February 28, 2013 - Blowing through.
But SOLAR has come SO far. As much as Spider-Man has made a change - this one really made the entire line.
This really came through.
I need to go back and re-read through this story. It now really feels like the Watchmen parallel. It felt full. Certainly the parallels can easily be drawn between the two stories - but this one took a clear step forward in its writing and execution(s). I felt fulfilled.
The characters confront SOLAR - who is quite omnipotent at this point - and lose handily. Not only does he absorb all of the energy of the nuclear blast - but in fighting the characters - more than a few are executed. That's too bad - because I'm certain that the writers worked pretty hard to create this parallel universe - and build impressive back stories.
The loss of each character - and the confrontations with the inner demons sort of sanitize the story. I miss the darkness portrayed in nearly every character through the Watchmen story. I kind of wanted SOLAR - and Phil, to some degree - have a more dark sense of deep flaws. But the comic was excellent.
Romita's first ionic villain.
Something about the change of the story here. I feel like Romita is finally getting to set his own path a bit. Of course, it's following the line that was put down by Stan Lee - someone was reading this for the first time, etc. It puts a little step into Peter Parker. It doesn't really change him. He's still that nerdy little kid... But something about him has changed.
I liked the story. Even though the Rhino is relatively quickly and easily defeated, he is a different - and dumber - kind of villain. And the story is leading up to the reveal of Mary Jane - thankfully. We really needed to make that change.
Of course, it won't be decided for YEARS from now - but this comic has jumped itself - and started to make a serious pacing here.