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Doctor Octopus drawn by John Romita Jr.
|First appearance||The Amazing Spider-Man #3 (July 1963)|
|Created by||Stan Lee
|Alter ego||Otto Gunther Octavius|
|Team affiliations||Sinister Six
Masters of Evil
|Notable aliases||Master Planner, Master Programmer, Doc Ock, Bowrey Bum, Prisoner #4756689, Peter Parker, Superior Spider-Man|
Doctor Octopus (Dr. Otto Gunther Octavius) is a fictional character, a supervillain that appears in comic books published by Marvel Comics since 1963. A highly intelligent mad scientist, Doctor Octopus is one of Spider-Man's greatest foes. He is typically portrayed as a stocky, myopic man who utilizes four powerful, mechanical appendages, and is obsessed with proving his own genius and destroying Spider-Man. In his first several appearances, Dr. Octopus' last name was spelled "Octavious." All stories since have spelled it "Octavius". Spider-Man has also nicknamed Octopus as Doc Ock. The character has appeared in numerous Spider-Man cartoons and video games and is portrayed by Alfred Molina in the 2004 film Spider-Man 2 as the film's main antagonist. In 2009, Doctor Octopus was ranked as IGN's 28th Greatest Comic Book Villain of All Time. Comics journalist and historian Mike Conroy writes of the character: "Created by Stan Lee and artist Steve Ditko, Doc Ock, as he became known, has become one of the web slinger's most persistent and dangerous foes."
Publication history 
|This section requires expansion. (September 2008)|
The character of Doctor Octopus first appeared in The Amazing Spider-Man #3 (July 1963), and was created by writer Stan Lee and artist Steve Ditko. The character soon appeared in The Amazing Spider-Man #11 and #12, and again in #31 - 33.
Fictional character biography 
Born in Schenectady, New York, Otto Octavius had a turbulent upbringing. His father, Torbert, a factory worker, was abusive and violent towards both Otto and his mother Mary. Young Otto's shyness and good work in school got him labeled as a "teacher's pet" and targeted as a subject for bullying. Torbert Octavius did not appreciate having a bullied son, and roared at Otto to use violence in dealing with the bullies. Mary Octavius would defend her son from Torbert's tirades, saying Otto was a gifted thinker who would use his brain to solve problems, not his fists. Due to his mother's insistence and her disgust towards men who worked in manual labor, Otto was determined not to become like his father and threw all his efforts into his education, regularly scoring top marks. Otto's devotion to study paid off with him being awarded a university scholarship. During Otto's freshman year of college, his father's death due to an industrial accident pushed Otto towards the study of, and obsession with, physical science. After graduating from college, Otto Octavius found work in an engineering firm.
Otto became a brilliant and respected nuclear physicist, atomic research consultant, inventor, and lecturer. He designed a set of highly advanced mechanical arms controlled via a brain–computer interface to assist him with his research into atomic physics. The tentacle arms were resistant to radiation and were capable of great strength and highly precise movement, attached to a harness that fit around his body.[volume & issue needed] Later in his criminal career, he claimed the inspiration for the device came from The Vitruvian Man, the famous pencil sketch by Leonardo da Vinci, one of his idols.
Though his relationship with co-workers was typically hostile, a fellow researcher named Mary Alice Anders befriended him when Otto impressed her with a demonstration of his harness, and the two began a courtship. In due time, Otto proposed marriage to Mary Alice. However, Otto's mother did not approve, believing that no woman was good enough for her son. To please her, he ended his engagement. Later, when he discovered that his mother had begun dating a librarian, he rebuked her, causing her to have a fatal heart attack in the heat of their argument. With the death of his mother and Mary Alice Anders out of his life, Octavius' disposition towards nearly everyone became mean-spirited, and he had become more distracted from paying attention to detail and safety precautions in his work. His co-workers often called him "Dr. Octopus" behind his back, a pun on his actual name inspired by the four-armed apparatus; he was aware of this insult, but he barely cared.
Criminal career begins 
During an accidental radiation leak that ended in an explosion, the apparatus became fused to Octavius' body. It was later revealed that the radiation (or possibly his own latent mutation) had mutated his brain so that he could control the movement of the arms using his thoughts alone. The tentacles have since been surgically removed from his body, although Octavius retains the power to control them telepathically from a great distance. The accident also seemingly damaged his brain (although it was later suggested that what was interpreted as brain damage was in fact his mind rewiring itself to accommodate four extra limbs), and the scientist turned to a life of crime, first taking the hospital hostage and calling himself Dr. Octopus, the derogatory name that his co-workers had given him. Though Doctor Octopus himself is portly, in poor physical shape, and is near-sighted, with his harness attached he is physically more than a match for Spider-Man. The accident also made his eyes very sensitive to light, requiring him to wear glasses with shaded lenses.
In their first encounter, Octopus defeated Spider-Man, tossing him out of a window. Following this defeat, Spider-Man considered giving up his heroic career, but was inspired to continue his heroic career by the Human Torch, and ultimately defeated Doctor Octopus.
