Amazing Spider-Man #54

Writer: Nick Spencer
Artist: Mark Bagley
Colors: Edgar Delgado
Letterer: VC’s Joe Caramagna

Release date December 9 2020
Review by D. Brown (WolfCypher)

Well, now. Peter Parker is officially caught up with the rest of us. Kindred’s true face is known to him, and its Harry Osborn (YOU HEAR THAT JIM?!! @weirdsciencemarvel). Now with that out of the way, Peter and Harry can have their next big reveal of the arc…the “how”s…the “why”s…

…or the “nopes”.

You see, this marvelously drawn issue of Last Remains only has a few issues remaining and some big questions are still being left for last. Everything looks like things are going to circle back to Peter’s very irresponsible decision to make a deal with Mephisto from all the way back to Amazing Spider-Man’s “One More Day” story, but we’ve still haven’t outright said it in the context of the story. Its being heavily alluded to for us, the reader, but its still hasn’t been spelled out to Peter, if this is what’s being alluded toward. Peter has committed a sin, and those sins are going to continue to harm those around him, at least as Harry sees it.

Incidentally, while trapped in the “other realm” with Harry, Peter can only watch helplessly at the events that have transpired since he’s been away, including the return of Morlun, and the incoming ambush of the Sin-Eater on the Spider-Friends (Miles, Jessica, Julia, “a Gwen Stacy”, etc.). Now, even Mary Jane is in danger.

This issue offers more of what we had in issue 52. In fact, it felt like I was reading a repeat of issue 52 but with Bagley art (I think I meant to type “better art”, but I did like the art in 52…). Let’s have it then: Spidey and Kindred fight each other for several pages inside the nether-astral-realm. Spider-Man gives Kindred a huge beatdown that proves to do nothing. Kindred returns the favor and brutalizes Spidey physically. Yeah…and Spidey is forced to watch all his friends either harming others, or in harms way, begging Kindred to do something to stop this.

Its basically issue 52.

But its still a good issue to look at. But here lies my problem. Last Remains (the exception being this previous “decimal point LR” issue) has been getting on very well by its story and the implications surrounding the story. This issue doesn’t have those strengths. All this issue has is more of the same and some great art. We are closing end fast on the final “real” issue (if you aren’t including those point LR companion stories for whatever reason) and I’m hoping we get solid closure on everything. So far, we have not only Peter and Harry/Kindred to resolve, but also the origin behind how he became Kindred, and what the full scope of his machinations are, plus Morlun is back, and now there’s a story brewing that will bring the Sin-Eater, all the Spiderlings, and Mary Jane into shared proximity, and I have to ask are we done with Norman? In fact, the last time we saw Mary Jane, she was with Norman and Doctor Kafka at Ravencroft. There are some details missing from this story, because why is Mary Jane arriving at this graveyard where everyone else is converging? I guess I should see if the next point LR issue covers that…oh, and we also have Doctor Strange out there somewhere. There’s a lot left to cover, and I hope the next issue can wrap everything up and together neatly. This story has been great and it deserves better than a rushed and incomplete ending.

I didn’t hate this issue, or even anything close to disliking it, but its a little too far gone to start dragging its feet and spinning it’s wheels with the important bits. While Peter may have gained new information, the secret identity of his grim foe, I felt like nothing new was learned from this issue. Once again, it feels like the most important pieces on the board hardly moved anywhere, but this time even the pawns progressed very little. This story has not lost me, and maybe this is just the final calm.

Final Thoughts

This issue delivers a Spider-Man/Kindred face-to-face I swear we’ve already experienced earlier in the arc, but with the added benefit of being drawn by Mark Bagley. no new answers are revealed or even hinted at, but thankfully no new questions arise either. It’s a bit of a stalemate issue, stalling the story while hyping up its upcoming final issues.


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