WARNING: The following contains major spoilers for Spine Tingling Spider-Man #2, available now exclusively on Marvel Unlimited.
The Marvel Universe is home to a number of colorful villains, and no hero knows that better than Peter Parker, otherwise known as the Amazing Spider-Man. Peter has faced off against quite a few fantastical foes, and it is an enemy from his distant past who has become his latest threat in Spine-Tingling Spider-Man #2 (by Saladin Ahmed, Juan Ferreyra, and VC's Joe Sabino). Spencer Smythe might not be the most intimidating figure, but the fact that he hasn't given up on revenge after four decades of waiting speaks volumes about how dangerous he can be.
Peter Parker has been on edge even more so than usual as of late. Between the ominous lullaby which has begun infecting people seemingly at random, there is the torrent of high tech thefts being carried out by someone's robotic henchmen. Already suffering from severe sleep deprivation thanks to the constantly playing tune that Peter hears whenever he tries to sleep, things take a sudden turn for the worse when the face of an old enemy pops up on his phone. Spencer Smythe has returned, and announces that he has hidden explosives throughout the city that he will detonate if Spider-Man fails to follow his forthcoming directions.
First introduced all the way back in 1965's Amazing Spider-Man #25 (by Stan Lee and Steve Ditko), Spencer Smythe is a technological genius who created the original Spider-Slayer armor at the behest of J. Jonah Jameson. While he and Jameson's first assault on the wall-crawler was unsuccessful, Smythe was undeterred by his initial failure. Smythe's later experiments resulted in the transformation of Mark Raxton into the Molten Man before he created further variations of his Spider-Slayers. Even though Smythe perished barely a decade after his first appearance, his legacy lived on through his Spider-Slayer tech as well as his similarly villainous son Alistaire.
Smythe seemed destined to become little more than a footnote in Spider-Man's history until another web-slinging hero brought him back from the dead. During Ben Reilly's stint as the Jackal, Smythe was one of over a dozen people resurrected as clones, all of them having lost their lives through their dealings with Spider-Man in 2016's Clone Conspiracy #2 (by Dan Slott and Jim Cheung). Smythe hasn't appeared separate from the rest of Jackal's clones until now, and it appears that he has taken the time to finally formulate a new plan against the webhead.
It's probably safe to assume that Smythe is the one behind the mechanical assailants and break-ins that Spider-Man has been battling, although there is no way of knowing his true goal as of yet. However, Spencer Smythe has never been an especially complex figure, making simple revenge his most likely motivation.
Whatever the case may be, Spider-Man is not in a position to negotiate. Regardless of his physical condition, Peter must once again defy the odds and be a hero if he and the city are to stand a chance against his newly resurfaced nemesis.
KEEP READING: Marvel Resurrects Classic Spider-Man Team the Slingers for a Special One-Shot
You May Like Also