Over the years, Dr. Octopus has become one of the most identifiable members of Spider-Man's rogues gallery. Doctor Octopus formed the original Sinister Six to fight Spider-Man after taking Betty Brant and May Parker hostage. He has led subsequent Sinister Six groups, and usually takes offense when someone else leads the team. Disguised as the Master Planner, he organized a theft of atomic equipment. After he stole a formula that Spider-Man needed to cure his Aunt May, Spider-Man tracked Octopus' gang to their base. In the ensuing fight, Spider-Man became trapped underneath a collapsed building. Seemingly doomed, Spider-Man was ultimately able to draw upon sheer force of will to summon the strength to escape. It is later revealed he used a scuba tank to escape.[volume & issue needed]
Doctor Octopus later attempts to steal the Defense Department's Nullifier device, and sets a trap for Spider-Man. He became May Parker's tenant, then got close enough to use the Nullifier on Spider-Man; although he had hoped that it would merely nullify Spider-Man's web-shooters, the radiation in Spider-Man's blood resulted in the Nullifier's interaction with Spider-Man's unique biology rendering him amnesiac, Doctor Octopus subsequently tricking Spider-Man into helping him before Spider-Man's own better nature resulted in him turning against his 'partner' despite his memory loss long enough for John Jameson to use the Nullifier to shut down his tentacles.
Doctor Octopus later exhibited the ability to activate his mechanical arms remotely, and used them to free himself from prison. His resulting battle with Spider-Man resulted in the death of Captain George Stacy. Doctor Octopus later waged a gang war with Hammerhead. He attempted to wed May Parker in order to acquire an island with an atomic plant which she had recently unknowingly inherited. Doc Ock escaped death when the island was destroyed, and began a life as a homeless person. He next battled the "ghost" of Hammerhead, and was able to return him to human form and defeat him after a temporary alliance with Spider-Man.
Doctor Octopus later attempted to hijack an atomic submarine. He also attempted to poison New York City with printers' ink, and battled the Punisher and Spider-Man. He next battled the Owl and his gang. He successfully deactivated a nuclear reactor in a laboratory before meltdown. He later displayed symptoms which Mister Fantastic diagnosed as multiple personality disorder. Doctor Octopus was taken to the Beyonder's Battleworld, where he fought a horde of heroes and plotted against Doctor Doom for leadership of the group of villains. He was able to defeat the X-Men until Magneto came to the mutants' aid.
His crowning achievement of evil was the near-fatal beating of Spider-Man's then-partner, the Black Cat, which led to Spider-Man beating Doc Ock to within an inch of his life. The trauma of the beating he received from Spider-Man left Octavius afraid of Spider-Man and spiders in general for years, and he needed to be treated for his acute arachnophobia. Spider-Man was forced to let his nemesis beat him in combat so as to allow Octavius to break free of his fears and recruit him to save New York City from an exploding nuclear reactor; Octavius had been planning to detonate the reactor to kill Spider-Man indirectly, but after his out-of-control arms beat Spider-Man seemingly senseless, Spider-Man convinced him to shut down the reactor to ensure that there were witnesses to his 'great triumph'. Octavius decided to let Spider-Man live on the grounds that he would now have to cope with the same humiliation he had endured.
Death and resurrection 
During the Clone Saga, Doctor Octopus saved Spider-Man from certain death from a poison injected by the Vulture, although this was only because he desired to be the one to kill Spider-Man. During the healing process he discovered the identity of Spider-Man and then allowed himself to be taken in by police, expecting to be saved by his accomplice/lover Stunner. However, Stunner was knocked out and Doc Ock was murdered by the insane Peter Parker clone named Kaine. Octavius' student Carolyn Trainer took over as "Doctor Octopus" until the original was resurrected by a branch of the mystical ninja cult known as the Hand. Upon his resurrection, it was revealed that he had no knowledge of Spider-Man's identity. The reason was that the memories he gained came from a computer chip provided by Carolyn Trainer; that recent memory had not been recorded at the time of his death.
Subsequent schemes 
In later years, Octavius attempted to create his own personal assassin in the form of a villainous mutated entity he dubbed "Spider-Woman", and was involved in a plot involving using prosthetic limbs as mind-control devices, to create an army of minions. He has also had to deal with another usurper, in the form of an arrogant young businessman and con artist named Carlyle, who pretended to employ Octavius at his company. This proved to be a ruse, and Carlyle subdued Octopus and stole his technology, using it to create his own version of Octavius' harness. During a prolonged battle with Octavius and Spider-Man, Carlyle was defeated when Doc Ock ripped open his suit, allowing Spider-Man to fill Carlyle's suit with webbing, although Doc Ock informed his enemy that he only did this to hurt Carlyle rather than to help Spider-Man.
Then, Dr. Octopus took the ambassador of the newly-formed Free Palestinian State hostage, demanding that in exchange for the ambassador's freedom, Spider-Man would meet him in Times Square and unmask himself in front of the world. When Spider-Man went to Times Square, he pulled off his mask to reveal another mask, angering Octavius enough to distract him from the release of the ambassador by agents of the Israeli Secret Service.
Dr. Octopus was taken to Ryker's Island and was drugged and brainwashed to take down the Green Goblin. He interrupted a battle between Spider-Man and the Green Goblin on the Brooklyn Bridge, and the two villains were struck by lightning and fell into the river below. Octopus was dragged out days later with no memories of the event.
