Ends of the Earth (Marvel Comics)

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"Ends of the Earth"
Preview for "Ends of the Earth" storyline that is an edited version of the cover for The Amazing Spider-Man #682.
Art by Stefano Caselli.
Publisher Marvel Comics
Publication date March – June 2012
Genre
Main character(s) Spider-Man
Sinister Six
Doctor Octopus
Avengers
Creative team
Writer(s) Dan Slott
Penciller(s) Stefano Caselli
Editor(s) Stephen Wacker

"Ends of the Earth" is a comic book storyline in The Amazing Spider-Man published by Marvel Comics in 2012. The villains of the story are the Sinister Six. Unlike the prior event story "Spider-Island" there is only one tie-in issue (a one-shot) instead of the multitude of tie-in issues involved with that story;[1] the story is completely contained within issues #682-687 of The Amazing Spider-Man.

Premise[edit]

The story is part of the celebration of the 50th anniversary of Spider-Man's first appearance.[1] "Ends of the Earth" will see Spider-Man fighting against the Sinister Six, who are led by Doctor Octopus. Despite Spider-Man leaving the Avengers in Shattered Heroes, the members of the team are supporting characters. The story was written by Dan Slott and brings storylines that have been running since issue #600 was released in July 2009 to fruition.[2][3] Marvel released several preview images for the event,[4][5] and has written an article about why each current member of the Sinister Six is important for this group.[6][7][8][9][10][11]

Plot summary[edit]

Lead-up[edit]

Doctor Octopus learns that he only has a few months left to live due to injuries he has sustained in fights with Spider-Man, Captain America, and others.[12] During the "Origin of the Species" storyline Doctor Octopus enlists the help of several villains to kidnap the presumed newborn son of Norman Osborn and Menace because he believes the unique combination of their blood being exposed to two different Goblin formulas could provide a cure for him. When he learns Harry Osborn is the father he realizes no cure will be found in the boy's blood.[13] Doctor Octopus captures Tony Stark and forces him to try to find a cure for him by threatening to blow up a bomb. Tony comments that medicine is not his specialty and states that he should try to contact Doctor Strange or Mister Fantastic for help.[14] Doctor Octopus has an army of Macro-Octobots attack New York city to keep Spider-Man and the Avengers occupied while his Sinister Six (consisting of Chameleon, Electro, Mysterio, Rhino, Sandman, and himself) infiltrates a military base, but Spider-Man and the Avengers are able to stop them.[15] The Sinister Six create a cosmic problem on a Caribbean island to keep Spider-Man and the Future Foundation occupied and away from the Baxter Building so the Sinister Six can sneak inside and steal one of Reed Richard's inventions.[16] The Sinister Six attack a lab in Paris to create an opening to the Avengers Academy to steal a device containing self-sustaining power that was invented by Henry Pym.[17] The Sinister Six later fight and defeat the Intelligencia so that the Sinister Six is the only team of supervillains left to conquer the world. They also stole the Intelligencia's Zero Cannon (a powerful weapon which change Earth's gravity field to send specific objects to space). Doctor Octopus later appeared in a new robot suit which would help to keep him alive.[18] Doctor Octopus had some Octobots sneak aboard John Jameson's space shuttle when it launched for Horizon Lab's Apogee 1 Space Station,[19] and tried to have them take over the space station by having the Octobots mind-control the Apogee 1 Space Station's personnel.[20] Spider-Man, the Human Torch, and John Jameson are able to stop the Octobots, but the Apogee 1 Space Station is destroyed.[21]

Main plot[edit]

Using his own version of Green Goblin's glider and bombs, Spider-Man defeats Equinox. After bringing a firefighter to the hospital for injuries he sustained during Equinox's attack, Peter Parker recaps all of the inventions he has made for Horizon Labs. When Peter Parker arrives at Horizon Labs he learns Mayor J. Jonah Jameson plans to do everything he can to shut down Horizon Labs. At the Sinister Six's underwater base, Doctor Octopus tells the rest of the Sinister Six his master plan which would also imply that he would even fight the Avengers. Doctor Octopus activates a giant antennae called the Octahedral which activate his satellites called Octavian Lens which are orbiting around the Earth. The Octavian Lens end up speeding up the Greenhouse Effect and heats up the Earth. Upon hacking into the TV screens all around the world, Doctor Octopus announces what is happening and shuts down the satellites while revealing he also has technology to fight global warming. He says he can save the world at a price so that he can be known as the man who "gave you the greatest gift of all...a future." After speaking to Mary Jane Watson, Peter Parker dons a new Spider-Man costume he had prepared in anticipation for the Sinister Six's next attack and meets up with the Avengers who are discussing what happened and how to combat this threat. Spider-Man states that the time to react is now and shouts "Avengers Assemble."[22]

