Amazing Spider-Man 550:
SPECIAL DOUBLE-SIZED ANNIVERSARY ISSUE!! THIS IS THE ISSUE YOU’VE BEEN WAITING FOR! Goblins…Web Shooters…J. Jonah Jameson rooting for Spidey…and The Death of MJ?
NOTE: I started writing this story with issue 446. To see that issue’s script and see the set-up for the NEW ENEMIES, old friends, the fight w/The Thunderbolts, The Rhino, an unmasked Spidey confronting J. Jonah Jameson, AND a battle with SHIELD, plus a face-to-face with Iron Man, look for it on this blog!
Welcome, o’ Honest Devotees! For here you shall find solace in some scintillating stories of the super-heroic Spider-Man!
What’s this blog about? Simply this: to bring back the fun to Spider-Man, the brilliance of Peter Parker, and the soap opera drama of the supporting cast…all while keeping some butt-kicking action in the mix…and withOUT disrupting continuity!
Easy as shootin’ webs in a barrel!
See, the Merry Madhouse apparently wrote itself into a corner. They themselves have acknowledged this. In a story called ONE MORE DAY, and its follow-up BRAND NEW DAY, Spidey had ended up: w/crazy powers (web-spikes shooting from the top of his wrists), a fugitive (b/c he rebelled against a new law for superhumans), a criminal (to save his aunt), and he never did send in the cancellation card after those four free trial issues of Maxim!
So, with all that in mind, Marvel had Peter Parker do something terribly UNheroic: he made a deal with the devil. Yep. A character named Mephisto appeared and basically said “Lose the wife, the love of your life, and for sacrificing that which is most dear to you, I’ll eff-up continuity something awful.” Well, I may be paraphrasing. But Peter accepted this deal.
The results were intriguing: Peter Parker’s life was reset. He was a teen again and no longer married to MJ. I was OK with that. What got under my skin was that no superhero Stan Lee created would do something so terribly unheroic. (Check my earlier blog to see how I had Peter respond to mirthful Mephisto.)
So I picked up the story where I felt it went awry. My aim was to show the book could have continued along the same plot lines and still be a whole lot of fun…and still reset Pete’s life to some degree. I’ve been tackling this piece by piece.
We’ve met a silhouetted bad guy who seems to have his eye set on Spidey. He seems to have some kind of history with our wall-crawler, and he isn’t a fan of Normon Osborn (leader of SHIELD team the Thunderbolts at this time) or J. Jonah Jameson either. Meanwhile, Spider-Man’s in the clutches of an evil doc named Ernest T. Wretched, who is working with said T-Bolts. And then there was the fight w/the T-Bolts…during which a super-strong guy named Watcher, who promised to keep an eye on a healing Aunt May, & The Prowler, both showed up to help Spidey…and now both are in police custody. Oh yeah, and Flash Thompson is missing….
SPECIAL DOUBLE-SIZED ANNIVERSARY ISSUE!! THIS IS THE ISSUE YOU’VE BEEN WAITING FOR! STUNNERS & SHOCKERS THROUGHOUT!
THE MIDDLE WILL BLOW YOU AWAY! THE ENDING WILL MAKE YOU PEE YOUR PANTS!!
(See other Blog Posts to catch up on earlier issues!)
Amazing Spider-Man 550:
Please note: I post ALL drafts as I finish them. This draft does need some tweaking…
IT’S A JUNGLE IN HERE – Part 3
Extreme close of a manic, horrific face with round, bulging eyes, pointy nose, and wide, deranged grin.
It looks like Green Goblin…but the color’s a little off…
SFX: HEH…HEH-HA! HEH HA-HAHAHAHAHAHAHAAA-AHAH!
1/ TAN CAPTION: IN LIFE, ONE NEVER REMOVES HIS MASK – AT LEAST, NOT UNTIL LIFE HAS ALL BUT PASSED ONE BY.
(That’s our narrator from Part 1 — revealed to be our ever-silhouetted mysterious bad guy — returning here. [Again, captions do not have to be colored TAN, it’s just a way to differentiate from regular captions without stating a name…a better color can be determined later.])
IT’S A JUNGLE IN HERE! PART 3
Writer: K e i t h P l a n i t
Dedicated to: Lee, Ditko, Roger Stern, David Michelinie, Ron Frenz, Peter David, Bob Layton, JRJR, Klaus Janson, Josef Rubenstein, Jim “Priest” Owsley, Todd McFarlane, and Bill Mantlo. (And a special thanks to all the folks who put Marvel Comics history up on Wikipedia!)
Large panel (1)
We get a better look at this creepy fella. He is NOT The Green Goblin. He’s dressed like what can only be described as a dapper zombie in crumbling clothes, and he’s flying on a mechanical apparatus which is most decidedly NOT a Goblin Glider. But it’s powerful and creepy nonetheless.
Behind him, two other people follow (on their flying machines of some sort), but at a distance – they’re in silhouette.
All three are causing havoc above the NYC streets!
1/ CAPTION: IN THE NEW YORK CITY SKIES…
2/ TAN CAPTION: WE TELL OURSELVES, WE MUST PUT ON A FACE, PUT UP A FRONT…
3/ TAN CAPTION: IT’S ALL JUST A TRICK OF THE MIND…
4/ CAPTION (next to the Goblin-like character): TRICK.
