Friday, September 11, 2015

Tarantula! (as seen in Green Arrow #44)

Alter Ego: Jonathan Law
Occupation: Mystery Novelist [Is he a novelist or isn't he?! It's a mystery!]
Marital Status: Single [Duh.]
Known Relatives: None
Group Affiliation: All-Star Squadron
Base of Operations: New York City [I wonder if he ever runs into Spider-man?]
First Appearance: STAR-SPANGLED COMICS #1
Height: 5'10" Weight: 180 lbs.
Eyes: Blue Hair: Blond

Intrigued by the costumed crimefighters who had begun appearing in the late 1930s, best-selling mystery writer Jonathan Law began doing research for a non-fiction book about such "mystery-men." In the course of his research [Let me guess! Bitten by a radioactive tarantula!], Law interviewed Dian Belmont in the summer of 1941 about her association with the original Sandman (see Sandman I). Belmont gave Law a sketch of a new costume she had designed for the Sandman which she doubted he would ever wear [Did superheroes not know about NDAs back in the forties?] After having written about crimefighting for years, Law decided to become a costumed crimefighter himself and decided to wear the costume in his mystery-man role [Sure. Why not? Writing about something is equitable to doing that thing. Why not steal somebody else's design and use it as your own? I guess the only thing Jonathan Law knew about the law was how to spell it.].

Inspired by his pet tarantula [You know how inspiring arachnids can be. "You can do it!" the Inspirational Arachnid says on his probably already exists Tumblr blog because people are stupid idiots for creatures saying inane inspirational, feel-good quotes.] Law had decided to take the name Tarantula [Sure, why not steal his pet's identity as well as Sandman's costume?] and, in keeping with this spider theme, devised a "web-gun" [Why do those quotes disturb me so much? What sticky substance is actually in that "web-gun"?] and suction discs for his boots that would enable him to walk up walls. He entrusted his loyal housekeeper Olga with the secret of his double identity [Mostly because Jonathan couldn't sew and he needed somebody to sew his costume using the stolen designs.]

A few days after Law's meeting wth Belmont, Olga finished making the [Trademark infringing] costume. That night, since the Sandman was out of town, Belmont donned his original costume to investigate a case of sabotage, only to be killed by a Nazi agent [People have no Goddamn respect for patents and trademarks, do they? Now the public is going to think that the Sandman sucks at his job. His reputation is ruined. Also they all think he's dead.]. Tarantula then attacked the Nazi agents, and was joined by the Sandman [Yeah but in what costume?! Tarantula is wearing his new design and Belmont is lying dead in his old one!], who was wearing a costume based on Belmont's sketch [So Tarantula and Sandman were twinsies?]. Together, they overcame the saboteurs [You know, the Nazi agents.].

Tarantula made his first public appearance soon afterwards when he defeated thieves who had robbed an audience at a Broadway theater. Reporting the incident, a radio announcer referred to the new hero as both a "Tarantula" and a "Spider Man!" [In other words, "Fuck you, Marvel!" See? Nobody respects patents and trademarks!]

Tarantula joined the wartime All-Star Squadron (see All-Star Squadron [If you want to be bored out of your mind.]), and soon afterwards adopted a new costume, feeling that Belmont had intended hers for the Sandman [Really? Fucking really?! I think the "feeling" in this sentence was actually a "cease and desist" from Sandman's lawyers.] Law also continued doing research for his book on mystery-men [So he could out everybody? I have a feeling nobody on the All-Star Squadron really liked this asshole.]

Tarantula's whereabouts and activities after 1942 are unknown [Although in 1962, he reappears in Marvel Comics!], but his book on mystery-men, Altered Egos, was published in the 1960s [Probably posthumously after the other Squadron members figured out what he was up to.].

Tarantula has no super-powers but is a superb hand-to-hand combatant. He is also a skilled acrobat [Of course he is. What writer isn't?]

Tarantula's web-gun shoots a sticky wet "web-line" [There are those quotes again! Gross.] with which he can ensnare [And possibly impregnate] criminals. His boots have small suction cups which enable him to walk up walls.

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