Comics
Published November 21, 2023

Inside the Two Generations of ‘Gang War’

This event isn’t just about Marvel crime families—but actual families too! Learn more about the super-powered parents and kids in Marvel Comics’ next big crossover.

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To the victor goes the city. In upcoming Marvel Comics crossover event GANG WAR, the super villains, crime lords, and criminals of New York are about to wage all-out war to determine their leader, and it’s up to Spider-Man and his allies to take them all down. Even with New York City Mayor Luke Cage and the city’s anti-vigilante laws in place, Peter Parker will need a team of heroes including Spider-Man: Miles MoralesShe-HulkDaredevil (Elektra), and Spider-Woman to take on the forces of villains like Hobgoblin, Mr. NegativeHammerhead, and more.

And in a war, it’s important to know your opponents. In the upcoming GANG WAR, there are not only crime families (the Maggia, the Five Weapons Society, etc.) but also actual families involved! Ahead of its prelude issue, we’re examining the event’s intergenerational connections between parents, kids, and extended family, plus their history so far.

MEET THE FISKS: KINGPIN, TYPHOID MARY, AND THE ROSE

Kingpin: Wilson Fisk has had an iron grip on New York City for as long as he’s appeared in Marvel Comics, to the point where he became mayor of the city at the end of DAREDEVIL (2015) #28. After being ousted from his corrupt seat in office—and escaping incarceration—Fisk “retired” to the mutant island of Krakoa and, thanks to his marriage to Typhoid Mary (see 2021’s DAREDEVIL #36), became a citizen. He would later become the White King of the Hellfire Club after the tragic events of this year’s X-MEN HELLFIRE GALA.

Typhoid Mary: The mutant Mary Walker has been causing chaos since her debut, either with fire, telepathy, telekinesis, or weaponry. Sometimes all four. She had a brief stint as a nun, going under the name Sister Elizabeth, but she would return to crime by working as Kingpin’s bodyguard. With help from Kingpin, it was revealed in DAREDEVIL (2019) #22 that she gained control over her various identities and eventually fell in love with Fisk and became his wife. Unfortunately, during her first Hellfire Gala, the anti-mutant organization known as Orchis attacked. Walker, alongside other mutants, fled through a Gateway and landed in Vanaheim, one of the Ten Realms.

The Rose: Richard Fisk has a very contentious relationship with his dad. As in he has tried to usurp and/or assassinate Wilson Fisk on multiple occasions. It’s ironic because when Richard died, Kingpin revived him with the Tablet of Life and Destiny and the Tablet of Death and Entropy in GIANT-SIZE AMAZING SPIDER-MAN: KING’S RANSOM (2021) #1 out of love for Richard’s mother, Vanessa. However, his dad would overlook Richard and give the “Kingpin” title to his half-brother, Byron “Butch” Pharris instead. The Rose just can’t catch a break.

The Rose resurrected in GIANT-SIZE AMAZING SPIDER-MAN: KING’S RANSOM (2021) #1.
The Rose resurrected in GIANT-SIZE AMAZING SPIDER-MAN: KING’S RANSOM (2021) #1.

MEET THE LINCOLNS: TOMBSTONE AND BEETLE

Tombstone: Known as the “Horror of Harlem,” Lonnie Thompson Lincoln is a major crime boss in New York City and has been for years. He’s also had a longstanding feud with Robbie Robertson. (This feud inadvertently led to Lincoln being mutated with Diox-3.) In recent times, Tombstone and Robbie worked together to save their kids (with help from Spider-Man and the Beetle’s Syndicate), and would call a truce in THE AMAZING SPIDER-MAN (2018) #66.

Beetle: Janice Lincoln may be an attorney, but she was always drawn to her father Tombstone’s lifestyle. When she had a chance to get a super-powered suit, courtesy of Baron Zemo and the Fixer in THE SUPERIOR FOES OF SPIDER-MAN (2013) #7, she just couldn’t say no! As the Beetle, Janice unsuccessfully fought Captain America: Bucky Barnes and Black Widow and was a former member of Boomerang’s Sinister Six. Further proving her commitment to crime, Janice created the Syndicate, a group composed of other female super villains. In her personal life, she’s partnered with—and plans to marry—Randy Robertson.

