It’s been less than 10 issues and the parents thing is already wearing out its welcome! This reveal isn’t what it coulda been, since Smythe appeared during that awful Scarlet Spider stunt, but here’s how I first met him:
A lot of cyborg dudes in this period. So, Peter rolls into Aunt May’s with Felicia in tow. Does May remember The Black Cat randomly showing up at her place looking for Peter in TAC 90? Does this woman look familiar? It’s not mentioned, May is just unhappy to see Peter with another woman. He tries to call the FBI to get info on Shaddock, but gets the run around for awhile and gives up. He promises to have dinner with May & MJ next week and he and Felicia depart. He says he has to pause their search for Smythe until he knows his folks are ok, but Felicia signs on for that adventure, as well. Soon they’re swinging through the city, having already smashed 14 of those robo spiders, we’re told, but apparently not fast enough.
2 more robots roll up, these based on a tarantula and a scorpion, and the battle continues. Spidey manages to get one of them to take a big fall, but it doesn’t stop, and regroups with the first one, Meanwhile, the scorpion one grabs Cat in one of its pincers, as she curses her dulled reflexes, but then Spider-Man swats it with a big girder and it releases her.
Good times. They dance around some more, and then Spider-Man has the idea to electrocute the robots, ripping up a power cable, but it doesn’t get through their armor. Some claw work from Felicia changes that, tho, and the big thing is zapped into submission. But Cat is now hurt, and not able to continue on the mission, so after helping her to safety, Spider-Man’s on his own again.
Why doesn’t he just change clothes??
Well, that didn’t go too well. They’re not gonna have much time to wrap up both plots next month, but we’ll see how they do. For the rest of this issue, Milgrom and Lopresti hang on and Mark Stegbauer and Bob Sharen swap into the rest of the art team to check in on Flash Thompson. He needs to practice for his new boxing career, and Peter has volunteered to spar with him. Flash brings up their previous bout in ASM 8, but is only joking around. While they dance around, they talk about Peter’s parents, and how he’s not sure if he can trust them.
So, Flash apologizes for the way he treated Pete, and then says he never got to make up with his dad because he died! Someone one shoulda told JM DeMatteis! If Flash’s dad in the 1997 comics (Like TAC 248) turns out to be a clone, that would be hilarious. Anyway, Flash says after losing his Dad to a heart attack before they could ever try to work it out, he thinks Peter should be happy his parents have come back.
That was easily the best of these backups so far. Flash is a pretty underdeveloped character, most of the time. Even when he’s on the run in 1986, he’s barely in the book.