Characters : Kaine
Being mysterious. Able to burn similar degeneration marks into the skin of his victims (the "mark of Kaine"). His more powerful Spider-Sense allows him to see glimpses of the future
Wracked by angst
Increased powers of Spider-Man
"Sting of Kaine" claws similar to those of Wolverine (but significantly smaller)
Known by the Jackal, Spider-Man (Peter Parker) and Spider-Man (Ben Reilly)
the Jackal, Spider-Man (Peter Parker), Spider-Man (Ben Reilly)
Mary Jane Watson-Parker, the Jackal, Spider-Man (Ben Reilly)
Spider-Man (Ben Reilly), Jackal, Spidercide, Green Goblin (Norman), Doctor Octopus (Octavius), Grim Hunter, the Scriers.
Jackal's secret lab
"The Exile Returns"
Kaine first appeared at a mafia meeting, where goons were trying to convince him to take a job to kill a rival mobster. They knew that he was a specialist when it came to murder and the target was well protected. Kaine wasnt interested, and he spent the meeting reading the Daily Bugle story on Spider-Man and the Scarlet Spider. When the goons got angry at him for showing them such disrespect, they pulled their guns on him. He killed them nonchalantly, then left. (Web of Spider-Man #119)
He was soon observing a battle between the Scarlet Spider and Venom, not surprised that the spider was holding his own against the alien creature. "He always was the lucky one," he mused. "Even when he should have died, he found life. Now he has returned, taken on another costume, and now I've taken a costume as well." He left after Venom was beaten. (Spider-Man #53)
"Web of Life"
He waited outside of the Forest Hills hospital where May Parker lay in a coma, brooding over the visions he had been having. He knew that in the not distant future, Mary Jane would be murdered by an unknown assailant. This was unbearable to him, and he swore he would act to prevent it. (Web of Spider-Man #120)
Walking alone one night to be with his thoughts, Kaine was attacked by a group of thugs. He killed them quickly and continued his walk, brooding about the pain in his life. (Spider-Man #54)
He came across some punks harassing a homeless woman in a park and quickly killed them after they tried to steal a framed picture of the woman's daughter. She thanked him for helping her, and then he stepped on the glass picture, breaking it. He was soon watching the Scarlet Spider as he watched Peter Parker. Kaine confronted him, calling him "Reilly." The Scarlet Spider recognized the costumed man and immediately went into a defensive fight. Kaine soon had him unconscious, after knocking him on the head with a slab of concrete. He was soon on the rooftop of Peter's apartment, confronting the Grim Hunter. (Web of Spider-Man #121)
As the two fought, Kaine pondered if the Hunter was the one he was looking for. He was dangerous and wanted to kill Spider-Man, which was all the reason he needed to kill him. The Grim Hunter escaped to resume his hunt against Spider-Man and Kaine eventually followed him. He had been having visions of Mary Jane's death and he feared that the Hunter would be her killer. He followed the Hunter to Central Park and the fight briefly resumed, until it was interrupted by the Scarlet Spider. The Spider and Kaine fell through the ice covering a pond and the Scarlet Spider left, thinking Kaine had escaped. He only doubled back to resume hunting the Hunter. Soon the Grim Hunter was dead, his neck broken. (Spider-Man #55)
"Web of Death"
After Spider-Man was infected by a virus from the Vulture, he was stumbling around New York in a daze. Kaine kept an eye on him, but kept his distance. He observed as Spider-Man was examined and then left on a wet rooftop by Doctor Octopus. Ock and Stunner soon returned for Spider-Man and took the unconscious wall crawler to their lab. (Amazing Spider-Man #397)
Kaine observed Stunner and Ock in their lab as they studied the illness that was afflicting Spider-Man. He regretted that someone as attractive as Stunner would associate with Octavius, but he knew that suffering and death were inevitable in his plan. He was soon stalking Mary Jane, also admiring her beauty and regretting her associations. He was aware that she was pregnant, and hoped that she would survive the coming ordeal. (Spectacular Spider-Man #220)
As Stunner was out for a workout in Central Park, Kaine shouted a warning to her from the cover of darkness to stay away from Doctor Octopus. He had warned her. The choice was now hers. (Amazing Spider-Man #398)
As Doctor Octopus was taken away by the police, Stunner was waiting in the shadows to break him out of the police transport. She was surprised by a gas grenade, thrown by Kaine. He was impressed by her fight against the gas and glad that she was knocked out anyway. Actively harming her would have been a pity. He then attacked the transport to get to Octavius and in the following battle, Kaine snapped Doctor Octopus's neck. (Spectacular Spider-Man #221)