Civil War 
Octavius unsuccessfully tried to form and lead another version of the Sinister Six, because Captain America's Secret Avengers managed to defeat the villainous group, although Ock himself eluded authorities.[volume & issue needed] In Sensational Spider-Man #28, Dr. Octopus is seen viewing a telecast of Peter Parker revealing himself to be Spider-Man. Ock then goes rampaging throughout the city, in utter disbelief that not only was he beaten numerous times by a teenager, but of the lost opportunity he had when he unmasked Parker in one of their first encounters (at the time, Peter was severely weakened by a bad case of flu and Octavius assumed he was an impostor). He is again defeated by Spider-Man, who confronts Dr. Octopus unmasked, after two of Peter's students distract Octavius.[volume & issue needed] He is then sent to Baron Zemo's supervillain detention facility (as seen in Thunderbolts #104 and Iron Man Vol IV #14). Later, Spider-Man contacts Octavius to see if he can help with Aunt May's condition.
Doctor Octopus is now dying, suffering from the consequences of the punishment his body took in his whole villainous career. As such, he becomes increasily despondent and brazen in his plans against Spider-Man, enhancing his failing body with technology and trying to exert control over New York City by using his newly minted Octobots. He also targets aggressively Aunt May (guilty of being due to marry another man) and the allies of Spider-Man, vowing revenge when stopped.
In his desperate attempts to prolong his life, Octavius reforms the Sinister Six, wishing to acquire Menace's unborn son, becoming able to synthesize a pure strain of the Goblin Serum, only to be thwarted again by the efforts of Spider-Man and the guilty conscience of the Lizard., reigniting his bitterness towards his foe, but gaining a grudging acknowledgment of his abilities. Octavius and Spider-Man keep crossing their ways during the following months, with the Avengers fighting a new iteration of the Sinister Six, Doctor Octopus sending a remote Octobot in John Jameson's shuttle, and Octavius contacting Tony Stark to force him find a cure for his degenerative condition. However, when Tony Stark genuinely offers him to have the brightest minds in the Marvel Universe finding a viable cure, Octavius smugly refuses, basking in the knowledge of his superior intellect.
His attempts to prolong his life however doesn't hinder a more vast, sinister plan, in which he has the Sinister Six fighting the Avengers Academy for a piece of Pym's technology, the Future Fondation for a piece of Reed's tech  and the Intelligencia for the Zero Cannon, a powerful antigravity weapon., later revealing to have gained something useful from his early foray in John Jameson's shuttle. All this careful preparation came to fruition during the "Ends of the Earth" storyline, where the apparently mismatched piece of technology stolen are used to build a satellite net, the Octavian Lens, able to alter the world's climate by enhancing or smothering solar rays.
Doctor Octopus at first claims to have a benevolent intent, wishing to halt the greenhouse effect in exchange from gratitude and recognition, but he's soon exposed by Spider-Man (enhanced himself with new Horizon Labs-built tech), Black Widow and Silver Sable, and his real plan (immolate a great part of entire population to prevent anyone from surviving his incumbing death, having the survivors remember him in perpetual fear and awe) is exposed. Playing over his ego, Spider-Man manages to stall him, by reminding that, even if he managed to have anyone surviving a drastic heating of the entire Earth, the survivors would likely be brain-damaged, and such unable to remember his actions. He then roughly defeats him, in retaliation for Silver Sable's death, openly mocking and berating his efforts by claiming that, because of the Octavian Lens' destruction and his declining health, he's now going to die alone, forgotten and without a legacy.
"Death" and Rebirth 
However, even his captivity and incarceration prove to be minor setbacks in Octavius' villainy. Since Peter Parker, in the previous months, was forced to access the Octobots' hive mind several times, he unwillingly gave Octavius a full, unrestricted access to his mind, and as such he becomes able to program a lone Octobot to swap their mind pattern. While Peter Parker is now trapped in the failing body of Otto Octavius, Octavius is now in Peter's body, able to access the memories of his foe but with none of his restraints, just content of living his civilian life and planning for his future.
Peter Parker, now as desperate as Octavius was, assembles a new, latest iteration of the Sinister Six, with the Trapster, the Scorpion, and Hydro-Man (turning down Alistair Smythe, Morbius, and the Lizard), giving them the task of keeping him alive and capturing "Spider-Man", thus becoming able to reverse the mind swap. However, while Trapster is able to build a portable life support for "Octavius", he bluntly states he can give him only 700 minutes to live. As such, "Octavius" openly antagonizes "Spider-Man". Octavius accepts the last challenge and while Peter Parker's attempt to reclaim his body fails, he's able to (before dying in the crippled body of Octavius) imbue his foe with his very memories and values. A distraught Otto Octavius (in a sudden surge of empathy for his sworn nemesis) vows to steer himself away from villainy and accepts Peter's dying wish of having a Spider-Man protect New York. Otto Octavius claims that since he now holds the physical might and the good values embodied by Peter Parker, but also the boundless ambition and the scientific mindframe of Doctor Octopus, he will surpass the "Amazing Spider-Man" becoming a "Superior Spider-Man".
The Superior Spider-Man 
Within Peter Parker's body, Doctor Octopus starts his new career as a hero by redesigning his gear and putting his past as a villain behind himself. However, he soon finds himself the target of several villains, such as an Octavius-tech enhanced Stilt-Man, Boomerang, Overdrive, Shocker, Speed Demon, the unnamed female Beetle, Living Brain, and all of them trying to take over the place left by the seemingly dead Otto Octavius and his Sinister Six. While they're still no match for the new, more ruthless Spider-Man, his violence and new mannerisms start to tip off several of his close friends and allies, such as the whole Horizon Labs, Daredevil, Wolverine (who is explicitly forbidden to have Spider-Man's mind telepathically scanned under the threat of legal action in court), Mary Jane, and Carlie Cooper.
