Appearing in "'Round and 'Round with Ricochet!"
- Daily Bugle
- Kaine (Shadow only)
- Alison Mongrain
- Don Fortunato
- Black Tarantula
- Marina Caches
- Fabian Caches (Mentioned)
- Shantal Wilsk
- Mr. Slattery
- Euboea (First appearance)
- New York City
- Ricochet's Suit (First appearance)
Synopsis for "'Round and 'Round with Ricochet!"
Identity Crisis continues from Sensational Spider-Man #27...
Since the Daily Bugle has put a five-million-dollar bounty on Spider-Man's head, Peter Parker has decided that in order to continue fighting crime he has to adopt a new identity.[Continuity 1] To this end, Peter has adopted four new identities to try out. This evening he is out on patrol as Ricochet. Catching some thieves, the former wall-crawler manages to trounce them with his spider-agility and his new ricochet discs. Unaware that he is being observed, Ricochet tells them that he is only in this for his own profit. When he discovers that these thieves are trying to steal Bear Babies, a highly collectible children's toy. As he trounces the thieves, he tells them that he will leave them alone if they give him a cut of the money. However, as Ricochet planned, the battle goes on long enough to attract the police prompting him to leave. As he leaves, Ricochet thinks about how he intentionally targeted this theft because it was the Black Tarantula operation. He thinks about his recent run-in with the mobster when he was still Spider-Man and how the villain took his mask as a trophy.[Continuity 2] While the Tarantula may have had the upper hand then, he learned some important information about his enemy.
Peter Parker went to the Daily Bugle to see what Ben Urich could tell him about the Black Tarantula. Urich tells him that there is not much reliable information about the criminal, including reports that date back to before World War II, something Ben finds impossible as it would make the Black Tarantula old.[Continuity 3] That's when Mary Jane arrived to remind him that they had plans to go out shopping.[Continuity 4] On their way out, they are stopped by Norman Osborn who wants Peter's opinion on the new costumed hero calling himself the Hornet, particularly his comments about Spider-Man.[Continuity 5] They are interrupted by Glory Grant, who tells them that she just got a postcard from Joe and Martha Robertson. When she tells them that they have arrived in Euboea in the Aegean Sea, Norman abruptly tells them that he has important business to do and storms off, making Peter suspicious.
In Greece, the Robertsons are enjoying their second honeymoon, although Joe has reservations about his wife sending postcards to the people at the Bugle since the reason he quit was because Norman Osborn took on part ownership of the paper.[Continuity 6] Telling his wife that he is going to check on their dinner reservations, Joe actually calls a mysterious benefactor who confirms that a yacht in the area is owned by Norman Osborn. Joe thanks the caller for the information, telling them that he will investigate it later that day.
Back in New York City, Mary Jane finds it hilarious that Norman Osborn was asking Peter his opinion on the Hornet since Peter has been masquerading as the new hero. However, she is not finished yet, pointing out that the problem with anyone changing their identities in the past is that they only settled for one identity, which easily got blown.[Continuity 7] She points out that since Peter is adopting multiple identities, proving that any of them will be Spider-Man is going to be difficult.[Continuity 8] She takes him to a used clothing store to look for outfits that will help their next costume. There, Mary Jane finds a leather jacket with the letter "R" stenciled on it and thinks that it will be perfect. Peter resigns to the idea but has trouble coming up with an identity that starts with "R".
As Ricochet finishes his recollection, he becomes aware that someone is watching him and decides to confront them.[Continuity 9] This pursuer turns out to be Delilah, who has decided to test out Ricochet's abilities and enlist him as an ally in the Rose's attempts to force the Black Tarantula's criminal operations out of the area.
At that moment, aboard a yacht moored on the island of Euboea, the Brotherhood of Scrier have come to collect the thing that Norman Osborn left in her care. Although she has grown attached to her charge, Alison turns it over to the Scrier's who giver her a briefcase of money and tell her to keep the yacht as a parting gift.[Continuity 10] However, as soon as the Scrier's leave a bomb they planted on the boat goes off destroying it and seemingly killing Mongraine. Watching from the shadows nearby is the man who Joe Robertson was talking to on the phone earlier.
