Fear Itself: Spider-Man #2 Review

Posted by Spiderfan001 10 June 2011

It's gonna be a long night...
The Story

John Russell found a man rummaging through the alley of his house, and overtaken by the fear, thought that this man was sent by the bank to take away his house. John brings the man into his house and points his gun at him. Meanwhile, Karen Anderson managed to find a cab to take her to the NYU Medical Centre to have her baby. Unfortunately, her driver abandons her in the chaos. In Times Square, Norah Winters is out covering what is happening to the city for the Daily Bugle. She tells herself she is not afraid.

Spider-Man wakes up in an alley covered in rats and being attacked by Vermin. Spidey is nearly killed by the creature but is rescued by Robert Christansen (the jumper Spidey saved last issue) who is able to distract Vermin long enough for Spidey to put him down.
John shot the innocent man he had brought into his house. Norah is starting to get paranoid, thinking that everyone around her is part of Norman Osborn's goblin cult.

Spidey visits Mayor J. Jonah Jameson, who to his surprise has not been overcome by the fear. After receiving a "pep talk" from J.J., Spider-Man continues to do all he can to help people.

John, Karen and Norah all converge upon St. Mark's Church. Norah is the first to arrive, and after she has a brief conversation with the Priest, John walks in brandishing his gun. Spider-Man arrives and tries to talk John down, telling him that the man he shot is still alive. In the end, it is the Priest who successfully gets John to calm down and give up his weapon. Spidey and Norah walk outside the church, where they find Karen passed out on the steps. As Spider-Man swings Karen to the hospital, the Thing picks up the hammer that fell on Yancy Street...


The highlight of this issue for me was the Spider-Man/J.J. encounter. That Jonah was able to overcome fear by finding strength in his son's example speaks volumes about the strength of both characters, and I loved that Spider-Man was inspired by this to find strength in the example his Aunt has always set for him. Some great character work by Chris Yost here.

The church scene was also well done. This series has managed to explore the human element of Fear Itself in a way that the main series has neglected. That the Priest was the one who was able to get John to calm down speaks to the power that faith can have over fear. Showing people of different faiths all praying together was also a nice touch. On the other hand, Vermin's involvement added nothing to the story aside from giving Spidey an obligatory fight scene.

Fear Itself: Spider-Man is a solid tie-in book that takes a look at the events of Fear Itself from a street level perspective, which is really what a Spider-Man tie-in should do. Next issue promises to intersect directly with the main series as Spidey takes on a Serpent controlled Thing. Looking forward to it.

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