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Appearing in "Slithereens"

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Synopsis for "Slithereens"

This story continues from Web of Spider-Man #48...

With Manhattan under invasion from demons, Peter Parker and his wife Mary Jane are taking a cab to Queens to check on Peter's Aunt May.[Continuity 1] As they pass through the Midtown Tunnel, the cab is attacked by a flying shark, which rips the roof off the vehicle. While Mary Jane distracts the driver, Peter uses one of his web-shooters to rope the shark and knock it out with his spider-strength. As they continue on their way, Peter hopes that Queens isn't in the same condition as Manhattan. At that moment at Empire State University, Curt Connors struggles to keep his transformation into the Lizard at bay. However, despite his efforts, Connors transforms into his reptilian alter-ego.[Continuity 2]

Meanwhile, Peter and Mary Jane arrive at Aunt May's home in Queens, where the Inferno invasion has barely been felt. There they are greeted by Mary Jane's niece, Kristy. Kristy is happy to see them, but she plays up her crush on Peter hard enough to make him embarassed. When he asks where Aunt May is, Kristy reveals that May had traveled into the city to check on them.[Continuity 3] Peter begins to panic and tells Mary Jane that he needs to go back into the city and find her. Mary Jane agrees to wait here with Kristy, telling Peter to be careful. Soon, Mary Jane and Kristy are in the kitchen. While her cousin gorges on some food, Mary Jane can't eat because she is worried about her husband.[Continuity 4] Suddenly, Aunt May returns home, having been sent back home by a police officer. When she asks where Peter is, Mary Jane tells May that he stepped out for a moment.

At that moment, Martha Connors and her son Billy are heading into Manhattan, in an attempt to reconcile her marriage with Curt. Martha can't help but think how Curt's many transformations into the Lizard after experimenting on himself to regrow a lost arm has put an incredible strain on their marriage.[Continuity 5] Meanwhile, Spider-Man arrives at Bedford Towers and finds no trace of Aunt May, unaware that she is safe and sound back in Queens. Worried for her safety, Spider-Man decides to go to the only other place she could have gone looking for him is at Empire State University. There, Martha and Billy are ushered onto the ESU grounds by the security guard, unaware that he has been possessed by demons. He lures the Connors into the ESU library where he pulls a horde of demons out of a card catalog. At that very moment, a two boys break into the warehouse where a massive parade balloon of Spider-Man is stored. They are upset that their vacation from Texas was interrupted by the strange happenings and the annual parade in question was canceled. They are soon frightened away when the balloon suddenly comes to life and chases them away.[Continuity 6]

Back at Empire State University, Martha and Billy Connors are saved from the demons by the Lizard. Seeing this is Spider-Man, who assumes that Curt Connors willingly turned into the Lizard to save his family. His attention is then turned to the Spider-Man balloon that is now on a rampage in the streets of New York City. When he tries to attack the sentient balloon flicks the wall-crawler off its body. Needing something sharp to deflate the balloon, Spider-Man climbs up to the top of the Chrysler Building and breaks off the needle at the top. He then leaps down and uses it to poke a hole into the renegade balloon, causing it to deflate. Meanwhile, Martha and her son discover that they were saved by the Lizard, so the creature can kill them himself. That's when Spider-Man comes to their rescue, knocking a bookshelf on top of the Lizard. Promising to restore Curt to normal again, Spider-Man takes his family to the nearest science lab. There, the wall-crawler quickly whips up the formula that he has used to cure Connors in the past.[Continuity 7] When the Lizard come crashing into the lab, Spider-Man forces the creature to swallow the formula. However, the reptiles willpower is trying to fight off the transformation. Recalling that the Lizard's transformations are electrochemical in nature, the wall-crawler rips an electrical wire out of the floor, prepared to use electricity to speed up the formula.

