REVIEW: ‘Deadly Neighborhood Spider-Man,’ Issue #2

Reading Time: 2 minutes

Deadly Neighborhood Spider-Man #2

Deadly Neighborhood Spider-Man #2 is written by B. Earl and Taboo, illustrated and colored by Juan Ferreyra, and lettered by VC’s Travis Lanham. It’s published by Marvel Comics. Peter Parker’s trip to Los Angeles has been plagued by vivid nightmares — culminating in the return of the Demon Bear. The Bear tells Peter that the experiments he’s been conducting have weakened the barrier between the physical and spiritual worlds and that he has three days to defeat it. If he wins, the world is safe. If not…mankind is trapped in an endless nightmare.

The idea of Spider-Man fighting a massive demonic entity might sound out of left field at first, but Earl and Taboo manage to make it work. They do so by tying Peter Parker’s scientific acumen to the mystical crisis, giving him a reason to get involved and pitting him against an unknown threat. I like it when heroes face off against villains that aren’t usually in their wheelhouse, as it opens up plenty of storytelling possibilities. After all, the best Spider-Man stories often pit him against a threat that’s way out of his weight class — what fits that description better than a literal demon bear?

The writers also continue to infuse Indigenous myth into the story, opening with a folktale about the coyote and his friend Iktomi, aka the Spider-Man. Said story ends with an important lesson about respecting the Earth and the dangers that’ll happen if you don’t. This ties into the main story, as Peter’s experiments have caused a great disturbance to the Earth that only he can fix. Peter also continues to rely on his friend Crystal Catawnee for help, both in the scientific and spiritual realms. This book should be a prime example of how writers from different backgrounds can offer fresh new stories to icons like Spider-Man.

Artwise, Ferrerya continues to deliver some seriously twisted imagery. Spidey is stuck in his “nightmare” form more and more as the issue goes on, and he continues to see disturbing visions, including a raven bursting out of his coffee. But the real star of the issue is the Demon Bear. Ferrerya draws it as a hulking mass of fur and fangs, with burning red eyes and a malevolent stare. And what sells the otherworldly vibe of the Bear is how it speaks. Lanham depicts the Bear as speaking an otherworldly language, more like a set of pictures than actual words. These images are similar to cave paintings; if readers look closely, they can see the events playing out as Spidey describes them. It’s a nice visual touch that continues to touch on the Indigenous roots of the creators while also showcasing how terrifying the Demon Bear really is.

Deadly Neighborhood Spider-Man #2 finds the web-slinger fighting to stop the world from sinking into a living nightmare. Its supernatural storytelling and trippy imagery make it one of the best Marvel comics on the stands and continue a trend of Spider-Man stories delving deep into the psychedelic realm.

Deadly Neighborhood Spider-Man #2 is available now wherever comics are sold.


Deadly Neighborhood Spider-Man #2
4.5

TL;DR

Deadly Neighborhood Spider-Man #2 finds the web-slinger fighting to stop the world from sinking into a living nightmare. Its supernatural storytelling and trippy imagery make it one of the best Marvel comics on the stands and continue a trend of Spider-Man stories delving deep into the psychedelic realm.

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