"Smoke and Mirrors"
Soon both Peter and the Scarlet Spider were having visions of the Jackal, Professor Miles Warren. They felt compelled to go to Upstate New York, and Kaine was waiting for them. Scarlet Spider found the metal door in the side of a mountain, and a Jackal-like creature (calling himself "Jack") taunted him about secrets being revealed behind the door. (Web of Spider-Man #122)
Scarlet Spider had been defeated by the door's guardian and left unconscious in the snow, where Kaine found him. A hooded figure named Scrier appeared suddenly, amused that Kaine was still following the Scarlet Spider after so many years. He disappeared just as suddenly, leaving Kaine spooked and fearing for his safety. Spider-Man soon arrived and Kaine disappeared into the shadows. Later, he was inside the Jackal's hidden laboratory in the mountain, listening from the shadows as the Jackal explained his whereabouts for the past five years. (Amazing Spider-Man #399)
Kaine watched as Jackal toyed with Scarlet's and Spidey's minds, switching his story about which one was a clone, or if both of them were clones. After the Spider-Men escaped the lab, Kaine watched them and was watched by Scrier. (Spider-Man #56)
"Players and Pawns"
Hobgoblin (Jason Macendale) formed a new rotation of the Sinister Seven (Vulture, Shocker, Scorpia, Beetle, Mysterio and Electro) to kill Kaine. They reasoned that since Kaine was killing Spider-Man's enemies, they may be targets as well. It was not a good grouping (Vulture bickered with Macendale) and the alliance generally had poor team skills. They were saved from Kaine by the Scarlet Spider.
When Peter Parker was on trial for the murders Kaine committed (Kaine's finger prints were found on the body of a Salt Lake City police woman) Ben Reilly took his place and waited in jail for Peter to clear him of charges. Peter hunted down Kaine, who refused to cooperate, until Peter threatened to expose his secret identity to save Ben. Frustrated, Kaine turned himself in and confessed.
He didn't stay in jail for long, as he was released by Judas Traveller, who wanted to study the concepts of good and evil. Traveller assembled a trial to determine if Spider-Man was responsible for the creation of so many super criminals. After studying them, Traveller found that they all shared an obsession with the web slinger. If Spider-Man's existence made these criminals so obsessive, perhaps his death would end their reigns of terror. Traveller acted as the judge, Carnage as the prosecution, Kaine as the defense and John Jameson and Ashley Kafka assisting Kaine. Shriek, Chameleon, Malcolm McBride and Edward Whelan were in the jury. The jury quickly voted Spider-Man guilty and was about to carry out the execution when Kaine saved him. Traveller, seeing that Kaine was willing to die to save Peter, spared them and returned the criminals to their cells.
Of course, Kaine couldn't be held for much time, and he escaped to go after Ben again. By then, it had already been "revealed" to Ben and Peter that Ben was real and Peter was the clone. Ben, Peter and Kaine had to team up to deal with the greater menace of Jackal and Spidercide in Maximum Clonage. Kaine ended up killed by Spidercide, who died along with the Jackal after falling from a building.
Kaine didn't really die, though; he survived in one of Jackal's regeneration pods. He was brought back during the Great Game, and got unwillingly involved in it. He then escaped to prepare his final attack on the new Spider-Man, Ben Reilly.
In Spider-Man: Redemption, Elizabeth Tyne returned to Ben's life. She revealed that Kaine had blackmailed her into disappearing. Kaine chose the opportunity to strike, and after a relentless battle, he stood victorious over a beaten down Spider-Ben in a flaming diner. He said that neither of them deserved to live, and that the three of them were going to die in there. Ben begged him to save Elizabeth, who had nothing to do with it, and she begged him to save Ben. Finally putting his senseless hatred to rest, Kaine saved them both, and asked Ben to kill him. Ben refused, and told him he had to take responsibility for his actions. They fought while Ben tried to convince Kaine to turn himself in. Kaine then tried to kill himself by police fire, but Ben saved him in the nick of time. Enraged, Kaine asked why. No words were needed for him to understand. They looked each other in the eyes, and silently made peace with each other. Kaine was saved, by "[his] brother", and was ultimately convinced to turn himself over to the authorities. He was to be forever grateful for the help he was given to take the first step "toward redeeming [his] corrupted soul", and would never forget it.
