> Amazing Spider-Man Masterworks Volume 7

From the Mouths of the Marvels:

"And you never told me - - anything about my parents - - except that they died - - when I was a baby! Now I know - - the reason why!"

- - Peter Parker, to Aunt May, page 10

Spidey takes on some flunkies, Algerian style!


Amazing Spider-Man Annual #5
November 1968 • 49 pages

Publication Date: August 1968

Letters Page: No letters page published in this issue.

I: Feature Story: "The Parents of Peter Parker!"

Pages: 40

Script: Stan Lee
Layouts: Larry Lieber
Pencils: Larry Lieber
Inks: Mike Esposito (credited as Mickey Demeo)
Letters: Artie Simek

First Appearance: Richard & Mary Parker, Sandor, the Finisher, Ahab

Villain: "The Master"/Red Skull, Sandor, the Finisher, Ahab, Amal

Origin: Richard & Mary Parker

Guest Appearance: Aunt May, Reed Richards

Flashback Appearance: Richard & Mary Parker, Uncle Ben

Death: The Finisher

Cameo Appearance: Gwen Stacy, Harry Osborn, The Thing, Human Torch, Amal

Gadgets & Technology: Two-Man Gyro-Cruiser, Electro-Scanner, Destructor-Beam, Command Chair

Setting: Algeria

Synopsis: Spider-Man wends his way through the back alleys of the Algerian Casbah, obsessed with completing a personal mission that has brought him to this far-away land. But he is assailed by a rough and tumble band of local tough guys, each of them trying to stop him, whether with fists, daggers, clubs, or a watermelon stand! Spidey finally shows off the true extent of his strength, which scares the group away, but not before one guy gets off a lucky shot that grazes Spidey's head, sending him off the roof of a building and into a nearby aqueduct. Thinking he is dead, they leave the scene, but Spider-Man slowly crawls from the water and reflects on what events have drawn him to this time and place....

Remembering a few days previous at Aunt May's apartment, Peter was helping clear out her basement when he uncovered a huge stash of old momentoes and personal belongings. He discovers a newspaper clipping that fills in a lot of gaps in his own personal history: the article talks about how his parents, Richard and Mary Parker, were killed in a plane crash in Algeria, and were implicated as traitors to the United States. Peter is astonished at this news, and when he takes his discovery to his Aunt May, she admits that she and Uncle Ben intentionally kept this information from their nephew.

She tells him that Ben's brother, Richard - a retired military officer - and his wife Mary, left the US for Algeria on official business with his new job. They had no idea that Richard could have been involved in anything treasonous until after his plane went down, and the newspapers proclaimed his guilt. At that time, they decided to raise Peter as their own son, and made a choice to always keep him from the horrible and shameful facts of his parent's duplicitious life.

Peter can't believe it, and is possessed with the idea that he can somehow prove his parents were innocent. Aunt May tells him of a man who identified the bodies in Algeria, but that never helped answer the many questions they wrote to him about. She warns him to forget about it and get on with life, but Peter is haunted and the feeling follows him wherever he goes. On a Spidey patrol, he overreacts at the sight of a man leaving a jewelry store. Thinking he is a thief, he swoops in to stop him, but finds out he's just the rightful owner.

These dark thoughts about his parents don't cease, and Peter decides to take action! Since he doesn't have the money to get to Algeria, he heads to the Baxter Building to seek a favor. Reed Richards agrees to help him, transporting him to Algeria in a Two-Man Gyro-Craft he has been meaning to test. Spider-Man makes his way through the Casbah, searching for the man with whom Aunt May corresponded through letters. He finally tracks him down at a restaurant and shakes him down for information. The man tells him that everybody at that time knew Richard Parker was a spy, and that he took orders from one called "The Master". Spidey gets the address for The Master and heads there right away.

On his way, his Spider-Sense goes off the charts....

