Spider-Ham

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Spider-Ham (real name Peter Porker), is an anthropomorphic pig character who is the funny animal parody version of Marvel Comics' popular Spider-Man character, created by Tom DeFalco, Larry Hama and Mark Armstrong.

His first appearance was in the 1983 one-shot humor comic book Marvel Tails Starring Peter Porker, the Spectacular Spider-Ham #1, which was then followed by an ongoing bimonthly series, Peter Porker, the Spectacular Spider-Ham. The series lasted 17 issues, all of which were published under Marvel's Star Comics imprint. He primarily exists on Earth-8311, which was a universe populated by other anthropomorphic animal parody versions of Marvel heroes and villains.[1]

Background history[edit]

Spider-Ham was born a spider who lived in May Porker's basement, but one of her inventions went wrong, and was bitten by her, transforming him into an anthro pig himself, although still with the abilities of a spider. It's never established whether he is still a spider with the limitations of a pig or a pig with the proportionate strength and agility of a spider.

Spider-Ham begins to fight injustice and the occasional funny animal villain parodied of existing Marvel villains, such as Ducktor Doom, often alongside funny animal versions of Marvel heroes, such as Captain Americat and Hulk-Bunny. Another one of his enemies includes Pork Grind, who is an animal version of Venom whom he also fights among others that are also animal versions of Marvel villains.

Comic issues[edit]

Variant cover to Amazing Spider-Man #528, by Mike Wieringo.

The Spider-Ham series also included back up strips featuring such characters as Deerdevil (Daredevil), Goose Rider (Ghost Rider) and the Fantastic Fur (the Fantastic Four).

Some of these back-ups were contradictory, presenting different anthropomorphic versions of characters in different stories, such as two Namor counterparts: the Sub-Merchandiser (a dog) and the Sub-Marsupial (possibly a wombat).

However, the Asinine Torch (a donkey) that appeared in a story with the Sub-Marsupial and the Fantastic Fur's Simian Torch are not two variants of the Fantastic Four's Human Torch; since he was depicted as elderly in the 1980s, and referred to as an "old sparring partner" of the Sub-Marsupial's, he was obviously a counterpart to the Golden Age Human Torch.

Back into the mainstream[edit]

The character faded into cult status, alongside other funny animal super-heroes, such as DC's Captain Carrot and His Amazing Zoo Crew. Until recently, the Marvel crew decided to give Spider-Ham another chance.

Returning triumphantly in 2005 by popular demand in a poll in variant cover art for Amazing Spider-Man #528 by artists Mike Wieringo and Karl Kesel, Spider-Man Family #1 featured a sixteen-page Spider-Girl story, in which May Parker (Peter Parker's daughter) watches a DVD showing a small portion of a fictional Spider-Ham animated series, discovering that it was created by one of Spider-Man's enemies, Jack O'Lantern. Also in the issue, there was a reprint of Marvel Tails #1.

Finally, after a nearly 20 year hiatus of Spider-Ham stories, in January 2007, J. Michael Straczynski authored the Ultimate Civil War Spider-Ham one-shot, featuring Spider-Ham's attempt to find his missing "thought balloons" against a Civil War parody.

In the 2019 comic, Amazing Spider-Man: Full Circle, Spider-Ham and his symbiote suit are also featured.

In other media[edit]

Television[edit]

