Review by: comicBOOKchris

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Avg Rating: 3.4
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Size: pages
Price: 3.99

I’ve never read the original Clone Saga.

Sure, I know the basic plot of it and know of the behind-the-scene debacle behind its publication, but I’ve never plopped down any of my hard earned cash to pick up the back issues or trades. I suppose that the stigma behind the arc being “everything that is wrong with comics” and “the story that almost killed interest in Spider-Man” had something to do with my decision. Crazy, right? Despite this, the core concept always stuck me as kind of interesting and not too off the deep end, since there are definitely more inane and stupifying stories out there. So when I heard that Marvel was releasing a mini series that portrays the original intent of the Clone Saga, with one of its original writers and told in a number of issues that is a fraction of the original saga, I was pretty intrigued. After all, Spider-Man is one of my favorite characters, and I feel compelled to read about a major part of his past without buying all the much fanagled back issues or solely relying on Wikipedia.

So after an apology-of-sorts from writer Tom DeFalco, we’re given a recap of past events of Spidey history that had lead up to this saga. After reading this recap, I couldn’t help but laugh hysterically to myself due to how zany these old Spider-Man stories were. From Harry Osborn plotting from the grave to Peter Parker’s robot parents, it seems that the old 90’s Spider-Man stories were worse than soap opera stories on industrial strength crack. As ridiculous as these past events are, DeFalco does a decent job in dropping us in on that point in history. From there, the main story is set up and we are introduced to the infamous Ben Reilly and given his history. I was suprised by how steamlined this whole process was, since Ben Reilly is often synonymous with convoluted and complicated storytelling. Since DeFalco is cutting the Clone Saga fat with a chainsaw, we see that Ben’s origins and backstory are actually quite simple (for a superhero comic, that is.). The remainder of this issue is basically a set-up for the entire saga, as well as showing Ben and Peter’s first meeting. The plot wheels are only slowly turning at the moment, but with the way the story is moving, I’m sure we’ll delve headfirst into the heart of the story with the next issue.

The art of this issue was fine, not much to complain about. Everything was compentantly drawn, though I think it would have been quite novel to have the art mimic the art seen in the 90’s, with the style of drawing and inking that was done back then. It’s not really a complaint, but it would have been cool to see since the script is taking us back to the 90’s, it would be cool for the art to do the same.

A good start to a promising looking mini series, Spider-Man: Clone Saga #1 is a fun issue that can be read by anyone, whether they’re a Spider-Man newbie or one that’s curious about this specific storyline like I am. There has been much belly aching about how the Clone Saga was forced into becoming crappy from the editors and that the final product wasn’t the intended story. Well now DeFalco has the chance to put his money where his mouth is with this mini series. Don’t screw up! 

Story: 3 - Good
Art: 3 - Good


  1. Actually, I think Nauck is trying for a ‘90’s Mark Bagley look in this comic.  My only problem (other than “American Idol” anachronistically being mentioned) is that Mary Jane’s hair is not nearly big enough!  In the ‘90’s comic pencilers (especially Jim Lee) were drawing all hot women with big hair a la Julia Roberts’ hair in “Pretty Woman,” which came out in 1986.

  2. I didnt mind the American Idol reference. That show premiered about 7 years ago, and was always popular when it was on. As you know, Marvel characters dont age like us, so I figure that when you plug all the variables into the Big Marvel Chronology Machine, events that took place 13 years ago (when this story first debuted) actually took place around 7 years ago, making that reference not too much of a far cry.


    Of course, I can be putting to much thought into this…

  3. This issue has me on the fence.  It is cool to see kaine and reilly back.  But it seemed like the story was really rushed.  Too much happened in one issue.  I wish they could do this thing in a 12 issue series as opposed to the 6 issue mini.  Just my personal opinion. 

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