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Characters / Marvel Comics Scarlet Spider
aka: Scarlet Spider

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"All of the power. None of the responsibility."

Scarlet Spider is an alias that has been used by multiple characters in the Marvel Universe, with the common trait of them being clones, the two most famous to bear the title being clones of the famous superhero Spider-Man specifically, and created during The Clone Saga.

The original character to handle the title was Ben Reilly, one of the clones of Peter Parker, who used it as a distinction from Peter. The character was one of the few things well-received in the otherwise infamous Clone Saga. Eventually, Ben took over as Spider-Man after a complicated story that made it unclear who of him or Peter was a clone. He was eventually Killed Off for Real by the Green Goblin, and Peter Parker re-assumed the Spider-Man identity and was established as the original Peter Parker and that Ben was the clone.


The next time Scarlet Spider was actually a team of three Super Soldier clones of a recently killed Avengers Initiative recruit Michael van Patrick, that wore variations of Spider-Man's then recent Iron Spider armor. Named Michael, Van and Patrick, they briefly aided Peter Parker in attempting to cover up his recent reveal of his identity during the events of Civil War. Afterwards, during the course of their adventures, they discovered their clone heritage but by the end of the series only one of the three was still alive and went public with his story to help bring the darker elements of the Initiative to justice.

Another of Peter's long-disappeared clones, Kaine, who was also part of The Clone Saga, came back during the Grim Hunt arc, where he made a Heroic Sacrifice for Peter Parker and was seemingly Killed Off for Real. Kaine returned in the Spider-Island arc, resurrected as a mutated minion of the Jackal. He was eventually cured — with enhanced powers identical to the ones Peter once possessed — by Spider-Man, and helped him defeat the arc's Big Bad. After that, he left Manhattan, taking Peter's "Big Time" stealth suit with him, and tried to leave for Mexico.


Kaine Parker is the star of the 2012 series written by Christopher Yost. When passing through Houston, Texas on the way to Mexico, after breaking up a human trafficking ring on his way out of town, Kaine finds himself linked to a young girl and a group of Houston residents and eventually decides to stay. Due to Madame Web hacking the suit's color modification into being stuck, local media and people dubbed Kaine the Scarlet Spider. Compared to Ben Reilly, Kaine's incarnation of the Scarlet Spider is darker and more violent due to his past and struggles with his heroic impulses, but Kaine constantly finds himself drawn into doing good. While his title ended at Issue #25, he appeared in the short-lived Marvel NOW! reboot of New Warriors, also written by Yost. A Spider-Verse tie-in mini-series, called Scarlet Spiders was released featuring Kaine Parker and Ultimate Jessica Drew alongside an alternate version of Ben Reilly that survived.

In the story Dead No More: The Clone Conspiracy it was revealed that Ben Reilly was again cloned by the Jackal in an attempt to improve his cloning technology. In the process, he was driven mad and became the Jackal himself and plotted to turn everyone in the world into a clone to cure disease and death... against everyone's wishes, and while manipulating many, many people. Peter Parker would stop him, but Ben wound up on the run as a result, Peter allowing him to leave but Kaine out to deliver justice onto his criminal clone brother.

The Ben Reilly: The Scarlet Spider series focused on Ben and his struggles as a result of his actions as the Jackal, while simultaneously featuring Kaine hunting his clone brother while also trying to make more of a life for himself. It too ended after 25 issues.

Both Ben and Kaine would feature in the Spider-Geddon crossover.

The Scarlet Spiders provide examples of:

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    Ben Reilly 

Ben Reilly

Alter Ego: Benjamin Reilly

First Appearance: The Amazing Spider-Man #149 (October 1975)

