Nick Spencer started the big event he has built his whole run on Amazing Spider-Man around with “Last Remains.” As we learned at the end of Amazing Spider-Man #50 the mysterious Kindred villain who has been acting as Spider-Man’s boogeyman is none other than Harry Osborn. That wasn’t much a surprise given all the clues that Spencer has provided over the course of his Amazing Spider-Man run. But now that there is that confirmation that Harry Osborn is Kindred we have to wonder how both Peter Parker and Norman Osborn will deal with this. Maybe will get hints to this with the companion story that begins in Amazing Spider-Man #50.LR. Let’s find out now.
Writers: Nick Spencer and Matthew Rosenberg
Artist: Federico Vicentini
Colorist: Marcio Menyz
Story Rating: 5 Night Girls out of 10
Art Rating: 7 Night Girls out of 10
Overall Rating: 6 Night Girls out of 10
Synopsis: Underwater Spider-Man (Peter Parker) fights Spider-Woman, Spider-Man (Miles Morales), Ghost-Spider, Spider-Girl, Silk, and Madame Web, who have all been turned into demons by Kindred.
Elsewhere Norman Osborn talks to Doctor Kafka about all of his demons. Dr. Kafka has a hard time believing Norman as she has heard the whole divine intervention excuse in the past. Norman says Dr. Kafka is misunderstanding what he is trying to say as he admits he is responsible for what is happening. Dr. Kafka warns Norman that this whole making amends will be a painful process.
Back underwater Spider-Man does his best to survive the relentless assault by demonic versions of The Order of the Web. After a while the demon version of Miles punches Spider-Man through the window in the vessel, causing water to rush in.
Elsewhere Dr. Kafka questions Norman on who Kindred is. Norman reveals Kindred is his son, Harry Osborn. He goes on to reveal that he once met Kindred face to face and rather than helping Harry he instead taunted his son.
Back underwater Spider-Man regains consciousness and quickly webs up the vessel and swims above water in order to save his friends.
Elsewhere, Norman further breaks down as he talks about how useless he is and how awful of a person he was in both life and death to his family. Norman then begins to reflect that it may be to late to reach out to Harry.
Meanwhile, Spider-Man successfully brings the vessel above water but this ends up making him incredibly tired. Spider-Man doesn’t get much time to rest as The Order of the Web reappear and continue to attack him. They are able to pin Spider-Man down and then cover him in Kindred’s spiders.
Kindred then talks through Spider-Woman. Kindred talks about how he is preparing things for when he and Spider-Man will meet but must first exorcise his own demons. Kindred then orders The Order of the Web somewhere.
Elsewhere, Dr. Kafka has heard enough and says she will help Norman though it won’t be easy. Dr. Kafka asks Norman if he knows of anyone that could possibly act as a buffer between him and Harry. She says it’ll need to be someone that Harry already knows and trusts.
Over at an airport Mary Jane Watson reflects on how happy she is to be back in New York City as she gets into a car. End of issue.
The Good: Amazing Spider-Man #50.LR is exactly what it is advertised. This is just a companion piece that doesn’t do much in adding to the story we saw in Amazing Spider-Man #50. More than anything it just acts as additional content to what we got in the main story like a Director’s Cut to a movie.
The positive for Nick Spencer and his co-writer Matthew Rosenberg going with this route for Amazing Spider-Man #50.LR is that it gives us more context as to why Spider-Man was so beat up at the start of the story. That was something Spencer briefly teased about why Spider-Man was in such a bea- up state that he ended up passing out at Doctor Strange’s doorsteps. Providing that context gives us a better scope of the mountain that Spider-Man must climb to overcome everything that Kindred will be throwing at him in “Last Remains.”
Amazing Spider-Man #50.LR also works in getting us further inside Norman Osborn’s newly cleansed mind. Seeing the actual guilt that Norman feels in his new state sets up how he can be the wild card in “Last Remains” that Kindred created. The question is if Kindred understands what having a cleansed Norman will actually mean since Harry seems to be acting differently against his father compared to Peter.
This was also the best writing for Dr. Kafka since she came back into Spider-Man’s world. Spencer and Rosenberg did a good job making her more of a fully realized character as she gave Norman a full therapy session. She came across as someone who isn’t going to just jump because Norman tells her to. Anything that she does to help Norman and, by extension, Spider-Man will be because she thinks things through.
The ending of Amazing Spider-Man #50.LR was by far the biggest development of this issue. After being away for quite a while now it looks like Spencer is going to make Mary Jane Watson a major player in “Last Remains.” The set-up for that is well explained as MJ is someone that has a strong connection to Harry. And like Norman’s role, the question is if Harry as Kindred planned for MJ to return at this moment since he is the who pushed her to get back into her acting career.
Federico Vicentini’s artwork was solid throughout this issue. Vicentini did a particularly good job getting over how terrifying the demonic versions of Spider-Woman, Miles Morales’ Spider-Man, Ghost-Spider, Spider-Girl, Silk, and Madame Web were. That added to how Spider-Man’s hesitation to fight his friends made the beating he took even harsher.
The Bad: As mentioned earlier, Amazing Spider-Man #50.LR read like a director’s cut version of the first chapter of “Last Remains.” This entire issue mostly expands on scenes we got in Amazing Spider-Man #50. Because of that your mileage in terms of how important you view Amazing Spider-Man #50.LR will vary as only the final few pages truly move the story forward.
Treating Amazing Spider-Man #50.LR as a director’s cut does create immediate concern that Spencer will use these companion comics to develop key plot points for “Last Remains” outside the main story. The MJ reveal is something that should’ve been in the main story given how important she is to the franchise. Given that Amazing Spider-Man #50 itself was an oversized comic book since it was an anniversary issue there is no reason Marvel couldn’t have given one or two more pages to that issue for this MJ reveal to happen there.
But by putting such a key plot point in a tie-in story Spencer and Marvel are immediately telling fans that they have to spend even more money to understand what is going on with “Last Remains.” That’s is a terrible thing to do as it makes these tie-ins just a way for Marvel to nickel and dime fans out of all their money.
Amazing Spider-Man #50.LR also just makes The Order of the Web appear as nothing more than props for the battle between Spider-Man and Kindred. This issue should’ve given us some context into what The Order of the Web will be doing outside of being Kindred’s puppets. Showing us how Spider-Woman, Miles Morales’ Spider-Man, Ghost-Spider, Spider-Girl, Silk, and Madame Web are possibly having their own battles to reclaim their bodies would been good set-up for their stories in “Last Remains.” Right now they are nothing more than props and that is incredibly disappointing to see happen out of the gate.
Overall: Outside of the final few pages Amazing Spider-Man #50.LR is nothing more than a director’s cut to the first chapter of “Last Remains.” The way this entire issue is executed does make you question why Nick Spencer couldn’t include some of these moments in the oversized anniversary issue that was Amazing Spider-Man #50. Hopefully these tie-in comics don’t create an excuse for Spencer to leave out key plot details in the main story of “Last Remains.”
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