In a flashback, the Sinister Six steal objects from around the world which can further their plans. In the present at Palazzo Senatorio, an international meeting of the world's greatest minds and the world leaders is carried out to discuss Doctor Octopus' supposed offer to save the world. The Avengers crash the assembly as Spider-Man states that they cannot negotiate with a supervillain. Al Gore states that Doctor Octopus would save them. Without a counter-argument, Spider-Man punches Al Gore and reveals to everyone that Al Gore is actually Chameleon in disguise. Spider-Man states that his new costume could detect which person is actually Chameleon. Meanwhile at Horizon Labs, Mayor J. Jonah Jameson gives orders to shut down the laboratories, saying he doesn't care about the rest of the world. Back in Rome, a transmission from Doctor Octopus states that he has activated the Octavian Lens which are blocking the harmful UV rays from the sun in order to reinforce his offer. Spider-Man is forced to let Chameleon go by the collection of world leaders and thinkers, but he secretly places a Spider-Tracer on Chameleon so that he and the Avengers can follow him. They follow Chameleon to the Mediterranean Coasts where the rest of the Sinister Six is waiting for Chameleon. Although Thor is able to hurl Electro into the upper atmosphere, the Sinister Six successfully subdue the Avengers using the objects stolen in the flashback. Spider-Man is then taken down when trying to gain control of Doctor Octopus' tentacles with his helmet. Doctor Octopus then says he has succeeded in another goal, defeating Spider-Man.[23]

As the remaining five members of the Sinister Six depart, Silver Sable (who has been watching the fight under cloak) manages to rescue Black Widow and Spider-Man to track the Sinister Six. As Doctor Octopus issues his demands for two hundred facilities to be turned over to him to launch the missiles needed for the process to start as well as two billion dollars for each of the Sinister Six, Spider-Man contacts Horizon Labs for help. Tracking one of the facilities in the Sahara Desert, Spider-Man, Black Widow and Silver Sable confront the Sandman. Spider-Man successfully identifies and isolates the one grain of sand containing Sandman's consciousness. When they enter the facility they realize it is a decoy as it was producing hollow shells of satellites, and Doctor Octopus contacts the U.N. again and orders them to turn all their resources towards killing the 'global terror' Spider-Man.[24]

Over the course of the next three days, Spider-Man, Black Widow and Silver Sable make hit-and-run attacks on several of the factories that were constructing Doctor Octopus' satellites. In Korea, they face off against the Rhino whom Spider-Man defeats with electrified webbing. However, S.H.I.E.L.D. forces arrive on the scene, not to take the Rhino into custody, but to arrest Spider-Man and his allies. With nearly all of the Earth's governments siding with Doctor Octopus with the promise of ending global warming, Spider-Man is now considered Global Public Enemy #1. Back in New York City, Mayor J. Jonah Jameson declares martial law and has his Anti-Spider Squad patrol the streets to prevent any looting incidents as it happened during the Spider-Island event. Mary Jane Watson waits for Peter's return, confident that he will win against Doctor Octopus, and plans of a way to show everyone how much of a hero he truly is. Silver Sable also begins to show signs of romantic feelings toward Spider-Man. After interrogating the captured Sandman for information and receiving a surprising message from the Titanium Man, Black Widow explaining that the Titanium Man defines himself as a Russian patriot rather than an American villain. Spider-Man rallies Union Jack, Sabra, Kangaroo II, and the Big Hero 6 (consisting of Go-Go Tomago, Hiro Takachiho, Fred, Honey Lemon, Wasabi-No Ginger, and Ebon Samurai) to help stop the construction of Octavius' satellites. Following a lead, Spider-Man's group find a deserted factory near the border between Symkaria and Romania. Doctor Octopus appears on the monitor, claiming victory as the last of his satellites had already been built and launched. Spider-Man goads him to prove that he was going to save the world. However, Doctor Octopus instead admits that Spider-Man was right all along and further admits that he is a hateful and spiteful creature. He does not want the 'mediocre and mundane' to live on while his genius dies and wants the world must perish with him, so he activates the satellites' deadly function and begins to burn everything on Earth's day side.[25]

