Appearing in "Once More, With Feeling"
Synopsis for "Once More, With Feeling"
Inside a prisoner truck heading to the Vault Prison, Titania mocks the Trapster and the Brothers Grimm for being foolish enough to go after Spider-Man. This starts an argument among the four super-villains when suddenly the vehicle is pulled high up into the sky. The man responsible is Graviton, another one of the villains sent after Spider-Man during the Acts of Vengeance conspiracy. He uses his powers to free the captured villains and offers them a chance to get revenge against Spider-Man and takes them back with him to New York City.[Continuity 1]
Meanwhile, at the offices of J. Jonah Jameson Publications, Inc., Peter Parker finds himself answering uncomfortable questions about Nick Katzenberg's photos of Peter in a Spider-Man costume.[Continuity 2] Peter explains that he was wearing the costume for an advertising layout for the Daily Bugle and that he would never intentionally fake a news photograph. Peter assures both Jonah and Joe Robertson that he has never faked a single news photo he took for them over the years.[Continuity 3] Even though Jonah believes Peter, Joe Robertson is not as forgiving who has a strong sense of journalistic integrity. Surprisingly, Joe tells Peter that his photos are no longer welcome at the company and storms out. Jonah tells Peter that he will try to talk to Joe, but as his editor, Robertson is the one who makes the final decisions. Peter is upset by this, as it cuts into his source of income, and he rightly blames Nick Katzenberg for this latest misfortune. Forced to ride an elevator with Katzenberg, Peter snaps when the sleazy photographer makes fun of his situation. His anger gets the better of him until the elevator stops on the ground floor and people see him pinning Katzenberg to the wall. He composes himself and tells Nick that he isn't worth it. Katzenberg threatens to sue pointing that he has witnesses, but the people waiting for the elevator quickly leave, not wanting to get involved. Katzenberg vows to get even with Parker, deciding to do everything he can to compete with Peter as a photographer.
Changing into Spider-Man, Peter swings across the city to vent his frustration. He is angry of being pushed around all the time, and how recently he has only been reacting to things that are happening around him. He recounts when he had the power of Captain Universe during the Acts of Vengeance conspiracy, as well as when Thomas Fireheart purchased the Daily Bugle out from J. Jonah Jameson in order to boost Spider-Man's profile due to some debt of honor.[Continuity 4] The Bugle billboard that Spider-Man lands on states that Spider-Man is a "90's Kind of Hero". This should be considered a topical reference per the Sliding Timescale of Earth-616.</ref> As he gets down on himself over the whole Katzenberg thing, his thoughts are interrupted by the buzz of his spider-sense. However, he turns around a moment too late and misses seeing the Green Goblin fly by.
Meanwhile, Graviton has brought his would-be allies to a tanker ship near the Statue of Liberty. Inside, they discover that someone has constructed a massive theater inside the ship. That man is none other than the Chameleon who represents part of the New York City underworld. He offers the gathered villains the chance to destroy Spider-Man once and for all for $100,000 up to a maximum of $500,000 if they bring Spider-Man's mask and severed head. When they start to argue over the Brothers Grimm getting paid twice as much as the rest of them, but he reveals that they won't as they will also be working with Goliath. He opens a trap door in the floor, revealing the massive villain. Goliath explains that after he was blasted by Spider-Man's temporary cosmic powers he has been stuck at the height of 60 feet.[Continuity 5] At that same moment, at the Soho loft of Peter Parker and his wife Mary Jane.[Continuity 6] Peter tells Mary Jane about how Joe basically disowned him, feeling that it was hypocritical after Joe himself kept quiet about a murder for 20 years.[Continuity 7] Their evening is interrupted by a news report about the Daily Bugle rising out of the ground again.[Continuity 8]
Changing into Spider-Man, Peter swings to the Daily Bugle building. There he is ambushed by the Trapster, just narrowly avoiding a stream of paste. He is then attacked from behind by the Brothers Grimm, just barely avoiding their explosive weapons. This leaves him open to Titania, who strikes Spider-Man so hard he goes crashing to the ground. Trying to climb up a wall, Spider-Man has his weight increased by Graviton, causing him to fall onto some freshly laid cement. With his mass increasing, the web-slinger struggles to keep his face out of the wet concrete. That's when Goliath comes in and stomps on Spider-Man. The combined weight causes the street to break, sending them into the sewers. Spider-Man survives this attempt on his life, and while the villains are gloating, the hero emerges from a nearby manhole. He snares Goliath's foot with a web-line and forces him to topple. The Trapster and Brothers Grimm chase after the hero. However, he manages to get his foes into a crossfire, and leaps out of the way, causing them to get incapacitated by their own weapons. This leaves Spider-Man open to attack from Graviton, who uses his powers to completely negate Spider-Man's own gravity, sending him flying into the sky where he will undoubtably suffocate in the upper atmosphere.
- ↑ Spider-Man's involvement in the Acts of Vengeance led to his battles with Graviton, the Brothers Grimm, Goliath, Titania, and the Trapster as chronicled in Amazing Spider-Man #326-329, The Spectacular Spider-Man #158-160 and Web of Spider-Man #59-61.
- ↑ Katzenberg took these damning photos of Peter in last issue.
- ↑ Actually this isn't true, there are two instances where Peter faked news photos. The first was when he forgot to take photos of his first battle with the Sandman in Amazing Spider-Man #4, so he took pictures of Spider-Man leaping through ash clouds to simulate their battle. He did it again in Amazing Spider-Man #10 when Peter faked photos to make it look like Spider-Man and Electro was the same man. He also did so a third time, in Amazing Spider-Man #169 to protect his identity when Jameson got ahold of a photo where Spider-Man was disposing the body of his seemingly dead clone.
- ↑ Thomas Fireheart felt a debt toward Spider-Man since Web of Spider-Man #50. He purchased the Bugle in The Spectacular Spider-Man #156.
- ↑ Goliath was defeated by Spider-Man in Web of Spider-Man #60.
- ↑ 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 they should be considered a common-law couple here as opposed to husband and wife.
- ↑ Joe Robertson did not report a murder committed by Tombstone for 20 years in The Spectacular Spider-Man #139. He was found guilty of being an accessory to murder in The Spectacular Spider-Man #150. However, he was pardoned in The Spectacular Spider-Man #161.
- ↑ The last time the building was raised from the ground by Graviton in Amazing Spider-Man #326.
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