By Ethan Kaye
Who's that fishbowl-head making an appearance in X-MEN: FIRST CLASS #11? Whoa, that's Mysterio! But what's he doing in a book that doesn't star Spider-Man? Permission to freak out!
Don't worry, true believers, heroes swap villains pretty regularly in the Marvel Universe. In fact, Spider-Man's fought quite a few of the X-Men bad guys over the years! In fact, let's relive some of the highlight crossover battles where Spidey whupped on those nasty mutants.
Spider-Man vs Magneto (AMAZING SPIDER-MAN v1 #327—1989)
The premiere X-Men villain faced off with Spidey during the Acts of Vengeance campaign in the late '80s, when a cabal of super villains including Dr. Doom, Kingpin, and the Wizard traded their respective archfoes to discover if the change-up would throw them off balance. Magneto attempted to test Spider-Man to see if he was a mutant and possibly convince him to join his Brotherhood, but Peter Parker had just gained cosmic powers in a lab accident! After a brawl in a junkyard, Magneto decided that Spider-Man's newfound powers were just too complex to be mutant abilities, and he abandoned the battle. Fans of car-throwing should definitely pick this issue up!
Spider-Man vs Sabretooth (SPECTACULAR SPIDER-MAN #116—1986)
Hard to imagine Sabretooth as just a freelance killer and not a bloodthirsty mass murderer, but in the early days of his career he didn't even have a connection to the X-Men! He simply wandered from book to book, from hit job to hit job. In this issue, Sabretooth picks up work from the Foreigner to take out the Black Cat for stealing a gold notebook. Yep, the Foreigner is that petty. Spider-Man teams up with the Black Cat and defeats Sabretooth, only to have BC start dating the Foreigner! Sheesh!
Spider-Man vs Juggernaut (SPIDER-MAN #16—1991)
In this crossover with X-FORCE, Spidey mixes it up with Juggernaut and his partner Black Tom Cassidy during a hostage crisis in the World Trade Center! When there's action in NYC, Spider-Man's bound to show up, so when Juggernaut and Black Tom take a group of businessmen hostage in the WTC, Spidey pops in to see what's up. Spidey takes advantage of a pause to concoct one of the best plans in all of comics history: "Dogpile on Juggernaut!" Shatterstar gets Juggernaut's helmet off, punches fly, and the heroes win the day!
Spider-Man vs Sauron (NEW AVENGERS #5—2005)
Spider-Man has battled the pterodactyl mutant Sauron in the pages of MARVEL FANFARE and DARKHAWK, but one of their best fights appeared in the initial arc of NEW AVENGERS. When the Savage Land Mutates broke a host of super villains out of the prison known as the Raft, Sauron's alter-ego Karl Lykos escaped to the Savage Land. Spider-Man and the rest of the New Avengers fought with Sauron and his Mutates for two issues before S.H.I.E.L.D. stepped in and finished the job.
Spider-Man vs Pyro (MARVEL ADVENTURES SPIDER-MAN #31—2007)
When the Human Torch stops by Peter Parker's high school for a demonstration, his powers go nuts and Spidey has to take him down before his fellow students get injured. The culprit behind the pyrokinesis turns out to be none other than the mutant Pyro, disguised as a janitor. Spidey easily takes him down, but the issue does bring up a great concept: can Pyro take control of the Human Torch?
Spider-Man vs Silver Samurai (MARVEL TEAM-UP v1 #74)
So yes, Spider-Man did fight Silver Samurai, but he had a little help from…the 1978 cast of Saturday Night Live! In the crossover-to-end-all-crossovers, Peter Parker and Mary Jane get tickets to an SNL show with Stan Lee as host and Rick Jones as musical guest. Before the show, John Belushi receives a piece of fan mail containing an ornate ring, a ring that happens to belong to the Silver Samurai. The Samurai shows up, fights break out, Laraine Newman dresses like Ms. Marvel—really—Garrett Morris dresses up like Thor—really—and Gilda Radner and Bill Murray electrocute Samurai's henchmen with live power lines—really. After a three-way Belushi/Spider-Man/Samurai battle, Spidey gives the Samurai back the ring and he teleports away. All characters go home and reflect on how incredibly bizarre this comic book turned out to be.
Read more X-MEN: FIRST CLASS at Marvel Digital Comics Unlimited and catch issue #11 on April 23.