Spider-Man Comics Solicitations For April 2017


Spider-Man says hello to returning allies and foes, while others go their separate ways in the second month of spring for 2017.

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Welcome back, Spider-Man fans, to another month where we look at upcoming comics featuring the web-slinger and friends, courtesy of Newsarama and CBR. And in mid-spring of 2017, it looks as though we’ll be welcoming back some characters that have long since been absent from Peter Parker’s world. In one case, this also means a brand new ongoing series, and I believe some of you regular followers of comic book related news already know which one that will be.

But it is also a month for saying good-bye to certain comic book series, too. Sean Ryan’s Prowler has been officially canceled after just six issues. Not too surprising if you’ve been keeping track of this comic’s sales estimates, or—like I talked about in my review of Prowler #1—how it was too heavily tied to The Clone Conspiracy to have any shelf-life beyond that crossover. Also, it appears Marvel has cancelled Dennis Hopeless’ Spider-Woman, too. Although unlike Ryan, Hopeless hasn’t confirmed whether this is indeed the case, or if the series is just skipping a month. But given that title’s sales estimates, it looks as though issue #17 of that series might be the final issue.

But what about those continuing and new Spider-Man related comic book series? Let’s see what April of this year has in store.

On-Sale April 5, 2017

"Credit: Alex Ross (Marvel Comics)AVENGERS #6MARK WAID (W) • MIKE DEL MUNDO (A)Cover by ALEX ROSS“Kang War VI” concludes!• The rules of time are fluid — and when reality re-forms around the Avengers, not everything (or everyone) will necessarily be in the same place it was left!32 PGS./Rated T+ …$3.99"

Commentary: Good grief, this whole “Kang War I, II, III, whatever Roman numeral were on” finally comes to an end. Technically, its gone on much longer since this came out of Mark Waid’s All-New, All-Different Avenger run. I appreciate and admire how Waid was going for a nostalgia-evoking epic reminiscent of classic Avenger stories with is “All-New, All-Different” line-up. But you save something like this for when the new comic has a chance to breathe, develop, and gather its bearings–not use as the first story for a relaunched and renumbered title. Especially what with Secret Empire coming up, that event will likely interfere with whatever long-range plans Waid hinted at with issue #1. Not the lease of which potentially change the roster again.


Commentary: Well gee, that’s great and everything, Mr. Waid, but why should I care about the Freelancers? Especially since I have no clue who any of them are? Are these previously established characters? New characters? A mix of old and new? And no, Humberto Ramos’ cover art isn’t helping, either. Obviously, you’re attempting at keeping spoilers to a minimum, which I can appreciate. Unfortunately, there’s really no reason for why potential readers should see the Freelancers as such a big of a deal as this and the previous solicit makes them out to be. Also, I wonder if Sam Alexander/Nova’s absence from the cover is an indication of anything. Maybe he’s the one who will first quit the team?

"Credit: Disney/Marvel AnimationMARVEL UNIVERSE ULTIMATE SPIDER-MAN VS. THE SINISTER SIX #9Adapted by Joe CaramagnaSPIDEY UNLEASHES A FORCE OF NATURE!• SPIDER-MAN continues to search for NICK FURY, who has been missing ever since DOC OCK’s attack on the S.H.I.E.L.D.’s Tricarrier.• A clue leads PETER to an abandoned building, but will this whole search just end up being A WASH? Will Spider-Man TAKE A BATH in this investment of anonymous tips?• And why are we using water-based puns??? Well, pick up the book and find out!32 PGS./All Ages …$2.99"

Commentary: Um…perhaps because Spidey and the Web Warriors are up against Hydro-Man? Seriously, what good does it really do hiding who the villain is when you already know which episode this is from? Especially one that’s already aired and can easily look up on IMDB or Wikipedia? That’s the disadvantage of creating a comic book adaptation a cartoon series–because you already know what’s about to happen even before you read it.

