From Marvel Graphic Novel - The Amazing Spider-Man: Hooky (1986)

In the 1980s, Marvel Comics began experimenting with a new format for some of their stories. They began producing stand-alone tales of some of their characters in a larger format, on better paper, and with a broader color palette. It was in this line that X-Men: God Loves, Man Kills and The Death of Captain Marvel were produced. Also among this line was a tale of Spider-Man fighting against a supernatural shape changer. That is the tale told in The Amazing Spider-Man: Hooky.

Written by Susan K. Putney, this story had Spider-Man help a young magic user out against her most hated foe. Only after agreeing to help did Spider-Man realize the problems that this ancient villain, known as Tordenkakerlakk, would cause him. Drawn by the great Bernie Wrightson, co-creator of Swamp Thing, Tordenkakerlakk fought Spider-Man by molding his body in a variety of unsavory ways. The level of detail here, including the impressive coloring done by Wrightson himself, is something that just wouldn’t have been able to be published in any of Spider-Man’s monthly series. The entire book is a tour de force for Wrightson.¬†Even all of these years later, this page still has the power to unsettle the reader.


  1. Sorry about this but I just concentrated on:

    “… The pulsating mass of flesh continues to unfold.”

  2. that monster is creepy as all hell, very well drawn and VERY unsettling indeed

  3. ‘The Death of Captain Marvel’ made a 9 year old version of me cry. There was something indeed special about this format and these books. I was an attempting launching point for some series and for others it was just a way for AMAZING creators to do a story without disturbing the flow of a series
    The Amazing Bill Mantlo; John Byrne; J. M. DeMatteis; Chris Claremont; Frank Miller; Walt Simonson; Michael Moorcock; P. Craig Russell; Charles Vess; Bernie Wrightson; John Buscema; Bill Sienkiewicz

    Now don’t get me wrong. For every ‘Amazing Spider-Man: Hooky’ there was a ‘WolfPack’. Which I remember as essentially a Michael Mann / Outsiders / Warriors take off. The series quickly failed, and while the Graphic Novel most likely does NOT stand up, my love for it will not be deminished. Conversely; The New Mutants made its start with this format.

    However, the influence of these GN can been see everywhere. Emperor Doom has been tapped in the Purple Man episode of the beloved, and Frankenstein resurrected Avengers cartoon.

    Personal Favs:
    The Death of Captain Marvel; Elric: The Dreaming City; Dreadstar, The New Mutants; XMen: God Loves, Man Kills, Star Slammers; Daredevil: Love and War; Alien Legion; Emperor Doom; The Incredible Hulk and the Thing: The Big Change; Cloak and Dagger: Predator and Prey

    PS – I stll can not allow myself to see the faults that I hear are present in Dune…. any version.

  4. I’ve met Bernie Wrightson. He’s a very pleasant person to talk to and his love of creating comics has not diminished throughout all these years. He is truly one of the Masters. The morphing creature is beautifully rendered and rivals the special effects in the movie John Carpenter’s THE THING.

  5. I still remember seeing the in-house ads for this book and thinking, “Eep! No thanks!” then cowering in the fetal position.