Ned Leeds died not too long before this story, and Peter and MJ married right before it. Two major milestones in Peter Parker's life. This story depicts the third. Way back, since Amazing Spider-Man #15 (vol.1), Kraven the Hunter entered the list of Spider-Man's enemies. Since then, he suffered numerous defeats, and after each one he became more obssessed in catching his ultimate prey. Spidey never considered him much of a danger, cause he was always defeated mostly without any effort.
In this story, however, Kraven succeds in killing Spider-Man, buries him and takes his place, beating a foe Spidey could barely beat with Captain America's help.
By the way, this is a story where Pete still uses the black costume.
|Cover Art:||Mike Zeck|
|Reprinted In:||Spider-Man: Kraven's Last Hunt (TPB)|
Spider-Kraven barges through a window of a warehouse where it's being held a heroin transaction. Kraven takes them all effortlessly, and leaves when the cops arrive. They say he's been "a little out of control" for a couple of weeks, and that he has already sent 15 men to the hospital. Then they find one of the drug dealers dead. Kraven gloats on the rooftops.
Vermin catches another victim, and then attacks a police car, remembering that they harmed him "before", when he was something else, something he doesn't remember. He throws one of the cops out of the car to a sewer drain, from where it leaves a huge ammount of rats, who cover the cop. The other cop leaves the car and shoots him on the side. She tells him to call off the rats and he does. Then Vermin disarms her and licks her face, cause she reminds him of his mother, fleeing and leaving her in shock.
MJ goes to Robbie's, but she realizes she can't tell him anything and leaves, while Kraven prepares to hunt Vermin. By succeding, he proves himself a superior Spider-Man, by doing what the original couldn't. Vermin's asleep in the sewers while Spider-Kraven approaches. They duke it out. Kraven wins, and leaves the sewers carrying Vermin in his arms. Meanwhile, a hand bursts out of Spider-Man's grave.
Well, you shouldn't really be reading this to decide whether you should buy this one or not. If you're a Spidey fan, that decision is already taken. This is an epic. No webs rating, may it be a 5, a 6 or a 20 can translate how great this story really is. It's wonderfully written, wondefully drawn, wonderfully penciled, and the result is sublime. Each time I read it, I find some new delightful detail I never noticed. By all means, READ IT. These are the stories that make being a reader worth it. Kraven's Last Hunt is indispensable for any comics fan. True masterpiece.
If you already own it, then why the heck are you reading this? Me, boring! Last Hunt, great! Go and read it.
I couldn't end this without mentioning that this story was brought to us by J.M. DeMatteis, Mike Zeck and Bob McLeod. Each of them deserves as much praise as possible.
Just for the record, 5 webs. Spidey doesn't get any better than this.