Ben Reilly

From Academic Kids

Template:Superherobox Ben Reilly, also known as the Scarlet Spider and the second Spider-Man, is a fictional character in the Marvel Comics' Universe. He is a clone of Peter Parker, the superhero Spider-Man, and was a prominent character in the Clone Saga. He first appeared in Amazing Spider-Man #149 (October 1975).



Missing image
Cover to Web of Spider-Man #118. Ben Reilly as the Scarlet Spider.

Ben Reilly was "born" in a tank of green goo, the Jackal's second wholly successful clone, after the cloning of Gwen Stacy. Through a process of arcane science, he was then imbued with the memories of Peter Parker. After the latter was captured, the two found themselves, both in Spider-Man costume, in Shea Stadium, and fought briefly before teaming-up in an attempt to save the Gwen clone. In the process, he appeared to be killed and the surviving Spider-Man, fearful of the questions the finding of a deceased Peter Parker might raise, dropped his body in a smokestack.

In actuality, he survived and crawled from the smokestack. Naming himself "Ben Reilly", after "his" Uncle Ben and Aunt May (Reilly being her maiden name), and taking some old clothes Parker had intended to donate to charity, he left New York, deeply depressed. Soon afterward, stricken with influenza, he met Seward Trainer, a scientist secretly blackmailed by agents of the Green Goblin into keeping track of him. Trainer helped Reilly, first by giving the sick and depressed man help to get back on his feet, then, when Reilly returned to his life of wandering, by supplying references to allow him to get work, and becoming genuinely fatherly towards him. Following him was a failed earlier clone of Parker calling himself Kaine (after the biblical Cain), who believed Reilly to be the real Peter Parker and hated his "brother" for it (while admiring the "clone" Parker living Parker's life).

Three years after his "birth", he got a job in Salt Lake City as a research assistant on the back of Trainer's references. There, he became involved with a woman calling herself Janine Godobe, while Kaine became involved with a crooked detective called Louise Kennedy. "Janine" then began to push Ben away, but after he was bloodily beaten by Kaine and had nowhere else to go, he went to her apartment and she revealed that she was really a child abuse victim called Elizabeth Tyne, who had killed her abusive father and run away. Expecting him to push her away, she was shocked when he didn't, and instead revealed his spider-powers, and the fact that he was a clone, to her. After Kaine, who possessed the same fingerprints as Ben (and Peter) killed Kennedy, with the police believing Reilly was the culprit, they went on the run together for a year until Kaine forced her to leave Reilly, dropping a dead clone of her off a bridge to make Reilly think she'd died.

Missing image
Cover to Sensational Spider-Man #0. Ben Reilly as Spider-Man.
Five years after he left New York, he discovered that May Parker was dying from a stroke, he returned to New York, and encountered an embittered Spider-Man, shellshocked after several consecutive tragedies. Soon after, he donned a makeshift costume, and was dubbed the "Scarlet Spider" by the press - a moniker it took him some time to hear without wincing.

He later became the replacement Spider-Man for a time at the original's request, when Parker retired to raise his unborn child. This was at a time when both men had been led to believe that Ben was the original and Peter was the clone.

Ultimately, he died saving the original Spider-Man from the Green Goblin in Peter Parker: Spider-Man #75 (December 1996). This sacrifice, coupled with the concurrent stillbirth of his child, led Parker to reclaim the Spider-Man identity.


Scarlet Spider titles

Web of Scarlet Spider #3-4 starred a different Scarlet Spider, although Ben Reilly appeared (as Spider-Man) in issue 4.

Spider-Man titles with Ben Reilly as Spider-Man


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