We’ve panned down here. The three from the panel above, are passing over the “camera.” On the street, decomposing fingers are seen coming through a loosened manhole cover. NOTE: the metal of the cover, near the fingers, should appear rusted and crumbling.
5/ TAN CAPTION: AND WE CAN ONLY DO THE BEST WE CAN DO. EXISTENCE IS CRUEL.
6/ CAPTION: ON THE NEW YORK CITY STREETS.
7/ TAN CAPTION: YOU MUST ALWAYS BE SEARCHING FOR THE GOOD IN LIFE. BECAUSE LIFE GIVES YOU NOTHING.
Here, we reveal what’s coming through the manhole: another masked madman…this mask looks like a frowning decomposing pumpkin – with grubs crawling out of the oozing holes all around it.
In this panel, he’s tossed the manhole into a store-front. Someone is ducking out of the way of crumbling glass.
Running along the rooftop is another guy. Simple, burly. A hazy blue moon, with craters (part of his face or the mask?…), covers half his face. He is in a complete face/body mask that is otherwise white.
9/ CAPTION: ATOP NEW YORK CITY ROOFTOPS.
10/ TAN CAPTION: BUT FINDING THE GOOD ISN’T ALWAYS SO EASY. LIFE’S DARK TURNS TEND TO SHROUD THOSE DAYS WHICH SHINE BRIGHT…
CAPTION: BLUE ECLIPSE.
The five new villains are converging, coming together….people in the street are running…
11/ TAN CAPTION: BUT, THEY SAY, WHEN IT RAINS IT POURS…
We now see the entire group.
1/ TAN CAPTION: AND WHEN ONE THING GOES YOUR WAY…IT OFTEN SEEMS LIKE EVERYTHING ELSE WILL FOLLOW…
The final two vile foes are the two who were silhouetted before: a female with a metallic mask which looks like it is in a tearful, perpetual scream….
2/ CAPTION: HALLOW’S EVE.
…And another of this team, whose face is hidden by what looks like the dying leaves of a corn stalk. For the rest of the costume, he’s somewhere between The Green Goblin and DC’s The Scarecrow…He carries a decaying, but still useful, scythe.
3/ CAPTION: HARVEST.
4/ TAN CAPTION: AND, OH, WILL IT EVER!
Large panel (Vertical 1/3-page panel?):
Spider-Man screaming, captured, clearly in torment!
1/ CAPTION: A LAB – WEST SIDE, NYC.
2/ SPIDER-MAN: AAAIGGEEAHH!!
Unless you reveal it in panel 1, we should see here that Spidey is:
1. In the lab of Dr. Ernest T. Wretched (from previous issues).
2. In the same machine Rhino and Gargan were strapped to in previous issues.
3. Finding himself not just strapped-in at his wrists, legs, and waist, but his Spider-spikes should be sticking out of his wrists, and those are nailed down as well…
We see Venom overseeing the goings-on. He’s wearing a headset. (Yup! He’s trying [pretending] to be part of the establishment now — so he’s gotta answer to folks…)
Dr. Wretched is very pleased, he’s moving a lever or turning a dial of some sort….
(ARTIST: split this into 2 panels, if panel 1 shows all the things listed for panel 2).
Small panels – large needles from over-sized syringes, slide into Spidey’s neck.
Angle on a computer monitor showing Spidey’s raising heart-rate.
Angle on a computer monitor displaying a clear decline in “Superhuman Levels” (bleh — need a better name [working on it])
1/ VENOM: WRETCHED, EXPLAIN THIS ‘SUPERHUMAN’ MONITOR.
WRETCHED: OH, IT’S SO SIMPLE, TRULY. SEE, THAT IS MEASURING HIS STRENGTH ABOVE AND BEYOND THOSE OF A NORMAL MAN OF HIS SIZE AND WEIGHT. IT’S A TEMPORARY DETERIORATION MOSTLY…
Venom has his finger pressed to the earphone of his headset.
2/ WRETCHED: …MERELY A SYMPTOM OF THE ALTERATIONS BEING MADE TO HIS ACTUAL DNA.
3/ VENOM (small; into headset): YESSS, OSBORN, HE’S EXPLAINING IT ALL TO US NOW.
Close on Dr. Wretched…
4/ WRETCHED: THE STRESS ON THE BODY IS GREAT. YOU, GARGAN, DID NOT FEEL IT, BECAUSE OF THE SYMBIOTE’S INFLUENCE. BUT YOU, LIKE RHINO –
5/ VENOM (small): WE ARE VENOM.
Closer on Dr. Wretched…
6/ WRETCHED: — HAVE FOUND YOUR ANIMALISTIC SIDES COMPLETELY REMOVED. HEH-EH.
1/ CAPTION: RENTED WAREHOUSE – 1 CITY BLOCK FROM THE LAB:
In a dark room, PR Guy, the shape-shifter we’ve seen previously, and our mysterious villain are gathered….
2/ TAN CAPTION: TAKING CONTROL OF ONE’S LIFE IS OFTEN THE HARDEST THING TO DO.
