DAREDEVIL #16-17 (1966): 1st Masked Marauder

daredevil meets spiderman

Let’s get this out of the way at the top of this post: These two issues are an excuse to have a Spider-Man cameo in a book that wasn’t selling well, in the hopes that it would promote Daredevil awareness.  As a happy coincidence, Stan Lee would soon be looking for someone to take over for Steve Ditko on The Amazing Spider-Man, so this was kind of John Romita’s audition.  (Hint: He passed.)  That’s why we get this little sequence here, in Daredevil’s own book, which seems to orient readers to the character’s “power set:”

 Storywise, it’s lots of extended rooftop fights that kind of go nowhere and at bottom are ridiculous because Spider-Man has both spider-sense and super-strength.  It’s ridiculous that Daredevil can go toe-to-toe with him.

 The villain, creatively named “The Masked Marauder” decides to..Well, you tell me.  If you’ve been reading my history of Marvel posts, you probably know.

 That’s right!  He gets people to dress up as DD to frame him!

J. Jonah Jameson appears.

Creators: Stan Lee, John Romita Sr.

First appearance: Masked Marauder. He reappears a few times during the Silver Age, but you’re forgiven if you never heard of him.

Grade: C.  I really, really wanted to like this story but it’s so derivative and such an obvious marketing ploy that it can’t rise above average for Marvel at the time.  Sorry.

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