Peter Porker, the Spectacular Spider-Ham #1
Written by Zeb Wells
Art by Will Robson and Erick Arciniega
Lettering by Joe Caramagna
Published by Marvel Comics
'Rama Rating: 8 out of 10
For fans of Spider-Man: Into the Spiderverse, Peter Porker, the Spectacular Spider-Ham #1 provides ham-fisted hilarity as we follow Peter Porker back to his universe in the wake of his inter-dimensional adventuring. Picking up after Spider-Ham's dimension-hopping exploits, even those only familiar with the web-swinging swine from the movie will feel right at home in this story.
As far as Zeb Wells’ story, it’s pretty straightforward: Spider-Ham returns home from his dimension-hopping adventures and makes no hambones about his role in helping save the multiverse. Because of his jabs and jokes about their lesser contributions to heroism, his teammates on the Sca-Vengers quickly grow tired of his bragging and cut him off … not that he notices. It’s only until the threat of further inter-dimensional incursions in his world does Spider-Ham look for support only to find none around.
What’s interesting is that it’s the other animal heroes who are fighting crime and responding to the threats in their world – not Spider-Ham. We know he can be a hero, but clearly, Peter Porker is someone caught up in his own ego, which creates some opportunities for a little fun at his expense. While the story itself isn’t going to draw and keep readers engaged, the opportunity to get to see Spider-Ham in action amongst his fellow heroes is where readers will dial into this story and have some fun. Wells does an excellent job of channeling John Mulaney’s voice as the Spectacular Spider-Ham, with the witty and cartoonish dialogue as we see Porker interact with various heroes and teams. The scene where the members of the Un-humanati call him out is particularly funny as each member runs down a laundry list of Spider-Ham’s crimes against “unhumanity.”
While Wells clearly has an ear for comedic dialogue, he finds a strong partnership with Will Robson and Erick Arciniega, as their ability to sell the comedy with the expressions – both the slapstick of Peter Porker and the responses from those forced to put up with his over-the-top antics and ego. Additionally, the art is nothing short of spectacular, between Arciniega’s warm colors that bring life to the characters and Robson’s panels that always keep the eye moving from one scene to the next without missing a beat. Joe Caramagna helps conduct the action with lettering that naturally flows from one panel to the next, despite the nonstop action, and helps visually distinguish one character from the next.
Overall, the issue provides a solid entry point into the world of Spider-Ham. Whether fans of the film or the previous comic books, readers will get to know this hammy hero and see him prepare for yet another inter-dimensional adventure. Wells sets up enough pieces here to cue us into where we will be going next and who we can expect to see come issue #2. Peter Porker, the Spectacular Spider-Ham #1 proves to be an excellent comic for those younger readers out there looking for a bright, action-and-fun-filled adventure with just enough dry wit that parents will equally enjoy.