- No, officer-- --I just faced a few hard truths, and made a few long overdue realizations. And maybe, just maybe, I learned-- --that hate isn't enough after all...
- -- Vulture
Appearing in "Wings of Hatred"
- Nick Lewis (Shadow only)
- Aunt May
- Betty Brant
- J. Jonah Jameson
- Norman Osborn
- Flint (Only appearance)
- Gregory Bestman (Recap)
- Burglar (Mentioned)
- Fantastic Four (Mentioned)
- Avengers (Mentioned)
- Sally Avril (Mentioned)
- Uncle Ben (Mentioned)
Races and Species:
- Vulture's Wings (Main story and flashback)
- Spider-Man's Web-Shooters (Main story and flashback)
- Daily Bugle (Named only)
- Spider-Tracer (Mentioned)
- Patrol cars
Synopsis for "Wings of Hatred"
At Midtown High School, Flash Thompson tries to convince his classmates that Spider-Man is not a coward after he ran out on a battle against the Green Goblin, insisting that there must have been a legitimate reason.[Continuity 1] When he asks Jason Ionello for his opinion, Jason politely excuses himself from the lunch table and walks away. When Peter Parker walks by, Liz Allan invites him to sit with the others, much to Flash's chagrin. He continues to earn Thompson's ire by not standing up for Spider-Man either. Before things get heated, Liz tells them they need to talk about Jason, who has been acting strange ever since their classmate, Sally Avril, died.[Continuity 2]
Meanwhile, on the rooftops of Manhattan, the Vulture broods as he gazes upon the city. He vows to make everyone fear him, but all this does is causes him to think back to his past. He remembers how he and his business partner, Gregory Bestman, started a successful business. It was during this time that Adrian Toomes developed the flying harness that would allow him to become the Vulture. He later discovered that not only were profits up, but Gregory was skimming money off the top. Worse, Bestman had used the law to take ownership of all his inventions. Furious, Toomes retired to his farm in New Jersey and reinvented himself as the Vulture.[Continuity 3] However, his career as the Vulture was met with defeat at the hands of Spider-Man.[Continuity 4] After his most recent arrest, Toomes was surprised when some crooked prison guards freed him and brought him to a mobster named Nick Lewis. Lewis sought ot enlist the aid of the Vulture in dealing with his rival in the criminal underworld.
As he flies across the city, the Vulture notices a Daily Bugle headline about Spider-Man's cowardly retreat during his battle with the Green Goblin. This angers the Vulture, who wanted to go after Spider-Man himself. He then notices someone on the rooftop with him and goes to see who it is. He is surprised to discover that it is a young man, Jason Ionello, who is contemplating suicide by jumping off the rooftop. Hearing the boy's reason for wanting to end his life, the Vulture finds the reasoning pathetic. He tells Ionello that he is young and will move past it. He then relates how his own hatred has helped mold him into moving on with his life, suggesting that since Spider-Man was involved in the death of Sally Avril, Jason should blame the wall-crawler for it and use that hatred to focus himself. Meanwhile, Peter Paker is visiting his Aunt May in the hospital where she has been recovering since her heart attack. On his way out he bumps into Betty, who is still angry with Peter for blowing her off to go to the first meeting of Flash Thompson's Spider-Man Fan Club, thinking he did so to be with Liz Allan. Although Peter tries to explain himself, Betty doesn't want to listen and storms out.
Swinging back home as Spider-Man, Peter takes stock of his recent troubles and worries about earning enough money to pay for Aunt May's medical bills. That's when he spots the Vulture and decides that this might be a great way to sell some photos to the Bugle. Although Spider-Man ambushes the Vulture, the villain manages to break free. Because he is on a mission to kill someone else, the Vulture swats Spider-Man away, telling the wall-crawler that he will deal with him later. While at a nearby gentleman's club, J. Jonah Jameson gloats over Spider-Man's recent defeat, figuring that the wall-crawler is finished in New York City. That's when Norman Osborn suggests that the lack of Spider-Man stories in the Daily Bugle might hurt circulation, giving the publisher some food for thought. Meanwhile, Spider-Man recovers from his fall and tries to pick up the Vulture's trail, not willing to let him murder someone, remembering the vow he made after his inaction led to his Uncle Ben's death.[Continuity 5] Thanks to a spider-tracer that he planted on the Vulture, Spider-Man is able to stop the villain from killing Wilson Fisk, his intended target.
Witnessing the two fight it out, Fisk tells his minions to stand back and let things work themselves out. As they fight, Spider-Man asks the Vulture if this is what he intended to be when he was younger. This causes the Vulture to think back to his past life as an inventor, realizing that he has wasted his life, the villain stops fighting and willingly turns himself over to the police. The following day at school, Flash Thompson talks to his classmates about the Vulture's recent surrender. He is convinced that Spider-Man had something to do with it even though there were no reports about the wall-crawler being involved. However, Jason Ionello doesn't think so, and hopes that Spider-Man is dead, as he now blames the wall-crawler for Sally's death and the hero deserves nothing less than death.
Lost in a sea of troubles, Jason Ionello plans to end his own life!
- Can an encounter with the Vulture and the subsequent battle with Spider-Man, turn him around?
- Long time readers can glean extra insight into the mind of a classic Spidey foe as this special issue is narrated by that cagey old bird.
- Spider-Man was forced to flee his battle with the Green Goblin after hearing that his Aunt May suffered a heart attack in Amazing Spider-Man #17.
- Sally died in a car accident in Untold Tales of Spider-Man #13. Since Jason was driving at the time, he blames himself.
- The business relationship between Adrian Toomes and Gregory Bestman are detailed in Amazing Spider-Man #241.
- The Vulture mentions his first battle with Spider-Man in Amazing Spider-Man #2 and his most recent defeat in Amazing Spider-Man Annual #1.
- Peter's Uncle Ben was killed by a burglar that Spider-Man failed to stop earlier as seen in Amazing Fantasy #15.
- First and only known appearance to date besides flashbacks
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