A single, individual dollar! This is the first appearance of Murder World. Auspicious. The boys wake up in clear plastic globes, which turn out to be inside a giant pinball table, because that’s the kind of thing Arcade gets up to. Think about Murder World for even 5 seconds. People hire Arcade because he’s a famous assassin, and he then… finds their target, doesn’t kill them, and instead, puts them in an obscenely expensive death trap. How does he get work? The Maggia has paid him a million dollars to kill Captain Britain. Could a fully functional, murderous pinball table sized up so a human being is roughly the height of the ball POSSIBLY cost less than that? Seems unlikely!
What do you think Brian thought of Spider-Man’s pep talk to himself? Superheroes thinking out loud is just funny to me sometimes. But Arcade has, improbably, planned for this, and sends out a ball covered in spikes “as big as a house,” like on the cover. But THEN, it turns out the ball was an illusion, and Spidey & CB happen to be standing on trap doors that dump them into separate new traps. What is his overhead?? Spider-Man is pretty annoyed, but Captain Britain thinks he’s trying to remember not to have fun.
I just… there are certain things I just can’t roll with in comics. Who would’ve thought I’d survive Razorback, but couldn’t handle Murder World? It’s too silly. Brian defeats his weird doubles, while Spider-Man fights a cardboard cowboy shooting real bullets and a fleet of little-but-deadly jets. Spidey decides to quit playing the game and just rips a wall open and leaves, which is legit great. Not the kind of move you see too often, just noping out of there.
Spidey downplaying his electronics skills when he’s built webshooters and little devices that can broadcast on a frequency his weird danger sense picks up (And a device to track them) is a bit of a stretch.
Nice job on that water distortion. Spider-Man emerges back in to the main halls and almost gets to Arcade’s control room, but the villain opens a door near him so he can see Captain Britain about to drown and go help instead. He frees Brian and then they free Courtney just in time. So, Arcade deploys Spider-Man’s true archenemy, gas. But Spidey is just wondering why all the damage he caused doesn’t seem to have accomplished anything.
Is that the first Star Wars quote in a mainline Marvel comic? Could be!
Interesting that neither hero actually met Arcade. That’s unusual. Turns out, Arcade never really gets his rematch. His next appearances are in X-Men, and when he finally reappears in a Spidey comic, in MTU 89, it’s in a cameo role I still don’t quite get the point of. He fights a few people, but like most things Claremont has a hand in, he inevitably becomes an X-Men character. However, we will see him again here on the blog. Next up, we check in on Spectacular.