Gwen’s Hidden Enemy in Ghost-Spider #4
The tale continues in Ghost-Spider #4. Gwen Stacy, aka Ghost-Spider, aka Spider-Gwen, has finally regained balance in her life. She’s now successfully juggling her social life, hero life, school, and band. And she’s doing so flawlessly.
But that makes us wonder when the other shoe is going to drop. After all, it’s not common for any version of Spider-Hero of Gwen Stacy to have a long run of luck. Combined with the antagonist subplot building in the background, that fact has left fans curious – and concerned.
Still, it’s refreshing to see a version of Gwen that is happy and content. The girl could use a break or two in her life, and it seems like she’s finally gotten that. Once again, we’re reminded that a living and breathing person is underneath that mask.
Seanan McGuire’s Ghost-Spider has been a study of Gwen Stacy’s character. She’s still facing trials and dangers, but they’re different than she’s used to. It’s excellent seeing her thrive in this new environment. And yet the tension is still being built, courtesy of the plots building behind Gwen’s back.
The balance is surprising but compelling. So it probably shouldn’t be a surprise that Ghost-Spider #4 takes this all a step further, increasing the obsession of the returned antagonist. Careful planning is evident in this issue, which makes me concerned about what will be in store for Gwen.
The last issue showed us a shocking event that hurt Gwen more than she expected. And frankly, it hurt us, readers, more than expected. It was nice to get a bit of a follow-up, at least in the emotional sense. And it’s also a strong reminder that Gwen is a person first and a hero second. And that’s she’s a being of extreme compassion.
This issue doesn’t end on a cliffhanger – but it will leave fans anxious and curious to see what the next issue has in store. It’s the right balance for a conclusion. It’s an attention-grabber, but it isn’t meant for the readers.
The artwork in Ghost-Spider #4 is fun and colorful, just like the rest of the series. The creative team behind this series has been having fun, showing us all the extremes in Gwen’s life. From her superhero life to her more casual moments, it’s all woven into this issue.
Takeshi Miyazawa (pencils), Rosi Kampe (inks), Ian Herring (colors), and VC’s Clayton Cowles (letters) all worked together to bring us this issue, and they did an excellent job. There are many hidden details in the background, which enhanced both the plot and subplot of the series so far.
The portrayal of Gwen’s abilities and spider-sense was perhaps the issue’s highlight. Especially given how odd they’ve been acting as of late. But then there are also the expressions of Gwen and all of her friends – her relaxed face is such a pleasant change from what we’ve become so used to seeing.
Ghost-Spider #4 was another fun issue in this series. The tension has been building for four issues now, leaving fans wondering when it will burst. But we’ll appreciate Gwen’s small (ish) break in the meantime.
The clever writing and brilliant artwork are combined nicely, giving fans a read that’s a change of pace from all of the other hero comics available. And that makes it memorable, even when there’s no epic battle going on.
This review was originally written for Word of the Nerd, but has been ported over to Quirky Cat’s Fat Stacks now that the site has shut down.
Quirky Cat’s Fat Stacks | Quirky Cat’s Comics | The Book Review Crew | Monkeys Fighting Robots | Storygraph | Bookhype | Bookstagram | Twitter | Tumblr | Reedsy