Every day in April we will reveal the greatest stories ever told starring a particular character or written/drawn by a particular creator (and throughout the month, you’ll get daily chances to vote for NEXT week’s lists). These lists are voted on by YOU, the reader!
Here is the list of characters/creators featured so far (along with the rules on how to vote).
Today’s list is the Greatest Tom DeFalco Stories Ever Told!
10. “The Challenge of Hobgoblin!” Amazing Spider-Man #259-261
After finishing Roger Stern’s last Hobgoblin arc when he took over Amazing Spider-Man, this three-parter gave DeFalco the chance to first put his own spin on the villain. DeFalco teamed the Hobgoblin with the mysterious Rose and brought Harry Osborn into it, with Harry’s Goblin legacy bringing problems upon his wife and their unborn son. Meanwhile, Peter is still reeling from the revelation that Mary Jane Watson knows that he Spider-Man and has known for quite some time! Ron Frenz drew these issues with a couple of different inkers.
9. “Legacy” Spider-Girl #0-5
This is the introduction to the world of May Parker. It includes the reprinted What If…? #105 now as Spider-Girl #0. DeFalco and artists Pat Olliffe and Al Williamson (as well as the initial artists for the title, Ron Frenz and Bill Sienkiewicz)
8. “The Storm and the Sacrifice!” Thunderstrike #22-24
The story of Eric Masterson comes to a close in this dramatic story arc that answers all the unresolved questions in Thunderstrike’s world (most notably “Who is BlackAxe?”). Eric Masterson always stood out in his ability to be heroic when he was just a mortal in a world of gods and this final story shows him holding his own with the most worthy warriors Thor has ever known. The art is by Ron Frenz and Al Milgrom.
7. “Visiting Hours!” Marvel Two-in-One #96
The Thing has saved the planet but not without being beaten so badly that he cannot leave his hospital bed. The news that the hero is all alone in a hospital without the ability to move brings out all of Thing’s worst enemies. The heroes of the Marvel Universe, though, are determined that the Thing gets his due rest. One villain, though, manages to sneak in. What will he do to the Thing?! Art by Ron Wilson and Mike Esposito.
6. “The Kaine Saga” Spider-Girl #14-17
May Parker’s life as Spider-Girl, while dangerous, always seemed like she was in command of the situation, especially with her father giving her training (a condition of her being allowed to continue to be Spider-Girl). However, when she encounters the man named Kaine, all bets are off. Kaine handles her so easily that it throws her confidence off for the next few issues before Kaine returns, only this time her father must come out of retirement to deal with him. By the end of the issue, though, May essentially silences anyone’s doubts about her capabilities (including her own). Pat Olliffe and Al Williamson provide the art.
The top five is on the next page!
5. “The Hero and the Holocaust!” Amazing Spider-Man #269-270
In this sort of ode to “Nothing Stops the Juggernaut!” Spider-Man takes on an out of control Firelord. How can Spider-Man defeat a former herald of Galactus?! Well, read this story and be amazed! Ron Frenz and a couple of inkers drew the dynamic battle!
4. “Whatever Happened to Crusher Hogan?” Amazing Spider-Man #271
Crusher Hogan was the wrestler that Spider-Man defeated way back in Spidey’s first appearance. Now it is years later and Hogan is making himself seem more important in his job as a maintenance man at a boxing gym by telling stories of his past with Spider-Man. But how shocked will his friends be when Spidey actually backs up his claims! This touching tale was drawn by Ron Frenz and Joe Rubinstein.
3. “Time Runs Like Sand” Marvel Two-in-One #86
The Thing runs into the Sandman at a bar and the two find themselves conversing with each other rather than battling each other. The Sandman tells the Thing his background and origin and the Thing is struck by how similar the two men’s background is. In the end, the Thing sees his former foe in a new light while the Sandman is inspired to turn his life around. Ron Wilson and Chic Stone drew the issue.
2. “And They Shall Call Him…Champion!” Marvel Two-in-One Annual #7
One of the Elders of the Universe, the Champion, comes to Earth and challenges the strongest mortals on Earth to a boxing match. If they can defeat him, he won’t destroy the Earth. If they lose…well, things don’t look so good for the ol’ Earth. One by one the various possible contenders are eliminated (either through battle or through technicalities) until the fate of the world rests on the rather broad shoulders of the Thing and his boxing gloves. A heroic and inspirational story of never giving up, this one is a true classic. Art by Ron Wilson and a host of inkers.
1. “The Saga of the Alien Costume” Amazing Spider-Man #252-258
Tom DeFalco and Ron Frenz cemented their stint on Amazing Spider-MAn by introducing Spider-Man’s brand-new costume (Which was a really big deal at the time) and then slowly revealing that it is an alien! Eventually, Spider-Man is forced to fight his own costume! But before we get to that point, Spidey and the costume go on a number of fascinating missions, including a fight against a brand-new anti-hero, the Puma! Plus, the introduction of the mysterious new villain known as the Rose! Plus, Mary Jane Watson makes a major revelation. This is an excellent collection of Spider-Man stories, following an over-arching sub plot of Peter dealing with his new duds. Rick Leonardi drew two issues during this run. Frenz was mostly inked by Joe Rubinstein.
That’s the list! Agree? Disagree? Let us know!