Kaine's voluntary imprisonment didn't last too long, either. When the maximum security prison facility The Vault was destroyed in the pages of Thunderbolts, Kaine (along with lots of other villains) ran free. Instead of turning himself in, Kaine now had another purpose. Ben Reilly, the man who saved his life had been killed by the returned Norman Osborn. Kaine would not rest while Osborn still drew breath. He followed the Scriers to Europe, on the trail of the mysterious package that supposedly was baby May Parker. The package was actually one of the pieces to the Gathering of Five. He killed a few Scriers and retrieved it, but the object was eventually returned to Osborn. Don't try to make much sense out of it, because it's not a bright plot.
Kaine had giving himself up again, this time to The Vault in Colorado. He stayed in restraints and in solitary confinement. When he eventually got out, he started following a shady character named Damon Ryder (Raptor), who had a mad on for Ben Reilly. Ryder blamed Reilly for the death of his family and Kaine was happy to let the hate fueled scientist obsess over Ben. Years later, Ryder's obsession brought him to New York. Ryder began stalking Peter, mistaking him for Ben. Kaine betrayed Peter and helped Raptor take Peter's cousins and Harry Osborn captive at May Parker's home. Kaine watched as Spider-Man and Raptor fought, and thought back to years ago when he first met Damon. The police arrived and Raptor and Kaine escaped. Later, Raptor told Kaine that he had lied when he said that he could cure Kaine's degeneration and only wanted his assistance against "Ben." In return, Kaine broke Ryder's neck.
After Raptor was dead, Kaine was hunted by Kraven's kids, Alyosha Kravinoff and Ana Kravinoff. They knew from kidnapping the psychic, Madame Web, that Kaine was related to Spider-Man. He thus became a target of the hunters. He was badly beaten by them, and escaped to warn Peter that "they're hunting spiders." While Peter and Spider-Woman turned their attention to the Kravinoffs, Kaine had a vision of Peter's death. He later knocked Peter out, and took his place. Kaine was sacrificed by Sasha Kravinoff, in order to resurrect her dead husband, Kraven the Hunter. After Kaine was buried at the Parker family plot (I wonder how Peter was going to explain the new addition to Aunt May), Kaine rose from the dead. He had a new look, and called himself Tarantula. Apparently, the Spider-God from The Other (See: Ero) was still offering "come back to life" deals to dead Spider-Men. After he emerged, he had acquired the ability to create organic webbing from his wrists.
Little did Kaine know, but Miles Warren was waiting for him as he crawled out of his grave. He took the weakened clone back to his lab underneath the former Shea Stadium and further engineered him into a spider/man hybrid. He became the Jackal's henchman and bodyguard, along with the similarly mutated Spider-King (Captain America.) After saving Warren from a defective Gwen Stacy clone, Jackal and Spider-King joined with Ana Soria, aka the Queen. Together, Warren and Soria mutated the people of Manhattan into human spiders, creating their very own Spider-Island. When Reed Richards found a cure for the mutation, with help from Anti-Venom, Soria sent Tarantula to destroy the antidote.
At Horizon Labs, Tarantula was about to contaminate the antidote when he was stopped by Spider-Man, who knocked him into a vat of the cure. After he emerged, Kaine was not only cured of the mutation but seemingly of the clone degeneration disease as well. (He also lost his spider sense.) He told Peter that he knew where to find the Jackal and the Queen. Peter kept his spare costumes at his office at Horizon Labs, and Kaine found the invisibility/sound negation suit that Peter invented to fight the Hobgoblin (Phil Urich). Kaine joined the Avengers in the battle against the Queen, now monstrously changed into an enormous spider. He impaled her through the skull, stunning the Queen long enough for Iron Man, Gravity, Firestar and Storm to fry her.
