Superior Spider-Man #3 Review

Writer: Christos Gage
Art Team: Mike Hawthorne, Wade von Grawbadger, Jordie Bellaire
Cover Price: $3.99
Release Date: February 27, 2019

Otto Octavius, now known as Elliot Tolliver, has located out to San Francisco and finds himself in a fight for his life against Terrax, while also being in a fight for his rights (to be a hero) against Anna Maria. So does the self-proclaimed Superior Spider-Man has what it takes to stave off both threats to his well being while keeping his good streak intact?  Let’s discuss.

The last issue concluded with Anna Maria setting aside her better judgment, by enlisting the Night Shift to help her, help Superior Spider-Man not die, at the hands of Terrax.  While the attempt was successful, resulting in Otto now having half of the Power Cosmic, it can’t leave Anna feeling too comfortable with her lingering reservations about Otto, as she looks on to the fight at hand.

Things aren’t quite that simple though at the start here, as even only a half powered up Terrax is still quite a threat, and Otto finds out his confidence boost, that comes with the power-up, is short lived.  Anna Maria once again seeing Otto in trouble, springs back into action, this time calling on the Living Brain to scan Terrax’s Ax. This information eventually gets relayed to Otto, who in turn uses what is found out to gain the upper hand on Terrax once again.

Now I usually have a problem when an issue almost singularly revolves around one fight, but here Christos Gage does a great job of squeezing some character moments in too, that ultimately leave you feeling good about where these characters stand going forward by the time the book concludes.  Sure Otto, or I mean Elliot, eventually wins the day, returns the power back to the Cosmic Harness, and Terrax is whisked off to be handled by Alpha Flight, but there is some genuinely good characterization involving our stars that sell everything that occurs. I don’t entirely want to spoil what those revelations would be here, but they certainly make me appreciate the spin on this title, which gives it some needed separation from the previous Superior Spider-Man series, making it not just another retelling of what we’ve already seen.

Final Thoughts:

Overall, Superior Spider-Man was my ‘Spider book’ of the week, moving the story forward in a nice three-issue arc that brought some great character moments to the table for both Anna and Otto, while also delivering a satisfying conclusion to the events with Terrax.  The art duties handled by Mike Hawthorne add some grittiness to the title, making it stand out from the other Spider-books, like Amazing and Miles for example, while adding to the story at hand being told at the same time.  Superior Spider-Man seems poised to take Otto into different directions than he was previously headed in his first go around as the character and I’m here for it.


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