That time Spider-Man trashed a Macy’s

It’s the holiday season and the countdown to Christmas has begun! Here at Extremely Uncanny, we will be counting down the days with a holiday themed comic review. To start off 2021, let’s look at the time Spider-Man trashed a Macy’s with

Spider-Man’s Tangled Web #21

T’was the Fight before Xmas

Written, inked, and lettered by Darwyn Cooke
Pencils by Jay Bone
Colors by Matt Hollingsworth

Spider-man’s Christmas Journey

It’s Christmas Eve in NYC and a terrible snowstorm has besieged the city. Peter is brooding over the fact is stuck in transit due to the storm.  A tour group of kids have been separated from their guide and Peter Parker has taken them into the Daily Bugle’s Christmas Party. The story opens with Peter returning from the mall where Jonah has sent him to get gifts for the children and to get a gift for JJJ’s wife. Chaos unfolds at The Bugle as Peter learns he forgot the gift for JJJ’s wife and must go back to Macy’s before J. Jonah finds out.

Spider-man's Tangled Web

Macy’s on Christmas Eve is always a place of violence this is no exception. Macy’s has hired Flash Thompson to dress up as Spider-Man (Nothing good ever comes from that) all before the Puppet Master arrives with a brainwashed Medusa.

Spider-man's Tangled Web

Thompson quickly becomes enthralled by the Puppet Master and causes a ruckus in the store. Luckily, Sue Storm, the Wasp, and Crystal are there to fight back against the Prehensile Haired Inhuman Queen and Flash.

Spider-man's Tangled Web

Soon, Peter arrives at the store to get that last minute shopping only to find someone dressed as him trashing the join.  He quickly suits up into the Amazing Spider-Man.

Spider-man's Tangled Web

While this is all happening at 34th Street, the news that Spider-Man is trashing Macy’s is spreading around the newsroom. J. Jonah irritated over the kids love of Spider-Man sets out to ruin their Christmas. He goes on to hire a horse and carriage and takes all the kids and some staff to the mall to see the fight unfolding. J. Jonah Jameson spares no expense to ruin Spider-Man.

Spider-man's Tangled Web

The heroes quickly overpower the Puppet Master and stop the mind-controlled rampage across the store.

Spider-man's Tangled Web

The story wraps up nicely with the kids reuniting with their teacher, Puppet Master getting a visit from his daughter (while in jail), Sue finishing that ham, and MJ coming back home in time for Christmas thanks to J Jonah himself. I guess he hired even more horses or something.

Spider-man's Tangled Web

Final Thoughts on Spider-man’s Tangled Web #21

Spider-man’s Tangled Web #21 superb holiday comic and captures the Christmas feeling. The issue being a team up was a nice touch and gives it something more. While the brawl was fun to see and brought out some wonderful panels, the story itself still has that Spider-Man core. Pete is down over MJ being away for the holidays and he is consistently botching things with J Jonah. The chemistry Darwyn Cooke captures with Peter Parker and J Jonah, Sue and Crystal, and J Jonah with the kids is superb. It slides right in with a classic Spider-Man story and is evergreen as any spruce tree you may see.

It’s darn shame that Darwyn Cooke didn’t get much work with Marvel before he passed away. His collaboration with Jay Bone here is wonderful. I’ve seen many misattribute the art to solely to Cooke. I can see why considering Bone’s art style is reminiscent of Cooke’s and Cooke even inked the issue. That said Bone plays his proportions up to be more animated and it works well in service to this story. It is a light-hearted, yet sentimental Christmas special and the art gives it that animated energy. On the patented Extremely Uncanny Holiday Joy scale, Spider-Man’s Tangled Web #21 gets Nine Flash Thompsons dressed as Spider-Man Chain Sawing.

Spider-man's Tangled Web

Jordan Jennings

Jordan has written for wide array of comic review sites over the years including Comicosity, Comicon, and Comic Book Revolution. He has been reviewing and discussing comics for over 10 years. In addition to comics, Jordan enjoys various types of games be it video games or trading card games.

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