02 December 2006

The Many Foes of Spider-Man - Jackal

Rar! Here comes the Jackal.

Prof. Miles Warren was once a professor of biochemistry at Empire State University. Warren focused his attention towards methods of cloning, inspired by the creation of a full-grown frog to attempt to clone humans. When he killed his lab partner Anthony Serba (who had discovered the truth) Warren became completely insane, developing the personality of the Jackal as he tried to convince himself that someone else had killed his assistant, rather than he himself (Hmm... Sounds a lot like the Green Goblin so far).

In his first appearance as the Jackal, he attempted to manipulate the Punisher into killing Spider-Man (this was the popular anti-hero's first appearance), but when the Punisher learned of the Jackal's deception, he turned against Warren.

The Jackal subsequently worked to create clones of Peter Parker and Gwen Stacy. However, his first apparently successful attempt quickly began to show signs of degeneration. It was much later revealed that this clone managed to escape before Warren could kill him, and would come to be known as the serial killer called Kaine. Warren then refined the process, and although several more failures resulted, he eventually successfully created clones of Gwen, then Peter, who did not suffer from the tell-tale degeneration. The Parker clone and the Jackal were both apparently killed in battle with Spider-Man in Amazing Spider-Man #149 (October, 1975).

Almost twenty years later, it was revealed that the clone of Peter had survived the explosion and went into hiding. In addition, Prof. Warren had made a clone of himself before he died, who went into hibernation for several years. However, in the intervening years another clone of Miles Warren ("Warren Miles") appeared, and actually married the Gwen Stacy clone. He also used his experiments to mutate his own DNA and give himself attributes of an actual Jackal (Maybe they should call him Jackal-Man); prior to these events, the Jackal's physical abilities had merely been the result of training rather than any superhuman powers.

The Peter Parker clone, unaware that the Jackal lived, took the name Ben Reilly, and went into exile. Years later, he returned to and became the Scarlet Spider. The Jackal returned at this point and convinced both Parker and Reilly that Reilly was the real Peter Parker and that the other man was the clone, and created a number of other Peter Parker clones who came into conflict with Spider-Man and the Scarlet Spider. Ultimately, the Jackal, in the process of attempting to kill and replace millions of people with clones he could control, was killed falling off a tall building while trying to save the Gwen clone, who was saved by Spider-Man.

Shortly after, Parker retired to spend more time with his pregnant wife, Mary Jane Watson-Parker, and Ben Reilly briefly replaced him as Spider-Man, until he died at the hands of the Green Goblin, finally revealing in the process that Parker was and always had been the original Spider-Man.

In the 2005 limited series Daredevil Vs. Punisher, The Jackal returned once again. This version of the Jackal is a fourth clone of Miles Warren, even further genetically altered to a point where his body is always cold (causing him to wear a thick fur coat even in the hottest weather) and he now needs to suck blood to survive. He became a crimelord and allied himself with Hammerhead, but the two of them eventually went to jail.

Villain Profiles:

the Beetle
Black Cat
the Chameleon
Doctor Octopus
the Green Goblin
J. Jonah Jameson
Jack O' Lantern

Spider-Man 3 debuts in 153 days!

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