Thursday, May 17, 2018

I was thinking I might've bought today's book with Tuesday's, because sometimes if I'm going though a quarterbox, an annual or special seems like a good get, right? Extra pages, usually a self-contained story, even if it's not necessarily a life-changing issue. (That said, there's a couple annuals I love more than anything, but this wasn't one of them!) I wasn't super-impressed with this one, but then I found out I missed the first half! Here's part two, from 1997, the Amazing Spider-Man '97, "...Before the Dawn" Written by Roger Stern, pencils by Tom Lyle, inks by Robert Jones, with Kurt Busiek as "unindicted co-conspirator"!

Dr. David Lowell, better known as Sundown, has just been released from prison. What, you don't know him? Yeah, me either, since I missed Untold Tales of Spider-Man '97, which kind of sounds better: Lowell had been an Osborn Chemical employee (before it became Oscorp, apparently) working on a "photogenesis process" that Norman didn't sign off on. In fact, Norman shuts him down and orders his work destroyed. In a scuffle, his formula was accidentally dumped on him, giving him a pretty impressive batch of powers after he fell into the solar lamps. As Sundown, he went on the rampage, facing Spidey and Marvel's entire 60's lineup; before he inadvertently injured a young girl, Mary Kelleher, who would lose an arm.

After serving his time, Lowell is approached by an Oscorp employee (that had been partially responsible for his accident) but turns them down. That meeting interrupted the mob's attempt to sign him: later, mob boss 'Lucky' Lobo (a Lee/Ditko creation!) tells him it sure would be a shame if something happened to Mary Kelleher's other arm. Sundown fights Spidey, but it's for show: together, they turn the tables on Lobo, and Sundown is free to slink off into obscurity like he wanted. Spidey wasn't sure if that would work, but guess so!

While Lowell walks the city and laments the changes he missed and mistakes he made, it's juxtaposed with Peter and MJ together: despite all the drama of being Spider-Man, he had it pretty good.

This held up a little better on the re-read; it might even be halfway decent with the Untold Tales issue to go with it.


Dale Bagwell said...

Doesn't sound like all that bad of a story or character, but hey Stern's the man, even if the art isn't all that good. Hey, don't get me wrong, I used to really enjoy Tom Lyle's work back in the day, but it's so dated now.

Dale Bagwell said...

PS, was that really the style back then in the late 90's, to rock the Guy Gardner bowl cut? I believe it was.

SallyP said...

Heh. That was my first thought as well. What the heck is Guy doing at Marvel?