Um… I… uhhh… missed something.  So, apparently, the Ultimate Comics are having a crossover and Washington DC has been destroyed, the Southwest is under Sentinel control and Texas has seceded from the union.  Okay…

Captain America returns to the Triskelion and is stunned that there is a new thirteen year-old Spider-Man and that his allies have approved of this.

Miles, meanwhile, is traumatized by the death of his uncle, Aaron, also-known-as the villain The Prowler– a death that may have resulted from one of his spider powers.  (See last issue.)  Miles is staying at his parents’ house when his father “breaks” the news to him.  On the way to school, Miles and his friend Ganke see the Daily Bugle headline, “Spider-Man: Murderer?”  Ganke comments, “Washington DC’s gone… and this is the headline?!”  At school, they discuss what happened, when Judge, their third roommate who isn’t in on Miles’ secret walks up to them and they ask to be left alone, offending him.  Miles then gets a mysterious call asking him to meet at a secret location.

On his way, Miles finds himself battling Batroc the Leaper and his bungling henchmen.  After the battle, the police go after Miles, who uses his invisibility powers to escape.  He arrives at the meeting place and there are three shockers waiting for him.

Overall, this series is excellent and this issue maintains that level of quality, while suffering from crossover-itis.  It’s being dragged into this greater storyline, very tenuously, supposedly to drive sales, but the mentions of “Divided We Fall” seem shoe-horned.  There’s really no way that if Washington DC was destroyed and Texas had seceded that the headline of the Daily Bugle would be a condemnation of Spider-Man for killing a petty criminal!  Ganke’s comments in reference seem to only accentuate the fact that this was a forced tie-in.

But other than that, it’s another great issue.  The art by David Marquez carries on the overall look of the book, very clean and smooth.  The backgrounds alternate from ultra detailed with cool computer effects like blurring and ghosting to indicate windows, to completely blank.  It mixes things up nicely to keep things interesting.  The facial expressions are fantastic and there’s even some nice body language, that reflects the moods of the characters, tense at times, flaberghasted at others.

The dialogue is excellent with Miles starting to deliver the quips during his fight with Batroc, yet he clearly has a different voice than Peter Parker.  Miles has been a tad mopey up to this point, but we’re starting to see him really step into Peter’s webbed booties.

Verdict: Buy

Written by Brian Michael Bendis
Art by David Marquez
Cover by Jorge Molina