"Credit: Patrick Brown (Marvel Comics)SPIDER-MAN #15BRIAN MICHAEL BENDIS (w) • SARA PICHELLI (a)COVER BY PATRICK BROWNRESURRXION VARIANT COVER BY ELIZABETH TORQUE• Coming out of the crossover with SPIDER-GWEN, Miles’ life is turned upside down.• Rio Morales, Miles’s mother, is faced with a world she doesn’t know or understand. WHAT WILL SHE DO NOW?!32 PGS./Rated T …$3.99"

Commentary: If we’re to talk about the images in this cover at face value, I think we can glean two potential spoilers from the Spider-Man/Spider-Gwen crossover: 1) That Miles Morales’ dad, Jefferson Davis, is either still MIA or presumed dead, and 2) Rio Morales learns her son’s secret identity as Spider-Man. Which would reflect Miles’s situation from the now canceled Ultimate Spider-Man cartoon, and be a reversal of Miles’s situation from Ultimate Comics: Spider-Man, in which his mom died and his father learned his secret identity. Ironic considering how Secret Wars, in part, made Miles’s life happier than it was in the Ultimate Universe. Although if Bendis did do this, it does fit seeing as how the major subplot of this comic has revolved around  the consequences of Miles not telling his mom about being a superhero.

"Credit: Reilly Brown (Marvel Comics)SPIDER-MAN/DEADPOOL #16JOSHUA CORIN (W)SCOTT KOBLISH (A)Cover by REILLY BROWNPOSTER VARIANT BY ROD REISRESURRXION VARIANT COVER BY MIKE ALLRED’TIL DEATH DO US… Part 4 (of 6)• Spidey and Deadpool look for help in the least likely of places.32 PGS./Rated T+ …$3.99DEADPOOL & THE MERCS FOR MONEY #10Christopher Hastings (W)IBAN COELLO (A)Cover by REILLY BROWNPOSTER VARIANT BY FRANCESCO FRANCAVILLA’TIL DEATH DO US… Part 5 (of 6)• The Mercs struggle to stop Shiklah’s plans.32 PGS./Parental Advisory …$3.99 Credit: Mike Deodato (Marvel Comics)DEADPOOL #29GERRY DUGGAN (W)Salva Espin (A)Cover by Reilly BrownPOSTER VARIANT BY Rafael AlbequerqueRESURRXION VARIANT COVER BY MIKE DEODATO’TIL DEATH DO US… Part 6 (of 6)• Is this the end of Deadpool’s marriage?32 PGS./Parental Advisory…$3.99"

Commentary: Again, like I mentioned last time, I just find it so bizarre that Spider-Man–a character who was once married until a literal deal with the devil erased it–find himself stuck in crossover centered around a marital dispute. Of which one-half of the couple is a demonic succubus. Then again, this is Deadpool, in which bizarre is usually the name of the game.  Also, I wonder if Marvel is breaking up Wade Wilson’s marriage to Shiklah because (and I’m purely speculating here) they could be planning to reintroduce Vanessa Carlysle, a.k.a. Copycat. After all, Vanessa was the romantic lead in the very popular and critically acclaimed Deadpool movie.

"Credit: Disney/Marvel Studios Credit: Disney/Marvel StudiosSPIDER-MAN: HOMECOMING PRELUDE #2 (of 2)WILL CORONA PILGRIM (w) • TODD NAUCK (a)SPIDEY VS. THE AVENGERS!• SPIDER-MAN finds himself in over his head with his first super hero battle with IRON MAN…against CAPTAIN AMERICA and his team!• But will the outcome unite the AVENGERS…or tear them apart for good?• Get your spider-senses tingling for SPIDER-MAN: HOMECOMING with the epic conclusion to this two-part adaptation of the wall-crawler’s first foray into the Marvel Cinematic Universe!32 PGS./Rated T …$3.99"

Commentary: And again, I have to ask this: if the Spider-Man: Homecoming Prelude is nothing more than a comic book adaptation of the Spider-Man scenes from Captain America: Civil War with a few extra bits thrown in, why not just rent or buy Captain America: Civil War? This “prelude” should be more about telling what happened in-between Civil War and Homecoming, not retelling things we’ve already seen.

On-Sale April 12, 2017

"Credit: Kris Anka (Marvel Comics) Credit: Alex Ross (Marvel Comics)AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #26DAN SLOTT (w) • STUART IMMONEN (a)COVER BY ALEX ROSSRESURRXION VARIANT COVER BY KRIS ANKA“THE OSBORN IDENTITY” CONTINUES!• Silver Sable comes back into Spider-Man’s life — but isn’t she DEAD?!• Norman Osborn has worked his way into a position of power in Symkaria, and any incursion by Spider-Man will be seen as an act of war.• Will Spider-Man risk international infamy to take down his most dangerous foe?32 PGS./Rated T …$3.99"

Commentary: So after being presumed dead since Dan Slott’s “Ends of the Earth,” almost five years, Silver Sable has returned. After all, if the Rhino survived, then you just knew she did, too. Also, Julia Carpenter did tell Spidey she was still alive.  Of course, if Norman Osborn somehow has taken control of Symkaria, I’m guessing Silver Sable now works for him. Also, given how Slott was ship-teasing Silver Sable with Spider-Man during “Ends of the Earth,” and how he’s been ship-teasing Mockingbird with Spider-Man during the current “Worldwide” era, I’m guessing we’ll likely get a love triangle between all three. Then there’s the “invading a sovereign nation” angle, which I’m guessing is how Parker Industries will get in trouble since Spider-Man is their company mascot/personal bodyguard. Geez, am I alone in thinking this feels far more suitable for a character like James Bond than it does Spider-Man?

