Return of the Hobgoblin(s)
By: Andrew Hines
With two and half months to go before the end of Amazing Spider-Man at #700, there really aren't any punches being pulled on this one. There've been some big changes in the least few months on ASM, but some of the biggest were Peter's "nobody dies" rule that he's been strictly enforcing wherever he goes. He thought he'd let himself down with Silver Sable's apparent death until the new Madame Web told him otherwise. Then there was the super-douche sidekick, Alpha and thankfully that didn't turn out at all. Now the original Hobgoblin is back as is the third iteration who now works for Kingpin. Also, Madame Web/Julia Carpenter has been getting odd prophetic dreams of the world changing *spoiler alert* Marvel NOW! *end spiller alert*.
Dan Slott has done a great job on the last couple years of writing Amazing Spider-Man. The fact that the title is soon coming to a screeching halt hasn't deterred him from putting out great material. Getting help from Christos Gage on this issue didn't hurt. It actually gave us more awesomeness. We get more Peter Parker this issue, which I really liked. Seeing how he deals with his world beginning to unravel certainly doesn't hurt the story, in fact it makes it far more interesting. The inclusion of two different Hobgoblins is great as is Peter's visit to the Daily Bugle. I really can't find much of anything in the script that didn't work. Way to go, folks.
Giuseppe Camuncoli's pencils are a nice change of pace from Humberto Ramos' pencils in the last arc. Likewise with Dan Green's inks and Antonio Fabela's colors. The inks are good and clean and the color are more subdued, which I think works better than the overly contrasted work that some colorists go for. The title page (pg 3) and the spread on pgs 17 & 18 are the best examples of the spectacular work this team has done.
This is a better issue than the ones before in many aspects and as such, earns an "A-". The only thing stopping it from being a solid "A" or an "A+" is that it sort of feels like it's borrowing from DC on the double-page spread: dWLuh.jpg.