Appearing in "All they want to do is kill you, Spider-Man..."
- Wino Charlie (Charles Fortesque Smythington III) (First appearance)
- Joseph Pincus (Voice) (Unidentified)
- New York City
Synopsis for "All they want to do is kill you, Spider-Man..."
A thunderstorm blows into New York City from the Atlantic Ocean as a shadowy figure rises from the East River and comes ashore at Ryker's island. Pulling an unusual weapon from beneath a cloak, the figure presses the trigger and a beam is emitted that blows a gaping hole in the masonry of Ryker's island Prison. As prearranged, the Wizard steps out of the hole into the water, greeting the one who has freed him, and they swim away. Security guards give chase in boats, but the Wizard's liberator raises a hand, and an enormous sea monster surfaces to crush the boats in its tentacles. The guards barely escape with their lives. The Wizard is impressed, and the two companions in crime swim toward the city to begin hunting Spider-Man.
The next morning, Saturday, Peter Parker fills his bathtub with detergent water and a special formula he developed to get the itchy brine out of his spider-suit. While the costume is soaking, Peter will spend the day with Debra Whitman. All of a sudden, Peter's next door neighbor starts to sing one of his awful songs, and Peter has to get dressed in the closet to protect his ears. As Peter turns the corner of his corridor, he meets another of his new neighbors, a stunningly gorgeous brunette, as she opens the door to her apartment. When she says hello, Peter nearly forgets his date with Debra. Peter soon arrives at Debra's, and they spend the day sight-seeing. Debra is quite happy to be with Peter, and as they leave the Statue of Liberty at the end of the day, she kisses him. But when she invites him to her apartment, he declines. He wants to remain Debra's friend, but he does not want their relationship to become more intimate, and by 11:00 p.m., Peter is home. When he checks on his costume, he finds to his annoyance that the chemical solution has faded the colors. Then he hears a radio bulletin describing a giant mechanical spider that is climbing the south tower of the World Trade Center. Donning his faded and still wet costume, he web-swings to investigate. On the way, he muses about his appalling lack of organization. Soon Spider-Man arrives and sees the giant spider perched on the building. Unknown to him, the spider is being controlled by the Wizard and his shadowy companion. Either the explosives planted on the spider will destroy Spider-Man, says the Wizard, or his special device will get a reading on Spider-Man's spider-sense that will enable them to track him down.
When Spider-Man attacks, the spider begins firing lasers at him. Spider-Man's spider-sense is tingling fiercely, and he realizes that the spider is not the only danger he is facing. He web-swings into the device, knocking it off the wall into the plaza below, where it explodes harmlessly. Unable to find out who was behind the incident, Spider-Men web-swings away. Out of sight on a rooftop nearby, the Wizard ominously tells his companion that he now has a reading on the waves emitted by Spider-Man's spider-sense. Meanwhile, a derelict called Wino Charlie climbs to a roof in Manhattan's Chelsea district in search of a peaceful place for a drink. As he settles in, the Wizard and his companion descend to the roof of the adjacent building, which happens to be Peter Parker's apartment house. The Wizard's devices have given unmistakable indication that Spider-Man is nearby. This pleases the Wizard's companion, who has grown impatient with the Wizard's vendetta. Indeed, Peter happens to be walking up to the door of the building, angry that the university is charging him a $100 lab fee, money that he does not have. He passes the foyer, where he sees two of his new neighbors. One of them is wearing a cowboy outfit, and Peter thinks he is the person whose singing keeps him awake at night. The other is a short bearded man. As Peter is sewing himself a new costume, the telephone rings. It is Debra Whitman, calling to say she enjoyed their date, but their conversation is soon interrupted by a knock on Peter's door. When he answers it, he sees the gorgeous neighbor he saw earlier. She invites him to the roof for a tenants' meeting about an impending rent strike. Peter enthusiastically agrees to go, but as he dresses, the telephone rings again. This time it is J. Jonah Jameson, offering Peter a $100 bonus if he can get photographs of a subway excavation collapse in midtown Manhattan before the next edition goes to press.
So Peter dons his new Spider-Man costume and web-swings away, hoping to get the photos and still be on time for the meeting. Peter arrives at the subway and finds four workmen trapped in the rubble. He quickly digs through, much faster than the rescuers could have, and saves the workmen before they suffocate. Then he retrieves his camera, and in ten minutes he is web-swinging back to his apartment. As Spider-Man approaches his building, his spider-sense tingles, and he sees the Wizard and his companion on the roof. They had organized the phony-tenants' meeting in order to get all the tenants onto the roof, knowing that one of them must be Spider-Man out of costume. Thus they are puzzled when Spider-Man attacks them from a different direction. Attributing the error to a flaw in the Wizard's tracking device, they fire laser beams at Spider-Man, but he dodges and they destroy a chimney instead. Gathering some of the chimney bricks into a sling made of webbing, Spider-Man flings them at his two antagonists. The pair is stunned, but the Wizard presses a stud on his sleeve, and suddenly the roof of Peter's building erupts in flame. The Wizard and his companion had planted incendiary devices there earlier that evening. Spider-Man leaps to rescue the tenants as the Wizard and his companion escaped. Then Spider-Man tears a fire escape off the building he is on and uses it as a bridge to the burning building. One by one, the tenants walk across to safety, but Wino Charlie, who has passed out from drinking too much liquor, is still on the flaming roof, oblivious to what is happening around him. Spider-Man quickly spins himself a web-shield and jumps to the burning building's roof to save the derelict. But the roof has been weakened by the fire, and when Spider-Man lands on it, he begins to fall through.
- Peter is trying to wash the brine out of his costume. This was spilled on him on Amazing Spider-Man #211.
- The depiction of the original twin towers at the site of the World Trade Center should be considered a topical reference per the Sliding Timescale of Earth-616. The original towers were destroyed in a terrorist attack on September 11, 2001. Since then the Timescale has moved forward so the modern age doesn't begin until after these events.
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