Review: ‘Spider-Woman,Volume 1: Switching Gears’ by Dennis Hopeless [Spoilers!]

Warning, warning! This review contains spoilers!

When I first saw Spider-Woman, Volume 1: Switching Gears on a shelf in my local comic store, I basically lost my mind. Seriously, guys. Jessica Drew is pregnant! This is sort of the most exciting premise I’ve seen for a comic in a while.


This collection starts off with Jessica, fully pregnant. She’s frustrated because she feels as if people are babying (haha, see what I did there?) her. It’s at odds with how she feels. Far from taking a break, Jessica still feels ready to kick butt.

I really liked this part. It felt very real. Here she is, trying to balance suddenly being responsible for more than one life, but also not wanting to give up her current lifestyle. She’s a superhero though-and-through, but all of a sudden people are offering to help her walk across the street and carry her groceries.

But of course, Jess gets her chance to kick butt. Carol advises that she to go to this space-hospital. What Carol didn’t know was that this hospital would soon be under attack! Skrulls have taken over the hospital! And Jess (with the occasional help of other expectant mothers) totally saves the day.

To be honest, this particular storyline is why I dropped a full two stars. I just didn’t love it. I mean, come on. Jess is great and would certainly beat me in a fight (not that that’s saying much), but Jess is full-term at this stage. She’s full-term! And then she literally gives birth and five seconds later is back to kicking butt.

I just didn’t buy it. It sounds insane. And while I can’t say I’ve ever read a comic and thought Oh my! How believable!, I also don’t expect to read one and think …what? Seriously? How? Is this a joke? Are you kidding me?.

So while the middle was a bit of a flop for me, the last issue really brought it back home for me. The final issue of the collection shows Jess in full-blown baby mode. She’s totally overwhelmed and unsure of how to care for this kid and care for herself at the same time. This was what I wanted to see right from Issue 1. Instead of a full-term pregnant woman still backflipping and punching her way through life, I wanted to see one of my favourite superheroes figure out how to be a mother while saving the world.

Of course, with some help from a couple of friends, Jess manages to learn how to balance the two. She learns that she doesn’t have to get it right straight away, that she can lean on other people… and that she might not have to give up absolutely everything.

Overall, I think I was a little disappointed with this. But the final issue in this collection made me feel like I’m going to love this series as it continues. I’m super excited to pick up the second volume!

Were you as excited as I was about this premise? If you’ve read it, how did you feel about Jess taking on all those Skrulls? Let me know!


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