  • Anti-Hero: In his 2017 series. Ironically, Kaine of all people is actually the moderating influence on him.
  • Anti-Villain: In Dead No More: The Clone Conspiracy, he fills this role as the Jackal, actually trying to resurrect dead people's loved ones.
  • Artificial Family Member: He's Peter's clone, but both consider themselves brothers.
  • The Atoner: Ben Reilly: The Scarlet Spider focused around Ben making up for his crimes as the Jackal... kinda sorta, since he's not especially apologetic and is still willing to screw people over. This is presented as his conscience struggling against the damage to his soul incurred by the Jackal killing and resurrecting him over 25 times in quick succession.
  • Badass Biker: During "The Lost Years" Mini and "The Clone Saga" revamp.
  • Being Tortured Makes You Evil: Ben originally was a hero. But after coming back from death, Miles Warren used him as his main guinea pig to resurrect which unfortunately for Ben meant being killed in pretty much every way imaginable a total of 27 times. He snaps, almost kills Miles and becomes the new Jackal.
  • Big Bad: In Dead No More: The Clone Conspiracy, it's revealed that the Jackal cloned and killed him dozens of times, until the twenty-seventh clone of Ben finally snapped and nearly killed Warren, relenting at the last second. He then tricked Warren into believing he had been killed and that he was one of his army of clones. He then went on to become the new Anubis-masked Jackal and founded New U Technologies to clone all the people Peter Parker failed to save.
  • Blue-and-Orange Morality: From Dead No More onwards, he has shades of this.
  • Came Back Wrong: The reason for his borderline Blue-and-Orange Morality - repeated deaths and resurrections ( 27 and counting) at the hands of the Jackal fundamentally damaged his soul.
  • Can't Hold His Liquor: Just like Peter. Not played for laughs like usual. In "The Lost Years", a few drinks causes him to start trashing the bar and encouraging the bouncer to put him out of his misery.
  • Civvie Spandex: His original "costume" was simply a red spandex suit and mask with and a sleeveless hoodie with a spider on it. The point was Ben didn't have a lot of money and made his costume out of what he could afford (which wasn't much).
  • Cloning Blues: Was cloned from Peter Parker by the Jackal.
  • Clone Degeneration: The way it was confirmed he was the clone and not Peter. (Still, most clones died because they degenerated, unlike Ben, whose body did so after he was killed, so it would seem Ben was a more successful cloning attempt than the others.)
    • Following Dead No More, he's got degeneration scars that appear and fade to varying degrees to reflect his morality at the time.
  • Cool Loser: Sometimes, especially when compared to Peter.
  • Cool Mask: As the Jackal he wears a mask resembling Anubis to match his alias.
  • Damaged Soul: After being killed and resurrected by Miles Warren so many times his soul is blackened and cracked, which causes his shaky moral compass. It can heal with time and good moral acts, but one more resurrection would destroy it and permanently tip him towards evil.
  • Deadpan Snarker
  • Driven to Madness: Being killed and revived a painful twenty-seven times will do that to you.
  • Driven to Suicide: Heavily implied to be his reaction to finding out he's a clone. Luckily, he snaps out of it after rescuing a man suffering from the same feelings.
  • Dye Hard: In-Universe. He dyes his hair blond to differentiate himself from Parker.
  • Expy: Former hero/sidekick who was polarizing when alive returning from the dead as an antagonist with a motif based on his torturer and enemy, Jason Todd/Red Hood II says hi.
  • Fallen Hero: It is easy to see why Peter is shocked that a former clone of himself could end up adopting the name of one of his most hated enemies or why he's trying to revive the dead.
  • Heel–Face Revolving Door: Following his return in the Dead No More: The Clone Conspiracy, he's been going back and forth through this, since it's quite clear that the resurrection process did a number on his sanity. This is because the original Jackal resurrected and killed him around 27 times in a number of painful and inventive ways. While he's not exactly a bad guy, he's missing a few of his marbles.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: Throws himself between Peter and the Green Goblin.
  • Hero of Another Story: Clearly he was active during his wanderings. He was known to have encountered - and possibly fought the demonic villain D'spayre in the past, but the details were never revealed. Other adventures were hinted at.
  • Important Haircut: Decided to wear his hair in a different style and bleach it blond to differentiate himself from Peter.
  • Legacy Character Intended to be one for Peter. Now Kaine is one for him.
  • Meaningful Name: He is named after Peter's deceased uncle Ben and uses Aunt May's maiden family name.
  • Nerds Are Sexy: Well he is Peter's clone; what did you expect? He even hooks up with MJ after Peter dies in one Alternate Universe.
  • New Job as the Plot Demands: Because he's a clone. Until he settles on a job at the Daily Grind, anyway.
  • Not So Different/You Are Not Alone: Towards Kaine, eventually starting a Heel–Face Turn.
  • Rummage Sale Reject: His first two costumes — the first when he answers Judas Traveller's challenge at the beginning of the Clone Saga, and the other when he went up against Venom. Justified in that he was pressed for time in both cases. He ended up wearing the second costume for a long time before he finally got a proper costume.
  • Sharp-Dressed Man: He wears a red suit with a mask of Anubis, Egyptian God of Death.
  • Spared by the Adaptation: The '"Director's Cut" miniseries of "The Clone Saga" sees both him and Baby May survive the events of the story.
  • A Taste of Their Own Medicine: To the first Jackal. After almost killing Miles, he creates four clones of him and puts them in a position where nobody knows who is the original.
  • Uncanny Family Resemblance: Inverted; this is how he and "cousin" Peter explain why they look so much alike.
  • Villain Protagonist: Of Ben Reilly: Scarlet Spider.
  • Villainous Breakdown: When Spidey delivers a "The Reason You Suck" Speech to the Jackal, he turns everyone against Spidey. It gets worse when Doc Ock causes all the clones across the world to fall apart and he decides he'll just revive the world.
  • Walking Spoiler: Like you see, most of the tropes are related to his real identity.
  • Walking the Earth: What he did before the Clone Saga; he returned to New York because Aunt May was dying.
  • Well-Intentioned Extremist: He certainly doesn't see himself as a villain, the clones under his control are usually put in line by his remarks, and being a former Spider-Man himself makes him believe that he is in the right.
  • Woobie, Destroyer of Worlds: Ben Reilly. Being killed and resurrected 27 times by Miles Warren drove Ben mad. He decided to do better than Miles that he (supposedly) killed Miles and had him cloned multiple times, all of them unsure of who was the real one and who wasn't. He decided to improve the cloning process and wants Peter by his side to keep going, not knowing that doing so will unleash an army of Carrion clones.

