A collection of short stories featuring characters from New York, who are tied to Peter Parker and Spider-Man in one way or another. Plus, the untold story of Spider-Man’s first meeting with Captain America is revealed, when both he and Captain America save the world from the Rogue Scholars.
Writers: Sean McKeever, Jim DeMatteis, Frank Tieri, Joe Casey, Marc Guggenheim, Karl Kesel, Kurt Busiek, Stan Lee
Pencillers: Stephanie Buscema, Val Semeiks, Eric Canete, Chad Hardin, Jim Mahfood, Sana Takeda, Paulo Siqueira, Pat Olliffe, Marcos Martin
Inkers: Dan Green, Wayne Faucher
Colours: Andres Mossa, Jeromy Cox, Justin Steward, Chris Sotomayor, Fabio Dauria, Steve Buccellato, Munsta Vincente
Letterers: Jared K. Fletcher, Dave Sharpe, VC’s Joe Caramagna, Comicraft
Collecting Material From: Amazing Spider-Man #634-645 and Annual #37 and Web of Spider-Man #1, #3-5 and #7-11
The first story, titled ‘Last stand of Frog-Man’ is quite funny. It tells of Frog-Man’s obsession with becoming Spider-Man’s sidekick. The childish art is charming and quirky. ‘Love and Marriage’ is a bit jarring and features aunt May on her honeymoon after her marriage to Jay. She writes to Peter, explaining how happy she is and how much fun her new husband is. The angle of this story is a bit mundane and sits uncomfortably within the collection. ‘Western Promises’ is a gangster tale which has really good pastel artwork but like many of these stories lacks context making it feel like it fell from the sky, diminishing the impact.
‘Nobody’ has more detail and context. It follows the Scarlet Spider as he tries to run away from his old life as Peter Parker’s clone. He hides in a small town and is unwittingly drawn back into his role as a crime fighter. This story has some of the best artwork in the collection, rich in colour and smooth line work. The drama in Jackpot’s tales weigh down the flow of the book as it may be a tad too dense next to the lightness of the other stories. The art is a great mix of water-colour and pastel.
‘The Spider-Man and the Shield’ is the focus point of the collection and features Spider-Man and Captain America’s first meeting. Humour is splashed throughout and the inclusion of the Rogue Scholars makes it all the more humorous. Dialogue and action are well-balanced and the art, with its strong composition and clever angles is the best in the book.
‘New York Stories’ is not as consistent as you would want though. Most of the stories lack context and the disparate nature of the book in terms of style and story makes it difficult to digest at times.
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