Was It Worth It?: ‘Edge of Spider-Verse’

Will Rosenthal ‘16 / Emertainment Monthly Staff Writer

Cover art for Edge of Spider-Verse #2. Photo Credit: Marvel.
Cover art for Edge of Spider-Verse #2. Photo Credit: Marvel.

Welcome to Was it Worth it? A series where we examine recently concluded spin-offs, crossovers, and events and ask if you actually needed to collect every piece of the series. Should you have waited for the trade? Were the big reveals worth the build up? That’s where Was it Worth it? comes in.

With last week’s Amazing Spider-Man #9 beginning the Spider-Verse event, it’s time to put its forerunner, Edge of Spider-Verse, on trial with Was It Worth It?

The titles within Edge of Spider-Verse are typical comic book-style and are confusing to follow. The event includes its own labeled series, as well as Amazing Spider-Man, Spider-Man 2099, and even resurrects the Doc Oc/Spidey fronted Superior Spider-Man. ASM, SM2099, and SSM act as a framing device for the Edge series which introduces readers to new and recognizable variations on Marvel’s favorite web-head. All in all, the Edge event spanned ten issues, which is impressive for a prequel series. But does even the most committed Spidey fan have to pick up every one in anticipation for Spider-Verse?

The series starts with Superior Spider-Man #32, which actually takes place around the middle of the 31-issue series. Octavius ties desperately to stop the Horizon Labs reactor from overloading, but he ends up failing. The resulting implosion sends him out of time and places him in 2099. After discovering Miguel O’Hara’s lab, Superior Spider-Man quickly goes on a rampage around future New York, collecting parts to build a dimensional teleporter.

Accompanied by an AI resembling Anna Maria, Superior attempts to jump home, but finds himself in a parallel reality again and again, each with a dead Spider-Man. It seems something is picking off Spider-Men from the multiverse and devouring their essence. Superior’s plan: build an army of Spider-People and beat the crap out of what whatever it is.

It’s a solid plan, for sure, but mostly it’s a great opportunity to meet all kinds of Spiders. With the Edge books, different creative teams revive or create brand new Spider-People. This is the clincher of the event where readers are surprised to meet new and old faces. Spider-Man Noire returns and the appearance of Gwen Stacy as Spider-Woman are exciting for even the newest reader.

Meanwhile, the crossover issues follow the regular Spider-Men as they come to the identity of the group murdering their counterparts. Within Universe 000, a family of creatures who feed on spider-beings has developed the ability to travel to different universes to occupy their increasing appetites.

With new friends and enemies coming out of the woodwork, the future of the Spider-Verse crossover looks promising. Although, many of the characters introduced are done so in pretty gruesome stories. Cyborgs, eggs hatching in people’s skin, and carnivorous people-spider hybrids are commonplace. All of which are this reviewer’s least favorite of things. These factors can ruin a large portion of the event for some readers.

But the question must be answered: was it worth following this crossover before the crossover? Was Edge of Spider-Verse’s revelation worth following ten issues prior to the next inevitable set of issues? At the end of Amazing Spider-Man #8, after watching spiders come together from every which where, we get…Mayday Parker joining the other Spider-people.

So, was it worth it? No.

The biggest reveal in the series was by far Gwen Stacy. A revision such as that was so excellently handled that if any issue of this crossover should be remembered or picked up, it should be this one. However, the rest of the series can be condensed to a simple recruitment drive for a Spider army.

Emertainment gives Edge of Spider-Verse 2 out of 5 for being too drawn out and unrewarding for such a well written and visually diverse series. In addition, a high recommendation that if there is interest to purpose the event, find Gwen Stacy’s debut in Edge of Spider-Verse #2 as it’s not only the highpoint of the event, but a highlight of the Spider-Man mythos overall.

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  1. Nothing happened in the gwen stacy book. Superior spider-man issue 32 and 33 were the best part of edge of spider-verse. They could have been part one and two for the main series.

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