"Credit: Ryan Stegman (Marvel Comics)AMAZING SPIDER-MAN: RENEW YOUR VOWS #6GERRY CONWAY (w) • RYAN STEGMAN (a/C)RESURRXION VARIANT COVER BY ED McGUINNESS• And now…the X-Men!• Annie just received an invitation to attend Xavier’s School for Gifted Youngsters.• Guest-Starring Wolverine, Cyclops, Jean Grey, and Professor X!32 PGS./Rated T+ …$3.99"

Commentary: And the Renew Your Vows universe just got even better! As popular as the X-Men are, people forget just how huge they were during the 1990s, thanks in large part to the very successful X-Men: The Animated Series on Fox. It was also that same cartoon which inspired the Secret Wars tie-in X-Men ’92, and which also resulted in an ongoing that lasted for ten issues. So to see this version of the X-Men back in their Jim Lee designed outfits will definitely appeal to fans nostalgic for that era. It’s also kind of sad how, in the main Marvel Universe, all four these X-Men are dead, and in the case of Cyclops, Jean Grey, and Wolverine, replaced by time-displaced versions of themselves. Also, it makes sense for Charles Xavier being interested in Annie since, being born with her powers, does makes her one of Marvel’s merry mutants.

"Credit: Paulina Ganucheau (Marvel Comics)GWENPOOL, THE UNBELIEVABLE #14CHRIS HASTINGS (W) • MYISHA HAYNES (A)Cover by PAULINA GANUCHEAURESURRXION VARIANT COVER BY FRANCESCO MATTINA• Gwen Poole is L.A.-bound — and boy, is she LOVING it!• The mission? Help Cecil regain some of his more human qualities.• Guest-starring Kate Bishop (the REAL Hawkeye), Ghost Rider and…dwarves?32 PGS./Rated T+ …$3.99"

Commentary: For those of you who don’t know who Cecil is, he’s a hacker Gwen Poole befriended, who was then murdered by M.O.D.O.K., and then came back as a ghost. Because, you know? Comics! I guess that’s how the Robbie Reyes Ghost Rider fits into all this. Oh, and for those Clint Barton fans blistering at the solicit calling Kate Bishop “the REAL Hawkeye?” Don’t take it so personally. Because you know the truth, anyway.

"Credit: Jeff Dekal (Marvel Comics)KINGPIN #3MATTHEW ROSENBERG (W) • BEN TORRES (A)Cover by JEFF DEKALVARIANT COVER BY MIKE PERKINSBETTER THE DEVIL YOU KNOW!• WILSON FISK. People love him. Kids look up to him. His generosity and kindness make him a model citizen.• This is the spin…but DAREDEVIL doesn’t buy it.• As SARAH DEWEY tries to separate fact from fiction while on assignment to pen Fisk’s biography, will an OLD ENEMY’S plan to snuff out Fisk change the narrative?32 PGS./Rated T+ …$3.99"

Commentary: Well, of course Matt Murdock wouldn’t believe his nemesis has reformed; he’s been down this road before. Still, I do like the angle of having this story seen through the eyes of the Kingpin’s biographer. Reminds me a little of Kurt Busiek and Alex Ross’s Marvels, in which the history of the Marvel Universe is sen through the perspective of a Daily Bugle reporter. As for who the “old enemy” is my first though was Silvermane. though that might be bit odd seeing as how he’s currently just a cybernetic head. Finally, this is a fantastic looking cover, even if it does seem inspired by the What About Bob? movie poster.

