Written by: Nick Spencer
Art by: Ramon Rosanas
While being a fan of the main Secret Wars event, what has annoyed me is the disruption of many recently launched series that I’ve been enjoy. The biggest pain for me has been the unsure future of the delightfully relaunched Ant-Man by Nick Spencer and Ramon Rosanas. The five issue series was one of the most inventive, clever and humorous series Marvel has made in recent years and each issue was bursting with joy. While the recently released annual was a fun side story exploring the relationship between Scott Lang and his predecessor Hank Pym, Last Days pushes the main story forward a little and acts as a bridge between this current series and October’s Astonishing Ant-Man. This makes for an issue that captures everything that made the series great and that promise mores adventures in the future.
I wasn’t sure how the usually comedic book would take on the heavy “end of the world” themes, but thankfully Spencer chooses to play this with all the regular charm and adventurous tone, while using the book’s heart of gold to give resolution to some of the series’ themes. From the beginning of the issue I knew we were in good hands, with our hero being trapped under the 1000 pound frame of the villainous slug in the middle of a heist. It’s a fun opening that highlights Spencer’s ability to write the incredibly witty dialogue that I’ve come to love from the series. As the issue continues, multiple seemingly disparate stories including Scott’s only business investor and a retirement home for superheroes come together to make an incredibly sweet story that questions what constitutes as a hero, and whether or not Scott is one. This is without even mentioning the whole “end of the world” scenario. There’s a lot going on, yet it never feels bloated or unfocused, instead it balances all these threads well, each one reminding you of what makes the series special, and giving a little pang of sadness that it’s all coming to an end. By the end of the issue, you’ll have had some great laughs and felt some final feels. It feels like a great finale to the series rather than just part of the larger Secret Wars event.
Rosanas once more graces us with his beautiful pencils and his style has never felt more fitting. With an issue featuring so many golden age heroes he captures their presence and power perfectly. You can feel the respect flowing through his pencils and it feels like a very fitting tribute to a bygone era. The rest of the issue stands up to his usual high standards, capturing the raw emotion in charcaters dealing with the end of the world, the beautiful sights of Miami or just the hyptonising rolls of Slug. There’s not much left to say that hasn’t been said, but I’m so glad he’ll be sticking with the book throughout the relaunch. There’s simply no substitute for his fresh, charming style.
Last Days of Ant-Man could easily be overlooked by fans, coming quite late in the Secret Wars event which people are already feeling burnt out on, but if you’re a fan of the current Ant-Man series then it’s required reading. Spencer and Rosanas fill Scott Lang’s last hurrah with heart, humor and adventure, just like the previous issues. I look forward to the series returning in October, but for the time being, these two deliver a satisfying conclusion to an unexpected hit.