In the grand scheme of Spider-Man’s long and winding history, Marvel’s Spider Society is a relatively recent addition, debuting in the pages of “The Amazing Spider-Man” in spring 2001. Their first appearance, in fact, came in a now-iconic issue that set Peter Parker on an Earth-shattering journey that would reshape the hero’s identity forever. It was issue #30 of the recently relaunched title, and it saw a new creative team come aboard the book, with legendary artist John Romita Jr. taking the reins of the series. The title also boasted a new look and feel that included reverting the series logo to its classic design, back from the more flashy, ’90s revamp seen previously.
In the issue, fans were introduced to a pair of new characters: the mysterious Ezekiel, a wise old man who seems to have the exact same powers as Spider-Man, and the even more enigmatic vampire called Morlun, who arrives with nefarious motives. Little did fans know at the time, but this new duo would become an integral part of the hero’s story over the next decade, and expand Spider-Man’s mythology in ways nobody could have predicted.
We’d later learn, of course, that Ezekiel is a member of the Spider Society, who worship beings created by the goddess Neith known as Spider-Totems, and grant spider-powers to their members. Morlun, meanwhile, is eventually exposed as part of a group of deadly manhunters called the Inheritors.