Inside warehouse; sitting around a table.
3/ SILHOUETTE: THE HALLOWEEN GANG?
4/ LAWYER (SHAPE-SHIFTER): SCOURING THE CITY FOR HER.
5/ SILHOUETTE: THE NEW ONE – WHAT’RE WE CALLING IT?
6/ PR GUY: WE’RE LOOKING AT ‘GENUS.‘ AND WRETCHED FEELS VERY CONFIDENT THE SUBJECT WILL TAKE TO THE DNA-JUSTMENT.
7/ TAN CAPTION: IT IS A STRUGGLE WE ALL FACE – DO WE CONTROL LIFE VS. LIFE CONTROLLING US.
8/ SILHOUETTE: HM. I NEED AN ETA.
9/ PR GUY: IT’S ALREADY IN THE PROCESS…BUT HE’S CONCENTRATING ON THE SPIDER-MAN AT THE MOMENT, SIR.
10/ TAN CAPTION: THE ANSWER IS NEVER CLEAR. SO ONE’S ACTIONS MUST MAKE IT CLEAR.
11/ SILHOUETTE: BE THOROUGH WITH SPIDER-MAN. I’M NOT TERRIBLY CONCERNED WITH THE SUCCESS OR FAILURE OF GENUS…MERELY AN INTERESTING EXPERIMENT.
12/ TAN CAPTION: SOMETIMES, THE ONLY WAY TO FIND THAT ANSWER, IS TO STARE DEATH SQUARE IN THE FACE.
13/ LAWYER & PR GUY: NOTED, SIR.
14/ TAN CAPTION: AND THOUGH DEATH MAY WIN, SOMETIMES, YOU CAN CRAWL OUT OF THE MUCK AND STRETCH STRIATED FINGERS TOWARDS THE HAND OF FATE.
15/ SILHOUETTE: AND BE CERTAIN IT LOOKS LIKE THE THUNDERBOLTS WERE DIRECTLY INVOLVED IN THIS GENUS EXPERIMENT.
16/ LAWYER: OF COURSE.
17/ PR GUY: ON IT, SIR.
18/ SILHOUETTE: AND, ON OCCASION, FATE MAY GIVE YOU A GOOD OL’ SHOVE IN THE RIGHT DIRECTION.
Right here let’s give him a wide Green Goblin-like grin in the darkness (he’s otherwise still unrecognizable):
19/ SILHOUETTE: AHH. ANOTHER DAY, ANOTHER DEMISE.
20/ SILHOUETTE (connected): OFF WITH YOU ALL.
PAGE SEVEN & EIGHT:
EST. SHOT: hallway of a small motel. One door is open; a powder-blue piece of luggage outside the door.
Panels (2) and on: ARTIST: layout as you see fit.
1/ CAPTION: IRT MOTEL – MID-TOWN WEST NYC:
2/ AUNT ANNA (O.P.) 1 : I’M OKAY, MJ, YOU SHOULD PROBABLY GO.
3/ MJ (O.P.) 1 :AUNT ANNA, IT’S FINE.
4/ AUNT ANNA: I JUST DON’T WANT…TO CAUSE ANY TROUBLE.
Artist: lay out further panels as you see fit.
5/ MJ: ANNA, REALLY. IT’S FINE…
6/ MJ: …BESIDES, I NEED SOME FAMILY BY MY SIDE. I- I FEEL LIKE EVERYTHING IS JUST…BARELY HANGING ON.
7/ ANNA: EXPLAIN WHAT YOU MEAN, M.J.
8/ MJ: *SIGH* WHERE PETER AND I ARE NOW…IT’S LIKE WE’VE GOT EVERYTHING WE WANT FROM EACH OTHER…AND THAT WE, AS A COUPLE, CAN SURVIVE ANYTHING. AND, FROM WHAT I UNDERSTAND, EVEN AUNT MAY’S CONDITION IS SLOWLY IMPROVING…
9/ MJ (connected): …BUT, WITH THAT….
10/ MJ: …WE’VE SUDDENLY BEEN GIVEN SO MANY MORE WORRIES. FROM S.H.I.E.L.D., THIS TRIAL FOR PETER’S CRIMES…WE STILL NEED A PLACE TO LIVE, WE’RE FUGITIVES. AND LET’S NOT FORGET THE DEVIL’S WARNING….
11/ AUNT ANNA: THE WHAT’S WHAT?
12/ MJ: NOTHING. I’M JUST GLAD YOU’RE HERE IS ALL I’M TRYING TO SAY.
13/ AUNT ANNA: THEN LET ME ASK ONE, LITTLE QUESTION…
14/ AUNT ANNA: IF YOU TWO ARE FUGITIVES, WASN’T IT DANGEROUS FOR YOU TO MEET ME AND CHECK ME INTO THE MOTEL?
Artist: Exterior of hotel. (Maybe we see MJ and/or Anna through window?) Outside, strategically placed, we see Luke Cage, Wolverine and Echo….
15/ MJ: OH. WELL-L-L…I’VE HAD A FEW ANGELS WATCHING OVER MY SHOULDER.
