|THE AMAZING SPIDER-MAN No. 12, July 2016|
This disappointing state of affairs is predominantly caused by the Berkeley-born author’s insistence of playing every scene within this twenty-page periodical for laughs, even those involving Augustus Roman’s theatrical rescue by Tony Stark’s “new personal assistant and right hand.” Indeed, arguably the Eisner Award-winner’s main motivation for including such an old Mid-Eighties foe of Iron Man in this story is so the Golden Avenger and Spider-Man can be shown “squabbling like infants” as to which of them should fight the industrial saboteur; “Why don’t you let the guy who’s defeated him the most deal with this?” Such embarrassing shenanigans and puerile behaviour by two of the publisher’s A-List super-heroes certainly dilutes the impact of Regent’s “destructive debut”, something “Marvel Worldwide” clearly felt was supposedly serious enough to warrant its advertisement over Alex Ross' colourful cover illustration…
Fortunately, for those bibliophiles eager to better understand this 'new' character who has supposedly lined his “pockets off of the misery and despair of the Superhuman Community”, Slott’s script does finally ‘come good’ towards the end of the book, as events (finally) turn to the Cellar and Daily Bugle reporter Betty Brant undertakes an interview of a somewhat emotional Roman. This backstory, one which clarifies that the businessman’s family were “lost… to a super villain attack”, genuinely provides plenty of additional depth to Augustus’ motivations, and makes his belief that “the world will be a better place when those powers [both hero and villain] are in my hands” all the more sympathetically chilling.
|The 'Age Of Apocalypse' variant cover art of "THE AMAZING SPIDER-MAN" No. 12 by Jamal Campbell|