Comics : Deadly Foes of Spider-Man #3
This story is part of a Lookback Series: Worst of the Worst
This review was first published on: 2003.
The "Deadly Foes of Spider-Man" are Boomerang, Beetle, Speed Demon, Rhino, and Hydro-Man. They've also teamed up with some girl named Leila Davis, who seems to have some axe to grind. But for who does she grind it? No time for that, Spidey's got a bomb to defuse!
Deadly Foes of Spider-Man #3
Jul 1991 : SM Title
Summary: Sinister Syndicate
|Reprinted In: Deadly Foes of Spider-Man (TPB)|
|Articles: The Beetle, Boomerang, Hydro-Man, Rhino, The Shocker, Speed Demon|
Oh no! Spidey only has ten seconds to save the D.A! Still, it only takes nine seconds for him to recognise the bomb as being made by the same guy who made the sonic blaster... i.e. the Tinkerer. Now, if you ask me, that's a pretty big stretch, given that he saw the blaster for all of two seconds, and the bomb for all of one.
But that's not the lamest part. Spidey "recognised", in the next six seconds, the little green shape stuck on the side of the bomb that makes it all go. He rips that off, et Voila! Bomb is incapacitated, with 0.01 of a second left on the timer! The bomb then makes a "FSSSSST" noise, and puffs out some smoke. Err, pardon me while I disengage my brain, 'cos that's the only way I'm gonna survive through the first two pages of this comic!
The next day, the Beetle is disappointed he didn't kill Spidey or the D.A., but he doesn't tell his cronies. Instead, he tells them that he has an inside man who is gonna spring Boomerang. He also tells them of the next job they have planned, a lucrative Assassination. But Rhino ain't interested. But Speed Demon is interested in Leila, and she plays along, for now.
But what about this Boomerang breakout. Yep, Herman Schultz is the inside man. He was in the Masters of Evil, with Beetle, and owes him something. But what's even more strange is that Kingpin's guys are part of the breakout deal. Huh? Kingpin put Boomy in there, and now he's gonna bust him out? Well, anyhow, Schultz does manage to bust out Boomerang, before the big Boomer gets taken to the Vault. Schultz actually shoots off Boomerang's arm-shackles, which is pretty weird, hard to see how a rifle could KO those big shackles, and that he could be so accurate, given that he never used again. Oh well, details don't matter, right?
Leila is right there for the pickup, from under the nose of the cops. Cops? Nope! Leila explains that in fact the "cops" conveniently outside were in fact the Kingpin's men. Yep, KP bullied Schultz into springing Myers, so that he could have him killed... and probably Shocker too, just for being in the wrong place. But Leila whisked them to safety, and now they owe her something. She tells them her story. Seems she's the ex-wife, err... widow, of The Ringer, Anthony Davis. She blames Beetle for his death at the hands of Scourge, and she wants revenge. Boomerang agrees to help. Schultz is still suffering a crisis of confidence, but he wants to prove himself, and signs on too.
While the Rhino gets his skin-removal treatments started, Shocker and Boomerang practice in costume, under Leila's watchful eyes. Meanwhile, Beetle, Speed Demon, and Hydro-Man kill their target. But... Oh No! What a tragic co-incidence! It turns out that the guy they killed is the chief doctor at the facility where Rhino is having his skin removed! Angst! Angst! Beetle just killed the only person who could help the Rhino revert to normal! "Oh, woe is me, what kind of leader am I?" The Beetle is all guilt-ridden. The Rhino is far from happy, natch. But Hydro-Man and Speed Demon got lots of cash, so they forgive Abner.
Still, Rhino's anger works OK for Leila. She and her two helpers, Boomerang and the Shocker, approach Rhino and persuade him to help them against the Beetle. He agrees, but as they all drive back to base, Herman finally realises his nerves are shot, and he leaves the group, who are disappointed, but who realise that maybe it's for the best. But time for another gratuitous co-incidence! Who does Herman meet as he thumbs a cab? Yeah... Peter Parker! One quick change later, and Spidey collars the Shocker. Five seconds later, and a S.W.A.T team turns up! Six seconds after that, and... it's Scourge! Yep, and he fires a shot at Shocker, which is luckily deflected by Shocker's suit! Shocker seizes the moment, and grabs a car, and scarpers double-time! He's well out of there.
But that's a side-show. The main battle is not far off. As Leila, Rhino and Boomerang arm up with some black-market laser-blasters, and Leila prepares herself with her dead hubby's constricting throwing rings, Beetle's troops launch a pre-emptive strike! It's an all-out Sinister Syndicate Super-Scrap! Be here next issue!
It's a bit like a roller-coaster, maybe. It's the straight bits which make the corners exciting. If a ride is nothing but a series of corners, then it would be... well... just rather sickening. This problem is exacerbated by the fact that many of the twists are just lame. The worst of the lot is probably Spidey pulling the little green bit off the side of the bomb, but there are plenty of others that compare.
We're just getting silly now. This is plot-twistery for it's own sake. One and a half webs.