THE VIBRANIUM VENDETTA: Spidey Annuals (1991)

All three Spider-Man titles’ annuals bring back Ultron. The vibranium robot learns that Roxxon Corporation is creating a synthetic version of the precious metal, and Kingpin hires The Ghost to go steal it.

Kingpin is in the vibranium business? He’s never been a weapons dealer before. When Ghost can’t steal it, Kingpin just tells him to blow it up. And Ultron eventually decides to join them when he, too, can’t steal it.

Meanwhile, the heroes know Roxxon is corrupt so they’re trying to stop the villains from killing the villainous company but also stop the company from making vibranium.

So, it’s everybody piling on Roxxon!

It ends with Ultron escaping and Roxxon’s vibranium business shut down.

Lots of guest stars, of course, including several Iron Man characters like the afore-mentioned Ghost and the Sunturion, who we haven’t seen in a long time.

There are back-up tales. In Amazing Annual #15, all stories are written by David Michelinie, with different artists, one of which is Steve Ditko who doesn’t draw Spider-Man. He draws Chance. Sigh.

What’s kind of cool is that a back-up drawn by Alan Kupperberg also runs through all the issues. It involves Silver Sable (who is curiously omnipresent in the early ’90s) employing Will O’ The Wisp(!)…

…And also bringing back Rocket Racer and Prowler. She’s calling her new gang “The Outlaws.” It’s not a great story, not a terrible one, and it is cool to have a major serialized storyline with a serialized back-up. Makes it feel like less of a throw-away.

Leave a Comment