Review: The Spider #16
Richard Wentworth may be down, but he’s not out… not when the city still needs the Spider. With his eye on both a ring of crooked cops and a deadly gang uptown, The Spider sets up a carefully orchestrated scheme to take out two birds with one stone. But when an honest cop comes along for the ride, he’s got to protect the life of an innocent while making sure the guilty suffer.
The Spider has gotten pretty close to rock bottom with his money, friends, and network of helpers stripped away from him by the Fly. Trying to build himself back up, our hero runs into a new problem. The Spider returns this month with the 16th issue of the series written by David Liss with art from Ivan Rodriguez. Vinicius Andrade handles colors with Simon Bowland providing lettering. How does Richard Wentworth’s climb back to the top go this month?
Richard Wentworth is still The Spider, but he’s down to absolute basics as far as resources and assistance goes. In a state of continual hangover, Richard tries to track down this new villain on the block and put a stop to him. The Red Hand has hit our hero hard, and he has even bigger plans to torment the hero. Richard pulls Nita deeper and deeper into his web as he makes her do yet another favor at the expense of her husband, Commissioner Sloan. When The Spider finds himself face-to-face with The Red Hand’s hired help, he has quite a battle ahead of him. Nita also finds herself facing some music of her own making.
Liss writes an apt issue. We get a lot of development with the Nita story that has been playing out for the last while, and we see more of Richard’s decent into darkness. The Red Hand story seems to get tidied up rather quickly, which is surprising considering how he was set up last issue. The character still comes off unintentionally humorous with his “My mama said” talk reminiscent of Adam Sandler’s The Waterboy. It doesn’t help that he hires three absurd costumed thugs to help him deal with The Spider. Rodriguez’s art and Andrade’s colors are solid overall. Some things look a little too smooth and flat in the finished product, but the character work and action are presented well.
Bottom Line: The Spider continues to be a rather solid book. The Spider’s storyline is interesting and we’re about to get some real drama with Nita. Hopefully we haven’t seen the last of The Red Hand’s plan though. 3/5