"Credit: Francesco Mattina (Marvel Comics)SPIDER-MAN 2099 #22PETER DAVID (w) • WILL SLINEY (a)Cover by FRANCESCO MATTINA• With the help of Sonny Frisco, the Iron Man of 2099, Miguel’s developed a plan to prevent the disaster that leaves the future in ruins.• If all goes well, Spidey’s crusade against The Fist will finally come to an end.• Unfortunately, the entire plan hinges on Electro’s cooperation…and Miguel and Sonny are in for a shock!32 PGS./Rated T …$3.99"

Commentary: I mentioned in the article on the March 2017 solicits how the ones for Spider-Man 2099 read as though things were gearing towards a resolution for the series. Now with the line about how Miguel O’Hara’s “crusade against the First will finally come to an end” should his plan succeed, you definitely the feeling this is the final arc for the current volume of Spider-Man 2099. If so, and based on the titles current sales projections, I can easily see one more five-part story arc in the works starting with this issue, just enough for one last trade.

On-Sale April 19, 2017

"Credit: Helen Chen (Marvel Comics)SILK #19ROBBIE THOMPSON (w) • TANA FORD (a)Cover by HELEN CHEN• Cindy Moon’s been saving New York for the better part of a year now, and the rest of the superhuman community has taken notice.• Including Bobbi Morse, a.k.a. Mockingbird, who’s arrived at Cindy Moon’s doorstep with an interesting proposition: SILK…AGENT OF S.H.I.E.L.D.?!32 PGS./Rated T …$3.99"

Commentary: Given how this comic is under-performing in the sales estimates, this solicit sure does read as though Marvel is once more prepping Silk for another cancellation and relaunch. Or, if this comic does follow through on making Cindy Moon into a S.H.I.E.L.D. agent, having her being part of a new comic book series all together. Given the apparent stealth cancellation of Jessica Drew’s solo series, perhaps Marvel is gearing things up for a possible Spider-Women book, with Jessica, Cindy, and other Spider-females (Julia Carpenter immediately comes to mind) as part of a special S.H.I.E.L.D. squad. That would at least be one way to keep her viable. Of course, as I’ll point out soon, there already looks like a strategy is in place for doing just that.

"Credit: Robbi Rodriguez (Marvel Comics)SPIDER-GWEN #19JASON LATOUR (w) • ROBBI RODRIGUEZ (a/C)RESURRXION VARIANT COVER BY CLAYTON CRAINA NEW STORY ARC BEGINS!• Matt Murdock, crime kingpin of NY and leader of The Hand, sends Spider-Gwen on a mission that hits WAY too close to home.• This mission will introduce one of the biggest new characters in the Gweniverse and set Gwen on the path to her scariest villain yet!32 PGS./Rated T …$3.99"

Commentary: And I think we have a pretty darn good idea who that “scary villain” is: the Earth-65 version of Venom. If that’s indeed the case, then this has been a very long time in coming. Because the announcement of Spider-Gwen‘s “Gwenom” story arc–also reported as the very last story Robbi Rodriguez will illustrate before retiring from comics completely–happened at C2E2 from last year.  And yes, fans were very eager in seeing Spider-Gwen’s take on the psychotic, shape-shifting alien symbiote. One year ago. But since, according to its sales estimates, the title has lost 85 percent of its readership since its post-Secret Wars relaunch, hopefully the anticipation for “Gwenom” is even still there.

"Credit: Mahmud Asrar (Marvel Comics)THE TOTALLY AWESOME HULK #18GREG PAK (W) • MAHMUD ASRAR (A)Cover by STONEHOUSE“BIG APPLE SHOWDOWN” CONTINUES!• When a new alien race comes to Earth…• …HULK, MS. MARVEL, SILK, SHANG-CHI and JIMMY WOO are her last defenders…• Plus: A hostile takeover of THE OLYMPUS GROUP!32 PGS./Rated T …$3.99"

Commentary: If Marvel is planning on ending the current volume of Silk, Cindy Moon’s appearances in other comics like Totally Awesome Hulk and Ghost Rider is proof enough Marvel is nowhere near done with her character. At the very least, they’re clearly trying to give Silk greater exposure beyond the Spider-Man titles. Because if a comic book character can interact with and find an audience beyond just their niche sub fanbase, they’ll at least have a chance of sticking around.


Commentary: And it’s about time, too! It’s almost staggering to believe once you realize Eddie Brock, other a brief stint in 2007, hasn’t been villainous persona in over a decade. Heck, Cletus Kasady has lasted longer as Carnage than Brock has as Venom, and Carnage is a literal Venom offshoot. Oh sure, he’s been other symbiotes like Anti-Venom and Toxin, but neither one has really took. No doubt Marvel is having Brock reunite with his original partner in conjunction with the character’s 29th Anniversary. But of course, if the plan always was for Brock being Venom again, then why didn’t Mike Costa do that with issue #1? It also makes me wonder if Brock becoming Venom again is only temporary become the symbiote goes back to Lee Price again.