    Kaine Parker 

Kaine Parker
Click here to see his first costume 

Alter Ego: Kaine Parker

First Appearance: Web of Spider-Man #119 (December 1994)

  • '90s Anti-Hero:
    • He once wore an all-black costume with a grey vein motif (though the 2012 series indicates that the veins were a result of his degeneration underneath), a tattered red cape, and Batman-like arm and leg serrations, as seen during his flashbacks to the Clone Saga, and was also not averse to killing people by ripping their faces off.
    • As of the 2012 Scarlet Spider series, he tries to avoid killing at all costs, even restarting Kraven's heart after stopping it to satisfy the conditions of a mystical connection. However, he remains temperamental, foul-mouthed, and willing to use excessive force in combat and interrogation.
  • Abusive Parents: Technically the Jackal isn't his real father but for all intents and purposes it counts.
  • Alternate Company Equivalent: While DC's Azrael was explicitly meant to be seen as The Punisher in Batman's clothing, Kaine himself could be seen as the Marvel equivalent of Azrael. Both of them are violent 90s Anti-Heroes who gladly used lethal force against any villain who crossed their paths. They also started out as darker equivalents to the main flagship heroes of their respective companies (with Kaine being Peter's clone and Jean-Paul replacing Batman) and got into as much conflict with their more heroic counterparts as they did with any bad guys. And while Kaine never tried to replace Spider-Man like Azrael briefly replaced Batman, he would go on to replace his fellow clone Ben Reilly as the new Scarlet Spider. It also helps that once both of them got over their conflicts with their respective flagship heroes, they would in later incarnations go on to sport new costumes with a black and red color scheme.
  • Anti-Hero: As the second Scarlet Spider, of the Pragmatic Anti-Hero persuasion. He's willing to kill, thinks of himself as a monster and will put villains down with much more brutal means (like nearly lobotomizing Carnage) but will ultimately always end up listening to his "Parker Genes" and prioritize trying to help people.
  • Arachnid Appearance and Attire: As the Scarlet Spider. Taken to a new level following his second resurrection.
  • Artificial Family Member: Like Ben Reilly, Peter considers Kaine his brother and refers to him as such. Following his Heroic Sacrifice at the end of Grim Hunt, he's even given a proper burial under the name Kaine Parker.
  • The Atoner: After he became the Scarlet Spider. He doesn't try to dwell on it, but his past does eat at him from time to time, leading him to be this whether he likes it or not.
  • Atrocious Alias: Just like his little brother, he doesn't like the name "Scarlet Spider". In Kaine's case though, it's not because he thinks it's a lame name, it's that he doesn't feel like he's worthy of his brother's legacy. He doesn't like being called Spider-Man for much the same reason.
  • Badass Beard: Has worn one at various points throughout his career, and winds up with the entertaining visual in Dead No More of his having been imprisoned and stripped of the top half of his costume, and only having time to grab his somewhat mangled mask, which leaves his beard uncovered.
  • Badass Boast: Gives a good one to Ana Kravinoff in his solo series.
    Kaine: You have no chance here. All your knives, all your poisons, and still you're nothing compared to me.
  • Badass Longcoat: Part of his ensemble in the 1990s.
  • Berserk Button: Don't confuse him with Spider-Man.
    • Ben Reilly generally serves as one, for varying reasons - once, it was because Kaine's scrambled brain was trying to protect Peter and thought that Ben wanted to take Peter's place. More recently, it's because Ben's brains got scrambled, he wound up as a supervillain, and Kaine wants to make him pay - though on seeing that Ben's attempt at redemption is sincere, he tries to help him... with the caveat that he'll be around if Ben reverts.
  • Big Brother Mentor: To Spider-Gwen, particularly during Dead No More, encouraging her not to feel less than Earth-616 Gwen (who Peter, widely considered by the multiversal Spiders as the Spider-Man, put on a pedestal).
  • Big Ol' Eyebrows: His eyebrows are a lot bigger than Peter and Ben's for... some reason. And they're darker, too.
  • Blade Below the Shoulder: One of the new abilities he has gained since his revival are his "stingers". Following the death of the Other in Spider-Verse, he lost them.