While Spider-Man, Black Widow, and Silver Sable are tracking down Doctor Octopus' location, Spider-Man's allies are invading the other facilities. In Japan, Big Hero 6 find one of the facilities and discover that it is guarded by Everwraith. Despite the tough battle, Big Hero 6 ends up victorious. In another facility, Sabra fights through an army of Octobots until she is shot by Crossbones. In Australia, Kangaroo II enters a facility and is ambushed by Lady Deathstrike. In another facility, Titanium Man enters it and ends up fighting Scorpion. Titanium Man was defeated by Scorpion despite his best efforts.[26]

As Spider-Man and his allies exit the factory, they come across a scene of Symkaria being burned by Doctor Octopus' satellites. As they try to save the citizens from the seeming devastation, they are initially unaware that it is a large-scale ruse created by Mysterio and the Chameleon in order to distract them from away from the actual completion of the satellites. Meanwhile, Doctor Octopus once again asks the people of Earth to aid him against those who were actively try to stop his plans (though he considers the general populace to be nothing more than mindless sheep). He later learns of Mysterio and Chameleon's actions and is enraged that Chameleon is battling Spider-Man in what Doctor Octopus believes should be HIS final duel with the wall-crawler. He takes control of the battlesuit that Chameleon was using and tries to destroy Spider-Man which allows Spider-Man and the others to realize that Symkaria's destruction is false. After defeating the battlesuit, Spider-Man manages to convince Mysterio to switch sides with the argument that the $2billion he received would be worthless if Doctor Octopus did not follow through with his promise to 'save the world.' The team is led to a location in Guatemala in which they must defeat the Octobot-controlled Avengers. During the initial stages of the battle, Spider-Man realizes that all the inventions he had created at Horizon Labs (ranging from his Cryo Cube, a helmet design, and a noise reduction system) had been used and corrupted by Doctor Octopus.[27]

Although the Octobot-controlled Iron Man knocks out Hawkeye and Black Widow, Spider-Man's new kung-fu training allows him to defeat Spider-Woman while Silver Sable knocks out Captain America, who was holding back enough to give her attacks a chance to get through. With Spider-Man having immobilized Thor by tricking Octavius into taking full control of him (thus meaning that Thor is no longer worthy to wield his hammer), Mysterio frees Iron Man and Red Hulk by using an EMP to disable the Octobots. While Thor, Hulk and Iron Man fly up to destroy Octavius's now-launching missiles, Mysterio provides Spider-Man and Silver Sable with a ship that can take them to Doctor Octopus's sea fortress, then escapes. Unfortunately, upon arriving there, they confront the Rhino (who was fully aware of Octavius's plan to destroy the world and actually welcomes it, feeling he has nothing left to live for after the death of his wife Oksana) who pins Sable to the floor as water begins to seep into the corridor. Silver Sable orders Spider-Man to leave her even as Rhino vows to hold them both there until they both drown, saying this will enable him to win as Spider-Man vowed nobody would die around him. Spider-Man finds Doctor Octopus who traps him with all eight arms. Doctor Octopus reveals that he has calculated that 0.08% of Earth's population will survive, with those fifty thousand remembering him as the greatest mass murderer of them all. Doctor Octopus states this before he crawls out of the suit to activate the satellites as his four arms are needed to hold Spider-Man and the other four are needed for a base. Having failed to convince Doctor Octopus that the heat he is generating would fry the brains of the survivors, Spider-Man breaks the arms and destroys his enemy's equipment using one of the arms before planning to take Doctor Octopus away for medical attention. Although Spider-Man is left to mourn the death of Silver Sable as he is rescued by the Horizon Labs staff on their boat. Spider-Man then asks the Horizon Labs staff to build a life support unit for Doctor Octopus.[28]

Aftermath[edit]

Spider-Man spends the next few hours searching for Silver Sable's body, but is eventually relieved by the Black Widow (with orders from Captain America) who tells Spider-Man to help escort Doctor Octopus to the Raft. Since he is the expert on handling Doctor Octopus, Spider-Man is given no choice. Though Captain America tries to comfort the web-slinger by reminding him that Silver Sable was a trained mercenary and knew the risks, Spider-Man instead reminisces about a past adventure with Silver Sable and how he got to know her better. In the end, he confronts Doctor Octopus and tells him that since his satellites will be destroyed, he will die without leaving any legacy. The Avengers depart with a final scene of an Octobot floating on the surface of the water.[29] Octopus' story was continued in the November 2012 storyline "Dying Wish".[30]

