Peter tries talking a crippled Otto Octavius into becoming a superhero.
|Characters: Peter Parker/Spider-Man; Dr. Otto Octavius; Crimson Dynamo; Gwen Stacy; The Kingpin; Russell Fisk; Richard Raleigh|
DR. OTTO OCTAVIUS watches intently as white-coated engineers pore over computer monitors and readouts; nearby, a multi-stage rocket is being wheeled to a gantry. But his concentration is interrupted by a foreman telling him to get back to work, and with a long sigh Dr. Octavius, in his robotic octo-rig, returns to washing the windows of the Launch Control building of Cordco Aeronautics.
He is interrupted by the appearance of SPIDER-MAN, who is chasing the rampaging RHINO, and from his perch high on the face of the Cordco control center he watches with mild interest as the two hurl each other around. Spider-Man finally vanquishes and hogties the Rhino, then swoops up to sarcastically thank Otto for helping him. Otto stiffly replies that he had a job to do and returns to washing the windows. Spider-Man says he thought Otto had a position at Oscorp, but Otto replies that he quit after discovering that his contract gave Osborn all rights to his octo-rig designs, and that he had turned them into security robots without his permission and without compensating their designer (him). Spider-Man sympathizes, but says he still could have used Otto's help with Rhino, which earns him a tongue lashing about the octo-suit not being a weapon. When there's an explosion in the middle distance, Spider-Man swings off with a groan; Otto watches him speculatively.
Spider-Man finds a giant robot, CRIMSON DYNAMO, trying to break into Acme Atomics. He battles it, but is unable to prevent it from penetrating to the interior of the building, and tracks it and battles it into an underground facility. The security guards are more of a hindrance than a help, as Spider-Man has to web them to safety each time the Dynamo shoots flare beams or rockets, and he isn't able to significantly delay it until Otto shows up to lend four tentacles to the battle; in the middle of the tussle, the Dynamo powers down unexpectedly. As Spider-Man debates with the security guards about how to transport the inert (but still talkative) robot away, Otto examines the power reactor near where the Dynamo is lying. It is an ion reactor, he exclaims, a particularly dangerous sort of power source that hasn't won government approvals yet. It shouldn't be online, he says, and if it malfunctions, it could destroy a couple of city blocks. Crimson Dynamo reactivates (power backups) and brushes the defenders aside to interface with the reactor to draw more power. Otto warns that it is sending the reactor into a critical state: "All the better to delay you with," the Dynamo coos as it withdraws and blasts away.
Spidey gets a tracker onto the Dynamo as it blasts through the roof, and turns to find Otto at work on the reactor, trying to shut it down. Spider-Man rushes up to help, but Otto brushes him away, yelling about not needing the distraction of an amateur. At that moment, a power surge envelops him and his octo-rig, to Spider-Man's horror.
Fade in on a hospital, where Peter meets GWEN STACY; she tells him that Dr. Octavius is in low spirits, and when Peter comments acidly on how Otto is always a grump she hotly defends Otto for "saving the city"—she points to a nearby TV monitor that is playing a report of the story of the attack. After she goes, Peter looks in. Otto, still in his harness, informs him that the doctors say that the accident has fused his harness to his nervous system and cannot be removed; he bitterly remarks that the accident makes him even more of a freak than before. Peter tries philosophy on Otto, quoting his Uncle Ben to the effect that an accident can be a disaster or an opportunity, depending on what you do with it. Otto asks Peter what opportunity he sees in the situation, and Peter says he sees someone who could be a hero, like the man who stopped the reactor from going critical. Otto remarks that such heroism is what put him in the hospital. But his expression is thoughtful as Peter says that heroism can be a hard habit to break, once acquired.
Out in the city, Spider-Man fumes about having to waste his weekend tracking down a "Russian 'bot," but he is certain that Crimson Dynamo is still in the city, as she couldn't have gotten that much power out of the ion reactor before having to leave. Unfortunately, the tracker he put on it doesn't seem to be working and is only returning ghost signals, so he goes off to stake out a power plant. He doesn't know whether to be pleased at correctly anticipating her, or upset by her presence, when he finds her Crimson Dynamo already trying to break into it.
There's another battle with the Dynamo, during which she admits to having stolen the suit as payback for having lost all her family's property to "government gangsters"; Spider-Man tries to talk her out of being a thief, but she revels in the identity, and succeeds in getting to a fuel rod and charging up with it before Spider-Man can stop her. The power boost unlocks a new weapon and with it she buries Spidey under a pile of rubble. When he comes out, he finds her gone, and her signal a "ghost" again.
In the hospital, Dr. Octavius is working on a laptop when Spider-Man swings in through the window. He needs some help, he tells Otto: Crimson Dynamo has fueled up, and he can't find her. Otto affects not to be surprised by the news, and anticipates that it was a vibranium rod she took: With nothing else to do, he tells the surprised Spider-Man, he's been researching the Dynamo and learned that the stolen suit needs three different energy sources to fully unlock its potential: Next she will be after a Chitauri Energy Core, but there are no known such devices in New York. Spider-Man says he hopes Ock is right, but he'd still like to track her down and the tracker onto the Dynamo isn't working. With a sigh, Otto takes the tracker control to examine. As he studies it, Spider-Man asks if he is picking up the "habit of being a hero"; Otto irritably asks where he picked up that phrase, as it's one he himself heard just recently; Spider-Man stammers that it just came to him. Otto then tells Spider-Man that the Dynamo suit, being piloted by an amateur, probably hasn't got its electronics calibrated correctly, which is probably interfering with the signal—it's not a bad design for a tracker, he adds, as he gives it back to Spider-Man, and adds that it closely resembles the design that his second-best student submitted in his electrical engineering class. Spider-Man quickly scuttles away.
After Spider-Man has gone, Otto sees THE KINGPIN, with head bowed, passing by in the hallway, and goes out to follow him into a nearby hospital room where his son, RUSSELL FISK, is unconscious and hooked up to several devices. The distracted crime boss recognizes Otto from both Stark Expo and the news broadcasts, and tonelessly congratulates him on the "heroism" he showed Acme. When Otto asks about the boy, the Kingpin breaks down as he says that his son his dying, and that the "criminals" at Bilderberg Academy, who are responsible for his son's condition, won't tell him what the doctors need to know in order to save him. Otto remarks, mostly to himself, that a disaster can be an opportunity, which provokes the retort, "What opportunity is there in my son's impending death?" Otto confesses that he was thinking of someone else.
The tracker leads Peter to a bank just as Crimson Dynamo explodes out from under the street. He again tries to reason with Dynamo during the brief moments that Dynamo isn't pounding him flat. He is about to be crushed when he remembers what Otto said about the Dynamo interfering with the tracker, and reasons that the tracker might interfere with the Dynamo; he recalibrates his tracker, which causes the suit to malfunction so he can knock it flat. He remarks on how unfortunate it is that he just can't talk people into changing their ways.
Dissolve to the Bilderberg Academy, and the office of RICHARD RALEIGH, headmaster. The wall burst asunder and Raleigh cowers as Dr. Octavius enters, bellowing that he has come to discuss the case of Russell Fisk. To Raleigh's incredulous demand, "Who are you?" Dr. Octavius replies, "Dr. Octopus, Super-Scientist and Superhero!"
The above is loosely based on "The Rise of Doc Ock, Part 1" by Kevin Burke and Chris Wyatt.
Commentary: ""The One and Only Octopus""
Next: "S01E15 "The Dire Duo""