Writer: Jason Latour
Penciller: Robbi Rodriguez
Colorist: Rico Renzi
Letterer: VC’s Clayton Cowles
Release Date: 3/22/17
In the last issue Miles reunited with his father but lost Gwen. In this conclusion the two must find their way back to each other to defeat Scorpion.
Plot: As the conclusion of this crossover, Spider-Gwen #18 highlights the team-up potential of the two in stopping Scorpion. More so than focusing on the villain, or the reappearance of Miles’ dad, we get a better look into the multiverse and a future timeline that could impact Miles and Gwen as they move forward in their lives.
Story: If you look at this issue as just another Spider-Gwen installment and not a part of a crossover, it’s easier to enjoy. You get the same iconic Spider-Gwen humor and cultural references from Jason Latour as well as the joy of Spider-Gwen teaming up with Spider-Ham again (albeit from a slightly different timeline).
Seeing Gwen interact with her not-really-but-kind-of kids also provides some fun scenes (they must get their sass from their mom), but also adds an emotional nuance that’s mostly been given to Miles in this crossover. Gwen makes a plea for help, and it’s Earth-8 Gwen’s daughter who responds in reminding them all the importance of working together (Latour even adds a joke about being the “ultimate crossover”)
Showing Earth-8, where Miles and Gwen end up married with children, appeals to the fandom and ‘shippers but also somewhat derails the story from its original track.
Perhaps it was asking too much to get anything more from Scorpion than a one-dimensional villain of the week, but I continued to be disappointed by this aspect of the storyline. In fact, Scorpion has been so forgettable I had to go back and check his name twice because I couldn’t remember it. What started out as a search for Miles’ dad and then progressed into a fight against a new villain ended very anti-climatically. I enjoyed seeing yet another Spider team up, but it wouldn’t have hurt to raise the stakes of the plot that brought them all together.
Art: Rico Renzi continues to do a good job of differentiating the different Earths through using different color palettes. While Earth-8 doesn’t venture too far from the coloring of Gwen’s earth, there are subtle differences (lighter colors mixed in instead of the primarily black back drop against the neon shades) that signifies this is the brighter future utopia Spider-Ham refers to.
Robbi Rodriguez did an awesome job designing the costumes of Spider-Boy and Spider-Girl, pulling the more casual look of Gwen’s costume and mixing in the iconic red of Miles’ costume. Like mom and dad, they also have some great moves which he illustrates in the showdown with Scorpion.
I also really loved Gwen’s range of expression in this issue. Throughout this crossover she’s had to be the “strong” one because of what Miles was going through with his dad. Here we see Gwen show a little more vulnerability, whether it’s when she’s trying to get Miles back or facing their future together.
Of course, I’d be lying if I didn’t admit my favorite piece of art from this comic was the box of Groot Loops Max eats. If Marvel hasn’t already seriously considering making these, I hope they do. Also, Guardians of the Galaxy and Spider-Gwen crossover? Yes, please!
Verdict: Spider-Gwen #18 provided the fun and wit readers have grown accustomed to expecting from these Spider-crossovers. There were lots of references and jokes in the art and story sure to please, and we get a glimpse into what could be in the future for Gwen and Miles.
The main thing lacking was a satisfying resolution to the Scorpion plot. Something that was hyped as a threat to multiple Earths seemed way too easy to resolve. It seems unlikely it will be become a part of the ongoing Spider-Gwen plot, but I’m hoping we see more about the dangers of the inter-dimensional travel technology and how S.H.I.E.L.D handles it in Spider-Man.