Despite his accomplishments, Otto Octavius is revealed to be still haunted by the lingering spirit of Peter Parker, unable to reassert control over their shared body, but actively hampering his efforts to stray from Peter's values, and trying to reclaim his body. Despite Peter's lingering influence, Octavius' refusal of Peter's values and perceived screw-ups prompts him to "rectify" some mistakes: the "new" Peter enrolls back to college, pursuing actively the PhD Peter denied himself in the past, and breaks the self-imposed "no-kill rule" by taking a proactive stance against evildoers and criminals, shooting the villain Massacre even after Massacre appeared to show signs of recovering from the brain damage that motivated his crimes, and violently assaulting Jester and Screwball for a relatively minor insult. These actions prompted the Avengers to confront 'Spider-Man' about his recent activities, recognizing that their friend would never act in such a manner. When their subsequent analysis confirms that he is still biologically Peter Parker - the team's resident geniuses being otherwise occupied - Otto explains that he is merely dealing with stress over recent events, Peter's attempt to scrawl a picture-warning failing. After Otto saves a child who was brain-damaged during his assault on Earth using a neurological scanner, he reveals that he is aware of Peter's presence and intends to perform a 'Parker-ectomy' to remove what remains of Peter's mind from his brain.
Attempting a mind wipe of all Parker's memories to destroy Parker completely, Doctor Octopus managed to delete the memory of the Daily Bugle. Realizing Peter would not surrender, he directly engaged Parker in his mind. After beating Parker to a pulp, breaking his spirit with the knowledge Parker was willing to sacrifice a girl to keep Otto from finding him. Doctor Octopus declared his final victory, calling Parker unworthy to be called Spider-Man, and deleted all of Parker's memories. Returning to the real world Doctor Octopus rejoices from the fact he is free from Parker, as he achieves victory over the Amazing Spider-Man.
Powers and abilities 
Octavius is a genius in the field of atomic physics, and he holds a Ph. D. in nuclear science. A brilliant engineer and inventor, he is also a superb strategist and a charismatic leader. His genius in radiation is so exceptional that he was once called upon by Mister Fantastic of the Fantastic Four to offer his expertise when the Invisible Woman suffered from complications during her second pregnancy as a result of the cosmic radiation that had given the team their powers.
Due to exposure to atomic radiation, Doctor Octopus has acquired the mental ability of psychokinetic control over the four electrically powered, telescoping, prehensile, titanium-steel artificial tentacle "arms" (a degree of psychokinetic control over them that he can also exercise over vast distances even when they are not connected to him) that are attached to a stainless-steel harness encompassing his lower torso. Each of these four arms is capable of lifting several tons, provided that at least one arm is used to support his body. The reaction time and agility of his mechanical appendages are enhanced far beyond the range attainable for normal human musculature. The arms allow Octavius to move rapidly over any terrain and to scale vertical surfaces and ceilings. He has developed his concentration and control to the point that he can engage a single opponent, like Spider-Man, or multiple opponents with the arms while performing a completely separate, more delicate task, such as stirring coffee or constructing a machine. Due to his weight and age, his opponents are often lured into a false sense of security, only to find he is a formidable combatant, as he has managed to force to fight on the defensive, opponents as dangerous as Spider-Man, Daredevil, and Captain America.
Doctor Octopus has also employed an armored body suit enabling him to breathe underwater and designed to withstand extreme water pressure.[volume & issue needed]
Doctor Octopus has begun wearing a full-body armor suit due to a crippling illness caused by the amount of punishment he has sustained over the years, made even worse by the fact that his ability to take damage is still at a human norm, even if he can deliver a superhuman level of punishment; he relies completely on his arms to prevent opponents with superhuman strength getting in close enough to damage his relatively unfit physical form even before his illness. To compensate, he has covered his entire body with his new suit, his normal arms are bound to his chest, and four additional tentacles have been added to his harness. He has also developed psychokinetic-telepathic control over an army of "Octobots" (small octopus-like drones).
Dr. Octopus has possessed a total of three different harnesses during his career: the original titanium harness, a more powerful adamantium harness, and a carbonanium harness with tentacles bearing an octopus-like motif. The original and adamantium harnesses were both destroyed in the Lethal Foes of Spider-Man miniseries.
His current harness is made of a titanium-steel-niobium alloy mixture that is dense but light weight in composition. While wearing the harness, the arms are powerful enough to allow him to walk up sheer concrete walls and move about quickly. They are also used to grab items, both small and large, and as literal weapons in terms of being swung at objects and people like clubs. The pincers at the end of each tentacle can also be used to cut and tear into the flesh of his enemies. His sheer power using these appendages was great enough to beat Daredevil, a seasoned combatant with superhuman senses, almost to death.
The adamantium harness was powerful enough to both restrain and pummel the Hulk into submission during a series written by Erik Larsen. The adamantium in his tentacles made besting Iron Man in combat possible, tearing the hero's armor apart with a defeat so harsh that Tony Stark began to doubt his abilities almost enough to allow his persistent problem with alcohol abuse to flare up. The harness is also capable of holding a small jetpack allowing him to fly to places faster and able to evade Spider-Man more easily. Doctor Octopus is even capable of whirling his tentacles around to deflect small projectiles like bullets.
