Amazing Spiderman #23 is the Epilogue for the Hunted story arc. There are a lot of villains and heroes making appearances to close out the battle between Spider-Man and Kraven the Hunter. This is your spoiler warning but you can head to mycomicshop.com and pick up this issue while it’s in stock.
This was a pretty big arc, starting at #16 and having several supplemental issues. Kraven the Hunter is dead, killed by his clone/son Alyosha. His curse broken by posing as Spider-Man to trick Alyosha into killing him. Now that Kraven can rest, the force field has been lifted and everyone is free to go. Unfortunately, most of the people who are now free are costume wearing super villains. Luckily for the city, every super hero around is there to contain the threats.
There is only one thing on Peter’s mind though, and that’s MJ. During his fight with Kraven, Peter was given a hallucinogen that made him see MJ in danger. Hoping it was just a crazy dream state, he cannot shake the feeling that she is hurt. So while the likes of the Avengers, the Fantastic Four and She-Hulk take car of the villainous mess in Central Park, Peter races to his apartment to check on MJ.
All while Spidey is slinging his way home and the other heroes are fighting the now free villains, lots of threats are mounting to wreak havoc on New York. Vulture gathers together the Savage Six with King Cobra, Rhino, Scorpion, Stegron, and Tarantula. Black and Task Master are reunited, and just in time as the rest of the villains want revenge for locking them in Arcades force field. But there is also a reuniting of Billy Connors with his mother. It’s unclear of Doctor Connors fate, only that he is alive and scared of the lizard inside him. Alyosha goes into a fit of rage after burying his father but ends with taking up the mantle to become the new Kraven.
Spider-Man finally arrives home to find the window the the apartment is broken. Fearing the worst, he rushes in to find MJ safe and sound. Well, if you don’t count the cut on her arm from falling into the window. We know that the mysterious Bandaged Centipede man has been watching MJ while Peter was off fighting Kraven. But who is this villain and what is his intention? The last big reveal of the issues is back at Kraven’s burial site. The Chameleon was spared the fate of the other animal themed villains as he is Kraven’s half brother. He vows that there won’t be much of a world left when he’s finished.
Like I said, lots of different villains in this issue, all setting up for the next phase of ASM. The credits include Nick Spencer writing, Ryan Ottley penciling, Cliff Rathburn inking and Nathan Fairbairn coloring. This was a great epilogue to a long event that I had doubts about in the beginning. I’m pretty excited about the way we left off here and the many possible directions this story could go. The art was great. Not sure why Alyosha was running around naked for a bit but I guess grief can make you do crazy things.
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