Spectacular Spider-Man volume four, “Coming Home”, is out November 21st, and it’s packed with four stories celebrating everything great about the web-head.
Chip Zdarsky writes the entire collection, as well as illustrating the closing chapter. Other artists and colorists include Adam Kubert, Juan Frigeri, Chris Bachalo, Jason Keith, and Andrew Crossley. Tim Townsend, Al Vey, Wayne Faucher, Livesay, Victor Olazaba ink Bachalo’s work, along with Bachalo himself. Travis Lanham letters all seven issues, and the series is edited by Nick Lowe and Kathleen Wisneski.
As stated, “Coming Home” isn’t just one arc of Spectacular Spider-Man, but four short stories. They range from grand in scale, like Spidey traveling to an alternate timeline where he decided not to be a superhero, to very small and personal. However, big or small, each story has something that fans will love.
Throughout these tales, we see everything that makes Peter Parker great. His sense of responsibility, his humor, his selflessness, and – of course – his massive guilt. This is something that Zdarsky got right throughout his Spectacular run; he understood the heart of Peter’s character. And, for most fans anyway, Peter is what makes Spidey comics so popular, not the superheroing.
Zdarsky also really developed the relationship between Peter and J. Jonah Jameson throughout his run, and it really has an emotional impact in this issue. We see Jonah question whether or not he was wrong about Spider-Man for all these years, and you feel for him. Jonah’s turn, and his father/son dynamic with Peter are reason enough to read Spectacular.
We get a wide range of art in “Coming Home” as well. Kubert, Bachalo, and Zdarsky all have very distinct styles, but they all deliver the goods. The selling point to all three styles – even more than the action – is the sentiment. Each story has at least one moment that can bring a tear to your eye, and its because the artists put such emotion into their work. Zdarsky’s issue #310 in particular has five silent pages and it’s one of the most memorable and heartbreaking moments in recent Spider-Man history.
And on that note, I have to give a special shout-out to issue #310, the closing chapter in this volume. We’ve reviewed this issue on this site before, but it bears repeating: Chip Zdarsky ends his run on Spectacular with one of the best Spider-Man single-issue-stories of all-time. It’s a small, intimate celebration of what Spider-Man means to the people of New York that will give you all the feels (though I loathe that phrase).
Zdarsky sticks the landing on his Spectacular Spider-Man run, ending it on a high point. No matter what kind of Spidey fan you are, you’ll have a good time with this series.