Tuesday, April 21, 2020

Review of "Spider-Man and the Black Cat: The Evil That Men Do," by Kevin Smith and Terry Dodson

Review of

Spider-Man and the Black Cat: The Evil That Men Do, by Kevin Smith and Terry Dodson ISBN 078511095x

Five out of five stars

Hero-villain bonding over sexual assault

 Former Peter Parker and Spider-Man flame Felicia Hardy (Black Cat) returns to New York when one of her old friends disappears. There is a powerful criminal gang peddling drugs and she puts her Black Cat costume back on in order to investigate. At the same time Spider-Man is watching the same gang as an honor student with no known history of drug usage has died of an unusual overdose. There were no marks on his body to mark the point of entry.

 Even though Peter Parker is married to MJ, there is an immediate spark between him and the Black Cat. There are repeated instances of sexual innuendo, including a self-reference to Black Cat’s ample cleavage. She is one of the hottest of the comic super heroines, a fact that she is well aware of.

 There is also a very serious side to this story. One of the main villains is a mutant capable of teleporting objects and he confesses to Felicia the sexual abuse that he experienced at the hands of his brother. Felicia then bonds with him by describing the time when she was raped. Even though the villain is a killer, there is immediate empathy for him.

 This is one of the best graphic novels ever published, it has action, great dialog and a powerful social message to both male and female victims of sexual abuse.

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