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Weebl and Bob
8-bit Theatre


I've had this article in my head for ages, since I saw the film in the cinema, actually, but I couldn't be arsed to do it until now, because I am a shit and deserve your contempt. Let's begin! Go, comedy, go!

1. Strength/speed

It's your classic superhero combination. Superheroes always have enhanced strength and speed. You don't even have to mention it anymore. You talk about Spiderman - sorry - Spider-man's powers, and you say he can climb walls and shoot webbing. You don't need to say he's also got superhuman strength and speed, 'cos they go without saying. It's the superhero standard: One or more signature powers, strength and speed. Turn up at any superhero headquarters and say you're signature powers are superhuman strength and speed and you'll get laughed out the door until you learn break-dancing and come back as John Travolta Man.

2. Web-shooting

I was kind of disappointed when I saw in the cartoon/comic that Spider-man's webshooters were technological rather than a side-effect of the whole spider bite thing, which is why I enjoyed the film so much. Trouble is, when the webshooters are part of your body, they'll probably take something out of you. I'm guessing that the effectiveness of his webs are influenced by Peter Parker's diet. Plenty of fatty and protein-rich foods will give him a nice, strong, pliable web, while too many green vegetables would produce a rather pathetic spray just one step up from Silly String.

Obviously the webs he uses to swing between buildings either retract back into his wrists or get cut off, because if they didn't you'd end up dangling immobile, anchored to two buildings, looking very silly while the fire brigade came to get you down. If the webs do get cut off, there must be strands of Spider-man hanging from every building in New York. I'm guessing some wily bloke started collecting them and founded a small growth industry. He could market the horrible stuff as fly paper, or stick it in a jar and flog it as 'essence de Spidey'. It'd probably be a surprisingly effective aphrodisiac. That brings me to my next thing.

3. Hot Girlfriend

The thing about superhero girlfriends is that everyone wants them. Even insane supervillains. They'll go to incredibly elaborate lengths to kidnap them and force them to be their bride or something, like the Joker in the first serious Batman movie. Mary-Jane in the Spider-man movie was the school bicycle; everyone had a ride. And of course, it makes perfect sense that superhero girlfriends be hotter than a non-stick frying pan after a hearty breakfast. These women are so hot that the only man that could do them justice was a SUPER-man. A man one evolutionary step higher than the rest of the human race. And good thing too, because if you weren't shacked up with someone like Spider-man there'd be no-one to thwart those supervillains who keep trying to look up your skirt.

4. Fwipping

I had a dream that I was Spider-man, doing that swing-fwip-swing thing through the city, and let me tell you, it is the only way to travel. Sailing gracefully through the air, desperately trying to keep in mind the special web-shooty hand gesture before you go splat upon the ground. Lucky for ol' Parky that he lives somewhere with so many tall buildings. If you tried fwipping in my town you'd be sailing through the air at about two feet from the ground and being constantly hit by cars.


1. Nose

Tobey Maguire, I thought, was great as Spider-man. There was just one problem with him, though. He had a nose. When you see Spidey with his mask on in comic or cartoon, there is quite clearly no bump where the nose would be. Now every time I see the video box all I can look at is that prominent nose. And that rather limp wrist.

2. Being bitten by a radioactive spider

Yeah, yeah, I know, it gave him superpowers, but it must have bloody hurt at the time. Hey, does anyone know what would happen if Peter Parker were to bite someone? Does he have venom sacs? If he bit someone, that someone could well become SPIDER-MAN-MAN, a man with the proportionate strength and speed of a man who was bitten by a radioactive spider. And what if he were to bite someone? And what if that someone bit someone else? It probably wouldn't be a very effective way to create an elite race of spider-men. While Peter Parker is strong as fifty men, can shoot webs and possesses hairs on his hands that can somehow support his entire body weight, once you've gone nine or ten bites down the line the spider essence is diluted so much you'll end up with little more than a bloke with slightly hairy palms and leaky wrists.

Back to the subject of being bitten by a radioactive spider ... I suppose it could have been a whole lot worse. It could have been a radioactive ladybird. Or a radioactive sea turtle. Or maybe even a radioactive woman!

"Lady-man, lady-man,
Does whatever a lady can,
Wears G-strings, any size,
Gets uppity during menstrual periods.
Look out! Here comes the lady-man!"

All material not otherwise credited by Ben 'Yahtzee' Croshaw
Copyright 2002 All Rights Reserved and other legal bollock language