great foot. It’s a fastpaced story as the team goes straight into the globetrotting tale. Even if this is your first time reading a Spider-Man Noir story, you won’t be confused, and you’ll find why people love the character.
Memorable Quote: “Sometimes it’s not your mind that changes. Sometimes the world changes around you.” – Huma Bergmann
I’ve never heard that one, yet it has a simple beauty to it.