Comics : Sensational Spider-Man (Vol. 1) #16

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This story is part of an Arc: "Brother's Keeper 2"
     Part 1 / Part 2

This story is part of a Lookback Series: Filling Gaps

This review was first published on: 2006.

Background...

David Kalen was an environmental consultant who was hired by Sanders Chemicals along with his brother, Henry, to monitor their toxic waste disposal. When the two brothers discovered that illegal dumping was going on they went to Sanders who led them to another illegal dumping site, this one armed with explosives. After the explosion, only David survived becoming D.K. an oozing creature that can make things dissolve and decay just by touching them.

In Detail...

"Brother's Keeper 2"
Sensational Spider-Man (Vol. 1) #16 (Story 2)
Arc: Part 1 of "Brother's Keeper 2"
Editor:  Ralph Macchio
Writer:  Todd DeZago
Pencils:  Richard Case
Inker:  Richard Case
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Review

We find Spider-Man and Dr. Ashley Kafka outside David Kalen's cell in Ravencroft Institute, where she asks Spider-Man to help him. She tells Spider-Man that David is suffering from survivor's guilt because he lived when his brother died. The explosion that killed his brother Henry also gave David his powers. Because it was Spider-Man who talked David into not killing the person responsible for his condition and to commit himself to Ravencroft, maybe Spider-Man can snap David out of his depression. Too bad what Dr. Kafka doesn't know is that it was Ben Reilly who got David to come to the Institute and not Peter.

David has been periodically turning himself into D.K. and degenerating everything he comes into contact with. Dr. Kafka fears that subconsciously he is also turning that power inward and hurting himself in the process because of his depression. Because David came to Ravencroft on his own , legally he can't be held there against his will and lately he's been talking about leaving. Dr. Kafka hopes Spider-Man can talk him into staying longer and getting all the help he needs.

Entering his cell Dr. Kafka mentions to David his need to stay, which only sends him into a rage, lashing out at her. Spider-Man jumps into action and pulls her out of harms way. Yelling about how he's sick of this place, D.K. breaks down the wall to his cell and takes off. Too bad it was a load bearing wall but good thing Spider-Man is there to pull Dr. Kafka out of there just in time before the ceiling collapsed.

Following his trail Spider-Man comes upon two guards knocked out. Being thankful that they are still alive Spider-Man keeps following D.K. but the next guard he finds is completely dissolve into nothing more than his uniform. Just as D.K. reaches down to Spider-Man his Spider Sense kicks in and he turns his head to look behind him.

In General...

Dr. Kafka called Spider-Man into Ravencroft to as him to look in on David Kalen, aka D.K., who is going through a survivor's depression because of his brother's death. Fearing that David is turning his decaying ability inward, she wishes Spider-Man to talk to him and hopefully convince him to stay and get the help he needs, Of course Spider-Man doesn't know David from Adam because it was really Ben Reilly who last dealt wit D.K. but Peter tries to anyway. Seeing Spider-Man sends David into a rage, turning into D.K. and breaking out of his cell. Spider-Man follows him only to find the remains of some of the guards. From behind Spidey we see D.K.'s oozing hand slowly sneaking up to him.

Overall Rating...

Nothing really to say here. This was such a short story, only six pages, so it's really hard for anything to really shine in that amount of space. Other than the length there really wasn't anything wrong with this segment of this tale which started back in Amazing Spider-Man #230.