After the big fight with the local street gang, Spider-Man crawls out of the water, shakes himself off and gets back on track to find his quarry. He breaks into The Master's compound and rifles through his secret files. He finds in the membership files documents which would seem to prove his father was indeed a spy. But stepping up behind him is The Master himself...none other than the Red Skull! Spider-Man stands in shock, amazed that his father would ever work for such an evil man. The Red Skull sends Sandor, a hulking giant of a man, out to face off against the web-spinner, but Spidey is equal to the task of taking him on. Once Sandor is defeated, the Red Skull runs away, leaving Spider-Man to wander around with only the depressing knowledge about his parents that he came all the way to Algeria to find.

The Red Skull returns after Spidey leaves. Sandor and his thugs are putting the office back in order after the fight. His man, Ahab, finds a shred of Spidey's costume, which the Red Skull knows just what to do with. He calls in one of his top agents, the Finisher, and hands him his next assignment: find Spider-Man and destroy him. The Finisher grabs hold of the piece of fabric and feeds it into his Electro-Scanner, which tracks Spider-Man down quickly and easily. Spidey's danger sense goes off, just as the Finisher is launching rockets from his car. Spidey webs up one rocket and lassoes it into the water, then allows the next one to follow him straight towards his assailant's car. At the last second, Spidey leaps out of the way, but the rocket hits the car.

Spidey pulls the Finisher from the flaming wreckage and demands he tell him all he knows about Richard Parker and the Red Skull. The Finisher realizes he's dying, so he tells Spider-Man everything:

The Finisher was a longtime employee of the Red Skull, and was there when the Skull found out that Richard Parker, who he thought was his own spy, was actually an American double-agent! After finding this out, the Skull ordered Parker's murder in a plane crash, and set him up so that it appeared as if he was a spy in the employ of foreign agents. The news went out that Richard and Mary Parker were traitors, but Spider-Man has just learned that they were actually heroes! And with his last words, the Finisher dies.

Spider-Man realizes now that he can clear their names, and he heads straight to the Skull's compound. The evil Nazi is waiting for him in his Command Chair, firing blasts at him. While evading the blasts, Spidey demands to know why the Red Skull told the world Richard Parker was a traitor; the Skull admits it was because the American betrayed him! When the Skull tries to fire his chest-plated Destructor-Beam, the blast goes errantly behind Spider-Man, starting a fire in the building. Before fleeing the burning building, Spidey finds documentation that proves his father was an American counter-spy, "answerable only to the USA!"

With great joy, he realizes he's undone all those years the Red Skull implicated his parents as traitors to America!

II: Pin-Up: "A Day at the Daily Bugle"

Pages: 1

Description: J. Jonah Jameson rants alongside Ned Leeds, Betty Brant and Robbie Robertson

III: Featurette: "Peter Parker, the Super Sports Star"

Pages: 2

Description: Peter fantasizes about using his super-powers to play baseball, football and shotput.

IV: Pin-Up: "Where It's At!"

Pages: 1

Description: A map of New York highlighting the abode of Peter and Harry, Aunt May, the Daily Bugle, the Coffee Bean, Empire State University, and the home of Aunt May

V: Featurette: "This Is Spidey As We Know Him, But - - "

Pages: 2

Description: Spider-Man as if drawn as Dick Tracy, Mighty Mouse, Archie, or Charlie Brown

VI: Backup Story: "Here We Go-A-Plotting!"

Pages: 3

Script: Stan Lee
Pencils: Marie Severin
Inks: Frank Giacoia
Letters: Artie Simek

Synopsis: Stan Lee, Larry Lieber, and John Romita spend the day plotting the next issue of Spider-Man. Thus madness ensues....

--synopsis by Gormuu

Issues Reprinted
Amazing Spider-Man #62-67, Annual #5, Spectacular Spider-Man Magazine #1-2

Click on cover image to learn more about each issue.


ASM #62

SSM #1

ASM #63

ASM #64

ASM #65

ASM #66

ASM #67

SSM #2

Ann #5


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