PAGE NINE & TEN:
ARTIST: lay out as you see fit. (Word balloon numbering continues until end pg. 10)
1st panel is EST. NYC precinct building.
1/ CAPTION: 1st PRECINCT – FINANCIAL DISTRICT – DOWNTOWN NYC.
2/ DETECTIVE A (O.P.) : WHAT’S THE WORD?
3/ DETECTIVE B (O.P.): CAPTAIN SAYS S.H.I.E.L.D. ASKS WE ‘RESPECT THE MASK.’ %!@$! SO I GUESS IT STAYS ON.
We’re in a specialized holding room. A logo on the wall: SuperHuman Objector Task-force – S.H.O.T. (This seemed better than SuperHuman Investigation Task-force).
Angle on The Prowler in an interrogation room; he’s restrained in those oversized cuffs villains in The Vault are often seen in; these cuffs are chained to the floor. Two police detectives are around him Det. 1 is very laid-back, a black man; Det. 2 is anxious, a little overbearing (male, female – it doesn’t matter. But burly.).
4/ DETECTIVE A: ALRIGHT…SO GIVE ON WHAT WAS HAPPENING DOWN THERE.
5/ PROWLER: SAW IT ON THE NEWS IS ALL. SPIDER-MAN WAS IN TROUBLE…I CAME DOWN, HELPED.
6/ DETECTIVE B: PROBLEM IS, SPIDER-MAN’S A KNOWN FUGITIVE!
7/ DETECTIVE A: BUT YOU SEEMED TO BE FLYING UNDER THE RADAR UNTIL YOU JUMPED IN ON THIS MESS.
8/ DETECTIVE B: YOU HAD TO KNOW THAT WAS GONNA HAPPEN. THAT YOU’D BE MARKED AFTER THIS.
9/ DETECTIVE A: HAD TO KNOW.
10/ PROWLER: HAD A FEELING.
11/ DETECTIVE B: LISTEN, S.H.I.E.L.D.’S COMING HERE FOR YOU WHETHER YOU TELL US THE WHOLE STORY OR NOT. IT’D JUST BE EASIER IF YOU GAVE IT TO US…
12/ DETECTIVE A: BE A LOT EASIER.
Somewhere in here, we need to see a small tool has popped out from Prowler’s boot.
13/ DETECTIVE B: WERE YOU TRYING TO AIDE AND ABET THE FUGITIVE?
14/ DETECTIVE A: MAYBE HE THOUGHT THE THUNDERBOLTS WERE BAD GUYS.
15/ DETECTIVE B: DID YOU RECOGNIZE THE THUNDERBOLTS ON THE SCENE? WERE YOU TRYING TO TAKE DOWN GOVERNMENT AGENTS?
Prowler’s working the plate on the floor, the one the chain leads to…the plate’s loosening thanks to the tool in his boot…
16/ DETECTIVE B: !@$%! YOU TALK TO ‘IM – HE SOUNDS LIKE A BROTHER ANYWAYS.
17/ DETECTIVE A: I WAS AN ONLY CHILD.
18/ DETECTIVE B: YOU KNOW WHAT I MEAN!
19/ DETECTIVE A: SADLY, I DO.
20/ DETECTIVE A: LISTEN, CRAWLER—
21/ PROWLER: PROWLER.
22/ DETECTIVE A: RIGHT. LISTEN. S.H.I.E.L.D.’LL BE HERE RIGHT QUICK. WE HAVE A CHOICE, TO TELL ‘EM YOU’RE COOPERATING OR TELL ‘EM YOU’VE BEEN TROUBLE.
23/ DETECTIVE A: I’D LIKE TO TELL ‘EM YOU’VE BEEN COOPERATING.
24/ DETECTIVE A: …
25/ DETECTIVE B: AW, F’R CHISSAKES. ALLA THE HEROES BEEN ACTIN’ LIKE CRIMINALS LATELY…AND THIS ONE’S NOT GONNA BE ANY DIFFERENT.
Detective B storms out.
26/ DETECTIVE A (small): FRIEND? I CAN ONLY STALL FOR SO MUCH LONGER HERE WHILE YOU WORK THAT PLATE ON THE FLOOR. SO IF YOU’RE GONNA BOLT, MAKE IT FAST, HM?
Close on Prowler. It’s pretty clear he’s smiling under that mask.
PAGE ELEVEN, TWELVE, & THIRTEEN:
ARTIST: lay out as you see fit (word balloon #s are continuous)
Another Detective. A regular interrogation room. Watcher – the one meant to be looking out for Aunt May per previous issues – sits there, arms cuffed behind his back.
The Detective is laying into him, hard…
1/ DETECTIVE C: I WANT TO KNOW NOW WHO THE !%@ YOU ARE! I WANT TO KNOW WHY THE !@$!H% YOU WERE HELPING SPIDER-MAN, AND WHAT YOU EXPECTED TO GET FROM IT!
2/ DETECTIVE C: BECAUSE, AT THIS POINT, PEPE, THE ONLY THING YOU’RE GETTING IS TIME IN A HOLDING CELL, A MEETING WITH A JUDGE, AND AS MUCH MORE TIME IN A CELL I CAN GET THEM TO GIVE YOU FOR AIDING AND ABETTING, NEVER MIND ASSAULTING AN OFFICER!
