Characters Appearing: Captain Stacy, Gwen Stacy, J. Jonah Jameson, Joe 'Robbie' Robertson, Kingpin, Ned Leeds, Randy Robertson, Spider-Man, Vanessa Fisk
Amazing Spider-Man #70
Issue(s): Amazing Spider-Man #70
The Kingpin escapes from jail (using his strength to pull out the bars)...
...and starts hunting down Spider-Man. Remember his strategy last issue was to implicate Spidey in the theft of the tablet so that the police would do his dirty work for him...
...which is a much more Kingpinly way of doing things, but he must have gotten impatient with that approach. While Spider-Man is fighting him...
...JJ shows up with Ned Leeds and interferes, allowing the Kingpin's wife to show up in a getaway car.
Spider-Man gets really mad and threatens Jameson, giving him a heart attack.
It's always surprising to see the Kingpin get so physical and personally involved in his early appearances, but you can see as he's deciding to leave (two scans up) that he's going back to his original idea to let Spider-Man get framed, which, again, is the more master mind-y approach.
Also in this issue, Randy Robertson and the other students are released from jail and the school agrees to use the extra building as a low rent dorm.
Gwen tries to get Peter to explain his cowardly behavior but he doesn't have a good answer.
Spider-Man is still the best written book in the Marvel line. If Romita had been able to stay on full art duties these issues would be truly classic.
Quality Rating: C+
Chronological Placement Considerations: Pushed back in publication time so that Amazing Spider-Man #71 can be concurrent with Avengers #62.
Continuity Insert? N
My Reprint: Marvel Tales #53
JJJ isn't listed as a character appearing.
Posted by: Enchlore♠ | October 21, 2014 9:15 PM
Thanks, Enchlore. Added him.
Posted by: fnord12 | October 21, 2014 9:25 PM
I like how the Kingpin is allowed to keep his suit and everything even in jail. Guess they couldn't find prison attire his size.
Posted by: MegaSpiderMan | April 2, 2016 10:40 PM
I think this issue and the previous two (and Kingpin's previous appearances) pretty much establish he has superhuman strength, possibly equal or even greater than Spider-Man's. He's going toe to toe with Spidey, opening a vault door with his naked strength which Spider-Man himself has a tough time getting open, he's pulling out prison bars, smashing stuff with his bare hands, etc. I know people decided later he's "peak human strength", but come on. Certainly Stan Lee and John Romita Sr. never said Kingpin didn't have super-human strength. I wonder if Lee eventually gave him more of an origin, he would have established where he got his strength from, but I guess when Frank Miller revamped the character for Daredevil, he just became peak normal.
Posted by: mikrolik | July 3, 2017 6:11 PM
Yeah, the pre-Miller version of Kingpin is kind of removed from comics history at this point. At the end of Daredevil's "Born Again", it's treated as if any mud sticking to Kingpin is a major win.
Sure, every superhero knows Kingpin only masquerades as a legitimate businessman, but I think it's meant to be that the general public don't know that, unless they have some knowledge of the underworld. It's hard to imagine the public believing it only a few Marvel years after escapades like this.
Kingpin's whole "I am just a humble dealer of spices" alibi seems a little less convincing if he's just a humble dealer of spices who broke out of prison with his bare hands, then fights one-on-one with Spider-Man in the streets (and the Bugle's presence here suggest the fight would have been reported on).
Posted by: Jonathan, son of Kevin | July 3, 2017 6:42 PM
Kingpin IS described as having super-strength in Amazing Spider-Man 83.
Posted by: Michael | July 3, 2017 6:50 PM
I think that was the big problem with a lot of the mob-boss villains in Marvel pre-Miller: either they had some sort of weird gimmick to make them a threat (Kingpin's super-strength, Owl's tech and gimmickry, Baron Nefaria's...um...he did a lot of things) or didn't last long enough due to just being mob bosses in a world of superheroes (thinking the first Silvermane story) Kingpin just seemed to be devised as "a mob boss whose strong enough to deal with a guy with spider powers" and that's all he was until Frank Miller's Daredevil run, where his mob connections are more important and his strength is scaled down to match up with a guy whose only power is just enhanced super-senses due to blindness. It ultimately worked due to how classic Miller made Kingpin work out, but it does make one wonder in the earlier stories how Kingpin was so strong to basically just be "a strong mob boss" during the period his main and only real Marvel threat was Spider-Man. (it sort of just makes me think of the whole period they gave Cap super-strength thinking he had to be a threat to greater characters...but then Kirby and later writers ignored it and just reminded he was supposed to be "peak human acheivement" until a retcon finally revealed "it just wore off over time and he's back to how he was".)
Posted by: Ataru320 | July 3, 2017 6:54 PM
I personally think the Kingpin's "unstoppability" was entirely due to editors and higher-ups mandating that all his opponents take a dive out of some foolish obeisance to Miller...
Posted by: Mark Drummond | July 4, 2017 8:04 PM
Comments are now closed.
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