On-Sale April 26, 2017

"Credit: Mike McKone (Marvel Comics)ALL-NEW, ALL-DIFFERENT MARVEL READING CHRONOLOGYCover by MIKE MCKONEWant to know the best way to explore today’s Marvel Universe and build a library of volumes starring your favorite super heroes? We’ve got you covered! This Reading Chronology will arm you with all the information you need to navigate your way from the original Marvel NOW! era, through the All-New, All-Different Marvel age, up to right NOW! Our easy-to-follow guides will show you where to read the latest adventures of classic characters, cinematic sensations and today’s brightest new stars! We’re talking Spider-Man, the Avengers, Wolverine, Doctor Strange, the Guardians of the Galaxy, Black Panther, S.H.I.EL.D., Ms. Marvel, Spider-Gwen, Squirrel Girl and more! Now it’s easier than ever to Make Yours Marvel!32 PGS./All Ages …$0.00 (FREE!)ISBN: 978-1-302-90317-6Retailers, please check the Marvel Mailer for order information!"

Commentary: Yes, you’ve read this solicit correctly. Thanks to Marvel’s constant ending and relaunching comic book series with new #1 issues, and thus making their continuity even more convoluted and confusing, they now have to publish a literal guide explaining how their comics should be read and in which order to read them. Having an ongoing series reaching triple digits may seem daunting for new readers, but at least it still gave them a clear idea of where they should begin with a series. Of course, Marvel wouldn’t even be in this position in the first place if they weren’t so consumed with short-term sales boosts like having new #1 issues for Marvel NOW!, All-New Marvel, All-New All-Different Marvel, and Marvel NOW! again. At least this guide-book is free.

"Credit: Greg Land (Marvel Comics) Credit: Mark Bagley (Marvel Comics)BEN REILLY: THE SCARLET SPIDER #1PETER DAVID (W) • MARK BAGLEY (A/C)VARIANT COVER BY GREG LANDVARIANT COVER BY TOM LYLEVARIANT COVER BY J. SCOTT CAMPBELLACTION FIGURE VARIANT COVER BY JOHN TYLER CHRISTOPHEROne of the most controversial characters in comics has returned — and the controversy has only BEGUN! In the aftermath of THE CLONE CONSPIRACY, Ben has a new take on life…and he’s not the same Scarlet Spider he was before. Come witness what will be the most talked about comic of the year!32 PGS./Rated T+ …$3.99"

Commentary: You folks know already my thoughts about this upcoming new series and the new Scarlet Spider costume, so I won’t rehash those points here. What I will say is that after Clone Conspiracy #4, I’m more than convinced now that the Jackal/Anubishead/”Ben Reilly”/Ben 27 will not be this Ben Reilly. Because if it is, it’s will be a really hard sell, even with such a stellar creative team like Peter David and Mark Bagley behind. Which makes me think this Ben Reilly might be either Spidercide 2.0, or the “proto-clone” created by Doctor Octopus. That way, there can be a “Ben Reilly” untainted by the actions of the Jackal/Anubishead/”Ben Reilly”/Ben 27. Also, note how much better the new Scarlet Spider costume looks without the mouth. Thank you, Greg Land!