3/ WATCHER: WHUT?! I DI’N’T TOUCH YOU, MAN!
The officer grabs the arm off of a nearby wooden chair and smacks himself right on the side of his head…he’s now red and a little bloody. He puts the arm of the chair back.
Detective B enters in next panel…
4/ DETECTIVE C: YOU GOT ANYTHING TO SAY YET, AMIGO?
Detectives B and C are facing each other…
5/ DETECTIVE B: AW, WHAT THE !@!$@, DONALD, YOU SMACK YOURSELF WITH THE ARM OF THE CHAIR AGAIN?
6/ DETECTIVE C: …
7/ DETECTIVE C (connected/small): HE HIT ME. GUY’S, LIKE, SUPER-STRONG.
8/ DETECTIVE B: OUT.
9/ DETECTIVE B: LISTEN, YOUR FINGERPRINTS, YOUR FACE, NOTHING ABOUT YOU IS IN A COMPUTER OR REGISTERS WITH ANYONE WE KNOW. IF YOU’RE A NEW HERO IN TOWN, REGISTER. MAKE THIS EASY.
10/ DETECTIVE B: IF YOU’RE RUNNING SOME OTHER SCAM, WE’RE GONNA GET YOU SHUT DOWN FAST…BECAUSE THE SUPER-FREAKS’LL COME IN, AND WE’LL TURN A BLIND EYE.
Angle on Watcher, silent.
11/ WATCHER: AND IF I REGISTER?
12/ DETECTIVE B: YOU MIGHT GET A CALL FROM S.H.I.E.L.D., SOME PROPER TRAINING, AND BE ASSIGNED TO THE INTIATIVE.
13/ WATCHER: AND IF I GOT A MISSION OF MERCY HERE IN THE CITY?
14/ DETECTIVE B: !H%T! IS THAT SOME SORTA CODE FOR A REVENGE KILL?
15/ WATCHER: NO. IT’S WHAT IT IS. I’M LOOKIN’ AFTER AN OLD LADY. RELATED TO A ‘SUPER.’
16/ DETECTIVE B: YOU MESSIN’ WITH ME?
17/ WATCHER: NOT YET…
18/ WATCHER: BY THE WAY, YOUR BUDDY THINKS I’M MEXICAN. AND HE’S NUTS.
19/ DETECTIVE B: I KNOW.
20/ DETECTIVE B (connected): …YOU REGISTERING?
Close on Watcher. Evil grin.
21/ WATCHER: HEY, GOT NO REASON NOT TO…AMIGO!
ARTIST: lay out as you see fit.
We’re back in the lab of Dr. Wretched.
Needles from Spidey’s neck are being retracted…
The Superhuman Levels are falling slowly on that monitor.
Spidey’s struggling, breathing heavy and hard.
The web-spikes coming from his wrists are cracking, crumbling…but the nails holding them to the platform are still holding!
Spider-Man’s trying to free his arms…
He makes a fist and shoots webbing from one wrist…
His webbing gums up the mechanical works of the retracting needles…
He continues to shoot webbing from his wrists, but the amount is less…until there’s none.
ARTIST: lay out as you see fit.
Spider-Man is wide-eyed and panicked at the lack of webbing coming from his wrist. In this shot we can see the web-spikes have almost completely deteriorated.
ANGLE ON: Dr. Wretched trying to pull the webbing off of the retracting parts which held one needle. The apparatus whirring and stalling…
SFX (by mechanical joint in machinery): wrhhhhh!
1/ WRETCHED: CURSED ARACHNID-MAN! IT’S NOT YET DONE!
2/ WRETCHED (small): CAN’T SHUT HER DOWN NOW! IT’S NOT YET DONE! HAVE TO FIX IT…HAVE TO FIX IT!! NOT YET DONE!
Spidey turns his head toward the other wrist.
A shot of webbing shoots out.
This shot gums up the mechanical pieces retracting the other needle.
3/ WRETCHED: NOO!
The web-spikes now dissipate completely…With the spikes no longer there, Spider-Man finally has a little room to maneuver his hands: bending his hand at the wrist, he grabs hold of the restraints over each wrist –
Spidey crumbles them and screams…
4/ SPIDER-MAN: NYAAGRRHHH!!
Venom’s tossed his headset aside and jumps at Spider-Man…
Spidey’s reached back, yanked the needles off the apparatus which still hover above him.
Venom in the air at Spidey, Spidey swinging fists down as hard as he can, stabbing the needles into Venom’s back (or lats)…
Larger panel. Spidey hops over Venom, runs to the boarded-up exit Rhino created some issues earlier, kicks it open…
He’s removed his mask, turned toward the Doctor. He’s sweaty, red-faced, clearly exhausted – an unshaven mess…but he still has room for a twinkle-eyed smirk…
1/ PETER: WE’RE GONNA HAVE TO GET TOGETHER AGAIN – REAL SOON! AND I PROMISE, DOCTOR…
ANGLE INTO The lab from outside: Spidey’s leaping out of sight. Inside, we see a pained Venom doubled-over…and a clearly distraught Dr. Wretched…
2/ PETER: WE DEFINITELY WILL!
