Cover Price: $2.95

#90
July 1992

Value: $3.50 (Near Mint-Mint)

 

Supporting Cast:
Mary Jane Watson, Max Shiffman (Agent)



Guests:



Villains
:
Mysterio

"The Spider's Thread" - 39 Pages


Writer
- Howard Mackie
Artist - Alex Saviuk
Inker - Sam DeLarosa
Cover -
Hologram based on John Romita drawing
Letterer
- Chris Eliopoulos
Colorist -
Bob Sharen
Editor - Danny Fingeroth
Assistant Editor -
Eric Fein
Editor In Chief -
Tom DeFalco

What ever happened to Maxie Shiffman, Spider-Man's agent from Amazing Fantasy #15 and Amazing Spider-Man #1? It has been so long since those two appearances that you would think that some writer would have jumped a the chance to bring him back in one capacity or another. Well, here it is, a story by Howard Mackie, well worth picking up that also features one of Spider-Man's greatest villains and also has a very touching ending.

The story begins with a prelude that has an older Shiffman in his office talking to a statue of Spider-Man. "We go back a long way, buddy!" exclaims Maxie as he begins to reminisce about his long ago affiliation with the then new hero in town, Spider-Man. The reminiscing goes on for two pages before Shiffman's secretary announces that his wife is here and they both leave in a strange mist. The couple seems very much in love and inseparable as we end the little prelude.

Next, South Bronx, New York, where we see Spider-Man swinging by with his spider-sense going berserk. The sight of just about every hero in the city befallen at the hands of Galactus is shocking to say the least, but it's just the beginning of a crazy day for Spider-Man. Spider-Man battles Galactus next which he obviously comes up very short to the devourer of planets as he begins to dream. The early days of his career are mostly in his dream which also includes the many villains he has faced, but the face of someone familiar begins to become more and more clearer to him. Maxie Shiffman has rescued Spider-Man! Along with his wife, Shiffman makes Spider-Man very comfortable as he explains to Spider-Man that everything is all right and that the problem that the check that Spider-Man could not cash way way back is no longer a problem as Maxie set up Spider-Man as a corporation. Spider-Man seems very confused and rightfully so as he later learns that Galactus and the heroes were movie props and actors.

Things get more confusing as the Goblin League come crashing through after Spider-Man. Green Goblin, Hobgoblin, and Demogoblin have teamed up and have their sights set on Spider-Man. Spider-Man knows that something is very wrong and now wants some answers after battling the Goblins. Maxie Shiffman seems to be the only thing that is real to Spider-Man and an explosion separates the two old friends. The mist throughout the issue is getting stronger and stronger becoming even more visible and another of Spider-Man's great villains makes his way from it, Venom! After battling Venom, the symbiote bonds to the Galactus prop and becomes bonded with it. After Venom-Galactus picks up Mary Jane out of thin air and begins to put her in his mouth, Spider-Man realizes that he has had enough. He grabs Shiffman once again and this time he wants real answers. Real answers is what he gets as Mysterio makes his dramatic entrance. Mysterio begins to make Spider-Man question what is real and what is not real in his life trying to confuse him greatly. More illusions take place with Mysterio transforming into Venom, but like always, the illusions do not work. Exclaiming "My life is real!", Spider-Man smacks Mysterio around for a page then leaves him to picked up by the police as always.

A touching moment occurs when Maxie Shiffman tries to hold on to his fading wife Trudy, but it's no use. Mysterio gave her back to him in the form of an illusion if he would help him. Trudy died of Cancer a year before and even as an illusion, the pain in losing his wife once again is unbearable to Maxie Shiffman.

This was a surprisingly very good issue as a very old character is brought back and the story had lots of action and a tearful ending. Maxie Shiffman would later make an appearance in Amazing Fantasy #16-18 in a story set after Spider-Man's debut. Mysterio seemed to have gone out of his way in trying to make Spider-Man's life more confusing to him and it was one of his better modern appearances. A 3-page gatefold poster of Spider-Man and Spider-Man 2099 is included in the issue as well as having a holographic centered cover that celebrates Spider-Man's 30th anniversary. For the couple bucks that it takes to pick this issue up, it's well worth it.

Gold Variant

 

Quality Rating: 3
Significance Rating: 3

Overall Rating:

6

 

Web Of Spider-Man #89

Also This Month:

Amazing Spider-Man #364
Spectacular Spider-Man #190

Spider-Man
#24

Daredevil #306
Infinity War
#2

Avengers West Coast
#84

Web Of Spider-Man #91