  • Broken Pedestal: Considers Peter actually Otto in his body to be one after Issue #20, though the pedestal is somewhat rebuilt once he finds out what happened.
    • Later ends up with this towards Ben Reilly, after Dead No More and Ben's stint as the Jackal. Since then, Kaine's taken to shadowing Ben, first being out to kill him, then to make sure he doesn't backslide on his apparent redemption attempt, and finally - grudgingly at first - to help him deal with what he did.
    • He himself is this to Wally Layton and Annabelle Adams. Layton blamed Kaine for Ana Kravinoff almost killing his husband, and then uncovered Kaine's murderous past and attempted to arrest him. Annabelle freaked out when she saw Kane in his monstrous Other form fighting Shathra. Wally eventually forgave Kaine, apologizing and calling Kaine a hero in New Warriors, while Annabelle does seem to consider him a monster.
  • Cain and Abel: Literally plays the "Cain" to Peter and Ben's Abel. Of course, they're all Abels to Spidercide.
  • Came Back Strong: Kaine is resurrected twice, both times with enhanced spider-powers and both times by Ero, who is revealed to be the totemic spider deity Peter encountered in The Other.
  • Can't Hold His Liquor: A Continuity Nod to Peter Parker, since his revival and recovery from the clone degeneration, he gets black out drunk after 3 beers. The ridiculousness of this is lampshaded, since while Peter is about 5'10" and lean and can therefore be expected to not hold his drink so well, Kaine is listed at 6'4" (though Spider Island showed them as being the same height), is shown towering over just about everyone else in Houston (save Annabelle's enormous ex-boyfriend) and even after becoming more normally shaped following his resurrection(s), is still built like a tank.
  • Came Back Strong: After being killed by Kraven's daughter Ana, Kaine is resurrected by Ero as an anthropomorphic spider and is "reborn" during Spider-Island with the powers Peter acquired during The Other arc. note  After being killed by the Lobos siblings, Ero resurrects him a second time by getting him to embrace his Inner Spider in the same manner Peter did in The Other.
  • Chameleon Camouflage: His Scarlet Spider suit - which is actually Peter's Big Time Stealth Costume - is able to turn invisible or change colors for camouflage. It's usually just stuck in the Scarlet Spider mode because Madame Web is The Gadfly.
  • The Champion: He's this to Aracely, who is heavily implied to either be the reincarnation of, or at the least the human host to, the Aztec God of War.
  • Character Development: In spades. He goes from a hardcore murderous Anti-Hero/Anti-Villain to a man who could be described as a Heroic Neutral at best who nevertheless pulled a Heroic Sacrifice for his brother, to a ruthless but ultimately noble Reluctant Hero and member of the New Warriors, who was willing to make a Heroic Sacrifice to save the world. It speaks volumes of his Character Development that he's actually the moderating influence on Ben (whose resurrection left a few screws loose and rattling) in the latest Scarlet Spider series.
  • The Chosen One: Kaine is this twice over; He's the chosen avatar and current host of the totemic Spider-God, the Other, and he's the chosen champion of the Aztec war god Huitzilopochtli. This isn't even counting his role in Spider-Island, where Madame Web comes to believe Kaine is actually the chosen one of her visions, which he seemingly proves by being the one to slay the Spider-Queen, though he argues that it was only done because of a moment provided by Peter, in a suit designed by Peter, while Peter saved thousands of lives.
  • Chronic Hero Syndrome: Which Kaine refers to as the Parker legacy.
  • Clones Are People, Too: Zigzagged. He wonders if they are abominations but he still tries to save the Gwen Stacy clone.
  • Clone Degeneration: Main reason why his powers and his physical appearance looked so different before his resurrection during Spider Island. As of issue #20, it seems to be back, but is actually an illusion instead. After his death and resurrection at the end of Spider-Verse, he lost his Other-related powers and suffered partial degeneration. He's still entirely functional, but a war veteran mistakes him for a fellow vet and remarks that it looks like he got on the wrong side of some napalm.
  • Cloning Blues: Being Spider-Man's self-professed evil clone.
