Appearing in "Sub-City, Part 1"
Synopsis for "Sub-City, Part 1"
In a darkened alleyway, a massive slab of a man named Keever emerges from a manhole cover and begins looking for a new victim for his master. This victim has to be has to be larger than most of the others. Searching the alley, he comes across a homeless man huddled in the trash attempting to sleep. Rousing his intended victim Keever strikes him a little too hard, drawing blood. Reminding himself of his great strength, Keever picks up the body and carries it back into the sewers in order to present it to his master. It is not a moment too soon, as the surface world of the "bad ones" with their loud noises and bright lights bother Keever, who finds comfort in darker domains.
While at the apartment of Peter Parker and his wife Mary Jane, Peter is trying to convince his wife that he is not going out on patrol as Spider-Man this evening.[Continuity 1] Even so, Mary Jane is still bored and suggests they call their friends and go out somewhere. Deciding to have some fun at his wife's expense, Peter quickly picks up his wife and suspends her off the floor with his webbing. Realizing that she is stuck like this for an hour, the two decide to take advantage of the situation for a moment of romance. The following day, Spider-Man swings across the city to the Daily Bugle to look for work as Peter Parker. There he overhears a reporter asking J. Jonah Jameson to investigate a story about missing homeless people. Although Jameson is not interested in the story, Peter is and asks to know more about it. He is told about how five homeless people went missing behind the Port Authority building, and it is suspected that they went missing.
Soon, Peter Parker is back out as Spider-Man watching the alley's behind the Port Authority. He eats some donuts while he waits and contemplates the idea of doing commercial endorsements.[Continuity 2] Spider-Man's thoughts are interrupted by the shouts of a man running for his life in the alleyway below. The wall-crawler rushes down to ask what the danger is. Before he can get an answer, his spider-sense goes off allowing him to narrowly avoid being pelted with garbage that is being thrown by Keever. Spider-Man easily dodges the debris and tries to ambush his foe. Keever, however, storms past the wall-crawler and escapes into the sewers below.
Following after Keever, Spider-Man finds it hard to track him in the dark. Having the advantage, Keever orders his fellow Subhumans to attack the intruder. Unable to fight off this swarm in the darkness, Spider-Man decides that his best course of action is to escape. Having come up with a plan, Peter returns home to tell it to his wife, Mary Jane. He tells her that not only does he need to go into the sewers, he also decided to put on his black costume again to give him camouflage in the dark tunnels. She is absolutely against his idea, but Peter insists that it has to be done because people are missing and they need to be rescued. Peter understands her reservations about him wearing the black costume again, particularly after her first encounter with Venom, but Peter insists that it needs to be done.[Continuity 3] Peter once again reminds her of the promise he made when his Uncle Ben was murdered.[Continuity 4] Mary Jane finally relents, telling him to do what he needs to do, but asks him not to let her see him in that costume. Two days later, Spider-Man receives a new black costume prepared for him by the Fantastic Four. Putting it on, he is pleased to discover that this outfit fits like a glove.
That evening, Keever is bringing the latest victim to his master. Deep in the sewers, Keever is soon reunited with his fellow Subhumans and their new master, Morbius the Living Vampire. Morbius is pleased with Keever's latest capture. The fresh supply of victims to sate his bloodlust is the Subhuman's means of repaying Morbius for protecting them from those who would attack them. However, not all the Subhumans are pleased with Morbius' presence among them. One of the elders is disturbed by how quickly his people have taken Morbius' side and fears for the sanity of his people. At this same time, Spider-Man swings across the city, wondering to himself how other heroes manage to keep their crime-fighting from interfering with the rest of their lives. Soon, the hero arrives at the manhole cover where he lost Keever a few days earlier. Down in the sewers, it is still too dark to see, even after a half-hour in the tunnels Spider-Man's eyes still haven't adjusted. Suddenly, his spider-sense begins going off. Soon, the wall-crawler is surrounded by the Subhumans who intend to take him to their master. As Spider-Man is swarmed, Morbius is informed that they have been invaded. Amused, Morbius figures that his once ally Doctor Strange would not approve of what will happen next, but he will see that all intruders will pay the ultimate price.[Continuity 5]
- Peter and Mary Jane are referred to as husband and wife here. However, years later, their marriage was erased from existence by the demon Mephisto in Amazing Spider-Man #545. As such Peter and Mary Jane should be considered a common-law couple here as opposed to husband and wife.
- Spider-Man says he should get into commercials because two popular singers had done so recently. The singers he referenced are Paula Abdul and M.C. Hammer. At the time this story was published, the two musicians had done commercials for Diet Coke and Pepsi respectively. Obviously, Peter's referencing these musicians should be considered topical references per the Sliding Timescale of Earth-616 as these were ad campaigns that have long ended their run, and the concept of celebrity endorsements is quite commonplace now.
- After encountering Venom for the first time in Amazing Spider-Man #300, Mary Jane asked that Peter not wear his black costume anymore because it reminded her of that frightening situation.
- Peter's Uncle Ben was killed by a burglar that Peter failed to stop early in his career as Spider-Man. That happened in Amazing Fantasy #15.
- Morbius mentions Doctor Strange because at the time of this story he was a regular ally of Doctor Strange from Doctor Strange, Sorcerer Supreme #10-20.
- This cover is an homage to Spider-Man #1
- First and only known appearance to date besides flashbacks
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