Today’s Super Comic — The Astonishing Ant-Man #13 (2016)

The Astonishing Ant-Man reaches a satisfying conclusion in issue #13.

Since it’s recent and it’s the final issue, I don’t want to give much away. Just know that the father/daughter relationship remains at the heart of the series through the end. The book isn’t so much about the adventures of Scott Lang as it’s about Scott’s efforts to be the man his daughter Cassie deserves.

There’s a clear arc throughout these thirteen issues, and it’s a complete story that allows for further stories to follow. It’s also about something far more relatable than superhero action, and it never forgets to have fun along the way. Scott and Cassie both commit mistakes and grow a little, making them engaging co-protagonists.

Nick Spencer wrote a winner here.

Also, very obliging of its Marvel Unlimited release schedule to roughly coincide with my year of daily reviews. I didn’t include every issue, for the sake of variety and because I didn’t have anything new to say with some, but the entire series is an enjoyable read.

Writer: Nick Spencer

Artists: Brent Schoonover and Roman Rosanas

Cover: Julian Totino Tedesco

Publisher: Marvel Comics

How to Read It: recent back issues; Marvel Unlimited; Comixology; included in The Astonishing Ant-Man vol. 3: The Trial of Ant-Man (TPB)

Appropriate For: ages 12 and up

Today’s Super Comic — The Astonishing Ant-Man #4 (2016)

Astonishing Ant-Man 4As far as superheroes go, Scott Lang isn’t much of a role model. But he’s not a bad guy either. It’s a difficult balance to pull off in comics, but writer Nick Spencer handles it exceptionally well in The Astonishing Ant-Man. Scott isn’t a total jerk. He’s not unhinged. He just possesses faulty judgment and keeps trying to do better.

Things get a bit more serious in issue #4, but ridiculousness will forever be inescapable so long as your protagonist is Ant-Man. The humor remains strong, but Scott’s strained relationship with his daughter provides a solid foundation for the comic booky antics to stand on. Scott’s recent tendency has been to literally shrink away from Cassie, supposedly for her own good or something, and here we see how well that works out for him.

I also have to compliment artist Roman Rosanas. He’s got a good, clean style and knows how to effectively convey the hero’s sometimes-diminished stature. For example, Ant-Man spends a portion of this issue hiding on the shoulder of his ex-girlfriend, Darla. By using wide but short panels and fitting only the lower half of Darla’s face within, Rosanas succeeds in making her appear relatively gigantic and Ant-Man actually tiny without having to resort to any splash panels (which would cost a lot more of the book’s limited space). That’s good, efficient layout work right there.

Ant-Man isn’t a superhero to emulate, but he’s fun to read about.

Writer: Nick Spencer

Artist: Roman Rosanas

Publisher: Marvel Comics

How to Read It: recent back issues; Marvel Unlimited; Comixology; The Astonishing Ant-Man vol. 1: Everybody Loves Team-Ups (TPB)

Appropriate For: ages 13 and up