Ultimate Spider-Man #42

Issue Date: 
September 2003
Story Title: 

Brian Michael Bendis (writer), Mark Bagley (pencils), Art Thibert (inks), Transparency Digital (colors), Chris Eliopoulos (letters), Ralph Macchio (editor), Joe Quesada (editor-in-chief)

Brief Description: 

Spider-Man confronts Geldoff. He tries to talk some sense in the guy, but fails. The cops arrive, so Spidey wants to leave Geldoff to them. Geldoff panics and “lifts” with Spidey when he web-slings away. They land on a roof, where they talk about Geldoff’s whereabouts and how he got his powers. Later, a store gets robbed. Spidey goes over there to handle it and orders Geldoff to stay behind. The fight goes well, but Geldoff interferes with his powers and makes things worse. Luckily, nobody gets badly injured. Spidey goes back to Geldoff and they have some hard words. Geldoff won’t let himself treated this way and wants to fight Spider-Man. Luckily, he doesn’t get the chance for it, as Marvel Girl, Shadowcat and Storm show up, and they would like to have some words with them both!

Full Summary: 

Wearing a half-made Spider-Man costume, Peter hangs on a wall and watches some cop cars driving to a crime scene. He decides to follow them and lands in front of a school. There, he sees a group of youngsters cheering for Geldoff, who has just destroyed a car with his powers. Spidey lands and tries to talk some sense into both Geldoff and the kids, but seeing his half-made costume, they don’t believe Spidey is the real deal. Spidey puts some webs on Geldoff’s hands to make everyone understand he is real. Geldoff frees himself using his powers and wants to fight. The cops come, so Spidey wants to leave Geldoff to them.

Geldoff panics and refuses to stay, and grabs Spidey’s costume just as he web-slings away! Once Spidey realizes this, they are already too high in the sky to stop. Spidey moves too fast and Geldoff drops down, but Spidey manages to safe the guy with his webs and they land on a roof. Spidey is rather upset and demands to know why Geldoff was doing all those things. He explains that his principal suspended half the football team because of what happened on a party. Spidey’s confused. Geldoff explains that he was just blowing up some parked cars at the party for fun, and the principal got a name list and suspended half of the team. Geldoff threatened the guy that, if he didn’t get them back, he would protest against the principal. But Geldoff admits that he got carried away.

Spidey can’t understand that Geldoff has this amazing powers, and the only thing he can think of doing is to show off at parties. He really does miss Doc Ock! Geldoff decides to demonstrate his powers to Spidey. He focuses on a nearby barrel, thinks for a while and fires a big electrical like bolt at it and destroys the barrel! Spidey thinks that Geldoff’s a mutant, who gets angry hearing the remark. Spidey apologizes and, hearing Geldoff’s accent, wants to know where the guy came from.

Geldoff reveals that he’s an orphan and originates from Latveria. Spidey can’t believe it. Geldoff continues and says that he was adopted by an American family about two years ago and came to school there. At first, his parents didn’t know about the powers, but now they do and are rather mad about it. They too think that he’s a mutant. Geldoff told them he isn’t, but they didn’t believe him and are scared. Spidey really suspects that Geldoff is a mutant, since he doesn’t know how he got his powers. Geldoff rather believes that he’s what they call a magic man.

Geldoff wants to know about Spider-Man, and how he got his powers and why he wears the rather stupid costume. But Spidey doesn’t want to talk about it. Geldoff thinks about getting a costume too. Spidey tells him that, if he does, he’ll have to use his powers more responsibly. Geldoff realizes he went a little too far today. Spidey tells Geldoff a great saying someone told him: “with great powers comes great responsibility.” Geldoff’s intrigued. Spidey explains that it means that when you’ve got a great power, you have to use it wisely and help people without getting something out of it for yourself.

Suddenly below them, gunfire and other noises are heard. Spidey goes to check it out and orders Geldoff to stay on the roof. He goes into the robbed store, which is robbed by criminals wearing masks of famous superheroes. Spidey opens the fight, and the thugs open fire. Just then, Geldoff interferes and uses his powers at maximum strength, and destroys the entire store and one of the shoppers! Spidey checks her pulse, and luckily the woman’s still alive.

Spidey jumps back to the roof and slaps Geldoff in the face for reacting so immature. Geldoff says he won’t handle such behavior on his person, and wants to use try his powers on Spider-Man now. He panics a bit.

Luckily, three cute women arrive next to them. Those women are Marvel Girl, Shadowcat and Storm from the X-Men! (As seen on TV.) And they would like to have some words with the both of them.

Characters Involved: 

Spider-Man/Peter Parker


Marvel Girl, Shadowcat, Storm (all X-Men)

various cops, students and gangsters wearing masks of Captain America, Iron Man and another hero (all unnamed)

Story Notes: 

Geldoff is a new character in the Ultimate Universe, and doesn’t have a counterpart in the main Marvel Universe. His first appearance was in Ultimate Spider-Man #41.

Peter lost his Spider-Man costume during his fight against Venom [Ultimate Spider-Man #33-39]. Mary Jane was busy sawing a new one for him, but never finished it after they broke up. She handed him the half-one he wears now last issue. Peter and MJ broke up when she thought he had feelings for Gwen Stacy in Ultimate Spider-Man #32, but they eventually kissed and made up in Ultimate Spider-Man #41.

Latveria is a European country, which is mostly known because Dr. Doom hails from it. Dr. Doom, in the Ultimate Universe known as Victor Van Damme, has now appeared in the pages of Ultimate Fantastic Four.

The third masked thug wears a costumed of a hero with a black mask on. It looks very much like DC’s Batman, though it also could be the Black Panther (he hasn’t been introduced in the Ultimate Universe at the point the issue came out).

This is the first time we see Shadowcat in costume. In her earlier appearances, she just wore street clothes.

The reason why the kids don’t believe Spider-Man is real when he confronts them is because of the Spider-Man imitator from a while back, who robbed banks and stores, and caused Gwen Stacy’s father to die. [Ultimate Spider-Man #28-32]

Issue Information: 
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