Issue(s): Daredevil #16, Daredevil #17
Obviously Romita passed his test.
These issues also introduce the Masked Marauder...
...a villain that i consider a bit of a goofball but who nonetheless has some staying power. His blinding light power is a bit unimpressive...
...especially for a Daredevil villain!...
...but he clearly has a large organization behind him, and i will acknowledge that his scheme to start a fight between Daredevil and Spider-Man by having a bunch of goons dress up in Daredevil costumes and attack Spidey is pure brilliance.
The basic scheme is pretty similar to Tales To Astonish #57. I'd like to think that these master criminals decide to pit their chosen hero against Spider-Man because his name and creepy MO strikes fear into their hearts, not because Spidey was Marvel's most popular character.
Actually, i have it backwards. Issue #16 establishes a flashback wherein the Masked Marauder was defeated by Spider-Man first...
...and then the Masked Marauder picks Daredevil as the guy to get rid of Spidey for him.
Poor Daredevil. He's got such a lame rogue's gallery, and even when he gets his own villains, they're retroactively Spider-Man's leftovers.
Spidey sees Daredevil's new costume for the first time (he must have missed it at Mr. Fantastic and the Invisible Girl's wedding, which is understandable), and i'd like to drop this panel out of context to pretend that Daredevil isn't even aware that he's wearing a new suit.
While the Marauder instigated this Misunderstanding Fight, the continuation of it is all on Spider-Man, who will not listen to reason. All the imposter DD did was throw a billy club at Spidey, so Spidey's refusal to let Daredevil talk his way out of things seems completely unreasonable.
While fighting Spider-Man, Daredevil realizes that he's no more than 20 years old. Calling him a "kid" just prolongs the fight, however.
DD eventually gets Spider-Man tangled up in his billy club cable long enough for him to escape.
Meanwhile, of course, the Masked Marauder and his men pull off a complicated scheme at the other end of town.
He steals the plans for the XB-390, a high tech new engine.
While looking for Daredevil for the rematch, Spidey mysteriously finds himself attracted to the office of Nelson & Murdock. I'm assuming this is an unusual use of his spider-sense; it would have been better for Spidey to have slipped a spider-tracer onto DD's back or something. But in any event, when he arrives at the office, he writes off Murdock (blind) and Karen (lady) and assumes that Foggy is Daredevil...
...even though Foggy is "heavier -- softer-looking than I expected" and even "flabby". In Foggy's earliest appearances, he was drawn as a guy of average weight. Romita's been drawing him a little heavier, but even now Foggy's not looking as fat as he will in later appearances. Don't judge, Spider-Man! Some of us have office jobs with long hours!
Spidey is eventually convinced to leave the office, and awkwardly retreats. Foggy gets the sense that Karen would be more impressed with him if he really was Daredevil, so he decides to not actually deny it. This is the beginning of a sub-plot that will run for several issues. Everything about this page is awesome in its melodrama (and Stan Lee's self-deprecating humor about the wordiness).
And so is Karen's weird logic on the next page, when she decides that Matt is envious of Foggy, but "only because he himself wishes he could be Daredevil". What?!
At one point Matt says he becomes Daredevil for the "challenge... the thrill of battle... the danger!" and speculates that Spider-Man feels the same way. It would have been good to disprove that by dropping some "with great power comes great responsibility" style stuff into the story, contrasting Daredevil's swashbuckling nature with Peter's guilt-driven motivation, but the story doesn't go that route.
To draw out the Masked Marauder, Daredevil has J. Jonah Jameson publish an article about the special fuel that the XB-390 needs to run properly. This puts the executives who built the engine in a tizzy...
...but it does the job of luring out the Marauder. Spidey and Daredevil are able to stop his scheme and destroy his blimp...
...but the Marauder escapes and, as he's fleeing while disguised as a security guard, hears Foggy leading Karen on about his secret life as Daredevil.