Spidey atop the roofs, running, jumping, etc.
He comes to a rest, sitting back on a rooftop against the wall. He’s still unmasked….
1/ PETER (small): WOO-OOH!
2/ PETER (thought): WHATEVER THAT WAS…IT PACKED A WOLLOP.
Peter’s looking down at his gloved hands…
3/ PETER (thought): AND I’M NOT SO SURE I LIKED WHAT I SAW….
He’s aimed his hands in web-shooting form…
Hands still out, wrists aimed…
4/ PETER: THWIP?…
5/ PETER (connected): NOTHING… NO WEBBING. BUT– WAITAMINUTE…
He’s looking over the edge of the building into a dark alley.
1/ PETER (THOUGHT): THE NIGHT VISION’S GONE TOO.
He’s spun to the metal door which leads to the stairs within the building he’s on and has pulled the door off.
2/ PETER (thought): STILL FEEL LIKE I’VE GOT MY STRENGTH…WELL, MOSTLY.
Peter’s trying to put the door back.
3/ PETER: HM. TIMES LIKE THESE I COULD USE HEAT VISION…
4/ PETER (thought): OKAY, BACK TO THE TASK AT HAND. I WATCHED MY CRAZY WEB-SPIKES DISSIPATE, MY WEBBING’S GONE, MY STRENGTH SLIGHTLY DEPLETED….
5/ PETER (thought): I THINK I KNOW WHAT’S HAPPENED HERE – BUT I CAN’T BE SURE WITHOUT SOME TESTS…AND THERE’S ONLY ONE PLACE I CAN DO THAT WITHOUT DISTRACTION…
Spidey’s taken several big leaps north…
We’re still on the same roof – Spidey’s gone (or way off in the background)….
The Halloween Gang has flown into view…
We see they’re still very happily causing panic…
ARTIST: Rest of page as you see fit:
Amidst the chaos, we see an orangey-colored wolf (yes, I said “orangey”). It jumps at one of the Halloween Gang (either Harvest or Blue Eclipse)…
Harvest (or Blue) yanks the creature off his back and tosses it, and, mid-air, the wolf turns into a hawk of about the same size (and weight), and, again, with orange feathers.
ARTIST: the creature is changing species, but unlike, say, DC’s Beast Boy, he does NOT change size and weight. So he will always be the same size/weight (making him a pretty small elephant, but a pretty large mouse should he become those things).
Panel (1 [and 2])
The large Hawk flies up and over the city – we see the Daily Bugle/Flatiron building across town….
1/ CAPTION: THE DAILY BUGLE OFFICES – FLATIRON DISTRICT, NYC.
Inside the Bugle, everyone’s running around like maniacs…
2/ J.J.J.: BETTY, WHAT’VE YOU GOT?
3/ BETTY:MORE REPORTS…THEY’RE JUST SOUTH OF US, DESTROYING EVERYTHING THEY CAN. ESU STUDENTS ARE E-MAILING US THEIR PICTURES AND VIDEOS FROM THEIR PHONES.
4/ ROBBIE: JONAH, I SENT STERN OUT TO COVER IT – IF THIS IS ANOTHER GOBLIN, HE’S GOT THE BEST EXPERIENCE AFTER URICH.
5/ J.J.J.: AND WHO DO WE BELIEVE IS UNDER THE MASK? OSBORN? F’R GOD’S SAKE, IT BETTER NOT BE NED LEEDS!
6/ ROBBIE: NOBODY’S GOT ANY ANSWERS YET, J.J.!
7/ BETTY: POLICE SEEM TO BE ABOUT A MINUTE BEHIND THESE MASKED CREEPS. EVERYWHERE THEY GO, THEY CREATE HAVOC, THE POLICE SHOW, BUT THEY’RE GONE BY THEN.
8/ J.J.J.: I WANT EVERYONE OUT THERE! GET STREET BEAT ON THE KIDS, SHOP OWNERS, AND THE POLICE. GET THE POLITICOS TO THE MAYOR’S OFFICE, AND GET SOMEONE ON CAPES TO SEE WHAT STARK’S GOING TO DO ABOUT THIS.
9/ ROBBIE: ALREADY WORKING ON IT.
Close on J.J.J.:
10/ J.J.J.: AND WHERE IN THE WILD WORLD OF !!$K*! IS SPIDER-MAN?! STILL IN CUSTODY? IS S.H.I.E.L.D. GONNA STOP THESE FREAKS? OR ARE THEY JUST GONNA BRING THIS CITY TO ITS KNEES?
Large panel (1)
We’re in a vast room. The only brightly lit area reveals a TV camera and a podium in front of a wall with the Thunderbolts logo…
Our evil friend, the mysterious Silhouette, is sitting at a small table with a laptop. The PR Guy and Shape-Shifter are present….
1/ TAN CAPTION: FATE. SHE CAN BE A CRUEL AND HARSH LOVER.
2/ TAN CAPTION: BUT SHE RESPECTS STRENGTH. SHE BOWS TO POWER. AND SHE KNEELS TO DOMINANCE.
3/ TAN CAPTION: MY FATHER TAUGHT ME THAT.
