Here‘s the ten goofiest plot points in the first ten issue of the Fantastic Four, now it is Amazing Spider-Man’s turn!
It is remarkable to note, by the way, how few and far between the goofy moments came in Amazing Spider-Man. A LOT less than Fantastic Four. I do not know if that was Steve Ditko’s influence or what. Maybe it was because it came after Fantastic Four, so the kinks were out of the system. In any event, the book really isn’t that goofy. But I still managed to dig up what I find to be the ten goofiest plot points in the first ten issues of Amazing Spider-Man (and, again, we all understand these comics were meant to be read by children and it would never enter anyone’s brain at the time that people would still be reading them forty years later, let along picking apart the goofy elements of the story, so please realize that there is no maliciousness intended in this list).
I should point this out, if only because it would rank pretty high otherwise (and I figure a few of you folks might mention it), but in the first few issues, there are a couple of instances where Spider-Man basically fakes photographs to sell to the Daily Bugle. I suppose you could say that’s goofy, but I think it is a nice touch of realism, demonstrating how Peter Parker is not some perfect character – he’s willing to bend the rules a bit. So I don’t count them as goofy plot points, but I can see how others might disagree, so I figured I’d pay lip service to those staged photos here.
In addition, the aliens in the Tinkerer story in #2. Fairly goofy, but as I mentioned in the Fantastic Four list, aliens invading Earth was just such a standard comic cliche that to term this specific use “goofy” would be, I believe, unfair. And outside of their actual existence, that story wasn’t particularly goofy.
10. Industrial Light and Magic
In a back-up in Amazing Spider-Man #8, Spider-Man goes to bust the Human Torch’s chops. Johnny Storm is busy hanging out with some ladies. One lady decides to do a nice, interpretative dance (all the rage back then at teenage get-togethers). At this point, Johnny pulls out a power I’ve never seen before or since, with good reason!
And the Actor’s Union thing makes even LESS sense, as what would they care?
9. “Of all the gym joints in all the schools in all the world, they walk into mine….”
So, in Amazing Spider-Man #8, Peter Parker knocks Flash Thompson out while boxing, and Flash wakes up in the gym locker room (where Peter carried him to). As he goes to tie his shoelaces, though, he picks the same point in time that some crooks who were trying to steal a robot come flying in, and the result is goofy Stooge-esque history!
8. Interesting Science Experiment
So how did Peter and Flash get INTO the ring?
Well, they share a science class together.
See, this panel even tells us this.
They have some back and forth, leading to their SCIENCE teacher to decide that, OF COURSE, the two of them should box each other!
Pretty goofy stuff!
I never had a science teacher like that!!
7. How Conveeeeeeeeeeeeeeeenient
In Amazing Spider-Man #4, the Sandman is on the run from the coppers, so hides out in the local high school. Meanwhile, Peter Parker is helping out at the school, and comes across the janitor working with the school’s “king-size vacuum cleaner.”
I can hear the groaning already.
Later, surprise, surprise, Peter saves the day by sucking up Sandman into the giant-sized vacuum.
6. Giving Prisoners a Little Too Much Rights
After Spider-Man defeats the Vulture in Amazing Spider-Man #2, what do the police do?
They put him in a cell…WITH HIS COSTUME STILL ON!!!
Luckily, they take it off when he enters the general populace (not that that does any good, as he manages to still escape, but at least they were TRYING later!).
Go to the next page for the top five!
5. The Best Laid Plans Of Lizards and Men Don’t Always Make Sense
Okay, so you may know the story of Dr. Curt Connors. He lost an arm, so he figured if he experimented with lizards, humans could grow back appendages like lizards can!
Well, the serum didn’t work out as he planned, instead turning him from a MAN into a LIZARD creature.
So that’s how it goes when Spider-Man meets The Lizard.
But check out the Lizard’s plans…
How does that make ANY sense? If the serum is used on lizards, won’t it just make them more lizard-y? How would it turn them into Lizards like him? It makes no sense!!
In Amazing Spider-Man #3, Spider-Man gets his behind handed to him by Doctor Octopus, causing him to basically quit being a superhero.
The governor then has to call in the Fantastic Four, but only Johnny is available, and he is out of sorts, because he has “exhausted his flame.”
However, later in the issue, after Spidey took care of Doctor Octopus, we go to Johnny’s hotel room (and why is he IN a hotel? Don’t the FF LIVE in New York? The only reason THAT’S not on the list is because I guess I can see Stan thinking Johnny wouldn’t be allowed to stay in the headquarters all by himself) and learn that he had a VIRUS!!
Seems like Stan figured that the first explanation wasn’t all that good, all things considered.
3. Reach Out and Touch Someone
You all know the Chameleon.
He’s a dirty Commie who uses disguises.
But did you know he apparently is a genius inventor, as well?
Well, check it out, as the Chameleon is apparently smart enough to build a device that can deliver messages only to people with spider-senses!
So goofy, yet so true.
2. I’ve Heard of Being Prepared, But This Is Ridiculous
So Doctor Doom was hanging out, trying to figure out his next move when, in a stroke of luck, he happened to catch Spider-Man on a TV show in Amazing Spider-Man #5.
But what was even MORE lucky was that Doom just HAPPENED to have handy a machine with a giant spider that allowed him to talk to people with spider-senses!!!
Yes, the SECOND time in five issues this exact routine was used!
And it involves Doom talking into a big microphone that zaps into the giant spider!!!
1. Ohhhh….an anti-magnetic inverter! OF COURSE!!!
The goofiest plot point, though, in the first ten issues of Amazing Spider-Man, has to be Peter Parker’s first experience with the high-flying Vulture.
The Vulture is pretty impressive, but Peter thinks he can work up a device that will help. It takes him all night, but he finishes it.
Later, in battle, Peter springs his device – and it WORKS!
Down goes the Vulture! Down goes the Vulture! Down goes the Vulture! I don’t believe what I just saw!
So what is this magical device?
Well, Peter figured the Vulture was using magnets to fly (I swear, Stan Lee seemed to think that magnets and/or transistors could do literally anything), so he invented….sigh… just see for yourself…
Yep, of COURSE, an anti-magnetic inverter!!! It reminds me of when Jack B. Quick came up with the idea of how to save the world – build a Doomsday device, then switch it into reverse!!
Makes as much sense as this!
Luckily, Stan brought the Vulture back in a few issues, and made sure to quickly invalidate the silly anti-magnetic inverter option, forcing Spidey to beat him fair and square.
Anyhow, that’s the top ten! Feel free to quibble, or to offer your choices!