After the fight, Madame Web (Julia Carpenter) spoke to Kaine about his destiny. It prompted him to leave New York, where he ran into Peter at the airport as he said goodbye to Aunt May and JJJ Sr as they left for Boston. Kaine also took the invisibility suit with him.
On his way to Mexico, Kaine robbed a group of criminals at the Houston port, not knowing that they were smuggling illegal immigrants. He found the container that the immigrants were being held in, and most of them had died of heat. A lone young woman survived and he took her to the hospital. Later, a fire throwing killer named the Salamander came to murder her. Kaine, still trying to leave for Mexico, saw the hospital on fire, cynically guessed what was happening and went to save the girl. He tackled the Salamander viciously, strangling and shooting at him with an officers gun. It was only after he nearly smothered the criminal with webbing that the fight ended. Wanting to kill him, Kaine only stopped upon hearing the cheering on the onlookers. (Scarlet Spider vol 2, #1)
Kaine stopped to check on the girl, Aracely, and her doctor (Dr. Meland) asked him to stay in Houston, as the city needed a superhero. Kaine left the hospital, deciding to stay to make up for the murders he committed in his past. While Kaine never called himself "the Scarlet Spider," the name was given to him by a TV reporter who called him the Amazing Scarlet Spider-Man. Aracely moved into his hotel room with him and Kaine was kept tabs on by Dr. Meland and his partner, officer Layton, and the hotel bartender, Annabelle Adams.
One of Kaine's challenges was against a returned Cletus Kasady, who had escaped from prison and killed people in Houston. Carnage escaped to another dimension with mysterious, tiny accomplices and a wounded and furious Scarlet Spider swore to kill him, just as Agent Venom (Flash Thompson) arrived to bring Kasady down. (Minimum Carnage Alpha) The symbiote went crazy in Kaine's presence and tried to kill him. After Flash calmed it down, Kaine warned him not to touch him again or he'd be dead. Scarlet Spider was more than happy to let Carnage stay in the microverse and be forgotten but he was persuaded to follow him by Agent Venom.
By luck, Kaine arrived in the Microverse near the supreme being of that dimension, The Redeemer. He quickly acted as Redeemer's bodyguard against a giant creature (which Kaine assumed was probably an amoeba) and defended the being against Carnage. (Kasady had been brought there by order of Marquis Radu, who wanted him to kill Redeemer so he could take his place.) Carnage was soon apprehended by Radu's forces and Kaine learned from Redeemer that if Radu succeeded and Redeemer died, the Microverse and Macroverse would fall apart. Scarlet Spider and Redeemer arrived just as the cloning of Venom and Carnage was completed. Carnage escaped back to earth (even the Redeemer wasn't sure how) and Redeemer sent them after him. Back in Houston, Agent Venom defeated Carnage but Kaine took him down, lobotomizing him with a spike. Agent Venom said that there had to have been a better way, which Kaine was doubtful of. (Minimum Carnage Omega)
After dealing with a group of Santa Clause themed thieves (Scarlet Spider #12), Kaine investigated the murder of a 14 year old girl that had been forced into human trafficking by the cult known as The Hand. Confronting The Hand's leader, Scarlet Spider witnessed a "hostile take over" by The Arranger, the representative of Wilson Fisk. Kaine told Arranger that he wasn't intimidated by the Kingpin and Arranger told him that it didn't matter. Also, Arranger told him that the Kingpin thanked Scarlet Spider for dealing with an old debt for him, which left Kaine confused. (Scarlet Spider #12.1) He began to understand when he and Aracely were attacked by Carlos and Esmeralda Lobo. The werewolves knew by scent that Kaine was "related" to Spider-Man, as the Lobo Brothers had fought the web head in their war against the Kingpin years prior. The Lobos were currently involved in human trafficking and were the ones that had brought Aracely to America. They overpowered Kaine and began to tear into him as he lost consciousness. (Scarlet Spider #13)
In the afterlife, Kaine met The Other, a mystical being that Peter Parker had rejected after being killed by Morlun. Peter was returned to life by The Great Weaver but rejected becoming a host for The Other. It was The Other that brought Kaine back to life after he was killed by the Kravens. Reluctantly, Kaine agreed to join with The Other. (Scarlet Spider #14) Kaine returned and saved Aracely but was changed into the form of a man spider. He defeated the wolves and changed back to human form, but knew that he was now a monster. (Scarlet Spider #15)
