SPIDER-MAN: HOMECOMING PRELUDE #1
Writer: Will Corona Pilgrim
Penciller: Todd Nauck
Colorist: Vero Gandini
Letterer: VC’s Travis Lanham
Release Date: 3/1/17
Plot: Have you seen Captain America: Civil War? Great, you already know the entire plot of this comic. If not, the gist is the Avengers have split into two sides, disagreeing on whether the government should have control over the Avengers. Tony Stark seeks extra help from your friendly neighborhood Spider-Man.
Story: You have to hand it to Will Corona Pilgrim for giving you what you want upfront: to see more of the lovable, albeit a little goofy, Peter Parker that debuted in Captain America: Civil War. Talking to himself? Check. Talking too much? Check. Ridiculous costume? Check. All of the things that made Peter Parker a breakout in the film are present early in the comic. It’s the perfect combination of action and humor, the very things we expect from this new Spider-Man.
The few new scenes that are added to the comic do a great job of characterizing Peter. He is powerful, but still unsure of himself. He knows the weight of his responsibility, but isn’t quite sure what he’s doing. He is protective of Aunt May, who is all he has.
Unfortunately for this issue, that’s the extent of the new content we see. For the most part, the script of this comic is picked up from the movie script verbatim. And, don’t get me wrong, it’s a great story, but it’s hard to say much about a story that is old news. The scenes between Peter and Tony Stark are great, but trying to squeeze in so much plot into a few pages works to this comic’s detriment. Even more unfortunate, it takes away the focus from Spider-Man in a prelude that is supposed to be about his story.
Art: It was hard to not want to compare the art frame by frame with the movie, but judging it on its own led to a much more enjoyable experience. Todd Nauck does an excellent job capturing some of the intense action sequences. In fact, I thought the panel where Wanda blows up the building was just as, if not more, compelling in comic form than live-action.
I also really enjoyed seeing Spider-Man swinging through the streets of New York City in his pre-Avengers costume. Contrasting the goofy outfit with the real danger Spider-Man faces reminds you that while he’s just a kid the stakes are still real.
While there are some nods to the physical appearance of the actors from the film, the characters are for the most part their own. It’s hard to forget you’ve seen this story before, but the artist does his best to make it his own rather than just an illustrated version of the film. The characters are expressive, allowing the dialogue that was delivered so well in the film to have the same emotional punch on the page. This is especially true in the scenes between Peter and Tony.
Verdict: Maybe the second issue of Spider-Man: Homecoming Prelude will offer more tie-ins to the upcoming film, but this issue is barely more than a Captain America: Civil War rehash. While we know the upcoming Spider-Man film isn’t intended to be an origin story, it would have been nice to see more of Peter’s backstory in this comic rather than wasting it on events we already know about.