  • In the animated series Ultimate Spider-Man, Spider-Ham appears in two different forms.
    • In the fifth episode "Flight of the Iron Spider", he appears as one of the universes Spider-Man and Living Laser were transported in.
    • In the season one episode "Run Pig Run", Loki gives Spider-Man an enchanted hot dog by disguising himself as a hot dog vendor that turns him into an anthropomorphic pig resembling Spider-Ham on the day of Asgardsreia, a holiday where Asgardians go on a day long hunt which ends at sundown, as payback for foiling a previous scheme of his. With the help of Thor, Phil Coulson, Nick Fury, and his fellow S.H.I.E.L.D. trainees, "Spider-Ham" evades the Executioner and his Asgardian hunters until he turns back to normal at the end.
    • Spider-Ham proper later appears in the multi-part episodes in seasons three and four, voiced by Benjamin Diskin. This version of Peter Porker was a pig who got his powers from a spider that fell into his Aunt May's vitamin pancake batter and transferred said vitamins and powers to him, turning him into Spider-Ham. He used his powers for good and even joined his world's Avengers, but J. Jonah Jackal turned the public against him and forced him to quit. In the episode "The Spider-Verse" Pt. 2, Spider-Man encounters him while he is relaxing on his farm. With his encouragement, Porker decides to become Spider-Ham once again and help him fight the Green Goblin. Following the battle, Iron-Mouse, who is Iron Man's animal counterpart, offers Spider-Ham a spot on the Avengers again, which he accepts. In "The Spider-Verse" Pt. 4, Spider-Ham joins forces with a group of alternate reality Spider-Men to help Spider-Man defeat the Spider-Goblin and Electro. In "Return to the Spider-Verse" Pt. 1, Spider-Ham ends up in Peter Parker's living room due to the effects of the shattered Siege Perilous. In "Return to the Spider-Verse" Pt. 4, Spider-Ham is captured by Wolf Spider, who seeks to drain all of his multiversal counterparts' life forces, before Spider-Man defeats Wolf Spider.
  • He has also appeared in Marvel Battleworld: Mystery of the Thanostones and Treachery at Twilight, which are series based on the toy line, as well as the web-series Marvel TL;DR.

Film[edit]

  • Spider-Ham appears in Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse, voiced by John Mulaney. This version follows similar cartoon animal behavior as seen in cartoons from the golden age of American animation and bears a resemblance to Porky Pig from the Looney Tunes franchise. Additionally, Spider-Ham's origin remains the same and he seems to be aware of the fact that anthropomorphic animals are not common in other universes. He arrives in Miles Morales' universe along with Spider-Man Noir and Peni Parker due to the Kingpin's machinations before teaming up with them, Morales, Peter B. Parker, and Spider-Gwen to get back to their respective home universes; using his unique skill set to fight off the Kingpin's henchmen along the way. Before returning home to his own universe, he leaves his cartoon mallet with Morales as a keepsake.
  • In the prequel short Spider-Ham: Caught in a Ham, which is part of the home release of that film, when he is about to enjoy a hot dog, he gets kidnapped by Doctor Crawdaddy. He battles and defeats him in his typical cartoonish fashion until an interdimensional portal appears and affects him and his surroundings in a manner similar to the Looney Tunes short Duck Amuck before whisking him away, leading into his appearance in the film when he gets sucked into it and his hot dog pops out of it.
  • Mulaney returned to voice Spider-Ham in the animated short film Back on the Air, which was created to promote the character's appearance in the video game Marvel Contest of Champions.

In video games[edit]

  • Spider-Ham makes a cameo appearance in Spider-Man: Shattered Dimensions, voiced by an uncredited, former Activision Associate Producer Kevin Umbricht. During a mid-credits scene, Spider-Ham answers Madame Web's call to save the multiverse, but arrives after the Amazing Spider-Man, Spider-Man Noir, Spider-Man 2099, and the Ultimate Spider-Man already did so.
  • Spider-Ham appears as a support card in the "Heroes vs. Heralds" mode in Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3.
  • Spider-Ham was available as a purchasable hero in Marvel Super Hero Squad Online on March 15, 2014 to celebrate the game's anniversary.
  • Spider-Ham makes a cameo appearance in Spider-Man: Edge of Time. He is seen in an Alchemax stasis tank and in Peter Parker's drawings during the credits.
  • Spider-Ham appears in Marvel Heroes as a purchasable pet.
  • Spider-Ham and other associated "spider" characters from the Spider-Ham comics appear as playable characters in Spider-Man Unlimited.
  • Spider-Ham appears in Marvel Avengers Academy, voiced by Christopher McCann.
  • Spider-Ham appears as an unlockable playable character in Lego Marvel Super Heroes 2.
  • Spider-Ham appears as a playable character in Marvel Puzzle Quest.
  • Spider-Ham appears as a playable character in Marvel Contest of Champions, voiced again by John Mulaney.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. "Top 10 Oddest Marvel Characters". Time. September 3, 2009. Retrieved on March 4, 2010.

External links[edit]

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