4/ SILHOUETTE: GENTLEMAN, I AM ABOUT READY TO CONNECT…ARE YOU SET?
The Lawyer/Shape-Shifter changes his form – from Average Joe-Lawyer to Norman Osborn.
5/ SHAPE-SHIFTER: READY, SIR.
6/ SILHOUETTE: UNDERSTAND…NORMAN WILL ATTEMPT TO TRACK THE SIGNAL. AS CLEVER AS THIS TEAM OF MINE IS…HE HAS MORE RESOURCES THAN WE DO. WE ENGAGE, RECORD YOUR CONFERENCE, UPLOAD TO ALL LOCAL NEWS ORGANIZATIONS…
7/ SILHOUETTE: …THEN WE’RE OUT!
Est. Thunderbolts Mountain.
1/ CAPTION: THUNDERBOLTS MOUNTAIN – HOME TO THE HEROIC TEAM OF SUPER-VILLAINS WORKING FOR S.H.I.E.L.D.…AND TO NORMAN OSBORN, FORMER GREEN GOBLIN AND TEAM LEADER….
2/ NORMAN OSBORN (o.p.): I AM NOT CONCERNED WITH YOUR PROBLEMS! I WANT THE SOLUTIONS, GARGAN!!
We’re inside the mountain now, in Osborn’s office. He’s talking on a headset, looking out a window, railing at Venom/Gargan on the other end.
3/ NORMAN OSBORN: FINE. ‘VENOM’! AND, NO, YOU’RE DONE! I’M PULLING YOU OUT! THE THUNDERBOLTS VERSUS SPIDER-MAN – THAT SHOULD HAVE BEEN EASY!
4/ NORMAN OSBORN: THE OTHERS GET THEIR BUTTS HANDED TO THEM, AND YOU BARELY ESCAPE WITH YOUR SKINS! NOW I’VE GOT TO ANSWER TO STARK BEFORE WE MAKE EVEN ONE MORE M—
SFX: DEET-DEET! DEET-DEET!
SFX: DEET-DEET! DEET-DEET! DEET-DEET!
5/ NORMAN OSBORN: VENOM, THE OTHERS ARE ALL EN ROUTE?…HM. THEN WHO’D BE CONTACTING ME ON THE SECURE FREQUENCY?
6/ NORMAN OSBORN: GOTTA GO. OSBORN OUT.
Angle on Norman bending toward his laptop computer, which sits on his desk.On the screen we see a window with a button reading: INCOMING CALL – VISUAL
Normy’s got an apparatus on his finger – an infrared light points at the screen. He clicks the button via the light.
Angle on computer: a new window has opened. A message reads:
DECRYPTION IN PROGRESS
BUFFERING IN PROGRESS
ATTAINING VISUAL CONTACT. . .
Angle on terribly stunned and shocked Norman Osborn…
1/ TAN CAPTION: YES, THE ONLY WAY TO CONTROL FATE, IS TO MAKE THAT WITCH YOURS!…
2/ NORMAN OSBORN: WH- WHAT IS–?!
3/ SILHOUETTE (O.P./ELECTRIC FROM COMPUTER): QUITE A SHOCK THIS MUST BE….
Norm’s looking at the computer – more like he’s examining it, to see if the image is real…
4/ NORMAN OSBORN: WHAT KIND OF SICK JOKE–?!
5/ SILHOUETTE (O.P./ELECTRIC FROM COMPUTER): NO JOKE…JUST WANTED TO CHECK IN, SEE HOW THINGS WERE GOING…
Much Larger panel here (3/4-page splash?). Nice shot of the computer – on it is the face (and that wacky wavy hair) of smilin’ HARRY OSBORN!
Maybe the shadows from the darkness around him, give him a Green Goblin shape to his head…He is grinning quite happily.
6/ HARRY: …DAD!
7/ HARRY 2 (SFX): HEHEHEHEHEHEH!
A furious Norman Osborn has swept his fist at something on his desk (lamp, phone, Goblin Bobblehead, whatever…), sending it across the room!
1/ NORMAN: WHOEVER YOU ARE, YOU DON’T KNOW WHAT YOU’RE GETTING YOURSELF INTO, WHO YOU’RE DEALING WITH, OR WHAT KIND OF AWFUL AGONIZING DEATH YOU’VE JUST WISHED UPON YOURSELF!…
He’s pointing at the computer – the infrared beam from his finger-mouse doohickey should be visible…
2/ HARRY: WHATCHA GONNA DO, POP? TOSS ME OFF A BRIDGE?
3/ NORMAN: LISTEN, YOU WRETCHED PILE OF FILTH…I’VE THE KIND OF POWER AND RESOURCES OUR PRESIDENT AND HIS CRONIES DREAM OF HAVING! THIS IS NOT A GAME YOU WANT TO BE PLAYING!
(3 [AND 4?])
Inset: The infrared beam has directed the cursor, and a window’s popped-up which reads:
TRACE INITIATED. . .
4/ HARRY: OH, NORMAN…DEAR FATHER…I PROMISE YOU, THIS IS A GAME I WANT TO BE PLAYING. MATTER OF FACT, YOU’RE ABOUT TO GET CHECKED. I SHOULD BE CAREFUL – I KNOW IT’S NOT YET MATE.
