Besides the new athletic shoed Spidey look, there isn't much in The Amazing Spider-Man #1 (the movie's comic) that sets it apart from what everyone already knows about Spider-Man.
Credits & Solicit Info:
The Amazing Spider-Man #1 (of 2) - Movie Tie-in
Writer: Tom Cohen
Artist: Neil Edwards
Marvel Comics 2012
As I read through The Amazing Spider-Man #1 (of 2) I begin to understand exactly who this book is for: people who have heard of Spider-Man but who have never actually seen the first Sam Raimi movies or people who have never cared for comic books. Unfortunately, that doesn't leave a huge target audience for this limited 2-issue series...maybe the actor's family members, grandparents who might be taking their grandchildren to the future film and of course people waking from comas that have amnesia.
Tom Cohen, who is tasked with basically retelling the story of Peter Parker before he becomes Spider-Man, is given limited pages to actually fit in an original story. Cohen creates a problem the film Peter Parker must handle thus showing Peter's thought process, how he deals with difficult situations and what kind of a person he was pre-Spider-man. The story is basically meant to show readers the quality of Peter's character before he was Spider-Man. We meet Peter's influences (Aunt May and Uncle Ben) and we also are introduced to the various high school characters such as the bully, Flash Thompson, and Peter's crush/love interest Gwen Stacy. Each character is given a few panels to display who they are as individuals and how Peter feels about them. Pete's life is all spelled out for you in a bunch of narration squares and bubbled conversations.
The art by Neil Edwards is just ok. I understand that these movie tie-in comics don't always get amazing artists, but I think the editors could have given Edwards a bit more direction. He had Andrew Garfield's hair down, but when it came to making Gwen look like a stand-out, his art fell short. In the wide panels, I couldn't tell which blonde girl was supposed to be Gwen. That's a problem. Your stand out characters are supposed to...well, stand out. An editor could have seen the panels and given some suggestions.
The book isn't produced poorly, and beside some moments (like the Gwen situation) the creative team did a nice job with what they were asked to do, it's just that most comic book readers already know about who Peter Parker is and was. Unless the film was going to alter Peter Parker's back story to make him the jock, The Amazing Spider-Man #1 (movie tie-in) did not have to be made.
Overall: 2/5 - Well done, but didn't need to be done.
Review by: Dom G