What is an Arachknight? I feel like this deserves an explanation, but none is forthcoming. We open with a couple of gross Wall Street guys being gross (One of whom looks remarkably like Jeffery Epstein) before they’re slaughtered by The Lizard. As with last issue, the first page narration trails off into the phrase “–rise above it all!” over a 2-page spread as The Lizard pounces on the dudes. Weird.
Ok, but why is he leaving his name on the walls?
The font on the headline changing wildly every time we see it is funny. I mean, on the one hand, sure, finding out your friend is killin’ dudes every night is upsetting, but on the other hand, this feels weird and out of character. Across a 2-page spread at an undisclosed location, the person driving The Lizard, who is obvious if you know who it is, but I certainly didn’t when this came out, mixes a fresh potion and gets the drums fired up again.
And now we’re firmly in Kraven’s Last Hunt territory. Spidey goes smashing through a window, thinking about how the pounding in his head is driving him crazy.
The Lizard is cooler than Vermin, but otherwise, we’ve pretty much been here before. Spider-Man panics and flees into an elevator, but The Lizard tears right through it, the captions telling us he’s in a frenzy and out for blood. Spidey instinctively kicks his foe away, and this accidentally impales The Lizard on a chunk of debris in a scene quite a bit more graphic than mainstream comics were used to in 1990.
We see MJ out dancing, rather comically dancing with people who aren’t shown because it’s easier to draw one person, then Spidey’s mysterious tormentor works on yet another potion with a spider in it, and Spider-Man crouches on a water tower going crazy in Kraven’s Last hunt fashion and recapping The Lizard’s origin, thinking this bloodlust isn’t like him and his eyes were “like 2 black holes.” Then the mystery villain pours a new potion and it begins to rain.
I mean… is it that insane? He knows The Lizard got up and left earlier? I dunno. It’s certainly pretty scary looking for a superhero comic. The letter page tells us that even before #2 went to print, #1 has already become the biggest selling comic of all time. I once read that a comic in the 40s could sometimes sell as many as 5 million copies, and this sold over a million. Maybe that fact about the old days was wrong. I am not a historian. They also let you know the Kraven’s Last Hunt trade just came out, which is good synergy with this book. Comic collections were still pretty rare in these days, but that was starting to change. Come back next time for more grim-dark nonsense.