Very much a silly pair of issues, but interesting for the Spider-Man appearance drawn by Romita.
I shouldn't really use this site to mention things like this, but it turns out that Peter Parker's habit of ineffectually yelling at the television goes way back.
Quality Rating: C-
Chronological Placement Considerations: The MCP places this between Amazing Spider-Man #37-38.
Continuity Insert? N
My Reprint: Daredevil annual #3
Inbound References (2): showAunt May, Daredevil, Foggy Nelson, J. Jonah Jameson, Karen Page, Masked Marauder, Spider-Man
Blimps are inflated by helium(as far as I know), so it should have simply deflated and crashed. Unless the Masked Marauder was using hydrogen, no way would it have exploded in flame.
Was the "nee Giacoia" credit panel taken from the Annual? It would have been risky for it to be on the original since DC didn't approve of moonlighting artists.
Posted by: Mark Drummond | December 9, 2012 7:07 PM
The scan is from the GIT PDF of the original. It seems like this year artists generally stop using pseudonyms, so maybe this was Giacoia's "coming out" issue?
Posted by: fnord12 | December 9, 2012 7:19 PM
Romita's Spidey here is very Ditko-like. Lots more webbing, thin, and quirkier poses. That influence seems to have been quickly abandoned once Romita was on the main title. He was probably trying to be on model with this job.
Posted by: Chris | December 10, 2012 11:08 PM
In the last panel fnord12 has posted here, Peter sure doesn't look as frail as Aunt May thinks. At least from this back view, his shoulders look broader, he has defined biceps, etc. This is not Ditko's skinny Peter.
Posted by: Shar | December 11, 2012 8:06 PM
I was looking at Spidey, not Pete. The most Diktoesque is the middle panel where DD is wrapping Spidey with his billy club.
Of course, Romita isn't Ditko. But I think his Spidey here shows much more Ditko influence than what we would see in ASM later on. It's a relative standard, not absolute.
But if you don't get that vibe, hey, it's a free country.
Posted by: Chris | December 12, 2012 8:24 PM
yes, spidey here is looking very ditko-esque, in both style and poses.
also, the general look of the art is much grittier and less "romance comic" looking than romita's run on ASM...
Posted by: pgunn | January 10, 2016 9:39 PM
The Masked Marauder is my second favorite DD villain, right after the Death-Stalker. He plagues DD for a little while. Of course,he fell by the wayside like most villains from this era, but I was pleased when Matt Fraction wrote PUNISHER WAR JOURNAL #4 with him practically as the lead character. He needs to be updated, Blinding heroes is a good way to fight them. Not Daredevil, of course. Echo would be in trouble if she were blinded, as she is deaf as well.
Posted by: Andrew Burke | August 29, 2016 4:56 PM
I have a sad feeling the Masker Marauder won't be appearing in the awesome Netflix series.
Posted by: david banes | September 1, 2016 10:39 PM
He did, sort of! There's a minor crook int he very first episode named "Farnum!"
Posted by: Omar Karindu | September 2, 2016 6:45 AM
The Masked Marauder was an early candidate to be DD's archfoe as was the Owl but it didn't work out that way. He has since gone on to fight Iron Man, Spider-Man, the Punisher and even Werewolf by Night!
Posted by: Bobby Sisemore | November 7, 2016 10:20 PM
Spidey behaves rather odd in these issues, weird since Stan made them both, he should know what fits and not too the characthers
Posted by: Roy Mattson | July 6, 2017 5:23 PM
In a few issues time, Spidey behaves even stranger when he sends Matt a letter saying he knows he's Daredevil, which forces Matt into the whole Mike Murdock craziness when Karen & Foggy end up reading it instead.
I'm presuming maybe Romita did a lot of the legwork on the plot here (& Colan did the Mike Murdock plot?) rather than Stan, maybe that would explain why Spidey acts out of character when he appears in Daredevil?
Posted by: Jonathan, son of Kevin | July 7, 2017 11:32 AM
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