You know, I look at this comic and I can’t help it. The first thing I think of is always “Damn, I miss Alias!” Michael Gaydos’s artwork immediately makes me think of Jessica Jones and Luke Cage. The presence of Matt Murdock in this comic only emphasizes this feeling. I know actors often get typecast in prominent roles they play, and it only makes sense for an artist to be typecast as well.
This miniseries has other things in common with Alias as well. It has kind of a gritty, real-world feel to it, where people pretty much act as normal people do, with only the occasional fantasy element thrown in. Sure there’s a guy named Logan who uses a clawed weapon, but everyone else in the comic is relatively normal. The Peter Parker in this universe shares a scientific genius and a lack of self-confidence with the Peter Parker we know well. In this universe, however, Peter doesn’t have powers. Instead his arm is ruined. And so on.
So just as this comic shapes up as another Alias, the super-hero elements start to emerge. Tony Stark hires Peter to work on something very familiar, and Logan turns out to have memory implants. And for me, the clever novelty of the comic suddenly starts to fall apart. The funhouse mirror through which we saw formerly super-powered characters turned normal suddenly starts to swing back to the powers. Suddenly some of the feeling of specialness starts to go away for me and it seems this could turn out to just be a slightly more oblique super-hero story.
Maybe I’m wrong. Maybe it will zig when I think it will zag. I hope so. The real world stuff is intriguing as hell.