Don’t Miss: David Lapham and Tony Harris on SPIDER-MAN: WITH GREAT POWER

There are so many mini-series and one off titles that get hurled at us every week by the comics publishers, how can you be sure something is worth your time, and more importantly, your money? There’s a certain amount of gambling involved in picking whether or not to pick up a title. For me, It’s one part characters, one part creators.

This week, there’s a title that hits in both areas from the Marvel Knights line: Spider-Man: With Great Power #1 comes out this Wednesday and it features David Lapham (Stray Bullets) writing and Tony Harris (Ex Machina) drawing.

If the “Days” of Spider-Man are getting you down, you may dig this turn back the clock tale.
Similar to the recent Silver Surfer: Requiem and Captain America: The Chosen, Spider-Man: With Great Power is a story set outside of the main continuity of Spider-Man. It’s a turn back the clock tale, as Lapham and Harris explore the time period Spider-Man spends after he bitten by that radioactive spider that gives him his powers and before Uncle Ben dies. In the original appearance/origin tale of Spider-Man in the pages of Amazing Fantasy #15, this period of Peter Parker’s life is told in barely a couple of panels. Peter gets his powers, and then gains national celebrity and attention as a wrestler/performer. But then Uncle Ben is killed by a criminal Spider-Man let get away, and he learns the hard lesson that with great power comes great responsibility. But if you think about it, that time period that’s glossed over could be a pretty cool story. So cool in fact that I’m surprised it took over 40 years for someone to tell it.

David Lapham has come up in conversation quite a bit in the past few weeks. I’ve always been a big fan of his work, discovering him through his creator owned work on Stray Bullets, Murder Me Dead and more recently, Silverfish. Recently, he’s been working more and more for the big 2 publishers. He did a stint over in the Batman books that Conor claims was unreadable because it was so bad. And while I thought his Punisher Vs. Bullseye series at Marvel would have been a slam dunk, it didn’t really impress me. So his ability to write characters that he hasn’t created is still up in the air. But I’m ever the optimist, and when I’m a fan of someone, I try to be loyal and give them the benefit of the doubt. Given how cool this concept is, I hope this is the series that Lapham pulls off and shows how good of a creator I think he is.

If Lapham’s writing on this book is indeed crap, I still think it will be worth reading. You know why? Well I’m assuming you’ll be able to guess as you read this and look at the art included here. Yep, Tony Harris. If you’re reading Ex Machina from Wildstorm/DC, written by Brian K. Vaughan, then you don’t need me to tell you how great of an artist Harris is. He started off strong on Ex Machina, the tale of New York City mayor with powers, and has just gotten better and better as he experiments with everything from layouts to the coloring of the book. I haven’t seen Harris on anything other than Ex Machina in a few years, so I was excited to see this most recent work coming from Marvel.

I think it’s really special when you see an artist doing amazing work, and you think about what characters you’d like to see him or her on and then they do work on a character you never even thought to pair them with and it just blows you away. That’s exactly what happened to me with this preview art. Click on any of these images and just LOOK at his Spider-Man! Isn’t it just fantastic? It’s clean and elegant and delivers the character in a meaningful, toned and realistic manner unlike anyone I’ve seen draw Spider-Man in a long time (with the exception of Steve McNiven recently on Amazing Spider-Man). Sometimes, when I get bored at work, I just pull up this art because it instantly inspires me. A bit much, I know, but it really did impress me.

I didn’t pick up Silver Surfer: Requiem and while I’m reading Captain America: The Chosen, it’s definitely for Mitch Breitweiser’s art and not the story. I’m still not sure about the direction the Marvel Knights line is going in (ugh, I just remembered Spider-Man: Reign, ick ick) But with Spider-Man: With Great Power it’s a combination of writer and artist that I can’t pass up and I strongly recommend you don’t pass it up either. This could be one of those special series. At least I hope it is, so don’t miss out!

Spider-Man: With Great Power #1 is the first issue of a 5 issue mini series scheduled to ship this Wednesday from Marvel Comics and has a cover price of $3.99.

Comments

  1. Tony Harris art? I’m in. OMD (thats One More Day, not Orchestral Maneuvers in the Dark) be damned!

  2. G’day Ron,

    So I

  3. It looked like a “maybe” until I saw the $3.99 price. OUCH! No thank you.

  4. Definitely looking forward to this one – Lapham and Harris on the same book, and it’s Spider-Man no less? Color me sold.

  5. I saw the solicit for this book a few months ago and knew that I would immediately be buying it. It could read like complete garbage, but I’m all in for seeing Tony Harris draw Spider-Man. I miss his super hero stuff.

  6. I’m down 100%. If it isn’t very good, though, I’m not sure I’ll complete the series at $3.99 an issue.

  7. I am hopping from foot to foot in excitement for this to be released. I miss Tony Harris ever since I switched to trades for Ex Machina, and the central premise of this series is so simple I cannot believe nobody’s thought of it before. What was that Douglas Adams quote? “Genius is being the only person to come up with the idea that any idiot could have come up with”?

  8. Tony Harris’ art looks a hell of a lot better than McNiven’s.

  9. This will actually be the first Spider-Man comic I’ve bought in a couple years now. I don’t know how anyone can pass up on a series teaming up Lapham and Harris. I just hope that extra dollar on the price means there’s added pages. I don’t really see any book with SPIDER-MAN in the logo pre-ordering so low as to have to just tack that on to make money back…

  10. This was so bad I had to come back to this anticipation post to say so. So. So so bad. For the exact reasons feared, Lapham shows no understanding of the character. At all. Having not read his run on Batman, I thought for sure Conor had to be giving him to hard a time. No. No not hard enough. It was an absolute mess.

    So bad I want to do physical harm to the book but can’t bring myself to do so because of Harris’ fantastic art. In fact, the art was so enjoyable I would continue to buy the mini if it was at the 3 dollar mark.