Spider-Man’s Spider Signal Returns In the Dumbest Way

The infamous Spider-Signal returns to Spider-Man stories – but it’s used by a crazy demonic version of Peter Parker.

Warning: SPOILERS for Amazing Spider-Man #18

A key Spider-Man gadget finally returns to Marvel Comics, but this time Peter Parker isn’t the one using the Spider-Signal. The gadget made sparse appearances in comics and was eventually forgotten by writers over the decades, but writer Zeb Wells brings back the hero’s old calling card in 2023. Unfortunately, Amazing Spider-Man #18 also brings a version of the Spider-Signal back – in the form of an actual weapon held by an insane demonic version of the wallcrawler.


Peter Parker was initially a gadget-focused superhero. Initial designs by Jack Kirby (who would later be replaced with Steve Ditko) envisioned a web-gun for Peter Parker, but this was later replaced by webshooters on the character’s wrists. Peter also acquired the infamous Spider-Mobile, but he promptly drove it into the river (Peter never passed a driving test), and the era of Peter as a gadgeteer genius quietly ended by the 90s. The infamous Spider-Signal was perhaps the most rarely-used gadget of all and was all but forgotten until 2023.

Related: Even Spider-Man Knows Marvel Won’t Let Him Tell New Stories

In Amazing Spider-Man #18, written by Zeb Wells with art by Ed McGuinness, Peter Parker is trapped in Limbo as part of the Dark Web crossover event and forced to battle a demonic version of the Sinister Six. Fortunately, he has a surprising ally on his side: Rek-Rap, a Deadpool-esque hero with all the powers and abilities of Spider-Man, albeit with a demonic Limbo twist. Rek-Rap unleashes his “Spidey-Spranger” upon the Sinister Six, managing to actually hit them with the bright light (which is apparently solid in Limbo).

The Spider-Signal Returns – But Used By A Crazy Demonic Spider-Man

Spider-Man from Limbo uses the Spider Signal

The Spider-Signal was initially created to pay homage to classic pulp fiction antiheroes who announced their presence to criminals. While it did serve some practical use (by blinding criminals with light), Spider-Man rarely used the Spider-Signal, and most modern writers either forget he has it entirely, or simply mention it in passing. It is theorized that Spider-Man co-creator Steve Ditko placed the Spider-Signal in the book to further his Objectivist philosophy, but this has never been officially confirmed.

Seeing the Spider-Signal make a grand return is sure to please longtime fans, but they may be dismayed to learn that Peter Parker himself isn’t using the device. Rek-Rap is a powerful ally, but one that Peter isn’t too fond of; his penchant for violence seriously strains the relationship between human and Limbo-created demon. Perhaps it is for the best that Spider-Man leaves the Spider-Signal to his Doppelganger, and escapes Limbo with only his wits.

Next: Marvel’s Latest Spider-Man Event Hilariously Calls Out Toxic Fandom

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