> Amazing Spider-Man Masterworks Volume 3

From the Mouths of the Marvels:

"You see, he is in a fantasy world now! He wants to be a spider...but, of course, he is only a human being! It is only a matter of time before his id and his ego get so confused that he forgets who he really is. And then he will suffer a severe breakdown!"

- - The expert psychological opinion of Dr. Ludwig Rinehart, page 7

The newspaper of record: the Daily Bugle!


Amazing Spider-Man #24
May 1965 • 20 pages

Publication Date: February 11, 1965

Letters Page: Not currently in inventory.

I: Feature Story: "Spider-Man Goes Mad!"

Pages: 20

Script: Stan Lee
Pencils: Steve Ditko
Inks: Steve Ditko
Letters: Sam Rosen

First Appearance: "Dr. Ludwig Rinehart", Connie

Villain: Mysterio/Dr. Ludwig Rinehart

Guest Appearance: Foswell, Betty Brant, J. Jonah Jameson, Flash Thompson, Liz Allan, Connie

Flashback Appearance: Doctor Octopus, the Vulture and Sandman

Synopsis: It dawns on Peter that Aunt May be in financial trouble, so he sets out to try and earn some money selling photos to the Daily Bugle. He spots some burglars and sets his camera up, then leaps on top of them and takes care of business. On the scene, too, is Frederick Foswell, the former criminal who has raised Peter Parker's suspicions as an allegedly reformed reporter for the Bugle. Unfortunately, his presence spoils the possibility of selling the pictures to Jameson. Back at the Bugle, Peter gets jealous when he realizes Betty Brant is receiving letters from Ned Leeds while he is on assignment in Europe. After talking to Foswell, Jameson develops an idea to get man-on-the-street opinions about why people hate Spider-Man. (Spider-Man booster Flash Thompson has a few things to say to the beat reporter collecting these stories!) Liz Allan asks Peter Parker to help her study in science class, which drives Flash into a jealous rage! The Bugle stories seem to have Jameson's desired effect, as they begin to turn the tide of public opinion decisively against Spider-Man.

Later, Jameson meets with a psychiatrist named Dr. Ludwig Rinehart, who says to the newspaper publisher that he thinks Spider-Man is mentally ill and on the verge of a nervous breakdown. JJJ eats this up and runs an extra that discusses Rinehart's theory. Peter Parker reads the "news story" and starts to wonder if perhaps the psychiatrist's theory might not come true. Peter decides that the best thing he can do is go talk to the doctor and see if he can't get some help. On his way to the doctor, he thinks he sees his mortal foe Doctor Octopus charging towards him, but it turns out to be a mirage. Following soon are mirages of the Sandman and the Vulture, and Spider-Man is sure he's cracking up!

The following day, he makes it to the doctor's office, and upon entering he see the doctor sitting at his desk, but everything appears upside down! Spider-Man freaks out and runs away, while Dr. Rinehart chases after him, asking him what is wrong. The doctor explains that Spider-Man is going through the early stages of schizophrenia, and that he needs urgent treatment to get better.

At the Bugle, Foswell presents Jameson with allegations that Rinehart is a phony, unlicensed doctor. Jameson, who is worried about being publically embarrassed by another fiasco, stomps off to face Rinehart. On his way to Rinehart's office, Jameson is followed by Flash Thompson, who wants to berate JJJ for the Bugle policy to paint Spider-Man as a menace. Jameson huffs and puffs his way past Flash and enters Rinehart's office, where the psychiatrist is on the brink of getting Spider-Man to reveal his secret identity in order to "keep from going completely mad". But Jameson's entrance, barking at Rinehart the phony, breaks the hypnotic spell. Flash Thompson makes his way into the office, too, and thinking Spider-Man needs help, leaps into action to fight by his side!

Rinehart sees that his well-laid plan is crumbling and decides to run away while the getting is good, but Spider-Man is too fast for him. He realizes who is foe is, and pulls the mask off of Rinehart's face to reveal: Mysterio! That explains the mirage villains, the upside-down room, and all the disorientation that caused Spider-Man to think he was going crazy. Mysterio confesses that he was going to fool Spider-Man, and how he was almost about to pull it off until Jameson barged into the room. Flash Thompson thinks this is the funniest thing he's ever heard, and bellows at Jameson, who feels yet again like a laughingstock.

Flash is on top of the world after helping aid Spider-Man, but it's Peter Parker who has the attentions of an adoring Liz Allan.

--synopsis by Gormuu

Issues Reprinted
Spider-Man from
Amazing Spider-Man #20-30 and Annual #2

Click on cover image to learn more about each issue.


ASM #20

ASM #21

ASM #22

ASM #23

ASM #24

ASM #25

ASM #26

ASM #27

ASM #28

Ann #2

ASM #29

ASM #30


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