"Credit: John Romita Sr. (Marvel Comics)AMAZING SPIDER-MAN EPIC COLLECTION: THE GOBLIN’S LAST STAND TPBVolume #7 in the Amazing Spider-Man Epic CollectionsWritten by STAN LEE & GERRY CONWAYPenciled by JOHN ROMITA SR. & GIL KANECover by JOHN ROMITA SR.The tension-torn adventures of comics’ most put-upon super hero, the Amazing Spider-Man, continue! Stan Lee, John Romita Sr., Gil Kane and Gerry Conway bring you new creations like the Gibbon, and the return of iconic adversaries like Doctor Octopus and Kraven the Hunter! It’s enough excitement to give a hero an ulcer — and it does! Spidey also teams up with Doctor Strange against a mystic threat, goes toe-to-toe in a fight against the Incredible Hulk and faces Hammerhead — the only gangster with more steel in his dome than in his gun! The drama reaches its peak when the Green Goblin kidnaps Gwen Stacy in the story that put a generation into therapy and cemented the Goblin’s name as the definition of evil. Don’t miss this seminal chapter in Spidey’s history! Collecting AMAZING SPIDER-MAN (1963) #105-123.432 PGS./Rated T …$34.99ISBN: 978-1-302-90407-4 Credit: Humberto Ramos (Marvel Comics)CHAMPIONS VOL. 1: CHANGE THE WORLD TPBWritten by MARK WAIDPenciled by HUMBERTO RAMOSCover by HUMBERTO RAMOSOne of the great team names in Marvel history returns, in incredible new fashion! After the fallout of CIVIL WAR II, Ms. Marvel, Nova and Spider-Man quit the Avengers and strike out on their own! Along with Viv Vision and the Totally Awesome Hulk, these young heroes are determined to change the world their own way — and they’re only the beginning! It starts as an idea. It becomes an ideal. But what happens when it turns into a movement — one so big even the Hulk can’t stop it? Will one of the greatest X-Men of all forge a new future by their side? Will the Unbelievable Gwenpool be friend or foe? It’s a super-team book for a new generation! Collecting CHAMPIONS (2016) #1-5.120 PGS./Rated T+ …$15.99ISBN: 978-1-302-90618-4 Credit: Billy Tan (Marvel Comics)NEW AVENGERS BY BRIAN MICHAEL BENDIS: THE COMPLETE COLLECTION VOL. 4 TPBWritten by BRIAN MICHAEL BENDISPenciled by MICHAEL GAYDOS, DAVID MACK, JIM CHEUNG, BILLY TAN, ALEX MALEEV, CHRIS BACHALO & MORECover by BILLY TANSECRET INVASION rocks the New Avengers’ world! Trapped in the Savage Land, battling both friend and foe, Spider-Man turns to the one person he knows he can trust: Ka-Zar! But is it really him? Is anyone who they say they are? Discover how the Skrull infiltration ties to the team’s founding, and learn who instigated it — and why! What role did the Illuminati play? What happened to the Skrulls during HOUSE OF M? And when the Invasion ends and a Dark Reign begins, who will be the new New Avengers — and will they be heroes, or outlaws? Plus: Doctor Strange failed as the Master of the Mystic Arts, and the Marvel Universe has a legion of magic-users waiting in the wings to be the new Sorcerer Supreme. But who will rise to take up the mantle? Collecting NEW AVENGERS (2004) #38-54 and SECRET INVASION: DARK REIGN.480 PGS./Rated T+ …$39.99ISBN: 978-1-302-90865-2 Credit: Alex Ross (Marvel Comics)AMAZING SPIDER-MAN: WORLDWIDE VOL. 5 TPBWritten by DAN SLOTT, CHRISTOS GAGE, JAMES ASMUS, WAYNE BRADY & MOREPenciled by GIUSEPPE CAMUNCOLI, CORY T. SMITH & MORECover by ALEX ROSSDeath is no more as THE CLONE CONSPIRACY rocks the wall-crawler’s world! And if things weren’t bad enough for the Amazing Spider-Man, now Doctor Octopus has returned from the grave! How is he back? And what does he have to do with the Jackal? Another shocking return means big trouble for…the Scarlet Spider?! Where has Kaine been since the events of SPIDER-VERSE, and what role will he play in the Jackal’s twisted plan? And while we’re asking questions, what brought about the Jackal’s radical rebrand — and what could draw a resurrected Gwen Stacy to his side? Plus: The globe-trotting Spider-Man heads to Mexico City, Cloak and Dagger head into action in Shanghai, and star of stage and screen Wayne Brady tries his hand at comics! Collecting AMAZING SPIDER-MAN (2015) #20-24 and ANNUAL (2016) #1.144 PGS./Rated T …$17.99ISBN: 978-1-302-90238-4 Credit: Steve Rude (Marvel Comics)SPIDER-MAN: THE LIFELINE TABLET SAGA TPBWritten by STAN LEE & FABIAN NICIEZAPenciled by JOHN ROMITA SR., JIM MOONEY, JOHN BUSCEMA & STEVE RUDECover by STEVE RUDERelive a Spidey epic decades in the telling! It all begins with a classic struggle over a petrified tablet said to hold the secret to eternal life! It’s a priceless relic that a lot of dangerous folks want to get their hands on — like the Kingpin of Crime, the Shocker, Man Mountain Marko and Maggia boss Silvermane! Others are drawn into the fray — including Quicksilver and Dr. Curt Connors — but the tablet has a lesson to teach: Be careful what you wish for! Years later, Hammerhead sets his sights on the sought-after stone — and its full secrets are revealed in a free-for-all that draws in Boomerang, the Sub-Mariner and Connors’ savage alter ego, the Lizard! Only a Spider-Man/Doctor Strange team-up can prevent the Lifeline Tablet from wreaking havoc! Collecting AMAZING SPIDER-MAN (1963) #68-75 and SPIDER-MAN: LIFELINE #1-3.248 PGS./Rated T …$24.99ISBN: 978-1-302-90710-5 Credit: Sal Buscema (Marvel Comics)SPIDER-MAN VS. THE VULTURE TPBWritten by STAN LEE, ROGER STERN, LOUISE SIMONSON, J.M. DEMATTEIS & PETER DAVIDPenciled by STEVE DITKO, JOHN ROMITA SR., DON HECK, JOHN ROMITA JR., GREG LAROCQUE, SAL BUSCEMA & SCOT EATONCover by SAL BUSCEMASpider-Man’s greatest battles with his avian arch-adversary: the Vulture! Adrian Toomes has long been one of Spidey’s most fearsome foes, and their early encounters are all-time classics! But when Toomes’ ex-cellmate Blackie Drago takes to the skies, the elder statesman must prove that he is the one, true Vulture! Toomes gets a new lease on life and soars once more — but what started him on his airborne life of crime? Discover the secrets of the Vulture’s origin! He’ll take on more pretenders, the Vulturions — and seek forgiveness from a surprising victim when faced with his own mortality. But when the Vulture is hired to kill Spidey, will Peter Parker clip his wings for good? Collecting AMAZING SPIDER-MAN (1963) #2 (A STORY), #7, #63-64, #224 and #240-241; WEB OF SPIDER-MAN (1985) #3; SPECTACULAR SPIDER-MAN (1976) #186-188; and FRIENDLY NEIGHBORHOOD SPIDER-MAN #14-16.320 PGS./Rated T …$34.99ISBN: 978-1-302-90706-8 Credit: Sara Pichelli (Marvel Comics)SPIDER-MAN/SPIDER-GWEN: SITTING IN A TREE TPBWritten by BRIAN MICHAEL BENDIS & JASON LATOURPenciled by SARA PICHELLI & ROBBI RODRIGUEZCover by SARA PICHELLIK-I-S-S-I-N-G! That’s just one of the things that makes this a very modern Marvel team-up, as the two most sensational web-spinners of the 21st century cross paths — and lock lips! Miles Morales and Gwen Stacy are two young heroes from different Earths, but what threat could unite the Spider-Man and Spider-Woman of the new generation? The answer will rock both their worlds! Not for the first time, Miles will find himself in another universe — and he’s in pursuit of someone he holds dear. But will that description soon apply to Gwen? Or, as the stakes are raised, will this spider-crossed pair see teen romance give way to arachnid animosity? First comes love, then comes much worse, then comes chaos in the Multiverse! Collecting SPIDER-MAN (2016) #12-14 and SPIDER-GWEN (2015B) #16-18.136 PGS./Rated T …$17.99ISBN: 978-1-302-90762-4 Credit: Mahmud Asrar (Marvel Comics)ALL-NEW, ALL-DIFFERENT AVENGERS HCWritten by MARK WAID & MOREPenciled by ADAM KUBERT, MAHMUD ASRAR, ALAN DAVIS & MORECover by MAHMUD ASRARThe Avengers are dead — long live the Avengers! When a threat from beyond targets our world, fate draws Captain America, Thor, Vision and Iron Man together again — alongside three young adventurers who will reinvigorate Earth’s Mightiest Heroes! Welcome to the big leagues, Nova, Ms. Marvel and Miles Morales, a.k.a. Spider-Man! But who is the familiar villain pulling the reassembled Avengers’ strings? Will the new lineup last long enough to find out? The newest Avengers will lose their memories in a STANDOFF at Pleasant Hill, feel the sting of the Unstoppable Wasp and be sundered by the fallout from a second CIVIL WAR! Collecting ALL-NEW, ALL-DIFFERENT AVENGERS #1-15 and ANNUAL #1; and material from AVENGERS (2015) #0, FREE COMIC BOOK DAY 2015 (AVENGERS) and FREE COMIC BOOK DAY 2016 (CIVIL WAR II).424 PGS./Rated T+ …$34.99ISBN: 978-1-302-90409-8Trim size: oversized Credit: Mike Wieringo (Marvel Comics)SPIDER-MAN BY TODD DEZAGO & MIKE WIERINGO TPBWritten by TODD DEZAGO, MIKE WIERINGO & RICHARD CASEPenciled by MIKE WIERINGO, LUKE ROSS, JOSH HOOD, RICHARD CASE, JASON ARMSTRONG & TODD NAUCKCover by MIKE WIERINGOA sensational saga starring several Spider-Men! Ben Reilly (remember him?) has taken up the webs, but he’s about to be taken down by…the Looter?! And if he can get out of that one, he’ll face the sting of Swarm! But when revelations rock Ben’s world, he’ll make way for the one, true Spider-Man: Peter Parker! Peter takes on a Daily Bugle assignment in the Savage Land, where you might expect him to bump into Ka-Zar — but what’s the Hulk doing there? With the real Prowler out of action, someone muscles in on his act — and gets caught between Spidey and the Vulture! The Trapster and Living Pharaoh return, Doctor Strange lends a mystical hand, and we flash back to the days of a studious young boy, his Uncle Ben…and the Marvel Monsters! Collecting SENSATIONAL SPIDER-MAN (1996) #7-24 and #-1.456 PGS./Rated T …$39.99ISBN: 978-1-302-90699-3SPIDER-MAN: HOMECOMING PRELUDE TPBWritten by WILL CORONA PILGRIM with MATT FRACTION, STAN LEE & MOREPenciled by TODD NAUCK with SALVADOR LARROCA, STEVE DITKO & MOREYou adored his introduction in Marvel’s Captain America: Civil War, you can’t wait for his Hollywood Homecoming — now really get to know the Spider-Man of the Marvel Cinematic Universe! By day, Peter Parker attends high school and lives with May. By night, he fights crime with wall-crawling powers and web-swinging tech — and he’s destined to one day have an amazing, spectacular, sensational reputation as his neighborhood’s friendly hero! But first he must survive a war between Captain America and Iron Man that will split the Avengers! Join Spidey in his first tentative web-swings toward a blockbuster future! And it’s all backed up by a classic tale featuring Spidey’s first encounter with the high-flying Vulture, and a high-octane team-up with none other than Iron Man! Collecting MARVEL’S SPIDER-MAN: HOMECOMING PRELUDE #1-2, INVINCIBLE IRON MAN (2008) #7, AMAZING SPIDER-MAN (1963) #2 and more!112 PGS./Rated T …$14.99ISBN: 978-1-302-90516-3"

