What If... The Spider Had Been Bitten by a Radioactive Human?

The back-up in What If #8 is the earliest instance of a What If tradition, and that's the comedy parallel world. This is the brainchild of Scott Shaw! who would later become the force behind Captain Carrot and his Amazing Zoo Crew, so not a stranger to "Amazing" funny animals!

What If Vol.1 #8 (April 1978) - Second story
Based on: Amazing Fantasy #15
The true history: As the Watcher tells us, you'd have to have been in a coma for 20 years (now 30) not to know the story of how Peter Parker got bit by a radioactive spider.
Turning point: What if Marvel was deep into Funny Animal comics?
Story type: Silly
Watcher's mood: Roy Thomas picketed by Howard the Duck (a common enough mood)
Altered history: In this universe of funny animals, we follow the story of a teenage spider called Webster Weaver, who's apparently adopted, cuz his aunt and uncle are insects.
And kids: Spiders ain't insects. They's arachnids! The same kind of emo science geek, Webster goes to Hugeville to see a science exhibit, and gets bitten by a berserk scientist high on x-rays:
He discovers the bit gave him the powers of a human being, and the Man-Spider is born. Of course, it takes the death of Uncle Bug to turn him into a hero, and from there, the animalistic villains start pouring in! (Click for a more legible version.)
That Doctorpuss is particularly disturbing. More because you can't get enough?! Ok!!!
But what about the guy who killed Uncle Bug? Turns out it's a walking spray can out to destroy the ozone layer (avant-garde for 1978)! And he's come prepared:
Wow, that's a lot of manacles. He gets out of it with a combination of human-sense and the proportional strength of a human being, don't worry.
Books canceled as a result: All of them. (Ok, maybe just Peter Porker, the Spectacular Spider-Ham.)
These things happen: I still regard Marvel Tails and Spider-Ham with a great deal of affection, but Peter Porker is a pig in that. So I guess, no, a spider never got the powers of a man. But both characters worked at the Daily Beagle, so there are some crossover ideas. How would you feel about that, Pete?


Alden said...

I am having a particularly hard time imagining battles between the culture vulture and man-spider. Maybe he plans on taking over the world with a combination of offensive post-eating of rancid animals and boring to death the rest with explanations of why he likes Mozart more than Bach.

The Mutt said...


Gary said...

The potato is the Chameleon.

Anonymous said...

In an issue of Italian comic book Alan Ford, there was a story called Arachno, about a giant antropomorphic spider who steals insects for food. In the end, it is revealed that he was once a regular spider who got bit by a human. I don't remember the human's name, but it was similar to Peter Parker.

Siskoid said...

Interesting. I wonder if I can find that here.

Wooly Rupert said...

Didn't we find out that Spider-Ham's origin was he was a spider that lived in May Porker's basement, and that she was a mad scientist to boot. A radiation experiment drover her temporarily bonkers and she grabbed the spider and bit him. It turned him into a Pig with a Spider's abilities. May was traumatised by the experiment and became a simple-minded old lady and Peter stuck around to take care of her.


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