Writers: Nick Spencer & Ed Brisson
Artists: Marcelo Ferrerira, Carlos Gómez, Zé Carlos & Ig Guara
Color Artist: Andrew Crossley, Morry Hollowell & Rachelle Rosenberg
Cover Artist: Mark Bailey, Andrew Hennessy & Brian Reber
Spider-Man has been dealing with a lot, what with his longtime friend Betty Brant coming back into his life, pregnant, along with the supposedly dead Ned Leeds. His lab partner Jamie being roped into a super-villain heist to steal a power source for his future=seeing invention, the Clairvoyant. And all of it is part of some wider conspiracy involving his old foe the Chameleon, and he doesn’t even know about it. Now, Giant-Size Amazing Spider-Man: Chameleon Conspiracy #1 shows how far this conspiracy goes.
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So, this story arc has had its ups and downs so far. For the most part, this story arc has been teasing the mystery behind Peter Parker’s parents and Theresa Parker herself, as well as where the Chameleon and his mentor The Finisher fit in to everything. While on the side, the comic has been juggling a super-villain heist and Betty Brant’s return with her partner, Ned Leeds who was supposed to be dead.
This comic has had a hard time trying to tie everything back together and this issue tries its best to do so. But it only succeeds half-way. One the one hand, this heist story gives some of the lesser-known Spidey super-villains some time to shine. But on the other hand, it shows why they’re not popular as they keep getting eclipsed by the Chameleon in various ways throughout the comic.
The heist story arc is still fun but it doesn’t have a satisfactory ending, and it mostly gets overtaken by the Chameleon story which is even more unsatisfying. It literally teases readers with all of these possibilities for the Chameleon and Teresa Parker’s “true” origins, but leaves it hanging and ends with a predictable, painfully by-the-numbers conclusion for Theresa. Like the previous issues, the comic ends with more buildup to the upcoming Sinister War, and that’s actually looking far more fun than this story arc was.
This is where I need to get into Spoilers for further context.
As I said before, the Chameleon Conspiracy has been teasing the mystery of Peter’s parents and Teresa’ true identity for a while now, but it ultimately goes nowhere. It mostly provides a retelling or possible retcon of the Chameleon’s origins as well as Teresa’s. It essentially has Chameleon and The Finisher tease Teresa with the “possibility” that she may or may not be part of a secret clandestine program that turns handpicked kids like the original Chameleon into similar covert operatives and subversive agents. Or she’s who she thinks she is.
The story is literally playing this game of ‘maybe she is, maybe she isn’t’ with Teresa as well as readers and leaves things a little too ambiguous. By the end, it seemingly doesn’t matter since she chooses not to face the possible truth of her origins and decides that no matter what she’s still Teresa Parker and now she’s on the hunt for The Finisher. A very predictable ending that makes this whole storyline feel like a waste of time. The only thing to look forward to is the Sinister War and the return of the Sinister Six.
Giant-Size Amazing Spider-Man: Chameleon Conspiracy #1 wraps things up involving the Chameleon and the Clairvoyant. However, the story does far too much teasing of the truth behind the Chameleon and Teresa Parker. By the end, the comic provides a very predictable ending to the story that makes the whole storyline feel kind of pointless. Thankfully, the setup for the upcoming Sinister War looks far more fun and appealing than the concluded Chameleon Conspiracy.