Spider-Man Family is a 100 page anthology that include an original story, reprints of Marvel Tails #1, Spider-Woman #20, Spider-Man 2099 #1, and Untold Tales Of Spider-Man #1. With that many reprints of full-length comics I’ve opted to just review them as separate articles and will stick with the exclusive story and a short added to the book. I’ll turn that list into links once the reviews go live.
Marvel Comics (2005)
Spider-Girl: “Old Enemies Never Die!”
WRITERS/PENCILS: Tom DeFalco & ROn Lim
INKER: Norm Rapmund
COLORIST: Rob Ro
LETTERER: Dave Sharpe
EDITOR: Molly Lazer
Petey: The Adventures Of Peter Parker Long Before He Became Spider-Man: “The Devil And Mrs. Parker”
WRITER/ARTIST: Fred Hembeck
(originally published in Untold Tales Of Spider-Man ’97)
The original story actually takes place in the MC2 timeline (aka Earth-982). May Parker, daughter of Peter Parker, inherited her father’s powers and now fights crime as Spider-Girl. However, a new DVD hits the shelves releasing an old obscure Spider-Man parody cartoon called Spider-Ham. Rather than any of the Spider-Hams we know (more on that when I review the Marvel Tails comic) this one is closer to Batman, but with J. Jonah Jackal acting more like Jameson (to JJ’s annoyance) and depicting Araña as his Ant-Girl sidekick. This brought the duo to the video producer, but it turned out to be a trap set by Jack O’Lantern. Wondering if history is repeating itself Spider-Girl investigates the DVD distributor and is attacked by an elderly Jack O’Lantern, which she easily defeats but it turns out (unknown to May) that it’s the missing Araña and her partner Miguel testing the young wall-crawler to possibly join their organization.
What they got right: This was all the Spider-People in the 616 universe at the time, not counting Madame Web and various Spider-Women so congrats on working them all in and with an interesting story. A bit of a stretch for Spider-Ham but the whole Spider-Verse thing was a long ways off at the time, and at least Peter Porker and Jackal were all drawn like their regular selves, unlike more recent versions of Spider-Ham. The Peter Porker name is written off as a coincidence as Jack O’Lantern (Mysterio’s niece seeking revenge) wouldn’t know who Peter Parker is outside of a photog credit.
What they got wrong: Not working in a Spider-Woman? She is represented in one of the reprints so maybe this was for Spider-Folk who weren’t but Spider-Ham gets a reprinted story as well.
The short gag comic also included here has Aunt May woozy from a new medicine as Flash causes Peter to miss his bus. Nearby is a young Matt Murdock (this takes place when the Marvel heroes are kids) who is a bit overly eager to protect Aunt May. It was a cute story up to the ending, which was so bleah that it kind of took the fun out of it. As mentioned, the reprinted Spider-Ham, Spider-Woman, and Spider-Man (regular and 2099) will be reviewed separately.
Recommendation: While I haven’t reviewed the reprinted stories yet the main story is still worth getting the comic and the reprinted tales at least have enough significance to make the price worth it, depending on what this special goes for nowadays. There was also a Spider-Man Family series in I think 2007 and I did get a few issue of that so we’ll see those eventually.