That's when Billy Connors gets in the way, begging Spider-Man not to harm his father. This distracts Spider-Man long enough for the Lizard to knock the hero away with his tail. When the Lizard turns to harm Billy, he suddenly loses control of his arm, as Connors begins trying to regain control of his body. The Lizard attempts to rip off his arm, confident that a new one will grow back in its place. However, his focus is interrupted when Spider-Man burns him with a bunsen burner. This distracts the Lizard long enough for his rogue arm to grab hold of the exposed wire. The electrical jolt is sufficient enough to speed up the formula, allowing Curt Connors to revert back to human form. When Billy tries to run to his father's side, Curt tells the boy to keep away and crumples to the floor. Later, after Curt has composed himself and determined that he family is unharmed, Curt refuses to reconcile with his wife, fearing that he may become the Lizard once again and harm his family. Before Spider-Man can continue his search for Aunt May, Mary Jane arrives in a cab searching for her husband. After telling Spider-Man that his aunt is safe, Peter is happy to hear the good news, however, as he watches Curt Connors walking away from his family he wishes this evening could have had a happier ending for the Connors family. At that moment at Castner County Maximum Security Prison, Jonathan Caeser is released into the custody of his lawyer, Malcolm Kinderman. Kinderman has managed to use a number of legal loopholes on behalf of his client. Even in prison Caeser has been plotting to get revenge against Mary Jane for spurning his romantic advances.[Continuity 8]

This story continues in Spectacular Spider-Man #148...

Solicit Synopsis

An Inferno tie-in. Things were looking good for Doctor Curt Connors. After years of monstrous transformations, he had finally gained control over his reptilian alter ego. But when Inferno strikes, the lethal Lizard goes wild!


Continuity Notes

Inferno (Spider-Man)
Amazing Spider-Man #311 Spectacular Spider-Man #146 Web of Spider-Man #47 Amazing Spider-Man #312 Spectacular Spider-Man #147 Web of Spider-Man #48 Amazing Spider-Man #313 Spectacular Spider-Man #148 Inferno Event
  1. Manhattan has been infested with demons following as part of the ongoing Inferno event. This story takes place during the first chapter of said event, chronicled in Uncanny X-Men #240. This story referst to Peter and Mary Jane was husband and wife. However, years later, the demon Mephisto erased their marriage from existence in Amazing Spider-Man #545. As a result, Peter and Mary Jane never get married but remain a common-law couple.
  2. Following the events of Peter Parker, The Spectacular Spider-Man #127, Curt Connors found a way of controlling his transformations at will. This is the first instance since that time where Connors has lost this control.
  3. Aunt May left her home to check on Peter and MJ in Web of Spider-Man #48.
  4. Kristy's binge eating in this story is a symptom of bulimia. Her eating disorder is revealed in Web of Spider-Man #53.
  5. The breaking point for Martha Connors was when Curt went missing for weeks during the events of Marvel Super Heroes Secret Wars #112. She left Curt shortly after he returned to Earth in Amazing Spider-Man #252. This was revealed in Peter Parker, The Spectacular Spider-Man #127.
  6. This story states that the Spider-Man balloon was scheduled to make an appearance in the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade. A Spider-Man has been part of the parade from 1987-1998 and 2009-2014. Typically something like this would be considered a topical reference per the Sliding Timescale of Earth-616. However, the balloon may not have been retired on Earth-616 considering the fact that in that reality Spider-Man is a real person.
  7. This is the same formula that Spider-Man first developed to defeat the Lizard in Amazing Spider-Man #6.
  8. Jonathan Caeser, the owner of Bedford Towers, became obsessed with Mary Jane. Going so far as kidnapping her during the events of Amazing Spider-Man #307Amazing Spider-Man #310.

Chronology Notes

A flashback in this story affects the chronology of the following characters:

Publication Notes

  • This issue contains a letters page, The Spider's Web. Letters are published from Darlene Dixon, Elizabeth Holden, Malcolm Bourne, and Frank Balkin.

See Also

Links and References


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