Amazing Spider-Man by Nick Spencer vol. 4: Hunted

I’m on a quest to read all Spider-Man stories, one collection at a time. Today, I read Amazing Spider-Man by Nick Spencer vol. 4: Hunted. This is the first major arc in Nick Spencer’s Amazing Spider-Man.

Reading Order:
AMAZING SPIDER-MAN (2018) #16, 16.HU, 17-18, 18.HU, 19, 19.HU, 20, 20.HU, 21-23

Plot: Kraven the Hunter carries out a massive plan for an unknown motive. He hires Taskmaster and the Black Ant to collected animal-themed supervillains and traps them in Central Park, which is sealed off from the rest of the city through a force field. In the commotion, Spider-Man, Black Cat, and Billy Connors (the Lizard’s son) are captured. Kraven then invites “unworthy” hunters to join in the hunt, in order to earn their worthiness as hunters. He supplies them with Kraven-bots that are controlled with virtual reality head gear. Spider-Man finds himself fighting off the Kraven-bots as well as other supervillains as he tries to save Black Cat and Billy. Spoilers ahead: Kraven’s plan is for him to receive a worthy death at the hands of Spider-Man, which he achieves by dressing up as Spider-Man and tricking his son into killing him. After the event concludes, his son takes on the mantle of the new Kraven.

Review: This is a big story, spanning 12 issues in total, and we have been building up to it since the first issues, so I was excited to see what was in store for Spider-Man in this arc. I liked the way the story played out. The tie-in issues gave this arc a depth that made us invested in characters (even villains) and slowly revealed the details of Kraven’s plan without revealing everything at once. I was disappointed with the conclusion, as it seemed to be a rehash of “Kraven’s Last Hunt”, which is very hard to top. Props to Nick Spencer for writing a good Kraven story, but the bar was set too high with Kraven’s Last Hunt, making this story seem less impressive.

Rating: 4.5 (out of 5). “Hunted” is a good story and it manages to keep the reader interested but it suffers from being too derivative of other Kraven arcs.

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