Eventually, Dr. Octopus' harness was surgically removed, but he was still able to control it mentally, even at a distance. This power was initially explained as having been caused by the initial accident; Octopus and his arms were fused together mentally as well as physically. In fact, when the original harness was destroyed, it caused Octavius excruciating pain. He was seen sweating profusely and screaming.[volume & issue needed] Later stories suggest that Octavius possessed minor telepathic powers that gave him a direct mental link with his harness. These telepathic powers were also hinted at to have caused a brain aneurysm in his father when they first developed during puberty.[volume & issue needed] However, the original controls for the harness remain on the first version, with Mister Fantastic managing to use these controls to shut down the tentacles when he needed Octavius's help, though it is obviously impractical to use this regularly, given Reed Richards's unique powers.[volume & issue needed]
Powers as Spider-Man 
Having taken over Peter Parker's body, Otto Octavius possesses now all of the powers, abilities, memories and equipment Peter Parker used to have.
However, as a way to reaffirm his perceived superior mind, Octavius tinkered with the original Spider-Man costume, adding some carbonadium plating over his neck and skull, talons on his hands and feet, split-toed footwear fashioned as jika-tabi shoes, a slightly different, more imposing spider-motif on his back and enhanced lenses in his costume, with HUD and tracking abilities.
He also retains access to some of his former hideouts as Doctor Octopus, coupling Horizon Tech-derived inventions with his own peculiar brand of technology.
The Octobots are octopus-themed robots that are created by Doctor Octopus. There are two different kinds of Octobots:
- The first model of the Octobot seen is a little metal ball with eight legs which are controlled mentally by Doctor Octopus via a remote control. These Octobots can also be used to attack, to perform different tasks, and attach themselves to anyone so that Doctor Octopus can control them.
- The second model of the Octobot seen is a giant metallic robot which Doctor Octopus uses to attack huge constructions.
The Octobots have at least two known variations:
- The Spider-Slayers - These Spider-Slayers that appeared in Spider-Island are actually first generation Octobots that Spider-Man had laden with a special serum which was used to cure the Spider-Virus that slowly turned everyone into Man-Spiders.
- The Spider-Bots - The Spider-Bots are small red and blue spiders. While inside Spider-Man's body, Doctor Octopus controlled them by remote and able to enact constant surveillance over the whole New York city, perform different tasks and control technology.
Other versions 
House of M 
Marvel 1602 
In the Marvel 1602 universe, a version of Dr. Octopus appears in the Spider-Man 1602 miniseries. Baron Victor Octavius is an Italian nobleman living in France. His attempts to use the blood of octopuses to cure himself of bubonic plague have resulted in his becoming a deformed octopus-like monster,[volume & issue needed] he is also associated with fellow Dr. Curtis Connors, transforming him into The Lizard.[volume & issue needed] A potion derived from the blood of Hal McCoy by the natural philosopher Henri Le Pym keeps him human, but is growing steadily less effective.[volume & issue needed] He believes that the blood of Peter Parquagh might be the basis of a more effective potion.[volume & issue needed] He is later killed by a transformed Le Pym's giant foot.
Marvel Zombies 
On Earth-2149 (a world in which almost all heroes and villains are zombies) an undead Doctor Octopus first appears in the Marvel Zombies series alongside several other zombie supervillains attempting to kill and devour the invading Galactus; this incarnation of Doctor Octopus is apparently destroyed piecemeal by several cosmically powered hero zombies after he got in the way of an attack they were aiming at the invading Galactus.
In the prequel series to Marvel Zombies, Marvel Zombies vs. The Army of Darkness and Marvel Zombies: Dead Days, the zombie Doctor Octopus makes only a few cameo appearances, as a member of the undead Sinister Six. Another alternate version appears in Marvel Zombies Return as a member of the Sinister Six. He was ripped in half and infected by the reality-hopping Zombie Spider-Man. The Doctor's body is then destroyed and devoured by a zombified Spider-Man and then was spit out (because zombie meat tasted terrible to other zombies) after he and the rest of the Sinister Six has devoured Peter's friends.
In the MC2 alternate continuity, it is revealed that Doctor Octopus attacked the Daily Bugle shortly after the disappearance/retirement of Spider-Man, killing editor-in-chief Joseph "Robbie" Robertson. This motivates Bugle publisher J. Jonah Jameson to initiate "Project: Human Fly", an attempt to create a government controlled superhero. Mercenaries (later revealed to be in the employ of Doctor Octopus) attempt to steal the Human Fly suit, but are thwarted when Jameson's grandson takes the suit (the controls of which bond to the first user) and becomes the superhero The Buzz. The Buzz and Spider-Girl eventually apprehend Doctor Octopus, who—now being struck with cancer—falls into a coma from which he is not expected to recover.[volume & issue needed] Later, the mantle of Doctor Octopus is taken up by Lady Octopus.[volume & issue needed]
Noir Doctor Octopus 
In the Spider-Man Noir series, his name however first appears in the Daily Bugle newspaper as one of the biologists undertaking an oceanic voyage on a research ship named "The Atlantis'. He appears in person in issue one of the sequel series, "Eyes Without a Face". Here, he is a doctor working in a facility on Ellis Island. His legs are crippled and withered, and he travels in a wheelchair with six long metal claw-like tentacles sticking out. He is officially conducting experiments on primates, to study their brains in connection with evolution, and in the end, it is shown he is secretly taking in kidnapped African-Americans for his own more secret experiments. He is later revealed to in fact be working with the Nazis and their American proxies, "Friends of New Germany", with the plot of making all minorities into mindless slaves. However, his experiments are uncovered by Spider-Man, and although he is allowed to leave the country due to his past service to America, he is subsequently rejected by the Nazis as they believe his crippled body reflects a crippled mind that could produce nothing of value for them.
