As the release of Spider-Man: Homecoming draws ever nearer, Marvel Comics are steadily stoking the fires of enthusiasm. Trailers, TV spots, fancy advertising — you name it, they’re doing it. Of course, it wouldn’t be Marvel if there wasn’t a comic tie-in!

Spider-man: homecoming prelude comic

That’s where Spider-Man: Homecoming Prelude comes in. Originally a two-part digital comic series released in early 2017, it was released as a print trade paperback on June 20.

My Spidey-Sense is Tingling…

For a story called Spider-Man: Homecoming Prelude, the comic really has little to do with Spider-Man or anything from his upcoming solo film. If you are looking for some backstory surrounding Adrian Toomes or Spider-Man’s solo adventuring, then you are in for a disappointment.

In fact, the majority of the story is a retelling of the events of Captain America: Civil War. Some dialogue has been changed and added to clarify plot points not covered in the comic, but it is pretty much a faithful retelling of the film.

The only entirely new scene shows Peter Parker and Aunt May watching a news report of the Vienna bombing. This is strangely in keeping with the entire hype surrounding Spider-Man: Homecoming though. All of the pre-release posters and trailers heavily feature Tony Stark’s Iron Man, so why should Prelude be any different?

Spider-Man, Spider-Man, Does Whatever a Spider Can

Prelude does have some nice moments, though. The artwork by Todd Nauck is dynamic, capturing both the quieter moments of the story alongside the more complicated and dense fight scenes.

The best part of the story is the beginning. Spider-Man, decked out in his makeshift suit, stops a car from crashing into a bus. If that sounds a little familiar, then that’s because it is. In Civil War, we see the event, albeit as a badly filmed YouTube video. Prelude throws a little spotlight on the event and we see exactly what Spider-Man can do even without his fancy new suit.

We do get one nice piece of information that was not conveyed in Civil War. It’s a minor one, but in terms of the Marvel Cinematic Universe timeline, a month passes between the events in Lagos (where the Avengers face Crossbones) and the bombing of the summit in Vienna.

A Missed Opportunity

At the end of the day, Spider-Man: Homecoming Prelude unfortunately adds nothing to the Marvel Cinematic Universe. It could have been a nice primer to the introduction of Spider-Man and his supporting characters to the MCU. Given Spider-Man’s close ties to the street-level heroes of the Marvel Netflix series, it could have even served as a way to tie the two together without a big-screen crossover. Instead, we got an adaptation of Civil War disguised as a prelude to Spider-Man: Homecoming.

If you really want to catch up on the events of Civil War, then give this a pass and rewatch the film again.

Mike Delaney
Star Wars fan and general pop culture addict. Only two beverages worth drinking are tea and whisky.