Comics : Spider-Man: The Manga #28
This review was first published on: 2004.
This is part four of the last big arc in Spider-Man: The Manga.
Spider-Man: The Manga #28
Feb 1999 : SM Title
Summary: The Evil Spider-Man
Arc: Part 4 of "Spider-Man: The Manga Eighth Arc"
Night in Toyko and a thief with clinging powers is breaking into offices in a high rise building. The thief is clad completely in black and wears a ski mask that covers his face. He makes his way to the president's office and uses his sensitive fingers to determine the combination of the safe. But while he is stuffing his pockets with money, he is interrupted by a trio of security guards. At first, using super-human speed, the thief runs right through the guards but in the confined hallway the trio manage to grab him. They hit him over the head with a nightstick but it does no good. The thief viciously eliminates the three men with near-deadly force. A half-dozen more guards arrive by elevator but the thief picks up the fallen nightstick and accurately throws it so that it ends up imbedded in the forehead of one of the new men. The others momentarily freeze which allows the thief to jump out of a window, even though they are on the 18th floor. But the thief doesn't fall to his death. He clings to the wall like a spider. And once out there, he sees Spider-Man approaching him, seemingly walking on thin air.
Actually, he is walking on a thin wire instead. And, since this is the Manga Spider-Man, he seems to have no interest in fighting. Instead, he tells the thief that he must see his face and lets his masked opponent attack him without fighting back. Finally, the thief tries to escape but Spidey snags him with his web. He pulls the thief back up to the roof of the building, intending to remove his mask. But a huge crowd has developed down on the street and Yu, with Yukiko on his mind, realizes he can't reveal the thief's face to the world... sure as he is that the thief is Mitsuo. Instead, he gets the thief to swear that he will never commit another crime and lets him go. The police on the street fire their guns to no avail.
In the papers the next day, the full damage is tallied. Six injured guards, one in critical condition, another blind in both eyes. The police are blamed for shooting and interfering with Spider-Man's capture of the thief. But Yu knows that the only person responsible for the thief's escape is himself.
The odd wrong note is never far away in these stories. The differences in what works for one culture and not for another is impossible to avoid in such translations. Regardless, this story is a sound idea, executed with some talent, and that's worth four webs to me.