This week, Silk #1 swings into the main review spot! This web’s filled with spoilers, so swing carefully.

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Silk (2023) #1.

Silk (2023) #1

Writer: Emily Kim
Artist: Ig Guara
Color Artist: Ian Herring
Letterer: Ariana Maher
Main Cover: Dave Johnson

Cindy Moon returns for a new solo series, and she’s brought some familiar faces along for the ride! Will Silk survive the somnambulistic cinematic shenanigans to which she’s being subjected?

Previously on Silk

Silk originally made her debut in The Amazing Spider-Man (2014) #1. Many of her immediate subsequent appearances took place in team books and crossover events. She’s also had a series of solo titles: Silk (2023) #1 actually launches the fifth volume of her self-titled book.

The fifth volume is closely related to Silk’s two most recent solo title runs: Silk (2021) and Silk (2022). 

A “satisfying chunk”?

As coined by The Beat’s Editor in Chief Heidi MacDonald, the “satisfying chunk” theory puts forth that one tenant of a solid first issue is that it should offer up a satisfying chunk of story. Does Silk (2023) #1 count as a satisfying chunk? Not really; at least, not a self-contained one. Without the context offered by Silk (2021) – namely, the identity of the characters who appear as a last-page reveal, and their history with Cindy – this issue might come across as something less than that satisfying chunk.

As part of an ongoing series, however – and given that I do have the context from the 2021 run of Silk – this issue is very satisfying, indeed. I’m very pleased to see the return of both Saya Ishii, the founder of Fujinet and an expert in robotics, as well as her brother, Max. The last time we saw Max, he was posing as Cindy’s therapist at Saya’s behest. 

Later in the five-issue series that introduced the returning antagonists, it was revealed that Saya was working with a demon to help her achieve her business goals – but when she discovered the demon was only using her as a means to an end, Saya and Silk teamed up to overcome the supernatural antagonists. However, the pair parted ways on uncertain terms after Saya used an explosive drone to deal a killing blow to the demon.

Cindy faced a different supernatural antagonist in Silk (2022), an ancient witch who cast a spell that caused her to be turned into an old lady (aka “The Full Howl’s Moving Castle”). 

Silk’s Swinging Sequel

The first issue of Silk (2023) offers a premise that allows the artists and letterer to really explore some interesting territory. Trapped in a dream state, Cindy is subjected to a weird supernatural detective noir story, before abruptly shifting into a western train heist. 

Both of these cinematic premises are presented with great effect, with a full-page splash giving throwback detective Cindy a chance for a big battle sequence in “The Midnight Monster,” and a panel stretched across the top of two pages to herald the arrival of “The Silk Train Robbery.”

While it’s currently unclear just what circumstances have landed Silk in this strange situation, the main cover suggests she’s not out of the cinematic woods yet. In addition to images of Cindy as a detective and in the Western genre, the cover also teases Silk’s further adventures: in space, with zombies, as a pirate captain, and in a dragon-type fantasy realm.

Furthermore, being trapped in a dream realm is a classic Marvel Comics premise. This continues a tradition of throwing Cindy in textbook superhero premises and allowing her to make them feel fresh, heavily present in Silk (2021) and Silk (2022). Silk (2023) continues this tradition with a story that recalls some of the best Doctor Strange and Moon Knight tales, without feeling like a retread of what’s come before.

Silk (2023) #1

While the conclusive page of Silk (2023) #1 does suggest that Saya is responsible for the situation in which Cindy is entrapped, few further details are proffered. With the context I have from Silk (2021), this has planted all manner of speculation in my mind as to where this series may swing from here. Plus, given how good the two genres we saw in this issue looked, I’m very much looking forward to Silk’s venture into the sci-fi, pirate, fantasy, and horror genres.

Verdict: Just when you think you’re out, they thwip you back in!

Next week brings X-Men #22, Red Goblin #4, and Avengers #1! Catch up with past entries in the Marvel Rundown archive.