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Subj: JJ and Henry Abrams' Spider-Man#4: Betaverus
Posted: Wed Sep 23, 2020 at 01:40:38 pm EDT (Viewed 241 times)
Cadaverous has reawakened his mentor Minka Ross...but she steadily mutates into a monstrous giant spider. Retaining her intelligence, she soon takes full control of Cadaverous' entire operation. Cadaverous explains that shortly after she died, Howard Stark ended their experiments, and their work was confiscated by SHIELD, most of it was destroyed by Peter's parents Richard and Mary...all except for one spider that contained the key to their research. Cadaverous then reveals he had made a connection between the research and Spider-Man and arranged the attack on NYC seen in the first issue with the intent of capturing Peter...but Mary Jane as we know intervened and got killed, and Peter went off the grid. Cadaverous managed to find a sample of Peter's blood and verified his theories on it's properties. Peter's mutated blood is the key to resuscitating the dead.
Peter has been drained of so much blood that Minka can't 'purify' the key and prevent her from further mutation, so she takes Peter to the very bridge he confront Cadaverous on and uses him as bait to lure young Ben into her clutches. Ben, Faye, and Riri successfully fend off the Zombie Avengers, Faye is concerned for Ben and begs him not to go, but Ben goes anyway. In a battle with Minka and Cadaverous' forces, Ben is knocked unconscious and is set upon by the soldiers, as Peter looks on helplessly
So after almost a year out, the Abrams are back with an issue full of answers, but also..full of issues.
Ok, so Cadaverus' motivations are revealed, but as soon as Minka breaks down over her body horror moments, she establishes herself as the true mastermind of the pair...another subversion JJ? Cadaverus is little more than an Igor to Mika's Vicky Frankenstien, only she herself plays the duel role of the post modern promethius
Peter's few lines in this are cringe, "excuse me..I'm very naked...", at least he's retained a bit of humour, but give him some more agency
The Zombie Avengers really don't operate on a tenth of the level that people of their stature ought to operate on in regards to power levels, they're taken out in a matter of a few pages. Riri survives being thrown at a great distance and crashes into what I assume is a very shallow lake...then comes back in her full armour. At least let us check to see if that perm she has been drenched! Where did the armour come from?
Why isn't Faye volunteering to accompany Ben to the bridge if she's so worried about him? Why can't she tag along with him?
One more issue to go, yet I feel as if the point of this whole series has been lost or left unrealised. The main villain now plays a beta part to an altogether different mistress, and Ben, his gal pal, and to an extent even old man Tony, treat the whole situation with the zombie Avengers as if it's a juviel day out in the park picking on the local bullies.
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