Review: Silk Vol. 1: Threats And Menaces

Doing everything Spider-Man doesn't do anymore.

Written by Maureen Goo, Art by Takeshi Miyazawa

When I first started reading comics thanks to someone uploading digital versions of comics on Daily Motion I was limited to the comics that said person uploaded. They uploaded comics such as the New 52 Wonder Woman, Deadpool and Silk. Cindy Moon AKA Silk is a relatively new addition to the Spider-Man mythos introduced as part of Marvel's 'Original Sin' event in 2014. The retcon goes that the radioactive spider that bit Peter and gives him his powers didn't immediately die after that faithful nibble. Instead, it bit and granted Spider-Powers to another student: Cindy Moon.

After about a year the character proved gained her own solo series which ran for 26 issues across 2 volumes. After that, though the character more or less fell off the map. She popped up in some Spider related books as a guest character now and again and was a main character in the short-lived 3rd volume of Agents of Atlas (also featuring Shang-Chi) but that was about it. A far cry from her holding her own dedicated title. This year though she finally got her chance to be in the spotlight again with the subject of today's review, the 5-issue limited series Silk: Threats And Menaces.

Let's dive into this limited series and see if it's any good!

After stopping a fashion store robbery Cindy Moon starts her first day as a full-fledged employee at the media outlet Threat & Menaces founded and spearheaded by J. Jonah Jameson himself. Her first story is immediately a doozy, involving the freakish murder of a gang. That's not what makes the story so interesting, it's the gangster with weird super-tech that attack Jameson after work threatening him in regards to the story. This incident leads Silk down a rabbit hole concerning an evil generation-Z tech mogul, a cat demon and Jameson's stubborn old head.

As a fan of Silk, it was nice to see her back in the spotlight with a new series. One that's a good starting point for newcomers as it is fairly non-taxing in regards to continuity. It uses the moment of Cindy's first day as a reporter to naturally introduce the audience to Silk's world. Said world is essentially the same as we've seen previously. The same tone and vibe as the original run(s). There are some new characters that are introduced like the villain of the book and Cindy is a reporter now but that's it when it comes to newly introduced elements.

Yeah, I couldn't resist using the panel in which Silk makes her triumphant entrance as this review's example of the art.

This is all pretty neat considering this book is made by a different creative team behind it. When a character is handed over to a new team there are always changes. It's always never the same as it was before, even if the new team tries their best to keep the good times rolling. From side characters getting cycled out to a new setting to the main character having a slightly different (but noticeable) characterization. Goo and Miyazawa managed to keep this book consistent with the work of Robbie Thompson and his team in basically every way making it feel like a seamless continuation of those books. Commendable even if it doesn't really dare to anything big either.

I do have one critique with this approach and I admit, it's a bit of an odd one. Threats & Menaces doesn't feel like a limited series. Rather, it reads away like the first arc of an ongoing series. This might seem to be a weird thing to say, after all, what does it matter if the book is good and enjoyable regardless? Well, it just reads weird. It's like you go into a theatrical film, with all the expectations that come with it but are shown a direct-to-video film. The ending suffers from this approach as the entire thing doesn't get concluded as strongly or definitive as you'd expect and there are some moments in which characters or potential plot points are introduced and go nowhere. A bit of a waste of space if you ask me. Not a big flaw or anything but definitely something that stood out and bugged me.

In terms of art, the book looks good. It's going for something of a somewhat manga look. With colour, of course. Not overly cartoony with its realistic proportions and more down to earth approach but not hyper-realistic either. It can do both the mundane, the dramatic, the comedic and the action sequences without any of it feeling like it crashes with the style. It works well, is a good fit for the book and have nothing to complain about really. Perhaps the only thing I can complain about is that it doesn't have any big, 'jumps from the page' moments. Oh well. Doesn't make the artwork any less good, just means that there's still room for growth.

Conclusion

Silk Threats & Menaces is a good and enjoyable book that is a fun romp in the world of Silk and Spider-Man. It's nicely written, nicely drawn and is a breezy and is just a pleasant read. It has flaws, of course. The biggest of is that it doesn't have any real standout elements. It feels very much like just the first arc of a regular old ongoing series, which it isn't, so the entire read just felt a bit off. Introducing characters and potential plot lines that will (seemingly) never be used or resolved. Doesn't make this series any less enjoyable though so if you're an old-time fan of Silk or are just curious to see what she's all about, Threats & Menaces isn't a bad book to pick up.

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