The Gauntlet Is Thrown Down
A new Rhino appears and attacks the original Rhino forcing Spider-Man to intervene. Later Mysterio returns from the dead and he's working with a deadly enemy that Spider-Man will need all the help to defeat.My Thoughts:
The second volume of The Gauntlet story arc definitely picks up and is a little more how I imagined this event playing out. I wasn't very impressed with the first volume in terms of overall quality. Improvements in both the storytelling and the artwork are made in this volume. Fred Van Lente, Joe Kelly and Dan Slott all contribute their ideas this time.
My favorite part would probably be the issues with the Rhino. The writers haven't told us who this new Rhino is yet but the writing was very powerful during this part. I especially enjoyed the captivating dialogue between Spider-Man and the original Rhino towards the end. I liked the tone during this part. It was a little darker while at the same time very moving. I wish the overall tone of this series would be like that all the time.
The part with Mysterio had it's moments but could have been a little better. It was interesting to see him working the angle he was. Adding Mr. Negative to the mix was a good move. What he did to Aunt May was shocking. It made for a good story though and readers will be in for a surprise when they see the things she does. I like how the writers also pushed Peter and Carley a little closer together. They've been in a sea-saw of emotions that have yet to become balanced or stable as something is always coming up and interfering just when you think they're going to get together. I look forward to what happens between them next.
The art definitely improved from the last few issues. Max Fiumara, Marcos Martin and Michael Lark delivered some pretty decent artwork. I still had some minor complaints but overlooked them as the overall quality improved enough for me to actually enjoy the art. I still feel like the coloring isn't as good as it could be. Usually Marcos Martin's work looks so much better but the colorist failed to embellish his pencils to that normal standard we usually get. I will say that so far the covers have been consistently well designed. I just wish the interior artwork would be as consistent.
Spider-Man fans should be reading this if they haven't already. The story is picking up and getting more interesting as each issue progresses. It would appear that Spider-Man is in for the ride of his life as he's about to be tested like never before.Rating: 4/5