The epic 2014 comic book crossover event Spider-Verse introduced all the various incarnations of Spider-Man across the Marvel Multiverse as the web-slingers were hunted by the ravenous Morlun and his family of totem hunters. While the vast majority of the wall-crawlers from the multitude of realities were heroic like the Peter Parker on the main Marvel Universe, a few Spider-People weren't too nice.
Patton Parnel from Earth-51412 had the misfortune of turning into the Spider-Verse's scariest Spider-Man, who was a full-on monstrous villain. Now, we're taking a look back at this monstrous arachnid's tragic origins, incredible abilities and the dark final fate of Patton.
WHO IS PATTON PARNEL?
Created by Clay McLeod Chapman and Elia Bonetti in Edge of Spider-Verse #4, the tie-in miniseries that also saw the debuts of Spider-Gwen and Peni Parker, Patton grew up abused by his Uncle Ted. The tragic upbringing resulted in Patton developing psychotic traits, from running gruesome experiments on small animals to creepily spying on his next door neighbor Sara Jane. Unaware of Patton's secrets, Sara recruited him to help her expose illegal experiments on animals by Alcorp Industries where Patton was bitten by a mysterious red spider in one of the containment areas.
After being apprehended by security, Patton was taken home where he was savagely beaten by his uncle once again. The following morning, Patton awoke insatiably hungry and ate a live mouse, triggering his newfound arachnid nature as a result of the spider bite from the previous day. Growing hungrier, Patton ate a neighborhood cat and attacked his uncle before stalking a high school classmate and young boy searching for his missing dog.
HOW STRONG IS PATTON PARNEL'S SPIDER-MAN?
When fully transformed, Patton appears closer to Man-Spider, a super-powered figure that is more arachnid than human. In this form, Patton possesses the usual proportional strength and speed of a spider as well as the ability to climb walls and shoot organic webs from his wrists.
In his transformed state, Patton possesses eight compound eyes, four arms, four legs and pronounced mandibles that carry their own potent venom. The shocking ending of the issue reveals that Patton's bite can infect its victims with hundreds of tiny spiders, emerging less than 24 hours after the bite is delivered. Whether this spawn can similarly grow into a humanoid-sized figure like Patton is currently unknown.
WHAT HAPPENED TO PATTON PARNEL?
Shortly after Patton's monstrous transformation, Sara approaches his house while searching for Gene, the high school bully who ostracized Patton for years before he went missing. Upon entering Patton's home, he delivered his bite causing her to reflexively slap him, triggering Patton's full, physical transformation into Man-Spider before she discovered that Patton's uncle and the missing boy had both been consumed as used as hosts for hundreds of Patton's spider spawn.
Cornered, Sara is saved at the last minute by the timely arrival of Morlun who had tracked Patton down based on his new genetic makeup and connection to the spider totem. As Sara fled the scene, Morlun noted that while Patton was still a freshly transformed spider totem, he would still serve as a decent snack and effortlessly ripped off a mandible and arm before completely draining Patton of his life force; leaving the universe to resume his own insatiable hunt for other spider totems.
Despite the demise of Patton Parnel, however, Sara Jane would not have a happy ending as the spiders implanted within her by the monster emerged the following morning from the spider bite left in her neck in this dark tale's unhappy ending.