REVIEW: ‘Spider-Woman,’ Issue #3

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Spider-Woman #3

Spider-Woman #3 is published by Marvel Comics, written by Karla Pacheco, with art by Pere Pérez, colors by Frank D’Armata, and letters by VC’s Travis Lanham. Turns out, being a superhero doesn’t pay the bills, and with a son to provide for, Jessica Drew needs to find a way to keep the lights on. Now, Spider-Woman is on the payroll of a pharmaceutical CEO, serving as a bodyguard to his gravely ill daughter, but people are never that simple.

Previously, Jessica was hit with secret after secret, after finding out that her employer, Michael Marchand, was intentionally making her sick in an attempt to experiment on her to see if he could reverse engineer the Spider serum that had once cured Jessica as a child. As if this wasn’t bad enough, she was also sent out on a mission to retrieve a black market spider necessary for the potential cure, the downfall being that the shipment of spiders belonged to Octavia Vermis, daughter of Otto Vermis, one of Jessica’s old enemies. Bombshell!

Now in Spider-Woman #3 Jessica is on an absolute rampage trying to get answers from Michael. She only asks to be kept apprised of the details so that she can properly prepare. Things go from bad to worse, hard to believe given how everything has already been unraveling, as a tactical crew breaks into the building with the purpose of retrieving the spider. While Jessica is able to get Michael, and his daughter Rebecca, to safety in a personal jet, it doesn’t last for long as they are eventually taken down mid-flight. Now they must attempt to stay alive in an unknown location, and, they’re definitely not alone.

While I’ve not reviewed the prior two issues for this series, I find myself absolutely loving the story being told by Pacheco, and wishing I’d picked this up from the start. There’s always been something particular about Jessica Drew as a character from prior series that’s somewhat infectious, which is always humorous because she projects the need to be isolated, and has a particularly short fuse for people in general. Pacheco has absolutely tapped into that essence of Jessica, a woman who’s up for a fight, and will not restrain herself when faced with corruption and hatred.

Early on in the issue there’s a prime example of this when someone grabs Rebecca and puts a gun to her head. Jessica all but loses it, and venom blasts the would-be assailant. Usually, I take the time to highlight each creative role and discuss different aspects of their contributions to the issue, but during this particular sequence, I was so astounded by the cohesiveness of the work that I had to zero in. Pacheco firmly delivers the point that Jessica cares about this girl, knowing full well that not only is Rebecca her charge, but you can genuinely see she cares for the girl.

 

Pérez, who delivers some beautiful artwork throughout the issue, captures the sheer, unadulterated anger on Jessica’s face in this moment. The artist manages to convey the haste with which Jessica is moving towards the attacker, as if she’s fighting life and limb to reach him, and when she finally delivers that venom blast it’s a really rewarding conclusion.

D’Armata’s colors were spot on, and expertly woven into the issue especially during the action sequences utilizing a gradient color to emphasize the movement, and the speed with which Jessica movies. The colorists use of shading is noteworthy also, given Jessica’s suit is mostly black, he has a difficult task of showcasing the suit, but he did a fantastic job of expressing the how the light of the surrounding interacts with the black to add extra depth.

I really liked Lanham’s letters, which is not something I call out in such a way often, but I love how he’s able to give voice to Pacheco’s dialogue and really emphasize the vocal’s in Jessica’s words. Lanham’s design of the onomatopeia is exceptionally catchy too, and keeps the action of the issue lively, and encourages the fast cadence of the story.

Overall, I loved this issue, like I am caught completely off guard at how much of a fun issue this was on all creative fronts. I was not expecting to be hooked in so tightly. I’ve read a lot of Spider stories, but this creative team led by Pacheco feels very special, and the ending is really rewarding for long time Spider-Woman fans. If you’re a Spider-fan, jump on this series, right now!

Spider-Woman #3 is available now wherever comics are sold.

Spider-Woman #3
5

TL;DR

Overall, I loved this issue, like I am caught completely off guard at how much of a fun issue this was on all creative fronts. I was not expecting to be hooked in so tightly. I’ve read a lot of Spider stories, but this creative team led by Pacheco feels very special, and the ending is really rewarding for long time Spider-Woman fans. If you’re a Spider-fan, jump on this series, right now!