Amazing Spider-Man #433-435; Peter Parker: Spider-Man #90-92; Sensational Spider-Man #26-28 (1998); Spectacular Spider-Man #257-258: Identity Crisis!

Hold on a sec. This is a big Spider-Man event that’s actually really innovative and well done. Wow! It’s about time!

After being framed for murder by Normal Osborn and with a $5 million bounty on his head, Peter Parker goes into hiding and can’t afford to show his face as Spider-Man, so he adopts four different identities, each of which are the focus of a story in his four ongoing series. (Untold Tales and Spider-Man Unlimited were not included in the event, the former because it told tales from the Lee/Ditko era and the latter because it was only published quarterly.). By itself, that’s a cool idea. But half of his new identities were villains!

Some of the issues had variant covers, featuring the alter-ego.

Sensational Spider-Man #26-28: Hornet

Hydro Man tries to cash in on the $5 mil reward, while Silver Sable and Sandman try to uncover the truth–believing that the real Spider-Man is not a murderer.

Sable and Sandman end up fighting Hydro-Man (on a water tower), while Spider-Man visits his friend Hobie “Prowler” Brown to have him design a villain costume for him: Hornet.

As Hornet, he foils Looter’s attempt to get the bounty. Then Vulture figures out Hornet is really Spider-Man but can’t capitalize on it. And Hornet meets with Human Torch who stands up for his bro.

Ain’t that sweet?

Amazing Spider-Man #433-435: Ricochet

In these issues, Peter is running around in a green hoodie, and Mister Hyde thinks he’s his old partner–and enemy–Cobra. Jumping around without his webbing gives him the idea to become an agile villain: Ricochet.

As Ricochet, Spider-Man play sthe villain again–this time to get information about his ongoing nemesis Black Tarantula.

In a fight with Delilah, she starts having weird word balloons. It’s not explained. I don’t get it.

Peter Parker: Spider-Man #90-92: Dusk

Dusk was inspired by a fight with Blastaar. In an extradimensional costume given to him by S.H.O.C., Spider-Man gets Trapster to confess that it was his goo–not Spider-Man’s webbing–that caused the death for which Peter was framed.

But first, Trapster takes care of The Hand.

He does it in a few panels and he’s absolutely right in what he says above: The Hand are supposed to be badasses but they’re usually the Keystone Kops of ninjadom.

Spectacular Spider-Man #257-258: Prodigy

Finally, as Prodigy, Peter publicly revealed the evidence that Spider-Man was innocent of everything he’d been accused of by Norman Osborn.

The four identities were all intended to reflect aspects of Spider-Man, and although each series focused on one identity, they did weave throughout.

Despite that he loses, Norman Osborn still pays his partner “Jack O’Lantern” (it’s really Mysterio), and laughs his way off the last panel of this event.

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