Spine-Tingling Spider-Man #1 Review

Writer: Saladin Ahmed

Artist & Colorist: Juan Ferreyra

Letterers: Joe Caramagna

Cover Artists: Juan Ferreyra, Lucio Parillo, Rod Reis & Skottie Young

Publisher: Marvel

Price: $4.99

Release Date: October 18, 2023

Spider-Man has gained recognition from the police, the gratitude of the public, and the acceptance of other superheroes. But what is Peter Parker’s life built upon? What have his years of selfless crimefighting netted him? Let’s thwip into Spine-Tingling Spider-Man #1 and find out!

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Fighting Spidercide makes Peter question his identity. The shapeshifter regards him as a brother, but Peter sees him as a weird maniac who happens to share his DNA. Peter’s battled many distorted reflections of himself over the years. Recently, Ben Reilly tried to take over his life and sent Peter down to Limbo. So, after battling an even crazier clone, Spider-Man counts his blessings. Peter has people who love him and a roof over his head. He shouldn’t take that for granted, right?

The following morning, Peter gets locked out of his apartment. The people who love and respect him don’t know him. Nor does he have his superpowers. Suddenly, Peter’s just another person who’s fallen through the cracks of society. What will it take to get his life back?

Spine-Tingling Spider-Man #1 takes readers on a nightmare journey. Saladin Ahmed pairs Peter’s fall from superhero to super-zero with a descent from an apartment overlooking New York City to fighting off angry citizens in the streets to fleeing nightmarish villains in the dark labyrinth below. Without his superstrength and resilience, Peter will feel every blow. As just another homeless man, the police won’t rush to his aid. Would anyone care if Peter died?


The more muscular Spidercide evokes Rek-Rap, the demon of Limbo Peter inspired to become something more. His teeth jut from his mask as he battles Peter above the streets. Juan Ferreyra posts close-ups of Spidey and Spidercide on red building shapes. After the battle, as the sun falls toward the sea, Spider-Man thwips through the sky, level with the roofs of skyscrapers. The people who support him materialize around him.

When Peter awakens, Juan Ferreyra trades the gentle pastels of twilight for jarring pinks and purples. The colors shift, seemingly out of phase, as police escort him from the model apartment. Morning light shines down upon him, and foliage of nearby trees plays across Peter’s face and neck. Yet vibrant greens are interlopers in Spine-Tingling Spider-Man #1, as faded surfaces show grime and wear, pink overtakes faces and panels, or colors and backgrounds fade away, consigning Peter to the abyss. Darkness becomes his companion when Peter seeks help underground.

Although a spider climbs the corner of a narrative box in the opening panel, Peter’s thoughts appear in unadorned boxes afterward. Uppercase black lettering dominates white dialogue balloons, and sound effects enhance shocking moments. A cell phone cries out for attention. A fall from a great height takes our breath away. A sledgehammer threatens to make our ears ring. Spine-Tingling Spider-Man #1 is a dark and disturbing read, but Joe Caramagna’s lettering won’t strain your eyes.

Final Thoughts

Are superpowers a blessing or a curse? Spine-Tingling Spider-Man #1 explores Peter Parker’s weird mental landscape and the concessions heroes make to serve others.


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