Apr 19, 2020

Spider-Rama: Amazing Spider-Man #79

Welcome to Spider-Rama! Every day until the end of April, Ben and Duy will look at a Spider-Man issue from the very beginning, in chronological order, and answer questions for various categories, inspired in large part by one of our favorite podcasts, The Rewatchables by The Ringer. Our goal is to make it to Amazing Spider-Man #200. Will we make it? Grab your Amazing Spider-Man Omnibus or crank up your tablet to Marvel Unlimited, and then tune in every Wednesday to find out!

by Stan Lee, John Buscema, and Jim Mooney

Spider-Man and the Prowler, part 2!


BEN: In line with our recent discussions, it seems like some readers didn’t appreciate the multi-part stories at the time:

DUY: There isn't enough story material here to stretch to another issue.

BEN: Way to blame the fans, Stan.


BEN: Spider-Man talking it out with the “villain” and then letting him go is ... unprecedented? But a nice touch.

DUY: Sadly, the story of a young black man turning to a life of crime in lieu of better alternatives is still resonant today. There's a reason we didn't add him in the villain count — this is the last time he's "the villain." 

BEN: Peter’s greatest enemy, weaponized gas, is consistent with his history.

DUY: Peter's greatest enemy is debris.

BEN: Like a brick?

DUY: No, you're thinking of the Silver Surfer.

BEN: At this point, I'm thinking his greatest enemy is Aunt May.


DUY: In 2019, if after many years of fighting old white men, Peter suddenly unmasks a young black kid, he would have definitely been shocked, but maybe he wouldn't have called it out. In 1969, it's unbelievable that it's never even mentioned. I know the intent is normalization, but that really stuck out to me.

BEN: I'm too white to participate.

DUY: I can say it, I'm Filipino. There's no connection whatsoever, but only eight people read this anyway.


BEN: Only Peter could think surviving a 30-story fall out of a window (the scene depicted on the cover) would be less suspicious for his secret identity.

DUY: I call inconsistency. Gwen would totally be crying here.

BEN: Buscema's Gwen was far more resilient.

DUY: I'm beginning to think Romita actually automatically drew tears.


DUY: A panel almost worthy of a cover:

BEN: We take these kind of panels for granted,but that’s a good representation of trying to sleep with turmoil. I don't know what Aunt May did. But still.

DUY: She exists. Her very existence is distressing.

BEN: For all of us.


DUY: Hobie Brown has a great look, believable motivations, and immediately stands out from the rest of Spidey's antagonists. He wins.

BEN: I’m not sure I’ve ever read his origin, but it’s well done.

DUY: That's it for Spider-Rama this week.

BEN: Thank you, Stan Lee and Steve Ditko—

DUY: —for telling us we aren't the only ones.

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