Characters Appearing: Betty Brant, Foreigner, Killer Shrike, Pulse-3, Spider-Man, Swift-1
Web of Spider-Man #91-92
Issue(s): Web of Spider-Man #91, Web of Spider-Man #92
We last saw Killer Shrike in Moon Knight #34, where Frenchie figured out how to disable his powers and he was arrested. There's no mention of that here. But Shrike is paranoid and raving. Spider-Man is able to web him up to a pole for the police.
Note Spider-Man saying "they all come back eventually". The idea that Spider-Man is stuck in an endless cycle of fighting old villains is a repeat theme in this story.
Later, Peter Parker runs into Betty Brant.
And i don't know what the hell's going on anymore. Apparently she's an action hero now?
You'll note that after Spidey's complaint that he keeps fighting the same villains, he's got some new ones here (not that they'll have any lasting value).
One of them, Whisper, is kind of like Silencer from the Hawkeye mini-series; he cuts out all the sound in the room. You'd think that wouldn't have much value against Spider-Man, due to his spider-sense, and it would have been cool for things to play out that way, with the villains being surprised because the power wasn't "working" on him. But it does work.
The other one, Pulse, is super strong in addition to having his pulse blasts. Spider-Man assumes, correctly as it turns out, that because he's super-strong that he's also super-resilient. This is why Sunspot should always avoid Misunderstanding Fights.
When the fights starts going Spider-Man's way, Pulse activates a self-destruct sequence, and Spider-Man escapes with Betty. The villains had numbers appended to their names - Whisper-3 and Pulse-2 - giving a hint that we'll see them again.
Betty's story is that she went undercover for the Daily Bugle, but she's really got her own agenda trying to get revenge on the Foreigner for killing her husband, Ned Leeds. And she doesn't want Spider-Man's help.
As for the villains, it turns out that Foreigner has found a way to transfer data and powers to human subjects. So when one villain is killed, their data is transferred back to be given to someone else.
Meanwhile, Spider-Man keeps tabs on Betty, who is really going full Arnold Schwarzenegger.
Spider-Man trails her to the Foreigner's building, where they fight more villains, including a new one called Swift...
...and another called Warfare, as well as the previous two.
Spidey defeats all the villains, and then the Foreigner shows up on a viewscreen to spill the news to Betty that her husband was the Hobgoblin before detonating the building.
Crap villains and a really weird use of a supporting character.
Quality Rating: D
Chronological Placement Considerations: Peter and MJ are (for some reason) arguing about Peter helping Betty at the start of next issue as if it's something that more or less just happened. And next arc has a Moon Knight guest appearance that takes place during Moon Knight #44, which occurs in the immediate aftermath of Infinity War.
Continuity Insert? N
My Reprint: N/A
Spidey has fought Killer Shrike about five times and at least three of them don't even have Spidey actually after Shrike or intending to fight him, Shrike just goes after him (the two you mentioned above, but also kinda that one Spectacular issue when Will O the Wisp possesses Shrike).
Posted by: MikeCheyne | April 11, 2016 5:33 PM
In the scene where Peter first comes across Betty, did she forget to put on a shirt that morning? I don't remember the combination of jacket and bra being fashionable in 1992, unless Betty is moonlighting as a backup singer for Madonna?
Posted by: Tuomas | April 12, 2016 2:54 AM
Betty thinks she's Linda Hamilton because of what happened to Ned?
BTW: It was ASM 11 that had the death of her brother, not 12.
Posted by: Ataru320 | April 12, 2016 12:24 PM
Never trust a footnote! Thanks Ataru320.
Posted by: fnord12 | April 12, 2016 1:08 PM
Hey Warfare, War Machine and Silver Samurai want their looks back!
Posted by: david banes | April 12, 2016 1:42 PM
I can't find these issues right now, but isn't there a panel where Betty explains her sudden transformation into a gun toting high kicking bra and jacket wearing vigilante action-hero by saying something like "I'm an investagative reporter now; it goes with the territory"?
Posted by: Benway | April 12, 2016 9:36 PM
"Jonah wanted me to go deep cover into an organization we'd received information on... I got a job with them... They offered all types of extracurricular activities to employees. Weapons training, explosives, hand to hand - the whole kit and kaboodle. I got into it. Found I was good at it."
Poor Ben Urich got all the wrong assignments.
Posted by: fnord12 | April 13, 2016 11:46 AM
Thanks. Not quite what I thought, but pretty funny for how contrived it all is. I'm also wondering about other reporters and this sort of thing. Ned Leeds could really have used an assignment like that too.
Posted by: Benway | April 13, 2016 2:57 PM
Anyone else notice that Spidey gets Whisper's name wrong in #92? He refers to him multiple times as "Silence." Obviously nobody was paying much attention when editing these books.
Posted by: Uncle Gazpacho | September 20, 2016 11:52 PM
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