How Spider-Man went undercover for Daredevil
Spider-Man is one of the greatest crime fighters out there, but unlike other superheroes such as Batman and Moon Knight, he’s not known for his undercover detective work. However, when his friend Daredevil asks for his help in catching a serial killer stalking New York nightclubs, he has no choice but to dress up and hit the dance floor. The married hero is forced to dance with dozens of strange women in clubs across the city in order to hunt the killer, and he struggles to navigate the singles scene long enough to complete his mission. Although Peter eventually succeeds in discovering his target, he is clearly more comfortable with the web than playing detective.
In daredevil (vol 1.) #305-306 (DG Chichester and Scott McDaniel), the blind vigilante is on the trail of the Surgeon General, a femme fatale who lures dance partners into her home, only to leave certain body parts short when they wake up. Swapping her miniskirt and high heels for hospital gowns, she drugs her victims and cuts up their organs to resell them on the black market. Realizing that most of the victims were partygoers, Daredevil enlists his then-married friend Peter to go undercover as bait. Spider-Man wonders why Hornhead can’t do it himself since he’s supposed to be a ladies’ man. He’s also not thrilled to inform his wife, Mary Jane, that he has to flirt with dozens of young socialites to catch a serial killer.
Spider-Man’s Undercover Mission
Peter dons a fake cheese mustache to prevent anyone from recognizing him. It’s reminiscent of the Batman’s Matches Malone disguise that the Caped Crusader frequently uses to infiltrate Gotham’s underworld. While Batman is shrewd and cool while undercover, Peter is socially awkward and willfully annoys anyone he perceives as a threat to his sacred marriage vows. When he finally stumbles across the Surgeon General, it’s pure luck more than anything and the Wall-Crawler seems almost relieved to drop the charade.
The Surgeon General introduces herself as Angeline Kutter, but thanks to Peter’s spider-sense, he is immediately aware of her evil intent. Despite Parker’s shortcomings as a detective, one of the advantages he has over the Dark Knight is his keen sixth sense, which always alerts him to nearby danger. Kutter leads him to an isolated rooftop where she attempts to attack him, but Daredevil intervenes at the last moment. In the shadows, Peter can finally get rid of his ridiculous disguise and disguise himself as Spider-Man in order to help his horned friend.
How Spider-Man and Daredevil stopped the Surgeon General
The Surgeon General flees, pushing his way through the nightclub crowd, leaving behind a trail of wounded and dying to distract the vigilantes. This only fuels the heroes’ determination to bring her down. When they eventually track her to a base of operations near the World Trade Center, they discover that she is just a member of a larger organization that specializes in illegal medical smuggling. Despite being attacked by gas, scalpels, and hypodermic needles, Spider-Man and Daredevil team up to take down Kutter and his associates.
The final showdown with the Surgeon General was arguably the easiest part of this jaunt for Spider-Man, as he could just sneak up and punch his foe. For the introverted, goofy hero, clubbing and chatting with dozens of flirtatious singles is far more terrifying than any serial killer, goblin, or symbiote. In the decades since these issues were published, Peter has yet to don the fake mustache, but with his wedding magically undone thanks to Mephisto, maybe next time around will be a little less awkward.