Spider-Man: India 
In Spider-Man: India, Dr. Octopus is featured as a minion/meek doctor who is transformed by Nalin Oberoi into a mystical version of Doctor Octopus to find and kill Pavitr Prabhaker, the Indian version of Spider-Man. He is later killed by Oberoi, while trying to help Spider-Man rescue MJ and Aunt Meera from Oberoi.
Spider-Man: Reign 
In Spider-Man: Reign, as conceived by Kaare Andrews, in which many superheroes had grown old and retired, Octavius appeared to save Spider-Man from death at the hands of an older version of the Sinister Six.[volume & issue needed] While he originally appeared to merely be world-weary, relying on his 'four sons' (his tentacles) to keep him alive, he revealed via monologue that he had in fact been dead for months, and had left the tentacles a program that would force them into action to find Spider-Man.[volume & issue needed] Furthermore, the tentacles were used to play the tape on which his monologue is recorded, and take him to the graveyard where his loved ones lay.[volume & issue needed] The hope is to use Spider-Man to reignite the age of the super powered beings, as both Doctor Octopus and Spider-Man were born from nuclear accidents.
Ultimate Marvel 
In Ultimate Spider-Man, Doctor Octopus is younger and very muscular. While the original Doctor Octopus wore sunglasses due to myopia, the Ultimate Octavius wears them to disguise horrible wounds inflicted on his eyes during the accident that created him, that leave him very sensitive to light. His arms are also different: he modifies them so that their ends are made up of nanobots, and thus can have various lethal accessories, transforming the three-pronged 'claws' into flamethrowers, tasers, and machine guns. Ultimate Six revealed he had a psychic link with his arms and could control them remotely.[volume & issue needed] Ultimate Spider-Man #103 expanded on this, revealing Octavius also has the ability to manipulate metal.
Dr. Otto Octavius is introduced as a scientist at OsCorp and secretly a corporate spy for Norman Osborn's business rival, Justin Hammer. He is caught in a lab accident (the same one that turns Norman into the Green Goblin), grafting his traditional metal arms onto his body. After this incident, he is able to communicate with these mechanical arms via telepathy. He modifies his arms to have the power to morph into different shapes, and then seeks revenge against Justin Hammer, but Spider-Man intervenes. Although Octavius is defeated by Spider-Man, Justin Hammer perishes due to a heart attack caused by Doctor Octopus attacking him. Afterwards, Octavius is brought into S.H.I.E.L.D. custody where he, along with Norman Osborn, form the Ultimate Six, consisting of some of Spider-Man's rogues gallery. There are only five villains to begin with, but Norman Osborn planned to bring Spider-Man into the group. The five attack S.H.I.E.L.D. and capture an unmasked Spider-Man. They tie him to a chair, and Osborn humiliates Peter by rcounting the accident that created him, and he and Otto's involvements. Osborn then blackmails Peter into joining them, threataning Mary Jane's life. In a battle between the Six and the Ultimates on the White House lawn, Octopus is taken down by Wasp. Octavius is separated from his tentacles and held in a different prison far away from them. Octavius later finds out that his ex-wife is giving the rights to use his likeness in the Spider-Man film. Outraged, he summons his tentacles from the S.H.I.E.L.D. facility and goes on a rampage. He manages to capture Spider-Man, and he brings him aboard an airplane, ties him to a chair, and unmasks him. From there, he inflicts humiliation and torture on to Peter, mocking him as a teenager, pulling a tooth out, and webbing his mouth. Peter escaped, and defeats Octavius. Back in S.H.I.E.L.D. custody, Nick Fury melts Doctor Octopus' mechanical arms in front of him and instructs the guards to watch the melting mechanism for at least an hour afterwords to make sure the arms would not try to escape. However, in the Ultimate Hobgoblin story arc, it was revealed that a spare set of arms existed within a bunker belonging to Norman Osborn. Plans for these remain to be seen.
In the "Ultimate Clone Saga", Otto Octavius was revealed to be responsible for all the Spider-Man clones, including an older clone of Peter believing itself to be Richard Parker, and a Gwen Stacy clone that can transform into the Carnage creature. His experimentation and research was done for the FBI/CIA (both organizations are said to be behind it in different issues) in order to find a way to create super soldiers so the U.S. Government wouldn't have to be reliant on Nick Fury's monopoly on the Ultimates. In #103, he smugly reveals he is now outside Fury's jurisdiction and takes pleasure in pointing out to Peter that his work perverts the hero's life. In issue #104 he creates a new set of arms out of metal scraps and battles both Spider-Man and Spider-Woman, killing two other clones in the process, before being knocked out.