Angle on Harry now…Norman on his computer…
Teeth grit, sweat pouring off his brow…Norman’s biting back the anger to try and hear Harry out…
5/ NORMAN: MEANING WHAT?
6/ HARRY: MEANING THAT HERE YOU ARE TALKING TO YOUR LONG-DEAD SON, ON A SECURE LINE THAT WILL READ NO INCOMING CALLS…
The TRACE window results:
TRACE SCAN: INCONCLUSIVE.
. . .INTIATING ADDITIONAL SECURITY PROTOCOLS. . .
Angle on Harry in the large, dark room. In the BG is the Shape-Shifter posing as Norman, standing at the podium.
LETTERER: A small word balloon should be coming from phony Norman in this shot, the words illegible (b/c he’s far away).
1/ HARRY:…YOUR TEAM IS ELSEWHERE…YOU’RE ALONE IN THE HQ…WHICH IS WHY EVERYONE IS GOING TO BE SO, SO STUNNED…WHEN THEY TURN ON THE NEWS. AND, GRACIOUS, WHAT WILL YOU TELL THEM? WHAT’S YOUR ALIBI? WHAT’S YOUR EXCUSE?
2/ NORMAN: WHAT ARE YOU–?! EXCUSE?…ALIBI FOR WHAT?!
3/ HARRY(electric, from computer): GUESS YOU’LL HAVE TO WATCH IT WITH THE REST OF AMERICA. AND, OH, THEY WILL CERTAINLY BE WATCHING! I SHOULD GO NOW, DAD. SO MUCH TIME TO MAKE UP F–
4/ NORMAN: HARRY. HARRY…WAIT! IS– IS THAT REALLY YOU? TH- THIS ISN’T POSSIBLE! YOU WERE BURIED…KILLED BY THE FORMULA!
Harry’s leaned into the camera, close…
5/ HARRY: OH, FATHER, THE GOBLIN FORMULA DOESN’T LIKE TO STAY DEAD AND BURIED…YOU, ABOVE ANYONE, KNOW THAT!
Harry’s gone from the screen.
6/ NORMAN: HARRY?…HARRY!
Norman’s wide-eyed, still sweating…
1/ NORMAN (small): HARRY…
A faded image outside the window of the Green Goblin on his glider appears…
Nothing behind him but a window and a beautiful mountainous view.
2/ NORMAN (small): OH GOD NO.
artist: Lay-out as you see fit…
Various shots of S.H.I.E.L.D. troops: stomping around outside of precinct, marching into precinct, aiming weapons around corners…
(Can Detectives 1 and 2 from earlier be in the BG of one of the above?)
1/ S.H.I.E.L.D. TROOP A (electric): FIRST PRECINCT SECURED. SEARCHING PERIMETER NOW, DIRECTOR HILL.
Larger panel: revealing the S.H.I.E.L.D. helicarrier above lower Manhattan (Financial District as mentioned earlier). S.H.I.E.L.D. troops flying down and around the precinct. Search lights are aimed at various nooks and crannies nearby.
2/ DIRECTOR HILL (ELECTRIC): ACKNOWLEDGED, SERGEANT. ADDITIONAL SUPPORT DEPLOYED – I WANT TO MAKE AN EXAMPLE OF THIS PROWLER. NOBODY ESCAPES, NOBODY HELPS A FUGITIVE OF S.H.I.E.L.D.
On an adjacent building, visible in the previous panel, on the underside of a ledge, The Prowler hangs, claws and the tool (seen earlier) from each boot, holding him tightly to his spot.
3/ PROWLER (thought): Okay. they’re stronger, got more weapons, more men, and more training…but what can Prowler do that they can’t?
A phalanx of S.H.I.E.L.D. troops flies by several stories above him…
4/ PROWLER (thought): …
Using a laser from his wrist gauntlet, Prowler slices a hole in a window…and swings in…
Full horizontal panel:
bird’s Eye View: the entrance/sidewalk of the building Prowler was hanging from… S.H.I.E.L.D. agents everywhere…
Still bird’s eye view, but tighter shot:
A black man is seen exiting the building…
At street level:
Toby, looking like anyone else on the street, is walking past the S.H.I.E.L.D. troops, who take no notice of him. A little ahead of him, off the sidewalk, is an alleyway…
1/ PROWLER: LOOKS LIKE THE PROWLER CAN DO ONE THING…AND THAT’S TURN INVISIBLE. AND I THINK THIS TIME IT’S FOR THE BEST. IT’S NOT EVEN A HARD DECISION…
Large panel w/inset:
2/ PROWLER: THE WAY THINGS ARE THESE DAYS – S.H.I.E.L.D., THE REGISTRATION ACT — I MAY BE ABLE TO DO MORE GOOD…
Inset (at upper right): Over-the-shoulder shot of Toby looking down alleyway…
He’s walking away from the alley in plain clothes, head down. S.H.I.E.L.D. troops moving past him. A la the famous Spider-Man 50 Splash page of “Spider-Man No More!,” we see the Prowler outfit hanging out of a trash can as he continues away!
3/ PROWLER: …IF THE PROWLER IS NO MORE!