When last we saw our hapless hero, his Spider Sense was doing a lot more than just tingling. He was captured by the third iteration of the Hobgoblin and taken to the Kingpin and given the once over with brass knuckles. Then there's the fact that he was guarded by the Hand, which is excessive since they didn't think he was Spider-Man. I mean, sure, he's been outed as "Spider-Man's tech guy" but that's different. So far, he's managed to survive possibly the largest set of super-villain waves he's seen in quite a while. His boss even came to his rescue in the last issue, which brings us to the here and now.
Dan Slott and Christos Gage have been doing an exceptional job writing what is probably Marvel's premier title. Slott already has nearly 2 years worth of experience writing the original Spidey book, and the assistance from Gage has certainly not hurt the book. The dialogue they've put in here is just classic wall crawler. The pacing is good and there are a few references to characters we haven't seen in a while. The full plot of the last few issues comes to a beautiful close here. There's definitely some great things coming from the look of it. There's no shortage of awesome to this script.
The art is still really good in this one. Giuseppe Camuncoli has brought his "A game" to the end of the story arc. There's certainly plenty of action, things going boom and just plain great things to illustrate. Dan Green and Dell's inks have helped cement the artwork thus far. The inks and Antonio Fabela's colors have given some extra dimension and nice shading to Camuncoli's colors. The colors, especially the somewhat muted bits on Spider-man's costume are pretty good. I lust like the art in this one all around. Every bit is wonderful and consistent, which really makes a difference.
The issue earns a 5, because there's nothing missing and above all, there are some added bonuses that really make it work as a story arc finale. If you're a Spider-Man fan, this issue is simply spectacular. I hear the next few will be as well, so this is certainly one to read.
Amazing Spider-Man #697
Writers: Dan Slott & Christos Gage
Pencils: Giuseppe Camuncoli
Inks: Dan Green and Dell
Colors: Antonio Fabela