Octavius makes a brief appearance in Ultimate Spider-Man #113 confronting Norman Osborn as the latter breaks out of the Triskelion; Octavius attacks his former boss to prevent his escape, informing him that he betrayed him by giving the OZ formula to the FBI. Otto is beating Norman senseless until his other former ally, Electro, intervenes and shocks Ock with a bolt of electricity, knocking him out.
Alongside the rest of the Ultimate Six, Octopus plays a role in the "Death of Spider-Man" storyline. Norman Osborn breaks him and the rest out of the Triskelion. After their escape, Norman Osborn informs them that God wishes for them to kill Peter Parker. Doctor Octopus wanted to leave the group, because he wanted to live a normal life as a scientist and also said that he took enough pride in helping create Spider-Man. Osborn was outraged by the fact that Octavius tried to share credit for Spider-Man's existence, and attacked him. The two of them fought which ended with Osborn pummeling him to death.
In other media 
- Doctor Octopus appears in the Spider-Man episode "Bubble, Bubble, Oil and Trouble", voiced by Stanley Jones.
- Doctor Octopus was a guest villain in the 1982 The Incredible Hulk episode "Tomb of the Unknown Hulk", voiced by Michael Bell.
- Michael Bell reprises the role in the Spider-Man and His Amazing Friends episode "Spidey Meets the Girl of Tomorrow".
- Doctor Octopus made several appearances in the 1990s Spider-Man TV series, voiced by Efrem Zimbalist, Jr. with a thick Germanic accent. First appearing in the episode "Doctor Octopus Armed and Dangerous", Otto Octavius was Peter Parker's science teacher at science camp when Peter was 10 years old. This relationship of former mentor and pupil made Dr. Octopus fond of Peter even after his descent into villainy. Octavius was also a member in both incarnations of the Kingpin's Insidious Six, as the leader of the group in the field.[episode needed] In the three-part "Secret Wars" saga, Doctor Octopus was among the villains the Beyonder chose to represent evil.[episode needed] They conquer some of the planet. He originally colonized Octavia before it was taken over by Doctor Doom, who renamed it New Latveria.[episode needed]
- Doctor Octopus makes a cameo in the first episode of Spider-Man Unlimited.
- Doctor Octopus appears in The Spectacular Spider-Man, voiced by Peter MacNicol. Dr. Octavius is a timid research scientist working under Norman Osborn at OsCorp, and plays a part in the creation of Sandman and Rhino, earning him the nickname "Doctor Octopus", which he considers demeaning. After the four-armed harness he creates becomes fused to his spinal cord, he becomes deranged and megalomaniacal, blaming Osborn and Spider-Man for the accident. He forms the Sinister Six, composed of himself, Electro, Rhino, Sandman, Vulture, Shocker; he's defeated and incarcerated again. Pretending to become cured of his dementia, he secretly becomes the "Master Planner" and begins to organize several plans to ensure super villains would run New York with him as their leader. However, his plans are foiled again by Spider-man during New Year's Eve.
- Doctor Octopus appeared in Ultimate Spider-Man, voiced by Tom Kenny. This version is depicted as being physically paralyzed and entirely dependent on his tentacles to move following a lab accident which Norman Osborn saved him from. He has an unclean appearance with long hair, wears an apparatus similar to an iron lung, and the tips of his tentacles can convert into various weapons. This version is a black market criminal genius associated with Norman Osborn and the creator of Venom. He is abused repeatedly by Osborn who makes selfish and unreasonable demands. Following his fight with Iron Man, Doctor Octopus is shown to be bald and residing in a tentacled orb when he manages to catch Spider-Man for Norman Osborn. Eventually, Doctor Octopus gets revenge by turning him into the Green Goblin and places a control collar on Green Goblin. Green Goblin overcomes the control collar and attacks Doctor Octopus. By Season Two, Doctor Octopus has returned to his previous appearance and sports some new glasses. He has been shown to be working on some serums that turns anyone that is injected into their system into human/animal hybrids. These serums have the DNA of lizards, vultures, scorpions, and rhinoceros. Dr. Curt Conners uses the lizard DNA in the season premiere episode "The Lizard", to regrow his missing arm turing him into the Lizard. Later in the episode "The Rhino," Alex O'Hirn steals the rhino DNA and becomes the Rhino in order to get revenge on Flash Thompson for bulling him. In the episode "The Sinister Six," Doctor Octopus gathers Beetle, Electro, Kraven the Hunter, and Rhino to form the Sinister Six. To further his revenge and expand the Sinister Six, Doctor Octopus abducted Dr. Curt Connors and attached a control collar to him which mutated him into Lizard so that Lizard can be his sixth member. During the fight at the Statue of Liberty, Lizard broke free of the control collar and attacked Doctor Octopus. After Lizard escapes into the sewers, Spider-Man rips off Doctor Octopus' tentacles. Doctor Octopus and the remaining members of the Sinister Six are arrested by S.H.I.E.L.D.
- Doctor Octopus appears in the Robot Chicken episode "Tapping a Hero", voiced by Seth Green. In the episode "Superheroes Tonight" segment, paparazzi nabbed Spider-Man emerging from a window from Aunt May's house causing Doctor Octopus to think that Aunt May was Spider-Man.
- Director of the Spider-Man films, Sam Raimi, has stated that Ock was intended to appear in the first film, teaming up with Green Goblin, but wasn't included because Raimi thought it "wouldn't do the movie justice to have a third origin in there."
