That’s right, you can tell by cover, SPIDER-MAN is in the house! As I said before, Marvel must have had high expectations for this film and this character, to not only give him his own miniseries but to include their premier hero in it. And co-writers Dwight D Coye and Bertram B Hubbard write Spidey into the story in a creative way, so it doesn’t just feel like a gimmick. It also shows how effortlessly a character like Meteor Man would fit into the mainstream Marvel Universe. I could easily see him joining the Avengers or some other super team. But I’m getting ahead of myself.

This story picks up 3 days after the events of the previous issue, where Meteor Man appeared to let his anger overwhelm him and accidentally blows up Simon (referred to here as Simon CAIN not Simon Kane, in an error I will have to attribute to editor Fabian Nicieza for not catching that). Jefferson never wanted to kill him, and is feeling very depressed and guilty about it, and has not taken any action as Meteor Man since he got back home because of it.

In a funny plot twist, a cheap Meteor Man movie is currently being filmed in D.C. It’s noted that the unnamed actor who is playing Meteor Man isn’t very good (we see the director, a White guy, bemoaning that he should have hired someone like Wesley Snipes, Denzel Washington, or Robert Townsend for the role, but they were too expensive). Spidey is in town because Mary Jane Watson has a role in this movie (I don’t know what role she would play in this film, but it’s mentioned that she has her own trailer, so it must be significant), so Peter came along with her to hang out while she films her scenes.

However, all is not good, as a new gang called the D.C. Players have moved into the territory since the Golden Lords were disbanded, so the violence has returned. Jeff attends a funeral of one of his students, who was killed by a drug dealer, but Jeff is still afraid to act. That is until the gang violence interrupts the filming of the movie, with one cast member shot and killed. Spider-Man jumps into the fray and Jeff (who is excited to meet a “a real New York superhero”) joins in as Meteor Men, and the two heroes team up to take out the gang members. But Spidey notes that during the fighting Meteor Man seems to be holding back. Because of what happened to Simon, Jeff is now so worried about accidentally killing someone with his powers, that it’s making him hesitate, which makes him ineffective.

Then Malefactor and Ghost Strike track down Mike and try to kill him in his apartment, and Spidey and Meteor Man team up to fight them off.  In the end, Meteor Man tells Spider-Man what has happened, and Spidey gives him a pep talk about how he can’t hide from using his powers, no matter what happens. Because, you know, with great power must come great responsibility. This snaps Jeff out of his funk and he vows to be wherever METEOR MAN is needed, from now on.

A solid issue all around. Taking these first three issues as an arc, this would actually cap-off a great new “origin” for Meteor Man. There’s still open plot-threads, including an appearance by Armand Skyy, who still wants Meteor Man killed for some reason, and we see him hire a mysterious man named Mr. Minh to handle that, but this would be a satisfying ending to the saga of Meteor Man in the Marvel Universe, while still leaving things open for future appearances. And Robert Walker draws a pretty good Spider-Man here. Chacebook rating: 4 STARS



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