It’s nice to have something like this to cleanse the comic reading
pallette after The Eternal #3.

General Information

Title: Ultimate Spider-Man #44: Tampered

Author: Brian Michael Bendis

Illustrator: Mark Bagley

Original Publication Date: August 6, 2003

Cover Price: $2.25 US, $3.75 Can

Premise

Spider-Man learns the actual origin of Geldoff, with some help
from
the X-Men. Aunt May seems to have learned something
interesting,
too.

High Point

“Do you need it?”

Low Point

It’s not the fall that kills, it’s the sudden stop at the end. This
stop looks pretty sudden to me.

The Scores

The last-minute catch is not an original element, and
the
fact that it wouldn’t actually work makes it that much more
irritating. The rest of the issue, including Geldoff’s origin story,
feels fresh and new. I give it 4 out of 6.

The artwork is Mark Bagley. It’s been consistently
good
through the series, with only a slight dip when it went to 18 issues
a
year instead of 12, from which it has recovered considerably. I
give
it 5 out of 6.

The story here has continued in a very interesting
manner.
It looks like the next issue will be another cap-off, such as issue
13, which doesn’t involve the supervillain, but instead deals with
the
loose threads in Peter’s personal life. I give this seeming
conclusion to Geldoff’s story 5 out of 6.



The characterizations of Peter and Aunt May
continue, and the
work with the X-Men is nicely done under Bendis’ pen. Xavier’s
unethical decision is completely in character for his Ultimate
version, as is Peter’s reaction to it. I give it 5 out of 6.

The emotional response this produced was as
positive as
expected. Bendis has produced such consistently good work
with such
compelling cliffhangers that my expectations for him keep
growing.
The impressive thing is, he’s still meeting most of those
expectations. (Catching him two feet off the ground? Really…) I
give it 4 out of 6, for that one disappointment.

The flow is still excellent. The action is well
depicted,
while the conversation has enough interesting panel work to keep
things moving at a much faster clip than they really need to. I
give
it 5 out of 6.

Overall, it’s another consistently good comic in the
series.
That’s 44 straight quality issues under a single creative team.
How
often does that happen these days? I give it 5 out of 6.

In total, Ultimate Spider-Man #44 receives 33 out of
42.