Review by: comicBOOKchris

What did the
community think?

Avg Rating: 4.0
Users who pulled this comic:
Story by Dan Slott
Art by Humberto Ramos & Carlos Cuevas
Colors by Edgar Delgado
Letters by Joe Caramagna
Cover by Paulo Siquiera

Size: pages
Price: 2.99

Prior to the release of Amazing Spider-Man 654.1, we were 1 for 2
with the Marvel “Point 1” issues. Invincible Iron Man 500.1, while
boasting a strong soliloquy-of-sorts from Tony Stark, didn’t quite
strike me as new reader friendly (which is the point of all these
issues). The entire issue was pretty much a slide show of the history of
Iron Man with Tony giving a vague running commentary in the form of a
Alcoholics Anonymous speech. While all the references were fine for all
those already familiar with the history, the entire issue came off like
an inside joke for new readers. Wolverine 5.1 was a much better fare, as
it perfectly encapsulated everything that is right with Jason Aaron’s
Wolverine stories for the uninitiated. It was a done-in-one story
featuring zany action and characters (cannibals who use bone guns that
shoot teeth bullets), as well as the best take on Wolverine’s character
that I have seen in awhile.

This week we have Amazing Spider-Man 654.1,
and it’s a bit of a different beast than what has been previously
released under the Point 1 initiative. In this issue, we see the start
of a new side storyline with Secret Agent Venom’s first mission. In
issue 654, we saw that the military has possession of the Venom symbiote
and intends to bond it with wetwork soldiers. The current host? None
other than Flash Thompson (not a spoiler, since it was revealed in the
last issue). This issue focused entirely on Flash’s first outing with
the Vemon suit, and only mentioned the main story going on in Amazing Spider-Man
in passing. This is nothing new, as side stories in the Spider-Man
universe have routinely been published as one shots and mini series
since the start of the Brand New Day relaunch (The Extra! issues, the
Jackpot mini, the Osborn mini, etc…). This issue is a testament to how
the Brand New Day relaunch made the Spider-Man comics 100 times
stronger, since we have issues like this that expand the characters
& mythos and introduce new elements to the stories. While
superpowered wetworks are certainly nothing new to comics, this Secret
Agent Venom story looks to be entertaining and a nice addition to the
Spider-Man line. Last but not least, we are treated to Humberto Ramos’
hyper-kinetic art which makes the action pop just like it did in the
recent Spider-Man issues. Unlike those issues, however, Ramos’ art is
inked much heavier and seems a little more sketchy to match the darker
tone of this story. It fits like a glove. A very fun done-in-one issue.
Consider the Marvel Point One issues 2 for 3.

Story: 4 - Very Good
Art: 4 - Very Good


  1. Hmmm…I’ve been reading Amazing Spider-Man since Civil War and totally LOVED Brand New Day. This issue was hort ordered by my LCS and the single copy that came in this week sold before I could get it but then I started hearing it wasn’t much of a read…
    …Until I read this. I know it focuses on the new Venom more than Spider-Man but if a fellow fan of BND thinks it’s worth reading then i’ll grab my copy when more arrive next week!

  2. I thought it was ok, and I kind of liked that slightly sketchier Ramos art.  The only downside is that while I like the use of Flash, I’m not sure I buy him in the secret agent episodes.  I know he’s meant to be new at it, but having heard Remender’s intention to make him the James Bond of the MU, I’m not sure it’s quite going to work….still, it’s Remender, and if anyone can make it work it’s him.  I just try to remember how good Frankencastle was.

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