  • Colourful Theme Naming: More so then any of the previous incarnations.
  • Convenient Color Change: Kaine is wearing Peter's Stealth Suit from the Big Time arc, but the reason it looks so drastically different is because Madame Webb hacked the color scheme. Kaine later figures out how to change it back to its original colouration.
  • Cooldown Hug: On the receiving end from Aracely after he became the Other and tried to eat her. Her refusal to lose faith in him and her insistence that Kaine isn't a monster, he's her champion, is what gives him the strength to keep going and regain control.
  • Create Your Own Villain: Kaine sleeping with Zoe and then discovering that the supervillain he just put down afterwards was her father eventually lead to her blowing up Kaine's hotel room with an RPG and nearly killing Annabelle and Wally.
  • Creepy Good: Following his grudging claiming of the Scarlet Spider mantle.
  • Cursed With Awesome:
    • Kaine's Spider-Sense is much, much stronger than his brothers, almost to the point of precognition, but it came at the cost of having Clone Degeneration.
    • The Mark of Kaine was also said to be an amplified wall-crawling trait, specifically using his wall-crawling/clinging powers to stick his hand to someone and then rip it off, leaving a perfect hand-shaped mark. Of course, Peter Parker's "stick-em" powers are powerful enough to do the same (and he actually does it in Grim Hunt, taking revenge on behalf of Kaine), but most of his opponents only have their face exposed, so the results could be very gruesome.
    • Other times, however, its shown to work as a sort of brand; channelling his degeneration through his hands to burn his victim's faces. In either case, he maintains this power even after his body is stabilized in Spider-Island.
  • Deadpan Snarker: He doesn't do it as often as his brothers, but the Parker tendency to quip in fights is still present, albeit considerably darker and more sarcastic.
  • Deal with the Devil: Kaine makes one when he is killed by the Lobos, becoming the avatar of the totemic spider-god the Other, just like Peter once did, allowing him to return to life and save Aracely, but at the cost of becoming a monster like he always claimed he was.
  • Death Seeker: Why he sacrifices himself in Grim Hunt. After his resurrection in Spider-Island, he switches to the other end of the scale, resolving to enjoy life, before hovering closer to this trope again.
  • Did Not Get the Girl: Despite he and Annabelle having feelings for each other, after she sees him in his monstrous form, her feelings disappear. Kaine leaves Houston still having feelings for her, but by the time Peter checks up on things there, she just hates him. However, Kaine would eventually enter a relationship with Terry Wright, an army veteran, some time later.
  • Didn't Think This Through: Kaine has a habit of leaping before looking, and his remaining Death Seeker behaviour makes him reckless.
  • Dirty Coward: During the "Grim Hunt" storyline, he's so terrified of the Kravinoffs that after they capture Araña and Arachne, Kaine insists to Peter that they can't win and their best option is to "run and screw the rest." Spidey responds by decking Kaine in the face and giving him a "The Reason You Suck" Speech, absolutely disgusted that Kaine shares his DNA and memories yet acts like a selfish coward. This actually reaches Kaine, who subsequently knocks Peter out, dons his costume, and dies fighting the Kravinoff family in his place.
  • Discard and Draw: On his second resurrection, at the start of Spider-Island, he loses his Spider-Sense - which had developed into full on precognition - and gains stingers and the ability to talk to spiders. He later loses the stingers.
  • Eaten Alive: The Lobo siblings do this to him. He returns from the dead as the Other and returns the favour.
  • Evil Clone: Kaine to Peter, originally. Lampshaded by Wolverine when they meet, which Kaine responds to by saying, "Pretty much."
  • Expy: Kaine's version of the Scarlet Spider often gets confused for Spider-Man except for the uniform color, the Wolverine-like power (his "stingers") and his (phenomenally bad) attitude.
    • During the Minimum Carnage event, a victim of Cletus Kasady aka Carnage confuses Kaine for the killer.
  • Freudian Trio: In the Scarlet Spiders team, Kaine is the Id to Ben Reilly (Earth-94)'s ego and Jessica Drew (Earth-1610)'s superego.