Reception[edit]

  • The Amazing Spider-Man #682 received a rating of 8.0 out of 10 from IGN.[31]
  • The Amazing Spider-Man #683 received a rating of 6.5 out of 10 from IGN.[32]
  • The Amazing Spider-Man #684 received a rating of 7.5 out of 10 from IGN.[33]
  • The Amazing Spider-Man #685 received a rating of 6.5 out of 10 from IGN.[34]
  • The Amazing Spider-Man #686 received a rating of 7.0 out of 10 from IGN.[35]
  • The Amazing Spider-Man #687 received a rating of 5.0 out of 10 from IGN.[36]
  • The Amazing Spider-Man: Ends of the Earth special received a rating of 6.0 out of 10 from IGN.[37]
  • Avenging Spider-Man #8 received a rating of 5.5 out of 10 from IGN.[38]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "Comic Book Resources: Axel-In-Charge: Guest-Starring the "Amazing" Dan Slott". 3 February 2012. Retrieved 7 March 2012. 
  2. ^ "IGN.com: Dan Slott discusses the next big Amazing Spider-Man storyline". 13 December 2011. Retrieved 6 March 2012. 
  3. ^ "Comic Book Resources: Slott Takes Spidey to the "Ends of the Earth"". 13 December 2012. Retrieved 6 March 2012. 
  4. ^ "Marvel: The Sinister Six Vs. Spider-Man: Ends of the Earth". 24 February 2012. Retrieved 6 March 2012. 
  5. ^ "IGN.com: Marvel starts teasing their next big Spidey story". 23 February 2012. Retrieved 6 March 2012. 
  6. ^ "Marvel - Ends of the Earth: Doctor Octopus". 29 February 2012. Retrieved 6 March 2012. 
  7. ^ "Marvel - Ends of the Earth: Chameleon". 5 March 2012. Retrieved 6 March 2012. 
  8. ^ "Marvel - Ends of the Earth: Sandman". 2 March 2012. Retrieved 6 March 2012. 
  9. ^ "Marvel - Ends of the Earth: Mysterio". 5 March 2012. Retrieved 6 March 2012. 
  10. ^ "Marvel - Ends of the Earth: Electro". 1 March 2012. Retrieved 6 March 2012. 
  11. ^ "Marvel - Ends of the Earth: Rhino". 12 March 2012. Retrieved 13 March 2012. 
  12. ^ The Amazing Spider-Man #600
  13. ^ The Amazing Spider-Man #642-647
  14. ^ Invincible Iron Man #502
  15. ^ The Amazing Spider-Man #648
  16. ^ The Amazing Spider-Man #659-660
  17. ^ Avengers Academy #14
  18. ^ The Amazing Spider-Man #676
  19. ^ The Amazing Spider-Man #653
  20. ^ The Amazing Spider-Man #680
  21. ^ The Amazing Spider-Man #681
  22. ^ The Amazing Spider-Man #682
  23. ^ The Amazing Spider-Man #683
  24. ^ The Amazing Spider-Man #684
  25. ^ The Amazing Spider-Man #685
  26. ^ The Amazing Spider-Man: Ends of the Earth one-shot
  27. ^ The Amazing Spider-Man #686
  28. ^ The Amazing Spider-Man #687
  29. ^ The Avenging Spider-Man #8
  30. ^ The Amazing Spider-Man #698-700
  31. ^ "Amazing Spider-Man #682 Review". IGN. 21 March 2012. 
  32. ^ "Amazing Spider-Man #683 Review". IGN. 4 April 2012. 
  33. ^ "Amazing Spider-Man #684 Review". IGN. 18 April 2012. 
  34. ^ "Amazing Spider-Man #685 Review". IGN. 3 May 2012. 
  35. ^ "Amazing Spider-Man #686 Review". IGN. 23 May 2012. 
  36. ^ "Amazing Spider-Man #687 Review". IGN. 13 June 2012. 
  37. ^ "Amazing Spider-Man: Ends of the Earth special Review". IGN. 16 May 2012. 
  38. ^ "Avenging Spider-Man #8 review". IGN. 20 June 2012.