- In the 2004 feature film Spider-Man 2, Doctor Octopus is the main antagonist, and is portrayed by Alfred Molina. This version is portrayed as a sympathetic character, and he is married to a woman named Rosalie. He first meets Peter Parker when Curt Connors recommends visiting him. A disastrous experiment with tritium that Octavius uses his four-armed harness to handle results in Rosalie's death and the fusion of the harness to Octavius. The arms have artificial intelligence that influence Octavius into acting irrationally, and he comes into conflict with Spider-Man when he tries to rob a bank to further his experiments. He eventually kidnaps Mary Jane to an abandoned pier warehouse where he makes another attempt to harness energy from tritium. When Spider-Man arrives, they do battle, but Octavius's original personality manages to reassert itself over his arms' A.I., and he ultimately sacrifices himself to destroy the tritium reactor before it explodes.
- Archive footage of Molina as Dr. Octopus appears in the opening scene of Spider-Man 3, and one of the newspaper portraits on the wall of J. Jonah Jameson's office is the "Doc Ock Still at Large" paper seen earlier in Spider-Man 2.
Video games 
- Doctor Octopus appears in the Spider-Man Questprobe game.
- Doctor Octopus was one of many Spider-Man villains to appear in the arcade game Spider-Man: The Video Game.
- Doctor Octopus is the final boss in Spider-Man: Return of the Sinister Six.
- Doctor Octopus is the first boss in the game The Amazing Spider-Man vs. The Kingpin.
- Doctor Octopus is the first boss in both the Super Nintendo and Sega Genesis games based on the animated series.
- Efrem Zimbalist, Jr. reprises his role of Doctor Octopus in the Spider-Man video game for the PlayStation, Dreamcast, PC, Nintendo 64, and Game Boy Color. Doctor Octopus works with Carnage to turn everyone in New York into symbiotes but they are both defeated by Spider-Man. After being defeated, the Carnage symbiote bonds with Octavius, turning him into Monster Ock (voiced by Marcus Shirock). After Monster Ock is defeated, the Carnage symbiote separates from Doctor Octopus, and he is arrested.
- Doctor Octopus appeared as the final boss in the Game Boy Color game Spider-Man 2: The Sinister Six.
- Doctor Octopus is seen at the end of Spider-Man 2: Enter Electro, still in his cell.
- Doctor Octopus appeared in the Spider-Man 2 game based on the movie Spider-Man 2 voiced by Alfred Molina. He appears as a boss character several times in the game, and is the final boss at the end of the game.
- Doctor Octopus is a playable character and a boss in the Spider-Man: Friend or Foe video game voiced by Joe Alaskey.
- A female version of Doctor Octopus, Dr. Serena Patel, appears as a boss in the Marvel 2099 setting of the video game Spider-Man: Shattered Dimensions, voiced by Tara Strong. She is the head scientist of Alchemax's Shadow Division, which is dedicated to the creation of dangerous super-weapons and other experiments. Fearing that Spider-Man's war on Alchemax would lead to her, Patel creates a battle suit and models it after her idol, Otto Octavius, along with six high-tech mechanical arms, and takes up the mantle of Dr. Octopus.
- Doctor Octopus (credited as Doc Ock) appears as a villain in two missions in the MMORPG Marvel Super Hero Squad Online, voiced by Peter MacNicol.
- Doctor Octopus is available as downloadable content for the game LittleBigPlanet, as part of "Marvel Costume Kit 1".
- Doctor Octopus appears in Spider-Man: Edge of Time, voiced by Dave B. Mitchell. When history is altered so that Alchemax was established in the seventies, Octavius is a scientist employed by the company, who apparently never turned to crime, although he still uses his tentacles as tools for his research. He and company founder Walker Sloane attempt to use Anti-Venom to kill Spider-Man, but when Spider-Man 2099 intervenes, Octavius, Sloan and Anti-Venom are merged and thrown into a time portal, where they are trapped between the present time and the year 2099.
- In The Amazing Spider-Man video game, Octavius is mentioned in Scorpion's bio as one of the scientists at Oscorp that makes cross-species super-humans.
Toys and collectibles 
- Doc Ock has been recreated in action figure form multiple times, first as part of Mattel's Secret Wars line, then later many times by Toy Biz in their Spider-Man and Marvel Legends series, and finally by Hasbro as part of their Spider-Man: Origin series. The movie figure will also be featured in Hasbro's Marvel Legends Spider-Man 3 wave. The action feature from this figure was removed. Hasbro released a Spectacular Spider-Man action figure later.
- The character has also been recreated in several statues and mini-busts, by the likes of Diamond Select, Art Asylum, and Bowen Designs.
- Doctor Octopus is the third figurine in the Classic Marvel Figurine Collection.
Amusement park rides 
Doctor Octopus appears as the leader of the Sinister Syndicate in The Amazing Adventures of Spider-Man ride at Islands of Adventure at the Universal Orlando Resort, voiced by Rodger Bumpass. He has invented an anti-gravity cannon, and uses it, with the Syndicate, to hold the Statue of Liberty for ransom. He attacks guests several times during the ride, until he is finally defeated by Spider-Man on the New York rooftops. Doctor Octopus is last seen bundled together with the rest of the Syndicate, attempting to attack Spider-Man one last time before his tentacle is webbed to the Hobgoblin's head.
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