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Amazing Spider-man Vol. 2 Issue 546a

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Cover scan uploaded on Jan 17, 2008 by WallCrawler

Synopsis:

Submitted by: WallCrawler on Feb 02, 2008

It's a brand new day and Peter Parker, The Amazing Spider-man, is experiencing a brief reprieve from the "ol' Parker luck" in the form of a passionate kiss with a young night club goer. He quickly remonstrates us for thinking this is the norm, by rewinding the clock 24 hours.

We are presented with an image of a masked assailant demanding a victim's money. The twist here is that the man is wearing a Spider-man mask. Through a quick news story montage we learn that this man is a serial mugger known as the "Spider-Mugger" and that he is giving the police as well as Jackpot, NYC's officially licensed and registered hero, a very hard time. J. Jonah Jameson, publisher of The Daily Bugle, posits that this man in in fact inspired by our favorite web-head. The interview then turns to The Bugle's lagging sales in the wake of Spider-mans marked absence, to whit J.J.J has "No comment."

We cut to Forest Hills, Queens, the home of May Parker and ostensibly the current residence of her nephew, Peter Parker, who is crashing there until he finds a job. May is on her way to her volunteer job, and she leaves without even making him wheatcakes!

While searching for a job, he receives a call from Betty Brant, who has found him an apartment in his price range, but needs a check for the landlord by the next day. A series of fruitless interviews  ensues, which shows how much his life as a superhero has affected his viability as an employee. While mulling over the problems Spider-man has created for him, a call from his old pal Harry Osborne lifts his spirits as they make plans to meet at a night club. Harry and his new girlfriend, Lily, scheme to drag her room-mate, Carlie, along as well, to get her nose out of forensic odontology books.

Meanwhile, we are introduced to a new villain, Mr. Negative, who has conspired with a crooked cop to retrieve something from the evidence locker. When our villain's goons double-cross the detective, Mr. Negative himself shows up to set things right by slaughtering them in front of the detective. Negative insists that the detective spread his reputation as a man who keeps his word at the expense of the lives of all who cross him. As he pays the detective, he opens the briefcase to reveal a black tablet with glowing white characters etched into its surface.

By now we have come full-circle and are back at the opening scene, where we find out Peter hasn't even met this woman before. Her name is Mia Flores, and she's apparently very out-going, having accosted Peter on his way to the Men's Room. Rejoining his friends at their table, Lily chides him for not "going for it" because she was hot enough to be a model. Harry quickly sets her straight by saying Pete's sworn off dating models because he almost married one once. A quick recap of Harry's love life ensues, revealing he's been through three wives now. This prompts discussion of how he met prospective #4, Lily Hollister, through her father the proclaimed "public crusader" for whom Harry formed a Mayoral candidate exploratory committee. The amount of money spent on this venture prompts Pete to lament his financial woes, and to prevent him from starting in on "the Parker luck" Harry hands him a stack of bills to help pay his new landlord.

Harry points out that Pete's "friend", Mia Flores, is making eyes at him, and Pete exits for the restroom. Mia follows, and on the way expounds on her plan to become Peter's girlfriend in order to gain prominence in "the Osborne entourage" and to replace Lily Hollister eventually. Upon entering the men's room, however, she finds Pete has disappeared.

Outside, Peter jumps from the roof of the building to land in a back-alley... right next to Lily's room-mate, Carlie! He hadn't noticed her step out since she's not a "club person" and Pete awkwardly tries to recover from not noticing. Their conversation is interrupted, however, by none other than the Spider-Mugger! As Pete hands his wallet over, due to the gun at Carlie's gut, the mugger notices his right web-shooter and takes it as well, thinking it to be a watch. As the mugger flees the scene, Carlie stops Pete from joining pursuit. He manages to tag the assailant with a spider-tracer, and convinces Carlie he's only going to follow in order to get his picture for The Bugle.

While changing into his Spider-man suit, he spies a newspaper extolling 100 days without Spider-man. Peter decides against going into action as his alter-ego in order to keep Bugle sales at an all-time low, and pursues the mugger in his civvies. The mugger flees into a homeless shelter as Pete tries to confront him, and gets lost in the crowd as Aunt May grabs Peter's arm. Apparently this is where she has been volunteering, and Peter's appearance fools them into thinking he's come here for "help". Mr. Li, the supervisor of the shelter, gets Pete some shoes (he took them off to pursue the mugger) and makes Pete feel even worse for complaining about his troubles.

Before making his way home, Pete decides to make one more stop - The Daily Bugle building. Inside, we find Jameson in the midst of a crisis, with shareholders pulling out and selling stock in the paper. Peter is here to pick up a check owed him, in order to pay his new landlord, now that Harry's loan is in the possession of the Spider-Mugger. However, due to the financial troubles, Jameson has stopped all payments until he can have a controlling share of the paper. An altercation ensues, where Peter tells Jonah off for always undermining him and under-appreciating him for the job he does. Basically, that the paper relies on Peter's pictures of Spider-man to make ends meet and that Jonah owes Pete because Pete MADE him. Jameson manages to yell half of "PARKER!" before keeling over from a heart attack.