Appearing in "Original Sin"Edit
- Ernie Popchik (First appearance)
- Aunt May
- J. Jonah Jameson
- Joe Robertson
- Jean DeWolff (Appears in Flashback) (Death)
- Sin Eater (First appearance)
- Celia (DeWolff) Weatherby (First appearance) (Only in flashback)
- Emil Gregg (First appearance)
- Reverend Bernard Finn (First appearance)
- Reverend Tolliver (First appearance)
- Carl Weatherby (First appearance) (Only in flashback)
- Judge Horace Rosenthal (First appearance)
- Bernard Finn (First appearance)
Synopsis for "Original Sin"Edit
Fatally shot, Jean Dewolff's life flashes before her eyes. She remembers how her father, Philip, left her mother six months after she was born. After the divorce, Jean was left in the care of her mother, while her brother was in the care of her father. Her mother swore off relationships with people in law enforcement until she met and later married patrolman Carl Weatherby. Although Jean grew to love and idolize her step-father, her mother always worried when the day would come when she would get word that her newlywed husband was killed in the line of duty. Jean's mother didn't like the idea that her daughter had an interest in being a police officer herself. However, Jean soon enlisted and eventually graduated from police academy, much to the disappointment of her mother. Wanting Carl's approval, Jean pushed herself eventually rising to the ranks of Captain. Unsmiling during all her achievements, Jean knew that Carl was proud of her, and was likely holding out until she made police commissioner.[Continuity 1] As things begin to go black she hears pounding at the door of her apartment. As two police officers force themselves into her apartment, they find the gore-spattered body of Jean DeWolff. Finding Jean's dead body, the officers call the situation in.[Continuity 2]
The next day, Peter Parker is out snapping photos for the Daily Bugle when he runs into Ernie Popchik, one of the new tenants to move into his Aunt May's boarding house. Greeting Mr. Popchik, he learns that the old man is in the city to cash his social security check and then do some shopping. As Peter parts company, his spider-sense begins to go off as Ernie is pulled into a nearby alley. Peter rushes to his aid, but is too late to stop a gang of punks from robbing Ernie and making a run for it. When a crowd forms, Peter tells them to call an ambulance while he goes for help. As he runs through the alley, Peter begins stripping off his street clothes, revealing the black-and-white costume of Spider-Man. The wall-crawler catches up to the crooks and manages to nab them all. As they robbed an elderly man, Spider-Man treats them rougher than usual. That's when the police arrive on the scene and take the thieves into custody. One of the officers tells Spider-Man that Ernie Popchik seems okay, but he is being taken to the hospital for observation. It's then that the officer asks the wall-crawler if he's heard about Jean DeWolff's murder. This comes as a shock to Spider-Man, who asks if they know who did it, but at this time the police don't know.[Continuity 3]
Meanwhile, at a church, a bespectacled man has come to see the priest in order to make a confession. At the same time, J. Jonah Jameson and Joe Robertson are going over the Jean DeWolff story. Jonah is sickened by the actions of the killer, telling Joe that even though he didn't like her, nobody deserves to die the way she did. When Joe asks him if he feels the same way about Spider-Man, Jonah admits that although people like Hitler, cop killers, and assassins deserve to die, Spider-Man isn't fit in those categories. They are interrupted by the arrival of Reverend Tolliver, who is setting up a new parish in New York City and would like a mention in the Bugle. Jameson remembers a story about some slayings in Atlanta that Tolliver was involved with. This leads to a brief exchange about race between Jameson and Tolliver, for which the priest apologizes. That evening, Spider-Man pays a visit to the police station to talk to the officer in charge of investigating the DeWolff murder. He learns that it is Sargent Stan Carter, who had just left for the evening. Spider-Man manages to catch up with Carter, and he invites Spider-Man into his car. Spider-Man tells Carter that he wants to know more about what happened. He learns about DeWolff's grisly death and that there are a large number of suspects, including Spider-Man. When the wall-crawler asks if Carter thinks he did it. Carter is certain that Spider-Man wasn't involved and tells how Jean DeWolff thought very highly of Spider-Man.
In the early morning, Daredevil has finished his patrol of the city and heads criminal courts where he is due to represent a client at trial as lawyer Matt Murdock.[Continuity 4] Murdock is representing the thieves who attempted to rob Ernie Popchik the other day. Among the members of the public watching the arrangement is Peter Parker, his Aunt May, and the tenants of her boarding house. When they are released on their own recognizance and without bail, Popchik is upset that the thieves are just going to be released. Peter chastizes Murdock for making this happening, unaware that he was revealing that he is secretly Spider-Man as Murdock recognizes his unique heartbeat. His Aunt May scolds Peter for giving grief to the blind lawyer, and Peter apologizes and leaves. After the courtroom clears out, Murdock confides in Judge Horace Rosenthal how his oath to uphold the law makes him feel awful when he has to represent people like his clients that day. Horace tells Matt that he should try being a public defender for a few years as it will strengthen his resolve. He then suggests they have lunch together and excuses him to go to the washroom first. This allows Matt to learn who is hiding out in the Judge's office. Walking around in the dark, he senses a masked man wielding a shotgun.
Matt calls out, asking who is in the room with him. That's when the masked man walks out and introduces himself as the Sin Eater. Murdock pleads the Sin Eater not to hurt him as he is blind. However, when he admits that he is a lawyer, the Sin Eater opens fire. Murdock barely manages to leap to cover under Horace's desk in time. Converting his walking cane into his billy club and tosses it across the room, striking Sin Eater in the back of the head. That's when Judge Rosenthal enters the room. Before Matt Murdock can tell him to get down, the Sin Eater whirls around and pulls the trigger.
- ↑ Jean DeWolff states that her step-father hoped she would become the first female police commissioner. As of 2018, the position has yet to be given to a female police officer in New York City. Regardless, the idea is certainly an eventuality, and as such this should be considered a topical reference per the Sliding Timescale of Earth-616.
- ↑ Although Jean DeWolff dies here, she is later resurrected years later in Clone Conspiracy #2.
- ↑ Spider-Man recalls that he just saw Jean a few days previously. That was in Peter Parker, The Spectacular Spider-Man Annual #5.
- ↑ The narrative of the story recounts how Daredevil got his powers after an accident robbed him of his sight. This was first documented in Daredevil #1.
A flashback in this story affects the chronology of the following characters:
- This issue is reprinted in other comics and books, see references for more info.
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