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Comic Book Review: Avenging Spider-Man #14

When I was a kid, there were two monthly comics I loved.  As most of my readers know, my favorite comic was and still is Amazing Spider-Man.  The other one that I loved as a kid was  Marvel Team Up, which was a book where Spider-Man teamed up with someone else in the Marvel Universe. At this time, Spidey was not a member of any team (how times have changed). Marvel Team Up ended and restarted several times over the years. At times, it seemed that I was in the minority with my love for this book

Avenging Spider-Man is a team up book that has focused on the Web Head joined forces with various Avengers.  But times appear to be changing.  This issue, #14, of Avenging Spidey does not have him with an Avenger.  It has a Marvel Team Up feel to this issue.

Credits:
Avenging Spider-Man-Issue # 14
Marvel Comics
Writer: Cullen Bunn
Artist:Gabreile Dell’Otto
Colorist: Dommo Aymara
Letters: VC’s Joe Caramagna
Cover Art: Gabreile Dell’Otto
Price: $3.99

Plot: (Plot Spoilers)
At the start of this issue, Spidey is in the middle of the Savage Lands fighting off dinosaurs.  As the issue goes on, we learn how the Wall Crawler ended up in the Savage Lands.  The dinosaurs are being control by some outside force. Devil Dinosaur, a giant red T-Rex with the intelligence level of men, and his friend Moon Boy, a Neanderthal, comes to Spider-Man’s rescue.

Devil Dinosaur was a Jack Kirby creation of the late 70s. Spider-Man has a misunderstanding with Moon Boy and Devil Dinosaur which leads to a small battle. They clear up the misunderstanding and join forces.  This is typical plot device of the late 70’s Marvel Team Up comics and fits perfectly with the Devil Dinosaur era.

This comic is a two part story and leaves the reader with a cliffhanger.

Review:
Art:
The art is vibrant and exciting. Many of the panels jump right off the page at you. The dinosaurs are magnificently drawn with great details. I am not familiar with Dell’Otto’s art but I was impressed with it in this comic book.  The double page spread on the last pages was fantastic.

The coloring is spot on by Aymara. Most of the characters are brightly colored and pop out at you while the backgrounds of the Savage Lands are fairly bland as they should be. I really like change in color tone for the flashback scenes.  This clarifies that these pages are not set in present time.

Caramagna has become a standard bearer in lettering for Marvel. For me, if the lettering flows and doesn’t stand out, then enhances the experience. Caramagna always does this perfectly.

Story/Plot:
This story was a fun ride from the first panel to the last.  Spidey, dinosaurs of all varieties begin mind controlled, and the awesome 70’s Devil Dinosaur and Moon Boy are ingredients for a great time. Bunn takes the ingredients and makes a action packed adventure which is a pure 70’s nostalgic ride.

The plot moves along nicely while developing conflict and excitement. Spider-Man is in danger the entire issue which can be difficult to do.

My REVIEW:
When I was a young kid, I picked up the first issue of Devil Dinosaur in 1978.  This comic series only lasted 9 issues but it was pure fun. Dinosaurs are super KOOL and having a giant Red T-Rex who can think and work with Moon Boy is sensational.

I was thrilled when I realized this was an old fashioned Marvel Team Up with Spider-Man and Devil Dinosaur.  I was not let down at all.  This issue was a blast to read.  I can’t wait for the second issue.

By the way, did I mention some of dinosaur who are being mind controlled were also altered.  The Raptors breath fire (season 3 of Land of the Lost anyone?) and the pterodactyls are wearing helmets with visors.  What a fun, exciting, bizarre, and KOOL comic.

I loved every second of this comic.  I re-read it for pure joy a few times.

Grade: A

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