  • Friend on the Force: Wally Layton, up until Kraven the Hunter finally tracks Kaine down and begins to threaten Kaine's friends to goad him into giving Kraven the death he wants. Kaine refuses to commit murder after his character development, and stops his heart long enough to sever their connection, allowing Kraven to die by any means again, not just the hands of the Spider, but he isn't able to stop Kraven from goring Wally's husband Donald Meland. Wally blames Kaine, and holds him up with a shotgun, in part of a series of events that ultimately leave Kaine in self-exile from Houston. He and Wally bury the hatchet when Justice forces Kaine to return to his old home.
  • Good Is Not Nice: Kaine's first heroic act in Houston, saving a granny from being squashed by a truck, is followed by him yelling and swearing at her for being stupid enough to walk in the road in the first place - and when Peter visits Houston after Kaine leaves, Meland remarks that he thought that Kaine had actually come back... then noticed that he wasn't yelling and swearing at everybody. He's also a very reluctant superhero, frequently expressing a desire to simply sit on a beach and sip margaritas. When he actually gets round to doing this, it doesn't last and Aracely (a psychic, among many other things) points out that he doesn't really want to do that, deep down, despite his insistence to the contrary.
  • Good Is Not Soft: Believes in putting criminals down hard. This is especially notable in that he and Water Snake are the only members of the New Warriors to deal with their enemies aggressively.
  • Good Scars, Evil Scars: Kaine was the first clone created by Miles Warren to reach maturation. However, Warren was still perfecting his cloning process and as a result, Kaine developed scars across his face.
  • Hair-Trigger Temper: Kaine is very quick to resort to violence and in general not a difficult man to anger or irritate.
  • Heel–Face Turn: Originally, considered more of a Anti-Villain but within recent years he has mellowed. Not, mind you, that he's particularly happy with it.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: In Grim Hunt. Fortunately he gets better in Spider-Island.
  • Heroic Self-Deprecation: Once he became the Scarlet Spider, he refuses to see himself as a hero, constantly puts himself down, and thinks of himself as a horrible monster, especially after becoming the avatar of the Other and after the brother he idolized (who was actually replaced by the Superior Spider-Man) told him that all clones were genetic abominations that didn't deserve to live. He starts to get over it during his time with the New Warriors, when Justice tells him that if he feels like a monster and a bad person, the best thing he can do is surround himself with people who care about him and will force him to be better, like his fellow Warriors.
  • Hero Stole My Bike: Houston doesn't have enough tall buildings to get around everywhere, so Kaine sometimes has to "improvise".
  • Hot-Blooded: Much more so than Peter or Ben, Kaine is fairly aggressive and much more likely to get into fights and shouting matches with anyone or anything.
  • I am a Humanitarian: Post-resurrection #2, Kaine comes back as a spider-monster and almost eats Aracely, but she uses her powers to restore his human form. He's horrified at what he almost did and went into full I Am a Monster mode.
  • I Am a Monster: Almost a catchphrase of his. Kaine feels this about himself due to his past and later due to his Inner Spider following his second resurrection. He later shrugs it off, viewing Ben Reilly as the real monster of the two following the latter's stint as the Jackal.
  • I'm Not a Hero, I'm...: Kaine constantly tells people he is not a superhero, and not a hero at all. This is despite the fact that he routinely saves people's lives, which he can probably blame on those damned Parker genes.
  • Impaled with Extreme Prejudice: Kaine uses his stingers to stab Wolverine straight through the heart, knowing that he'd get better. He's less kind to Carnage, who he stabs through the brain, turning him into a vegetable. If it weren't for Agent Venom, he would have gone further too. He also projects multiple spines to skewer Daemos of the Inheritors.
  • Important Haircut: During Grim Hunt, he finally carves away his long, unkempt "villain hair" to a haircut more like Ben and Peter's. It symbolizes his Heel–Face Turn as he's preparing to sacrifice his life to save Peter's.