Janice Lincoln suits up for the first time as the Beetle in THE SUPERIOR FOES OF SPIDER-MAN (2013) #7.
Janice Lincoln suits up for the first time as the Beetle in THE SUPERIOR FOES OF SPIDER-MAN (2013) #7.

MEET THE ROBERTSONS: ROBBIE AND RANDY ROBERTSON

Joseph “Robbie” Robertson: A Harlem native, Robbie is a longtime editor of The Daily Bugle newspaper and a career journalist who focuses on the news instead of sensational tabloids. Robertson is an ally to Spider-Man, and on the flip side, he’s an enemy to Tombstone! Oddly enough, Randy, Robbie’s son, is in a serious relationship with Tombstone’s daughter. Robbie tried to get his son to drop his relationship with the Beetle, but that’s not happening. In the interest of their kids’ happiness, he and Tombstone decided not to interfere in their children’s lives and made peace (however long that lasts) with each other in THE AMAZING SPIDER-MAN (2018) #66.

Randy Robertson: Randy has had an interesting life so far, going from college student, actor, Front Line employee, temporary spider-hero (see SPIDER-ISLAND: DEADLY FOES #1), to social worker. He’s another Spider-Man ally and Peter Parker’s roommate. While sharing an apartment, the Beetle broke in, searching for Boomerang, and he fell head over heels for her. After being rescued from the clutches of Madame Masque and Crime Master V, the couple moved in together in THE AMAZING SPIDER-MAN (2018) #65. And what followed next was an engagement!

Randy and Janice decide to move in together in THE AMAZING SPIDER-MAN (2018) #65.
Randy and Janice decide to move in together in THE AMAZING SPIDER-MAN (2018) #65.

EXTENDED FAMILY: PROWLER: AARON DAVIS AND SPIDER-MAN: MILES MORALES

Prowler: Brother to Jefferson Morales, Miles’ dad, Aaron Davis is an uncle by day and a criminal by night. He died on Earth-1610, but after the death and rebirth of the Multiverse during SECRET WARS (2015), he returned and now lives on Earth-616! And then went right back to crime, to Miles’ dismay. But this second life wouldn’t last long as it seemed Aaron died—again—in MILES MORALES: SPIDER-MAN (2018) #21. Later, it was discovered in issue #35 by Miles and one of his clones, Shift, that Davis was alive but was in a different dimension. In MILES MORALES: SPIDER-MAN #41, he and Miles faced Selim, Miles’ evil clone. After they defeated him, uncle and nephew returned home to Earth-616.

Spider-Man (Miles Morales): Originally from Earth-1610, Miles has become a very capable Spider-Man. After adapting to a new universe, he traveled to the Spider-Verse, fought a version of the Sinister Six, was an Avenger for a time then left and became a Champion, and dealt with his own clone saga (see MILES MORALES: SPIDER-MAN #24-28). Oh, and he’s best buds with Spider-Man (Peter Parker). Current status? Fighting vampires in Brooklyn with Blade and Blade’s daughter Bloodline (after dealing with an overpowered Carnage).

The Prowler returns from another dimension in MILES MORALES: SPIDER-MAN (2018) #41.
The Prowler returns from another dimension in MILES MORALES: SPIDER-MAN (2018) #41.

It’s fitting that GANG WAR will start with a wedding. Families for the bride and groom will be present to celebrate their special day, but if you’re familiar with Marvel weddings, it always has a 99% chance of “special interference.” How will it grow into an all-out war between crime families and Marvel heroes? Who will come out on top? Stay tuned to GANG WAR as it unfolds in comic shops this month, starting with prelude issue AMAZING SPIDER-MAN: GANG WAR FIRST STRIKE (2023) #1!

Want to read all the issues leading up to the epic GANG WAR crossover? Join Marvel Unlimited to read all issues mentioned above, plus gain access to 30,000+ digital comics spanning all of Marvel Comics history.

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