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TombstoneOrigin
Series Spider-Man
Release Date October 12, 1996
Episode Number 36
Writer John Semper, Jr.
Larry Brody
Robert N. Skir
Marty Isenberg
2 images
You may be looking for the character Tombstone.

Tombstone returns with a gang of street thugs, one of which is Randy Robertson. What is his special interest in Robbie's son?

Story

Mrs. Silver, actually Alisha Silvermane, hires Tombstone to stop an expose from The Daily Bugle which would expose both her and her organization. In addition to the story Silvermane wants some incriminating photographs. Tombstone says that he'll be calling in an old favor. At the Bugle Peter is amazed that he once wanted to date Alisha Silver and Robbie says that it was a surprise that she would continue her father's empire. Despite being so close to stopping the Silvermanes another problem has arisen, the Bandana Gang has struck again. Robbie is worried about what kind of place this is to raise a family. Although he believes that Spider-Man does a lot of good, he cannot be everywhere at once.

At a car lot, members of the Bandana Gang are caught breaking in by a security guard. The gang attacks the guard and the leader asks a new member to take care of him. The new guy is hesitant until Spider-Man stops him and the gang runs away. Spidey grabs the new guy and finds out that he's actually Randy Robertson, Robbie's son. Swinging away, Spidey debates the best way to reveal the news to Robbie.

At the Parker home, Tombstone breaks in looking for the photos of Silvermane. He begins tearing up the house looking for the negatives. Aunt May is helpless to stop the brute or even call the police. Tombstone eventually finds the negatives although he fails to notice the Spider-Costume hanging in the darkroom. Returning home Spidey sees Tombstone running off. After checking in on Aunt May Spidey follows Tombstone's trail. On a bridge, Spider-Man attacks Tombstone. During the melee Tombstone grabs the webhead and throws him into the water below. Spidey berates himself for letting his anger get the better of him and losing the bad guy.

At their hideout, the Bandana Gang congratulates Randy for escaping Spider-Man. Though that was only the first part of the initiation. For their next crime Randy will need to get a gun. At home Aunt May retells the evening's events to Peter then wonders who else will come in, such as a giant lizard or human octopus. Peter finds that only the Alisha Silvermane negatives are missing. Peter realizes that Robbie is in danger because he's the only other person with copies.

Robbie returns home and his wife, Martha, tells him that their son has been cutting classes for over a week. Robbie doesn't think that he would act that way but Martha complains that he's so busy and has lost touch with his family. Sneaking home, Randy takes his father's keys and opens a drawer containing Robbie's old service revolver. Robbie catches him and finds a bandanna in his pocket. Spider-Man arrives just as Randy admits that he's in the gang and says that at least they're there for him. Robbie then gets a call from a Lonnie who calls him "Straightarrow". Lonnie, who is actually Tombstone, tells Robbie to meet him at Veterans Memorial Park at midnight. Robbie leaves and tells Randy to go to his room so they can talk things out later.

Spider-Man follows Robbie to the park. Robbie finds Lonnie and becomes frightened at his new appearance. Tombstone wants the Silvermane story buried by Robbie or he's going to bury the story himself. Robbie refuses and Tombstone moves to attack him. Spider-Man intervenes and the two get into another physical confrontation. Tombstone destroys the support columns causing the place to fall down and runs. Spidey saves Robbie just as the place collapses.

Safe, Spider-Man asks Robbie how he knows Tombstone. Robbie then recounts the events that led Lonnie Lincoln to becoming Tombstone. Robbie and Lonnie were once childhood friends. One day Robbie tried to help Lonnie to climb into a broken window to steal some ice creams. When the cops arrived Robbie ran off and Lonnie got caught, arrested, and went right to juvenile court. Robbie eventually graduated with honors but Lonnie went into crime. Robbie often regretted that he wasn't caught and that Lonnie never revealed his name. When he finally got a reporter job at a local newspaper, Robbie got a call about a break-in at the Spaulding Chemical Plant. Robbie goes to the planet thinking that it could be his big break but only finds Lonnie. Lonnie wants Robbie to experience life on the other side. Lonnie was the one who made the call and knew that Robbie would not bring gloves. Lonnie plans to frame Robbie since his fingerprints are everywhere. Lonnie then smashes a fire alarm and runs. Unfortunately he trips on cleaning supplies and trips over the railing. Robbie grabs him but Lonnie slips out of his gloves into a chemical vat. Robbie waiting for the police and other reports back up his story. However, everyone thinks that Lonnie died.

Swinging Robbie home, Spider-Man comments to himself that Robbie seems stronger now than ever before. At the Robertson home, Martha goes to talk to Randy but find that he snuck out the window. At their hideout, Randy finds that the leader of the Bandanna Gang is none other than Tombstone. Robbie returns home and finds his son gone, but his revolver still there. Tombstone once again calls and tells him to come to the Spaulding Chemical Plant because his son is about to take the fall. Robbie leaves telling his wife to dispose of the gun explaining that he never wants to see another gun in his house again. At the plant, everyone has gloves except for Randy. Tombstone tells him that he's so close to being in the family. Spider-Man then finds out from Martha that Robbie went to the chemical plant and goes to follow. Along the way Spider-Man talks to Madame Web who tells him that he cannot use his superhuman strength to once again confront the "man-mountain". Some villains must be fought with the human heart.

At the plant, the gang is loading boxes into the truck when Robbie confronts Tombstone. Tombstone tells Robbie that he's videotaping everything Randy is doing. Tombstone offers a deal: Randy can get away free as long as Robbie kills the Silvermane story. Robbie reveals that he has already rushed the story into print and that in a few hours the whole city will know. At least Tombstone will get to see the Robertson name go down in flames. Spider-Man see this and grabs Randy to tell him that they're setting him up. Randy doesn't believe him so Spidey takes him to listen in on his father. Randy witnesses Tombstone insulting him and sees his father attack Tombstone. When Robbie activates the police alarm the other gang members run off openly leaving Randy behind. Tombstone shoves Randy aside and runs away until Robbie tackles him. Tombstone attempts to throw Robbie into a chemical vat, but Spider-Man saves him. Spider-Man and Tombstone get into a third physical confrontation. But this time Spidey trips him and ties him up over a chemical vat, jokingly warning him what another chemical bath might do.

Randy wants to run but Robbie makes him stay to face the consequences. Whatever happens to his reputation, Robbie is more concerned about what happens to Randy. Tombstone is arrested and Randy seems to get away free. Spider-Man comments that Madame Web was right. He thinks about apologizing but thinks that she has a big enough head already. However, Madame Web hears him anyways.

Quotes

"Rest in pieces!"

-Tombstone

"I took that fall for you, man!"

-Young Lonnie Lincoln in Robbie's flashbacks

Trivia

  • At the end of this episode, Tombstone almost falls into the chemical vat, but is saved by Spider-Man. Spider-Man then remarks that if he fell in there again his hair would turn green. This is obviously a reference to the Joker from DC comics who in many incarnations fell into a chemical vat and turning his hair green.

Goofs

  • During the fight on the bridge Tombstone smashes car with Spider-Man's body, badly damaging it, but when he lifts Spidey up to throw him into the water, the car is completely intact.
  • When Lonnie falls into chemical vat, he falls at angle rather than straight down.

Continuity

Background

Reaction

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