Peter Parker, the Spectacular Spider-Man #119
Issue(s): Peter Parker, the Spectacular Spider-Man #119
He's already proven to Mary Jane that he won't stay home and rest if it's just her there to supervise him, so MJ comes up with the clever idea of throwing a party at his house.
Before the partygoers arrive, MJ convinces Peter to tell her about his life as Spider-Man, and she doesn't like what she hears.
Then the guests do arrive, including Joe Robertson and his son and daughter-in-law, Randy and Amanda. Also, Peter's neighbors, Bambi, Candi, and Randi.
Also invited is Harry Osborn, who seems more than willing to believe that Flash Thompson really is the Hobgoblin. I guess when your own father hid for years that he was the Green Goblin, you can believe anything. Except that Peter Parker is Spider-Man.
Meanwhile, Sabretooth has been hospitalized under police custody since his last encounter with Spider-Man, and a doctor is even talking about a "cure" for his savagery.
Sabretooth escapes, killing the doctor and the police guards, and decides to hunt down Spider-Man for revenge. His healing factor is obviously not working.
In addition to a pure vengeance motive, Sabretooth is still interested in proving himself to the Foreigner.
Using a piece of Spider-Man's costume that he's held on to, Sabretooth manages to track Spidey back to Peter Parker's apartment building. And he starts slaughtering cops to draw Spider-Man out.
Luckily for Peter's health and secret identity, the Black Cat is also out tonight. Felicia was actually tossing her photos of Spider-Man into the river as a way to get over him.
But she follows Sabretooth and fights him in Spider-Man's stead.
This is only the second time we've seen the Black Cat with her new powers, which are more about cat-like senses and abilities and not necessarily about bad luck, although Sabretooth is unlucky at the end of this fight.
The Cat does well against Sabretooth, repeatedly targeting his injured face while dodging his attacks.
Even so, she finds kicking him is "like kicking a brick wall" and he eventually managed to grab her leg with the intention of chomping it off. But that's where the bad luck comes in; he happens to chomp down on her lockpicks instead.
The bite still hurts, but it inspires Felicia into greater ferocity, and the fight ends with her repeatedly slamming Sabretooth's head against the ground.
Watching the fight from his apartment, Peter Parker was becoming increasingly worried and guilty about letting the Black Cat do all the fighting, and he makes it about as far as the roof in costume when the fight is over. She turns to wink at him.
I was going to make a crack about this being reprinted in Sabretooth Classics and how getting soundly beaten by the Black Cat wasn't a "Classic" moment from Sabretooth's point of view. But Peter David is doing a nice job of showing the improved Black Cat (i still dislike her costume), with this fight being a turnabout from the previous Sabretooth appearance where Spider-Man did all the fighting outside of the Black Cat's apartment. Any failings on Sabretooth's part are really because he's still not yet the Sabretooth that became popular with the very close Mutant Massacre.
Again back in police custody, Sabretooth is again shown to be focused on impressing the Foreigner.
He'll kill the Black Cat, Spider-Man, Iron Fist (already dead, but then again, not really), and even his old partner Constrictor, to redeem his humiliation. Or maybe he'll just join the Marauders. The Foreigner is more interested in the Black Cat anyway.
Peter David does a great job balancing the humor, the humanity, and setting up a story where there's plenty of action and relevance to Spider-Man even though he's essentially grounded. It's also worth noting that while Sabretooth seems "off" to readers that know him from the x-books - his missing healing factor and his desire to impress Foreigner especially - he's still depicted as an extremely dangerous and lethally violent character, and he does already seem like an evil Wolverine, especially looking back to Wolverine's early near-psychopath days. Part of the issue is that both Wolverine and Sabretooth have gone though such power inflation that the idea of either of them getting beaten by the Black Cat or Spider-Man is harder to swallow, but i actually prefer them at this level.
Artwise, Buckler is on breakdowns here with McLeod on finishes. I find some panels a little awkward and some having the depth of Buckler's really great Jean DeWolff work. I do find the perfect cross-hatching of Sabretooth's injuries a little weird looking.
Quality Rating: B+
Chronological Placement Considerations: This takes place not too long after Amazing Spider-Man #280-282 ("the other night"), with Spider-Man still suffering the effects of a concussion. It also needs to take place before Sabretooth's appearance in the Mutant Massacre. That forces Marvel Fanfare #32, which features X-Factor, between Amazing Spider-Man #282 and this issue, and the MCP has put Fanfare #42 there as well.
Continuity Insert? N
My Reprint: Sabretooth Classics #5
Inbound References (1): showAmanda Robertson, Bambi, Black Cat, Candy, Foreigner, Harry Osborn, Joe 'Robbie' Robertson, Mary Jane Watson, Normie Osborn, Randi, Randy Robertson, Sabretooth, Spider-Man
I think I've mentioned this before but...a look at Sabretooth's early record.
I guess he switched to Wolverine cause that was the only guy he could beat.
Posted by: kveto from prague | February 9, 2014 6:53 AM
Some Tom Morgan finishes, especially the panel in which Sabertooth tries pulling a Mike Tyson on her calf.
Posted by: Vin the Comics Guy | June 18, 2017 5:53 AM
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