While back in New York, Delilah continues testing Ricochet to see if he will be a suitable ally. She tells him that the Rose needs powerful allies to stop the Black Tarantula, telling her opponent that the Tarantula is immortal. While at a mansion on Long Island, Don Fortunato has called the Black Tarantula and the Rose in order to convince them to put past grudges behind them. However, the Rose is furious that the Black Tarantula has been given control of hijackings that happen in the city. In order to smooth things over, the Black Tarantula offers to pay the Rose a monthly fee to compensate for the loss to his business operations. While back at the scene of the battle, Delilah is convinced that Ricochet is powerful enough to help her, explaining how the Black Tarantula had recently broken her neck and, instead of killing her, healed her leaving her feeling incredibly violated.[Continuity 11] Realizing that Delilah is a wildcard in all of this, Ricochet wonders how he can end a potential war and make sure that nobody dies.
While at Empire State University, Professor Marina Caches dismisses the students in her criminology class. She is then approached by Mary Jane and Shantal Wilsk who invite Marina to join them for lunch. Unfortunately, she has to decline, telling the women that she has to pick up her previously unmentioned son from daycare. As the women depart, they are unaware that they are being observed by the Black Tarantula's minion Chesbro. While in Greece, Joe and Martha Robertson arrive at the pier moments after the explosion. Seeing the flaming yacht, Joe suspects that someone must have been tipped off from his investigation. That's when someone on the beach finds the body of Alison Mongraine in the water and confirms that she is still alive. While in New York, Ricochet -- after thinking for a long moment -- agrees to work with Delilah. At that moment, Chesbro returns to his master with a report of his observations on Marina. Looking at a photo of the woman with Mary Jane and Shantal, the Black Tarantula thinks these other women might be useful. As it turns out, the Black Tarantula did not come to Manhattan to get into the criminal underworld, instead, he was motivated by the desire for vengeance.
... Identity Crisis continues in Sensational Spider-Man #28.
- Norman Osborn has put a bounty on Spider-Man's head since tricking the hero into attacking him in Spectacular Spider-Man #250. This has been compounded by the fact that Spider-Man has been framed for the murder of a crook named Joey-Z in Spider-Man #88.
- Spider-Man battled the Black Tarantula in Amazing Spider-Man #432.
- Specifically, Ben states that Black Tarantula would be at least in his sixties. This assessment on the Black Tarantula's hypothetical age should be considered a topical reference per the Sliding Timescale of Earth-616.
- Peter and Mary Jane are referred to as husband and wife here. However, years later, their marriage is erased from existence by Mephisto in Amazing Spider-Man #545. As such they should be considered a common-law couple here.
- Unknown to Norman Osborn, Peter was the Hornet, an identity he adopted in Sensational Spider-Man #27.
- Norman forced J. Jonah Jameson to sell him half ownership in the Bugle in Spectacular Spider-Man #249–250, this prompted Joe to quit in Amazing Spider-Man #431.
- Mary Jane specifically refers to Absorbing Man and Titania as well as the Thunderbolts. Absorbing Man and Titania adopted the identities of Lightning Bolt and Thunder Girl in Amazing Spider-Man #429. That failed attempt at pretending to be heroes was inspired by the Absorbing Man's former allies the Masters of Evil who posed as heroes in Thunderbolts #1–10.
- Other than the aforementioned Hornet costume, Mary Jane mentions the Dusk costume that Peter got from the Negative Zone in Spider-Man #90, and the Prodigy costume that they just designed. Peter will first wear the costume in Spectacular Spider-Man #257.
- Ricochet states that approaching strange women is too "Bill Clintonish" for him. This is a reference to then-current Clinton-Lewinsky scandal in which an affair between President Bill Clinton and Monika Lewinsky -- a presidential intern. This should be considered a topical reference per the Sliding Timescale of Earth-616.
- What Alison Mongraine has been keeping on this yacht is revealed during the Final Chapter story arc.
The Final Chapter Amazing Spider-Man #441 Spider-Man #97 Spectacular Spider-Man #263 Spider-Man #98
- The Black Tarantula battled Delilah in Amazing Spider-Man #428.
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