Kaine got into a relationship with Annabelle at a rodeo after stopping the Armadillo, who was drunkenly trying to get back together with his ex-girlfriend. (Scarlet Spider #16) Kaine was soon contacted by the Assassin's Guild, who returned to Houston to demand the favor that he owed them. In return for the Guild calling off their vendetta against him, Kaine would carry out one hit for them. The target was Wolverine and if he didn't complete the job, he and his friends would die. Kaine traveled to New York with Aracely and snuck into Xavier's School for Gifted Youngsters. Beast saw through the Scarlet Spider's cloaking system and knew that he looked and smelled like Spider-Man but clearly wasn't. Kaine was subdued by Shadow Cat but was confronted by Wolverine. The battle between them was brutal but Kaine managed to spear Logan in the chest with a wrist spike, impaling his heart. (Scarlet Spider #17)
Logan's healing ability saved him but it took CPR from Beast to resuscitate him. Wolverine beat Kaine and later learned that he had been sent by the Assassins Guild. Kaine convinced him to go with him to New Orleans to take on the Guild. Logan agreed, but told him that if they ever met again, Kaine was dead. (Kaine's plan was to try and kill Wolverine and if that didn't work, to convince him to work together. Either way, he figured he could win.) They cut through a good number of assassins in New Orleans but were quickly overpowered by a woman named The Red Death. (Scarlet Spider #18) Logan and the X-Men had a history with The Red Death, a god-like being that gained power from death and was worshiped by the Assassins Guild. The Red Death turned on the Guild to gain power and quickly swatted away Wolverine and Scarlet Spider. The battle ended when Kaine managed to impale her in the head with a wrist spike. The Guild was ready to kill them for destroying their deity, when the Arranger arrived with assassins of his own. Wilson Fisk now owned the Assassins Guild, as per a deal he had made previously with Kaine. (Scarlet Spider #19)
Kaine traveled to New York afterward, and met "Peter" in his apartment. Little did Kaine know, but he was facing Spider-Man (Octavius) instead of Peter. "Peter" immediately threw Kaine out of his apartment window, upon realizing that he was facing the man that had killed him as Doctor Octopus. Kaine was clueless as to what had changed in "Peter" but their fight was soon interrupted by human-spider hybrids that had added powers from the X-Men. Jackal, Carrion and a clone of Miles Warren showed up shortly afterwards. The two Spiders were defeated by a new clone of Gwen Stacy, who was wielding a high tech gun. (Superior Spider-Man Team Up #2)
Kaine woke up in chains in a warehouse, Spider-Man chained at his side. The Jackal was explaining how he planned to use Spider-Man's DNA to make new human-spider hybrids. Wiping out humanity was still his goal, and replacing with with the hybrids. Kaine managed to break free of the chains and free Spider-Man with a optic blast from one of the hybrids. The Scarlet Spider managed to save the Gwen clone from an angry Spider-Man, who considered her a waste of genetic material. (Plus, she had tried to shoot him.) While Kaine battled the bad guys, Spider-Man blew up the DNA samples and escaped. Kaine barely managed to follow him out and laid him out when they met. Kaine left for Houston, telling Spider-Man to start acting like a hero. Back at the hotel, Kaine saw that his degeneration disease had returned. (Scarlet Spider #20)
An enraged Kaine threw a coach out of the hotel window and went for a rage fueled web swing. He was suddenly attacked attacked by someone who seemed to be the original Scarlet Spider, Ben Reilly. "Ben" chased Kaine across Houston, reminding him of how he tortured Ben for years before he died. Kaine got the upper hand and voices in his head began to tell him to kill Ben. Kaine realized he had been drugged and was merely hallucinating the voices. He then saw that it wasn't Ben Reilly attacking him, but Sergei Kravinoff. Meanwhile, Ana Kravinoff kidnapped several of Kaine's friends. (Scarlet Spider #21)
