Friday, August 06, 2010

The Long Box #9

Words: Danny Fingeroth
Pictures: Al Milgrom & Kerry Gammill
May 1991

Probably one of the first Spider-Man comics I picked up this one deals with one of Spidey's villains, The Beetle, as he makes a deal with the Kingpin, Wilson Fisk, in hopes of being let out of prison early.
Fisk comes through and the Beetle is freed. But now he has to repay the Kingpin for his part of the deal. Thing is, while being in prison he begins to doubt that the life of crime is the life for him.
But you don't promise the Kingpin something and not deliver. So, after getting a new and improved suit courtesy of The Tinkerer, the Beetle begins to put his plan into motion. Part of the plan is gathering a group of villains who need money like Rhino, who wants to get the rhino skin removed from his body and go straight. The rest, Hydro-Man, Electro, Boomerang and Speed Demon are just in it for the money.
The big plan is part of the charm of this book and reminds me of a simpler time when comics could just be fun. They plan to rob the federal reserve of all it's money and gold. Naturally the succeed despite the efforts of Spider-Man who is surprised to be faced with six of his greatest enemies but the money is taken by the Kingpin who made a deal with Beetle to only take 10% of future hauls, but it means this group called the Sinister Syndicate now works for him.
After the first haul, Boomerang is captured by the police and put in jail. Spider-Man decides to call on him to get information on what's going on and is attacked by Beetle who has another toy from the Tinkerer: a Sonic Cannon!
The issue ends with Spidey at the mercy of Beetle's cannon in a cliff hanger ending that actually makes me want to re-read the next issue!
Overall, this is a great old school read. From the dialogue and costumes to even the art, this was before everything went to Image crap in the mid-90's, this book takes me back to the time when comics were still very new to me. But I do wonder why this was never collected in a trade.
Ah, well, next week: Issue #2!

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