Title: I (Heart) Marvel: Web of Romance
Author: Tom Beland
Pencils: Cory Walker
Cover by: Gez Fry
Publisher: Marvel Publishing, Inc.
Length: 32 pages
Released as part of Marvels’ I (Heart) Marvel Event. If you’ve never read a Spider-Man comic or seen one of the movies, it might be hard to figure out where Spiderman and his wife, Mary Jane, live. And who are all those guys are watching the Knicks game with MJ? Here’s a hint: they’re superheroes, too. Longtime comics readers would know this is the Avengers headquarters, and that man in the kitchen with Aunt May is Jarvis the butler.
What is clear from the first few panels of this sweet Valentine’s Day story is that when it comes to giving his wife a gift, Spider-Man is just as much at a loss as most husbands. He thumbs through the yellow pages in search of ideas, while consulting the villain he has tied up. He asks the advice of his fellow Avengers, Captain America and Luke Cage, as they battle a dragon. He also takes time to show Mary Jane his cool web shooters and tell her a funny story of when he punk’d Johnny Storm (The Human Torch) back in high school days. Eventually, he goes to Tony Stark (Iron Man) for his mechanical genius in creating a unique present for MJ.
Better and more romantic than the gift itself is the true love that writer Tom Beland shows shining through Spider-Man’s every thought. When Spidey tells MJ how he feels about the moon and coming home to her, the story hits a pure high note. This is a genuinely loving and romantic tale with touches of gentle humor. Beland is of course the acclaimed author of the semi-autobiographical romance comic called True Story: Swear to God.
The cartoony artwork of penciler Cory Walker and inker Cliff Rathburn conveys a cute story that resonates with love.
Web of Romance was released as part of Marvel Comics’ I (Heart) Marvel event, which was designed to pay homage to this once-forgotten genre. Other titles include I (Heart) Marvel: Masked Intentions, I (Heart) Marvel: Outlaw Love, I (Heart) Marvel: My Mutant Hear #1, and I (Heart) Marvel: Marvel AI . This comic is rated G for all audiences. Overall this story was more cute than sexy.