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I'm just going to cover what I wanted to know before I bought the book. Maybe that'll help inform your decisions as well.

WHAT'S IN IT? It's got the first 40 issues of Ultimate Spider-Man (#1-39 and #1/2), as written by Brian Michael Bendis and illustrated by Mark Bagley.

ANY EXTRAS? Some, but not all, of the bonus stuff from the back of the old hardcover editions has made it over. For example, everything from the first volume is included here (so that's a few variant covers and a lot of detail on how the series is created) whereas nothing from the third volume made the cut (so all the genesis for the Venom story and how reluctant Bendis was to do it is gone). It's nice to have some, but it'd have been nicer to have all.

HOW'S THE PRESENTATION? It's gorgeous. What, are you kidding? It's a Marvel Omnibus. It's GORGEOUS. It lays perfectly flat from cover to cover, the art reproduction is flawless at full-page at this size, and the book's in a nice red hardback, too.

SHOULD I BUY IT? If you like Marvel's latest cinematic venture Amazing Spider-Man, absolutely. Its version of events and in particular its Peter Parker owe less to Stan Lee and Steve Ditko's version of the character and more to how Bendis worked with characterisation. Plus, the story and the art are fantastic. Sure, this has been released to capitalise on a movie release, but it's been in my top ten for years and it's really as good as Spider-Man gets. It's very frequently laughaloud funny, the action is awesome and it bears many, many re-readings. As far as value for money is concerned it may be the best Omnibus yet.

HMM. I'M STILL NOT SURE... Then we're on the outs. This book is awesome and unless you have the issues fact, even IF you have the issues already, you should still buy it. It's the best presentation these stories will ever have and your shelf will look happier to have them.

ALRIGHT, SO I'M IN. WHERE DO I GO FROM HERE? You could start in collecting the hardcovers as they offer the same presentation but the later volumes are becoming increasingly hard to find at reasonable prices. Marvel has published the last of this series' run (before its 2011 relaunch) in Omnibus format, but who knows if they'll ever release the volumes in between? The next book in paperback is Volume 7: Irresponsible which is collected alongside Volume 8: Cats And Kings in the fourth hardcover collection. If you decide to go down the hardcover route, there are 12 books in all (counting the three contained in this Omnibus) before that second Omnibus to wrap it all up. If you go with paperbacks it's a little more confusing as they're numbered 1-22 (as Ultimate Spider-Man) and then re-numbered 1-4 (for Ultimate COMICS Spider-Man). Either way, if you're ever confused drop a note in the comments section and I shall be thy guide.

THAT'S AWFUL SWEET. Don't mention it.

COOL, SO WE DONE? We done.


Omnibus Essentials:

PAGE COUNT - 1,000
ISSUES COLLECTED - 40: #1-#39, #1/2
CREATIVE TEAM - Brian Bendis (w), Mark Bagley (a)
OTHER BOOKS COLLECTED - Okay... It collects six story arcs: Power and Responsibility,Learning Curve,Double Trouble,Legacy,Public Scrutiny and Venom (which is also available as a standalone Premiere Hardcover), which are collected two apiece in Ultimate Collections 1, 2 and 3. The hardcover volumes 1, 2 and 3 are, like the Omnibus, oversized and also collect two arcs each. (I tried linking to each but Amazon's upper limit is ten - sorry)
EXTRA CONTENT - 40 pages' worth of character sketches, discussion on the series' creation and generally quite a lot of context.

***As ever, I keep an eye on the comments section, so if you'd like to know anything about the book please ask below.***
66 comments| 33 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 12 April 2015
Bendis can do little wrong for me.Get his Daredevil,it outstrips every conception of the character,lifts it to heights previously unimagined.Spidey has his story retold,for the now generation,updated,but similar to the pre existing,but different enough to maintain even the attention of we older readers.I would rank the artwork as functional,not dark and brooding as in Daredevil,for me it merely serves its purpose.The bad guys leer,subtlety is missing,but it serves...Could this be better?Well,I suppose a writer always looks back and thinks so,but if so,not much.Do I prefer it to Daredevil?No,that is the standard to which all mainstream comics of the genre should aspire,multi layered,a masterpiece.Do I regret buying this?Not at all.
'Nuff said?Well,actually,no,not quite.As decent as this is,it is really only a one dimensional superhero book,and as much as I like Bendis,there are better,more mature,adventurous,exploratory,boundary breaking tales out there.Like just about anything by Alan Moore,or Gaiman's Sandman saga,or at the risk of repetition,Daredevil,which certainly surpasses the Bendis Spider man.As a reader of 60 years of age(yes,and I still read comics,for me there is no distinction,absolutely none,between "comics" and the more familiar written word,both are equally valid.Is a great work of art superior to a great movie?If so,why?Both have the same ends in mind,and if properly done,both have left an image,or narrative,behind)I am probably more comfortable with the Ditko Spidey of yore,but fully appreciate how the younger generation may not respond as well to this as did I,many years ago..(48,I think).
So,in conclusion,I understand why the re-vamp.And it is interesting,in many ways,but does it replace the old Spidey stories?Not for me.It has humour,such as the way the Shocker is such a failure at his chosen profession of robber,and the Rhino episode,well,that's an example of how real life just is,but ultimate?Ultimately,no.Very good,but mature readers should be looking elsewhere for illustrated works of weight.Because the medium is more than just superheroes in skimpy outfits,more than just superbabes with improbable bodies(although my teenage self loved them),more than just tales simply told.It is at best literature,a movie told in single frames,to be studied,and the meaning to be fully extracted,and not just KAPOW and SKKKRAAAAASH,and all that action stuff.It's like saying shall we watch Fast and Furious 12,or whatever number they've done,or a Kurosawa movie classic.You can have both,but don't just have F&F.It'll leave you unsatisfied.Well,I hope for your sake,it will.
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on 1 February 2013
Excellent read. A bit on the pricey side, but worth the money!

If you love spidery then splash a little dish and enjoy. The art work and stories are second to none. A real treat.

Can't wait for the second omnibus, but will need to save for it.
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on 30 August 2015
A fantastic collection of Ultimate Spiderman,collects the first 40 comics of the series in one hard back book. You don't get all the additional extras like you do in the back of each volume of this series but you do get the entire story up to number 40 uninterrupted with awesome graphics and storyline.
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on 28 January 2014
I used own every single issue of the Ultimate Spiderman original run, over time became misplaced or shelf damaged so lot fell in to the bin but omnibus is a great jumpstart to restart my collection
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on 13 August 2015
So this was terrible. I was expecting something really different to this. I'm pretty sure I absolutely detest the ultimate universe, this confirms it. The old Stan lee stories were ten times better than this.

Here are the reasons I hated it...

1. It's just a retelling of all the classic Spider-man stories with a twist.
2. The artwork is terrible
3. The artwork is terrible (so bad it's on here twice) to the point that they draw Peter Parker posing like a girl in his pants wtf!
There is only one comic I've read recently with worse artwork and that was Rick Remenders uncanny avengers!
4. The changes they made to the characters are worse! Why make Kraven a TV star?

I will continue to avoid the ultimate marvel universe like the plague. The only thing worse than this is Ultimate X-Men and if you like that there's something wrong with you.

The end.
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