Commentary: It’s always interesting to me which trade collections Marvel decides to release depending on what is currently going on in their comics and movies. For instance, the Spider-Man by Todd Dezago and Mike Wieringo TPB is all about Ben Reilly as Spider-Man, just as he will have a new ongoing series starting in the same month. It’s clear the Spider-Man Vs. Vulture was put together because the Vulture, of course, is the main villain in Spider-Man: Homecoming. Likewise for Marvel’s Spider-Man: Homecoming Prelude TPB, which also reprints the Vulture’s first appearance and team-up with Iron Man.

But then there are those TPB collections which seem oddly out-of-place, like the Lifeline Tablet Saga. Don’t get me wrong, the first story in that collection is a classic, probably one of Stan Lee, John Romita Sr. and Jim Mooney’s more underrated but influential comic book epics. It’s even been adapted in cartoon form in Spider-Man: The Animated Series, and inspired the video game, Spider-Man: Shattered Dimensions. Fabian Nicizea and Steve Rude’s Lifeline, however, isn’t nearly as good.

There’s also the matter of the latest Amazing Spider-Man Epic Collection placing a lot of emphasis on “The Night Gwen Stacy Died,” even though that’s just one story in the collection. My guess is this is because Norman Osborn is playing a such large role in the upcoming arc for Amazing Spider-Man during this month, and perhaps Marvel figured they need to remind readers (again) why Peter’s battles with him are so personal.

What really gets me is how Marvel’s also reprinting the Amazing Spider-Man, Clone Conspiracy tie-ins in a separate trade, even though just the solicits for the previous month offer a Clone Conspiracy TPB which includes those tie-ins along with the Clone Conspiracy miniseries. Yes, I realize the Amazing Spider-Man tie-ins have outperformed the miniseries it’s tied into. But reading those issues by themselves, without the proper context, is like reading a novel with the main plot removed. In that regard, Amazing Spider-Man: Worldwide Vol. 5 just seems like a pointless money-grab.

Those are all the upcoming comics and trades for April, 2017. How do you feel about the apparent cancellations of Prowler and Spider-Woman? Which series do you believe will be put out to pasture next? Are you interested in picking up the new Scarlet Spider series? And what do you think about the return of Silver Sable and Eddie Brock as Venom? Leave some of your answers, and other thoughts about these solicits in the comments section below.