Amazing Spider-Man #235

December 1982

Cover art by: John Romita, Jr. & Al Milgrom

Story: Look Out There's A Monster Coming!

Writer: Roger Stern

Pencils: John Romita Jr.

Inks: Frank Giacoia

Spider-man is in a lab run by the Brand Corporation in which they were attempting to give the crime lord Tarantula powers like his. Another villain(?) Will-o-wisp disrupted the proceedings and the Tarantula looks very much like a spider now. The threesome have quite a battle, but Spider-man is taken out of it when he saves some Brand employees from being crushed by falling machinery.

W-o-W and Tarantula take their fight outside, and eventually fall into Jamaica Bay, seemingly both dead. Spider-man makes his own retreat and leaves the place as Peter Parker.

Back at the Daily Bugle, Agent Royton from the Department of Justice has a meeting with Jameson, Robbie, and Ned Leeds about the exposè they are working on the Brand/Roxxon Corporation. Royton then gives them (us) a breakdown on what kind illegal activities the company has been up to. With a real nice 2 page highlight of the heroes and villains that have been involved. Ned, looking real dapper with his 70s newsman haircut and lavender...lavender! suit, asks what their next move is. JJJ has to explain to him that they are killing the story. Believing it may tip off Brand and ruin the government's case.

That night Spider-man breaks into James Melvin's house, the Executive Director of Brand. Will-o-wisp also arrives, but much more overtly, and plans to kill Melvin. Before he does he reminds Melvin just who he is. Once a researcher named Jackson Arvad he was pushed by Melvin to complete his project on a magno-chamber. Jackson fell asleep and the chamber exploded. Jackson was kept in a containment cell, and Brand was hoping to learn everything that happened to him, before he died. Jackson simply turned immaterial and slipped away, with Brand thinking him dead. Now he is back for revenge.

Before he can make the killing blow, Spidey interferes, and the two begin their fight anew. During their battle Melvin attempts to get away, but is caught by the still living Tarantula.

I liked this one quite a bit. Fast-paced with great action sequences. Yet it still makes room for the little moments. Like Peter finding all of the pictures he took of the battle at the Brand lab were blurred by radiation there. His run-in with his landlady. Good read.

Although, I need some help Legionnaires. How did this one end? I don't have the follow-up issues.

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Will-o'-the-Wisp and Spider-Man part on cautiously amicable terms.  Tarantula mutates further, despair and provokes suicide-by-cop.  Brand suffers some PR damage but that means little beyond burying Melvin's reputation as a scapegoat.

A new Tarantula was introduced in The Spectacular Spider-Man #137-#138, at the start of Gerry Conway's 80s run on the title. Unlike the original, he had enhanced strength.

Thank you, gents. I did know that Tarantula got killed, and another one came along. Just wasn't sure of the specifics.

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