Ever since Doctor Octopus took over Peter Parker’s body, started calling himself the Superior Spider-Man and violented himself up, it was only a matter of time before somebody put him face to face with Kaine, the Scarlet Spider – the version of Spider-Man who was already violented up. After all, the comic reading public has since proven that they will pay to see different versions of Spider-Man tuning each other up. It started with The Amazing Spider-Man #149, back in October, 1975, the first time Spider-Man fought a cloned version of himself, and continued, on and on, through the creation of Venom, and then Carnage, and then the return of that original Spider-Clone. And then the Clone Saga.
The Goddamned, everfucking Clone Saga.
Anyway, there wasn’t a hope in hell of getting through this Doc Ock incarnation of Spider-Man without someone spending some time having him knock around, and get knocked around by, Scarlet Spider. And frankly, I wasn’t looking all that forward to it; again, only 15 years ago, Marvel had one Spider-Man punch another, and they spent the next year and a half dragging it out until they all but knocked the title’s dick in the dirt. So in my mind’s eye, I was expecting a multi-issue extravaganza, dragged out over weeks if not months with big fights and constant wondering who the real Spider-Man was at any given time.
So imagine my surprise when the inevitable fight between these two guys was done in just two issues, both available on the same day, with some decent believable interplay between the two, and a common enemy to fight.
Of course, that enemy is The Jackal, who started the whole damn clone business in the first place. Oh: and a bunch of other clones.
Dirty, stinking clones.