  • Impossibly Cool Clothes: Kaine's suit, not only does it allow him to turn invisible and several other features, but it is able to regenerate - which is good because Kaine tends to take massive amounts of Clothing Damage. Unfortunately it can't change colour any more, much to his aggravation.
  • I'm Not a Hero, I'm...: Kaine believes he is cursed by those Parker genes, and considers himself a monster.
  • Inhuman Human: Both times after being resurrected he is brought back as an anthropomorphic spider.
  • In-Series Nickname: "Not-Spider-Man" from Carnage.
  • Insistent Terminology: Kaine Parker is not a hero, and he sure as hell isn't a "Superhero". He's sure as hell not "Spider-Man" either.
  • Kid Sidekick: Aracely, who becomes the superhero Hummingbird to go on more "fun" adventures with Kaine. She joins the New Warriors, at least in part to help Kaine overcome his Heroic Self-Deprecation and drags him along with her.
  • Knight in Sour Armor: Extremely bitter and cynical, but he'll fight to his last breath to save people and protect his new family.
  • Legacy Character: Becomes the new Scarlet Spider after Spider-Island.
  • Lovecraftian Superpower: Being the avatar of the Other grants Kaine a number of grotesque powers.
  • Morality Pet: Has one in the form of Aracely, a young Mexican girl he rescued from a human trafficking ring. As of New Warriors #9, Justice suggests that he take the New Warriors as this, to keep him on the straight and narrow. The events of Spider-Verse suggest that he took this to heart.
  • Mundane Utility: In the first issue of his Scarlet Spider series, he uses the Mark of Kaine to give himself a shave and a buzz-cut.
  • My Greatest Failure: Killing the love of his life in The Lost Years because she was a Dirty Cop. Not to mention losing his "brother" Ben.
  • Name of Cain: Kaine. A Lampshade Hanging comes up when he goes to a priest for a confession, with said priest saying they have a lot of work to do toward his forgiveness.
  • Next Tier Power-Up: Kaine went through the same changes his "brother" Peter, did: following Spider-Island he possessed the same powers Peter had after his first encounter with the Queen, and after being killed by the Lobos siblings he was resurrected by the Other, who bestowed upon him the same powers it once had given Peter.
  • No-Holds-Barred Beatdown: Before he became the Scarlet Spider, these were just about all he gave out. Once he became a superhero, he reserved them for enemies who crossed the line, notably the Lobos after they brutally killed him to get to Aracely, Carnage after failing to stop his killing sprees before he could rack up a body count, and Ana Kravinoff and her father Kraven the Hunter after Kraven manipulated and drugged him to think his degeneration was coming back and that Ben Reilly was alive and wanted to kill him for stealing his life away. Then they captured, tortured, and nearly killed Kaine's only friends, all while rubbing his attempts to be a hero in his face.
  • Not So Different: With Ben. It's what starts his Heel–Face Turn.
  • Not Quite Dead:
    • He died near the end of The Clone Saga, though the Jackal revived him by placing him in a regenerative pod, which fell into the hands of the organizers of the Great Game.
    • After The Clone Saga, Kaine went to Europe to combat Norman Osborn's forces; an agent of Osborn later ominously reassures his boss that Kaine has been "dealt with".
    • He sabotaged the ritual to revive Kraven in Grim Hunt by tricking the Kravinoffs into sacrificing him instead of Peter. He's resurrected by the Other, with the help of the Jackal.
    • He gets mauled by the Lobos, but is once again brought back by the Other.
    • Finally, after channeling the Other to kill Solus, he's brought down by Morlun, though at the end of the event a hand is shown shooting out of his Man-Spider corpse. He comes back completely during Clone Conspiracy, however, the Other dies in his stead.
  • One-Winged Angel: Once he dies and is brought back as the avatar of the Other, he's able to transform into a horrifying Spider Monster. He loses nearly all human thought during it, referring to other people as "prey" and usually needing Aracely to calm him back down. Transforming into it to save his new friends is a big factor in what alienates them enough to drive him from Houston. When on Earth-001, Kaine unleashes the full power of the Other and transforms into a massive version of Man-Spider, causing Morlun to admit that Peter-as-the-Other was nothing compared to Kaine.
