Scarlet Spiders # 1 review
Spider-Verse: The Widow
This issue takes place after the events of Amazing Spider-Man # 10, following, Ben Reilly, Kaine and Ultimate Jessica Drew ( Clone). When we last saw them, they jumped into the portal where Daemos' second body came from along with the twin inheritors. Realizing that the second Daemos body must have been a clone, they, being clones themselves felt the need to stop the cloning, to increase their odds of winning the fight against these inheritors.
The three however are shocked to see that the world from which the evil inheritors came from was peaceful, orderly, and beautiful. Ben, being pretty much a perfect clone of Peter is obviously the more carefree, fun loving one of the three. He immediately wants to check out this new world, but is stopped by Jess, who reminds him that they are in their Spider Suits.
While Ock's cloaking device can hide their scent, their costumes would be noticed by anyone looking for them. Kaine finds some hospital gowns for his two siblings. He doesn't need a costume since his costume can go invisible.
While Jess questions at first if Kaine's costume can cloak his stronger pheromone smell, Ben, being the Spider-Man of his world assures her that if Kaine's suit is anything like the suit he made on his world, Kaine should be fine.
The clones find themselves in some sort of cloning facility where human clones ( not inheritors) are being made. They are also being brainwashed by a repeating visual recording of Jennix, leader of the Inheritors. The clones are soon discovered however, and end up having to fight some heavily armored security force.
After a lengthy battle, with each using their individually unique skills and abilities to fight the security forces, Iron Man appears at the scene. Ben is at first delighted to see him, not at all aware that this is not a friendly Iron Man. Jess immediately realizes the danger but is unable to alert Ben before Tony attacks him, knocking him out. Kaine, being invisible later attacks Tony and knocks him out with ease.
The scene changes to Jennix, who is naturally sitting in his evil chair, just like all bad guys often do. He is delighted at the news that there there is spider activity in numbers, thinking to himself what a great feast he will have.
Ben awakens, after a few hours, to find that Jessica had removed Tony's armor (having been taught by her Iron Man how to remove his armor) and tied him up. Ben, refusing to give up on Tony tries to talk some sense into him, but soon realizes that it is pointless.
Kaine is willing to try other methods to get Tony to talk and spill the location of the Inheritor;s clone incubators. No torture is necessary however as Tony gladly reveals that the place they are looking for is the Baxter Building, convinced that they will die there.
Things take a slight turn however when Johnny Storm comes in, recognizing Peter Parker ( Kaine actually), and begins asking Iron Man ( Ben) what's going on.
This was a great team up issue for the clones. It has been years since we saw any form of proper interaction between Ben and Kaine. Unfortunately, this issue, though featuring the two, did not have the kind of interaction I was looking for. The star of this issue was obviously Jessica Drew of the Ultimate Universe.
While Kaine was often portrayed and the almost mindless bloodthirsty beast/ muscle of the team, and Ben portrayed as the easy going fun guy, Jessica seemed to be the only character representing some brains in the team.
One thing that I did not quite like about the issue was how Ben was portrayed to be a dumb ass. He somehow was unable to come up with any useful plans, was unable to sense any danger, got knocked out by Iron Man after one shot, and simply blundered around the place following his team mates. Being the perfect clone, I suppose he was supposed to represent the embodiment of everything good in Peter Parker, which he does perfectly. Unfortunately it makes him look a little silly in the process.
This may have to do with the title being Widow, implying that the main character, who's abilities would probably be most highlighted and written to be most useful would be Jessica Drew. Perhaps, and hopefully the second and third issue will focus more on the usefulness of Kaine and Ben in the story.
In the earlier issues, we saw familiar characters whom we know in the inheritors world, just being portrayed very differently. In this issue we saw Tony Stark and Johnny Storm, both who seem to be working for the bad guy as well. Up to this point, the clones think that everyone in this world are clones, brainwashed and taught to serve the inheritors without question.
It will probably come as no surprise that the rest of the Fantastic Four will also appear, seeing that it is the Baxter Building that they have broken into.
Also, seeing that everyone in this world seems to be working for the inheritors, it's quite likely that even the Peter Parker of this world is also working for Jennix, explaining why Johnny would be so surprised to see him ( actually Kaine) in captivity.
Finally, throughout the entire issue, there is a mystery narrator, observing and commenting on each of the three clones, pointing out their skills, abilities, past, and weaknesses. It may be the Master Weaver, but up to this point, we are still unsure of who this narrator is...
Then again, I might have missed an obvious clue about the identity of the person.