Comic Browser:


Amazing Spider-Man #55: Review

Dec 1967
Stan Lee, John Romita

Story Name:

Doc Ock Wins!

Review & Comments

5 stars

Amazing Spider-Man #55 Review by (May 1, 2024)

Review: Spidey’s out for blood after Aunt May was hurt last issue, in the third part of this ongoing Doc Ock story. After the first two parts gave us some great set-up, this third part was simply phenomenal, really ramping up the stakes! Doc Ock executes his crime of the century (as he keeps calling it), stealing the nullifier he attempted to steal in ASM #53 in impressive fashion, showcasing why he is one of Spidey’s most dangerous enemies. He then uses it to attack Stark Industries, coinciding with a story taking place in Tales of Suspense for some cool worldbuilding, leading to some really snazzy Romita action! Seriously, this was one of the cooler Spidey/Ock fights we’ve had so far, rendered typically beautifully, all leading up to the shocking ending! After Ock uses the nullifier on Spidey, Spidey loses his memory, allowing Ock to convince him that they work together, leaving quite the cliffhanger for the next and final issue of this tantalizing tale! While amnesia stories might be overplayed nowadays, Spidey hadn’t done one yet so I think it works wonderfully as a hook for the big finale to this story!

We also have Gwen and MJ continuing their little passive aggressive tug of war over Peter, which is interesting in hindsight. Most people tend to think of this era as mostly Gwen being into Peter, while MJ was just kind of dating him casually, not really being into him until later. Issues like this though, show that MJ does seem to have some actual attachment for Peter even at this stage, and seems genuinely jealous that he and Gwen are getting closer. Nevertheless, it makes for a fun dynamic, as Peter’s soap opera-like personal drama is often just as entertaining as the Spidey stuff. I also really like that Spidey was able to accurately predict Ock’s next move after stealing the nullifier, as I feel it further cements their arch-rival status. This issue had a bit of everything, a cool, calculating villain, epic action, fun drama, and one heck of a surprising ending, making this the overall highpoint of this story so far, and it was already enjoyable to begin with! Tune in next time for the epic conclusion, where Spidey will have to contend with his memory loss, as well as his reputation taking a hit as he works with Doc Ock!

Comments: When Doc Ock attacks Stark Industries, he notes that there’s no sign of Iron Man, and a note from Stan details how Iron Man is fighting for his life in another part of the factory, detailed in Tales of Suspense #96.


Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Amazing Spider-Man #55 Synopsis by Anthony Silvestro

Angrier than ever after the events of last issue, Spider-Man eagerly combs the city for Doctor Octopus, finding one of his old hideouts filled with his goons. Spidey tears through the goons before hearing Doc Ock’s voice, thinking that he’s finally found the villain. However, it turns out that Ock is just speaking through a computer screen and Spidey swears that he’ll find and stop Ock no matter what. Ock then taunts Spidey, claiming that he’s not hiding at all and that he's too focused on planning his crime of the century to care about Spidey. Spidey then tears the hideout apart in a blind fury, knowing there’s nothing he can do at the moment. Spidey then figures he might as well check Ock’s old Master Planner hideout but finds no leads there, resorting to giving up his search for the day.

Meanwhile, an important meeting is taking place, as Col. John Jameson meets with other government officials regarding the safety of the nullifier Doc Ock tried to steal a couple of issues ago. With Ock still on the loose, Jameson explains that they plan to move the nullifier to Stark Industries, where modifications will be made. Little do they know, Ock has a man planted there under false credentials, listening to the whole plan in detail. Back with Peter, he drops in to see how Aunt May is doing and finds Anna Watson with her, back from her trip. While Peter is stressing about the hole in the wall and Aunt May’s misconceptions of Spider-Man, Mary Jane Watson also drops by, to Peter’s slight annoyance. While Aunt May gets some rest, Peter shows Mary Jane the hole left by Doctor Octopus. Gwen Stacy then appears as well and she and MJ vie a bit for Peter’s attention, though Peter remains a bit oblivious. Changing scenes again, Doc Ock receives the details of the nullifier convoy from his inside man, so that he might formulate his plans for his crime of the century!

Later that night, John Jameson and his convoy begin to transport the nullifier, when they spot what appears to be a normal maintenance truck up ahead. Not wanting to take chances, they pass by cautiously, when Doctor Octopus springs from the nearby manhole, covering the area with some well-placed smoke grenades. With the convoy effectively blind, Ock traps them in their cars by smashing all the door locks with his powerful arms, before making off with nullifier and driving away in the maintenance truck before reinforcements can arrive. Ock then plans to do the unexpected, as rather than escape, he plans to head right for Stark Industries to test his new device. Back at the convoy, J. Jonah Jameson arrives, sure that Spider-Man had something to do with the theft. John rebuffs his father, as Joe Robertson, ever the voice of reason, tells Ned Leeds to report only the facts. Wanting more coverage of the story, Jonah tries to find Peter by calling his apartment, only for a very disgruntled Harry Osborn to tell Jonah that he doesn’t know or care where Peter is right now.

Speaking of, Spidey swings upon the convoy, noticing it swarmed with police, FBI, and possibly even SHIELD. Spidey knows they have no leads but also knows that no one knows Ock as well as he does, and accurately predicts where Ock will head. As Ock and his goon drive upon Stark Industries, Ock makes some adjustments to the nullifier before firing it upon the facility, knocking out all mechanical devices in the vicinity. The guards find that they cannot fire their guns or call for help, as Doc Ock increases the power on the nullifier, immobilizing every machine in the factory and trapping everyone inside. Doc Ock revels in his success, as Spidey swings upon the scene, quickly tying two of Ock’s tentacles together. Spidey and Ock engage in an epic battle until Ock turns the nullifier upon Spider-Man, causing Spidey to collapse in blinding pain. Spidey then starts to recover but it turns out that the nullifier had a strange effect with the radioactivity in Spidey’s blood, causing him to lose his memory of who he is entirely! Doc Ock capitalizes on the situation and tells Spidey that they are accomplices in the crime of the century and the desperate and confused Spidey has no choice but to trust him! To be concluded!

John Romita
Mike Esposito
John Romita (Cover Penciler)
John Romita (Cover Inker)
Stan Goldberg (Cover Colorist)
Letterer: Sam Rosen.


Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Doctor Octopus
Doctor Octopus

(Otto Octavius)
J. Jonah Jameson
J. Jonah Jameson

(JJ Jameson)
Mary Jane Watson
Mary Jane Watson

(Mary Jane)
May Parker
May Parker

(Aunt May)
Robbie Robertson
Robbie Robertson

(Joe Robertson)

(Peter Parker)

Plus: Anna Watson, John Jameson, Ned Leeds.

> Amazing Spider-Man: Book info and issue index

Share This Page