  • Pay Evil unto Evil: Used to do this back before his Heel–Face Turn, especially during his '90s Anti-Hero phase, and still has moments where he thinks about going back to this mindset.
  • Redemption Demotion: A partial example. His first resurrection (once he was no longer a giant man-spider thing) took away the cellular degeneration, gave him his stingers and allows him to talk to spiders. But it also took away his supercharged spider-sense, which developed into fully fledged precognition, and his previous levels of Super Strength, which made him capable of knocking out the Rhino in a single shot (admittedly, this single shot involved Kaine hitting him in the face with most of a building).
  • Redemption Equals Death: Sacrifices himself to save Peter, but is resurrected during the Spider-Island arc.
  • Refusal of the Call: Unlike Aracely, Kaine responds to Justice's offer to join the New Warriors with a deadpan "No". He helps them solve the problem he's immediately wrapped up in, but as soon as it's resolved he leaves. When Justice takes him to Houston to talk him down from quitting, he only claims that you can't quit what you've never actually joined. He (and Houston) get through to him, and he becomes a full-time member in the end.
  • Scars Are Forever: After being scarred in fight early in the 2012 series he gets a tattoo to help cover it up.
    • Kaine's degeneration scars - which vanished after his first resurrection - reappear after he confronts the Jackal. Turns out to be an illusion.
    • The degeneration scars come back after his stint as the Other ends, and while they don't look too bad, an army veteran assumes he was on the wrong end of some napalm.
  • Secretly Dying: After he's resurrected at the expense of the Other, Kaine's degeneration returns. He and Karn discuss that he only has a little time left, but keep it a secret from Gwen.
  • Seer: He used to have unpredictable, painful visions, but he seems to have lost this ability following his rebirth.
  • Shadow Archetype: To Ben Reilly, and Peter to a lesser extent.
  • Sir Swearsalot: Kaine is constantly swearing, though he starts to pull it back some when Aracely starts demanding money for her Swear Jar for it.
  • Sociopathic Hero: Kaine tries to do good but has very little problem using underhanded and almost villainous methods to get the job done.
  • Sir Swearsalot: Kaine is way more vulgar than his "brothers", causing Aracely to implement a swear jar.
    • It gets to the point where Meland realises that Peter - who is otherwise more or less identical to Kaine - isn't Kaine based on the fact that he isn't yelling swear words at people.
  • Superman Stays Out of Gotham: His attitude toward most superheroes and their issues endangering his new home town of Houston.
  • Superpowered Evil Side: After Ero persuades Kaine to embrace his Inner Spider like Peter did in The Other, he risks losing control of it and transforming into a feral humanoid spider not-so-coincidentally called "The Other".
  • The Team Benefactor: Kaine funds his operations, his expensive hotel suite where he houses Aracely, and his and Aracely's self-exile to Mexico by stealing money from drug dealers and human traffickers.
  • Token Adult: Subverted. He acts like this with the New Warriors, and appears to be the oldest member of the mostly teen super team, but he's actually only a couple years old since he's an aged up clone. It doesn't stop the fan nickname of "Grumpy Uncle Kaine".
  • Tsundere: He's Tsun to everyone and everything. He tries exceptionally hard to hide his Dere side from Aracely, Annabelle, and Peter, to varying degrees of failure, especially since the former can read his mind.
  • Up to Eleven: As implied in the comics and later confirmed by Word of God, some of Kaine's powers are actually augmented spider-powers - the Mark of Kaine for wall-crawling and premonitions for Spider-Sense.
    • Played straight when he gains the same augmented powers Peter did in The Other during Spider-Island.
  • Vitriolic Best Buds: Sometimes with Ben and Peter, when they weren't trying to kill each other. Since he got his own series, is this with Officer Layton.
  • Yandere: He claimed the reason he murdered Doctor Octopus and the Grim Hunter was because he wanted to protect Peter, claiming he felt a brotherly bond with him.
  • You Are Number 6: According to the Jackal, he is "Parker 3.0".

Alternative Title(s): Scarlet Spider


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