Spectacular Spider-Man #191-193
Issue(s): Spectacular Spider-Man #191, Spectacular Spider-Man #192, Spectacular Spider-Man #193
What triggered this seems to be an assassination job that Puma has accepted. He normally only kills criminals, and the Senator he's been asked to kill is a human rights hero. But Puma just seems to have gone generally nuts.
Black Crow makes sure that Puma doesn't know Spider-Man's secret identity.
And then Puma is shot by the police, although Spider-Man isn't able to find a body.
I'll leave you with this bizarro scene.
Quality Rating: D
Chronological Placement Considerations: The next arc begins soon after this one, on the same night.
Continuity Insert? N
My Reprint: N/A
DeMatteis makes the vision that Peter receives here seem like a big revelation, and not playing by "the beast's rules," besides summing up Spidey's character for much of the early-90s, will be a major theme in upcoming stories, most notably Maximum Carnage.
However, DeMatteis also implies that the revelation is a fleeting one, and that Peter will forget it and possibly suffer for that. Considering that in the course of about two years after these issues we get stories like "Best of Enemies," "Lifetheft," and the Clone Saga, maybe Peter's vision quest here was more important than we know.
I realize there are major issues with this story as a story, most glaringly the creator's pet nature of Black Crow, but I also really appreciate how this seemingly unimportant tale fits so well into the bigger picture of Peter's life.
Posted by: TCP | April 22, 2016 9:29 AM
I must admit that I absolutely *love* this story! It's... beautiful, just like Kraven's Last Hunt.
Posted by: Piotr W | April 22, 2016 3:44 PM
Peter's "bizarro scene" seems to be channeling Mr. Buda.
Posted by: Mark Drummond | April 22, 2016 8:56 PM
I never understood what the point of Black Crow erasing Puma's memories of Spider-Man's identity was. Puma's uncle knew Peter's identity too, so it's not like he couldn't just ask him if he wanted to.
Posted by: Michael | April 22, 2016 10:54 PM
It did not seem to have much of a point the first time. It is not better this time.
Posted by: Luis Dantas | April 23, 2016 12:10 AM
I've also wondered recently if the vision Peter receives here of a great web linking the world together is actually him seeing the Web of Life and Destiny, which would first get mentioned about a decade later in Straczynski's run.
Posted by: TCP | May 2, 2016 3:14 PM
This was a high-fiber word salad of the first degree. Goodness, it seemed like every panel was jammed with overly wordy narrative boxes. And for what? So that Puma forgets that Peter is Spider-Man?
I read some of the narration to my wife, and her eyes glazed over. Not DeMatteis' best work.
Though I do like the connections to the Web of Life and Destiny, as well as the foreshadowing of Peter's increasingly fragile mental state that will come to fruition as the Clone Saga begins.
Posted by: Uncle Gazpacho | September 24, 2016 1:00 PM
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