Much like last issue, we are introduced to another spider powered character that will be featured in the Spider-Verse story line. Though on this Earth all of that power and responsibility has fallen on Gwen Stacy, who received the spider bite instead of Pete Parker. That incident is probably the strongest connection she shares with the 616 Spider-Man. Not content on giving us Peter just wrapped in a Gwen package, Latour does just enough to make her familiar yet able to stand on her own. The story itself has her attempting to deal with her new identity and guilt, which has been interfering with her role in the band The Mary Janes. Also her father is on the hunt for the “murderous” Spider-Woman which complicates matters.
This issue feels complete in a way the first one didn’t. We were pretty much dropped in the middle of things in that issue, whereas here we get the benefit of coming in at the beginning or as close as possible to it. Aside from the usual complications that come from Gwen being Spider-Woman, there’s a bit of a twist that alters the relationship between Captain Stacy and Gwen, making it something very much worth looking into later on down the line. Taking something as well known as Spider-Man’s origin and making it feel fresh and new looks like an easy feat thanks to Latour. So much that I wouldn’t mind seeing this as a maxi series.
The art is just as great, and Gwen’s superhero character design is one of the best to happen to any alternate Spider-Man character. The design is totally different from what we’re used to seeing, but keeps a small amount to make it recognizable. The purple/violet effect around the eyes on the white mask gives it an illuminated look which is pretty cool. So I’m sure it will be a cosplay favorite in the coming months. Rodriguez makes sure your eyes are dazzled from the energy he brings, and Renzi’s colors just kick it up another notch or ten!
Overall, another great introduction to a Spider-Verse character that is easily accessible even if you didn’t pick up the first issue. So until she returns, this issue is worth reading several times to hold you over!