The arc introducing Ultimate Black Cat finished this
week.

General Information

Title: Ultimate Spider-Man: Claws

Author: Brian Michael Bendis

Illustrator(s): Mark Bagley

Original Publication Date: December 2003 through
Feburary 2004

Premise

Ultimate Black Cat shows up with a grudge against the
Kingpin.

High Point

“Sssh, I’m thinking.”

Low Point

Craig apparantly changed his name to Greg between
issues.

The Scores

It’s a return to another new spin on an old story,
and the
original version wasn’t that great. While I
give Bendis
credit for making the Kingpin’s interest in the
tablet actually work
for his extremely pragmatic character, the new stuff
is still
restricted to the side story with Mary Jane.
I give it 4 out of 6.

The artwork is, as usual, very well done.
Mary Jane’s
warehouse rant was particularly well drawn. I give
it 6 out of 6.

The story had a lot action and very little
motivated plot. I
give it 4 out of 6.



The characterization was excellent,
particularly for Mary
Jane and the Kingpin. Gwen Stacy had a very small
role, but even that
showed what kind of person she really is. I have a
hard time believing
Peter would have held back when talking to Black Cat
on the rooftop,
though. I give it 5 out of 6.

The emotional response wasn’t as strong as
it has been in the
past. The early stories had significant changes
often, keeping things
fresh and exciting. It’s been a while since that
happened, and I’m
getting impatient. I hate a status quo, and that’s
what we’ve got
now. The funny moments were still funny, but that’s
about it. I give
it 3 out of 6.

The flow worked well outside the catfight.
Some of the
artwork was drawn in extreme close-up, which made it
hard to track
some of the action. I give it 4 out of 6.

Overall, it’s not a bad arc, but it’s not
spectacular. (It’s
not amazing or ultimate either, come to think of it.)
I give it 4 out
of 6.

In total, Claws receives 30 out of 42.