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Quote1 You know -- I think there's another reason they call you the Terrier, Gord! It's because you're nothing more than a dog to them-- --an animal, to be sicced on thier enemies-- --and if you screw up, they'll just cut you loose, because you don't know anything that can harm them! Quote2
-- Spider-Man

Appearing in "The Battle for the Daily Bugle!"

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  • Daily Bugle truck

Synopsis for "The Battle for the Daily Bugle!"

Betty Brant's ex-boyfriend Gordon Savinski has forced her to break into the Daily Bugle offices at 4 am. There he orders her to go into J. Jonah Jameson's office safe, warning her not to tell anyone that he has asked her to do this. When Betty hesitates, Gordon warns her again, leaving her to wonder what happened to him since she last saw him. Gordon tells her that he met the "right folks" who gave him job and made him something "special". When Betty opens the safe, Gordon surprises her by putting papers into it instead of stealing anything. He explains that his employers want to be able to force the Daily Bugle to say and do whatever they want. He then tells her that he may call on her in the future. When Betty pleads with Gordon to leave her alone, Gordon reminds her that he knows that she has a new boyfriend and threatens to harm him if he doesn't do what he says.

Later that morning, Spider-Man is stopping a gang of thugs that are attacking a Daily Bugle truck. After saving the driver, Spider-Man is told that crooks have been hijacking Daily Bugle trucks all over the city. This has caused driers to quit and the remaining ones to pick up the slack. After being thanked for the save, Spider-Man goes up to the rooftops to recover his camera and rush to school before he is late for class. There he can't help but notice how things at school have changed: Tiny has dropped out of school, Jason is an outcast after his involvement in the death of Sally Avril.[Continuity 1] Worse of all, Liz Allan has developed a crush on him ever since Doctor Octopus unmasked him, earning him more ire from Flash Thompson.[Continuity 2] That's when Flash comes up to Peter and tells him about reports that J. Jonah Jameson has been arrested on charges of financial malfeasance. He then gloats about how Peter won't be able to sell photos to the Bugle anymore. Hearing this, Peter figures that it has something to do with the recent string of Bugle truck hijackings and decides to investigate further.

Later, after paying bail, J. Jonah Jameson emerges from Foley Square to a hoard of reporters, where he denies all charges. That's when Eddie Brock, a reporter for the Daily Globe, asks Jonah why the judge didn't consider him a flight risk. Jonah is insulted by this question but isn't surprised getting it from someone who works at the rival newspaper. Spider-Man overhears all of this from a nearby rooftop and is certain that Jonah is innocent of this. Although he is worried about potentially losing his only form of income, the wall-crawler is more concerned about Betty at this moment. Changing back into his civilian guise, Peter pays Betty a visit at home, where she is looking after her mother.[Continuity 3] Betty is happy to see Peter is safe and is so full of grief over what she has done, she tries to tell him when suddenly Gordon enters the room. He is not happy that she was about to tell Peter everything and decides to make an example out of Peter. Sensing that Gordon is looking for a fight he approaches Gordon. He is too busy worrying about holding back when Gordon slaps Peter to the ground with great force. Parker is shocked by how strong Gordon is and is still trying to clear his head when Gordon hits him so hard that Peter blacks out. When Peter wakes up, Betty tells him that Gordon is gone and he won't hurt him again. When Peter tries to get Betty to explain herself, she refuses to tell him anything. Peter presses for answers but makes a mistake of referring to her brother, Bennett, as a crook. This insults and hurts Betty to the point where she tells Peter to get out of her apartment.[Continuity 4]

Returning to school, Peter's mind can't focus on anything but Betty and her problems. Leaving school for the day, Peter and his classmates are happy to see that Tiny McKeever has returned to school. Flash is glad to have his friend back, even though he won't have time for after-school sports due to his job. Seeing how quickly the gang has welcomed Tiny back gets Jason Ionello angry because everybody has been ignoring him since Sally's death. When he storms off, Flash calls him a loser, Peter tells him off, saying that Jason needs the support of his family and friends. As it turns out, Flash has no point of reference because he hasn't done anything he regrets, angering Peter to the point where he to storms off. This whole situation makes Peter realize that he abandoned Betty when she needs him most and decides to go to the Daily Bugle to see what he can do to help her and stop whatever is happening.

At the Bugle, J. Jonah Jameson is visited by Gordon Savinski who tells the publisher that his legal problems will all go away if he agrees to sell part ownership of the newspaper to Lucky Lewis. When Jonah refuses, Gordon grabs him by the neck and threatens to throw Jameson out the window, saying that he could easily buy the paper from his son after the funeral. That's when Spider-Man comes crashing in through the window, kicking Gordon in the face. Although he lets Jameson go, the blow doesn't even phase him. When Betty Brant arrives at the office, she witnesses Spider-Man fighting Gordon in the bullpen and crumples to the floor, feeling as though her whole world is crumbling around her. By this point, Spider-Man leaps down the elevator shaft, using a web-line to pull Gordon down with him. This is all in order to yank his foe down into the printing press so he has more room to fight. Despite his efforts, Spider-Man is soon overpowered by Gordon. As he pushes Spider-Man's head toward the print rollers, he explains that the mob experimented on him, giving him fantastic strength. His ruthlessness and power earned him the nickname "The Terrier" because when he is given a job he never quits until it is done. That's when J. Jonah Jameson arrives in the printing press and orders the two intruders to get off his property. This causes Gordon to let go of Spider-Man to damage the catwalk and send Jameson falling to the ground. Thankfully, the publisher is saved by Spider-Man who then resumes his battle with Savinski. Deciding to change tactics, the wall-crawler begins mocking Gordon and his nickname, making him lose his temper. This causes Gordon to lunge blindly at Spider-Man. The masked hero easily leaps out of the way and uses a web-line to cause massive rolls of newspaper to come tumbling down on Gordon.

With Gordon defeated, the police soon arrive on the scene to take him into custody. As usual, J. Jonah Jameson blames the whole thing on Spider-Man. By this time, Peter Parker has changed back to his civilian identity and tries to talk to Betty again. Unfortunately, Betty tells Peter that she can't talk, telling him that there is something she needs to do. This whole situation makes Peter wish that he lived the life of a normal teenager, since the life he lives now, he has no idea what will come next. As he is thinking this, Mary Jane Watson has just arrived in New York City and hails a cab.

Notes

Continuity Notes

  1. Tiny has been abused by his father since Untold Tales of Spider-Man #2 he dropped out of school after his father broke his arm in Untold Tales of Spider-Man #9. Sally Avril was killed in a car accident in Untold Tales of Spider-Man #13.
  2. Doctor Octopus unmasked Spider-Man in Amazing Spider-Man #12. At the time, Peter lost his powers because he was sick at the time. As a result, when he was unmasked nobody believed that he was really Spider-Man due to the fact that he was easily defeated. Hearing how brave Peter was going up against Doctor Octopus was what caused Liz to develop a crush on him.
  3. Betty's mother suffered brain damage after being attacked by some mobsters, as revealed in Untold Tales of Spider-Man #12. This is the last time she is physically seen in a story to date.
  4. As explained in Amazing Spider-Man #11, Bennett Brant was deep in gambling debts, forcing him to work for Blackie Gaxton, a notorious mobster. This led to Bennett's apparent death. Unknown to all at the time, Bennett actually survived, as explained in Venom Vol 2 #21, he will resurface in Venom Vol 2 #1.

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