Kaine woke up at the Houston Zoo, buried in an empty grave. He soon found himself under attack from a leopard and a tiger. Defeating the cats, he soon faced Ana, who caught him in a net by using an injured guard as bait. He soon beat the girl into telling him where his friends were being held. He nearly killed her but decided that he chose not to be a killer any more. Ana told him where to find her father and she led him to where Sergei was holding Dr. Leland, officer Layton, Aracely and Annabelle. Kraven demanded that Scarlet Spider kill him or his friends would die in the most painful way he could think of. (Scarlet Spider #22) Kaine refused to kill Kraven and as they fought, Sergei ordered Ana to kill one of the hostages. She gutted Dr. Meland and then her father told her to kill them all. Kaine killed Kraven by hitting him in the chest and stopping his heart, then he went to attend to Meland. After binding the doctor's injuries, Kaine resuscitated Kraven, as punishment. Kraven and Ana escaped and Dr. Meland barely survived the attack. An enraged Layton did a search on Kaine and discovered his past as a mercenary. (Scarlet Spider #23)
Kaine continued to blame himself and after returning to the hotel, he found Annabelle waiting for him in the bedroom. Afterward, they were confronted by officer Layton, Aracely (who'd had a waking nightmare about Michtlan) Zoe (come for revenge for Scarlet Spider putting her father in a coma) and....Annabelle. The Anna that Kaine slept with revealed herself to be Shathra and she intended to take Kaine to her children. Zoe stopped all of it by firing a grenade launcher, blowing up the hotel room. (Scarlet Spider #24) The explosion blew everyone out of the building and Kaine caught them in a web. After changing to the Scarlet Spider, he tackled Shathra who quickly proved to be nearly invulnerable. Her wasp children began to devour him alive but he changed into "The Other" creature and tore Shathra apart. He left with Aracely for Mexico, never wanting to speak about Houston again. (Scarlet Spider #25)
Kaine and Aracely joined the New Warriors, but the team was short lived when it was destroyed by Daemos, an ancient being called an Inheritor. Daemos was a brother to Morlun, and the Inheritors were beginning the Great Hunt against all spider totems in all dimensions. Daemos was surprised to learn that he could be hurt by Kaine, as he and his kind were nearly invulnerable to anything that a Spider could throw at them. Daemos realized that Kaine was The Other, and would make a fantastic meal. Kaine was saved by Old Man Spider-Man, Spider-Man from Earth 70105, and Spider-Woman from Earth 65. They escaped through a portal to Earth 13, though Daemos killed 70105. (Amazing Spider-Man vol 3 #9)
On Earth 13, called the Safe Zone due to it being the home world of the Cosmic Spider-Man, Kaine joined with Peter, Spider-Girl, Spider-Woman (Drew), Spider-Man UK, a version of Ben Reilly, Anya Sofia Corazon, Spider-Ham, Silk and others. They found another group of Spider totems in the year 2099 and went to warn and recruit them against the Inheritors. They were surprised to find the group led by the Superior Spider-Man, who was also unhappy to see them. His device to block the pheromones of Spiders was overwhelmed by the sudden appearance of so many Spider totems. Kaine is particular was radiating a large amount of pheromones, a fact not unnoticed by Silk. (Silk had been previously deeply romantically and physically attracted to Peter, but found the same odd attraction to Kaine.)
The large number of Spiders drew the attention of Daemos, who arrived via a portal from his home dimension. Kaine was more than happy to fight him after he had killed the New Warriors and he succeeded, with help from Superior. However, the satisfaction didnt last long, as Daemos reappeared almost immediately with two other Inheritors, Brix and Bora, in tow. Kaine, the alternate Ben Reilly and Jessica Drew from Earth recognized that Daemos must be a clone and followed the worm hole back to Daemos's dimension to learn more. (Amazing Spider-Man vol 3 #10)
Quiz: Quick Quiz on Kaine.
|Dec 1994||App: Web of Spider-Man #119|
|Aug 1995||App: Spider-Man: The Lost Years #1|
|Sep 1995||App: Spider-Man: The Lost Years #2|
|Oct 1995||App: Spider-Man: The Lost Years #3|
|Nov 1994||App: Web of Spider-Man #118|
Here is the Full Appearance List (64 Apps) for Kaine.
The assistance of the Marvel Chronology Project is gratefully acknowledged.
Some of the above information is extracted from the various versions of the Official Handbook to the Marvel Universe and the more recent Marvel Encyclopaedias.