Comics
Published March 5, 2024

Welcome to Earth-138, Spider-Punk's Homeworld

Take a trip to Earth-138, Spider-Punk's universe, and learn all about the colorful heroes and villains that rock out there.

Since his debut in the original SPIDER-VERSE epic, Spider-Punk—the Hobie Brown of Earth-138—has become a rock star of the Multiverse. Like any hero, Spider-Punk was shaped by his circumstances, which led him to develop an antiauthoritarian attitude as he fought to survive in a city with little hope and no future. Even though he has helped save countless universes, Spider-Punk's heart will always be with his home dimension, where he once kicked off a violent revolution against those who wielded their power irresponsibly. 

Now, let's take a closer look at Earth-138, Spider-Punk's home dimension, and how the anarchic web-slinger fought back against the forces that ruined his world. We'll also break down the villains of Earth-138, as well as the heroes who are helping Spider-Punk fix it, just as their next adventure gets underway in SPIDER-PUNK: ARMS RACE (2024) #1 by Cody Ziglar, Justin Mason, Morry Hollowell, and VC's Travis Lanham.

WHAT IS EARTH-138?

Devastated by greed, tyranny, and apathy, Earth-138 is a ruthless world that compelled its heroes to become revolutionary figures. As Spider-Punk explains it, his United States of America was ruined by big business, rampant consumerism, apathy, and a fascist government led by President Norman "Ozzy" Osborn. 

In cities like New York, Osborn's followers wield advanced weapons, but modern conveniences like microwavable popcorn can be hard to come by for the general population. Music plays a vital role in this world's culture, and punk rock speaks to the latent rage and political frustration of the oppressed and aggrieved underclass. In sharp contrast to this world's version of the United States, Earth-138's Wakanda stands as a beacon of political stability and technological advancement, with the Wakanda Royal Family sending aid to Spider-Punk's community rebuilding efforts. 

The abuse of power that defines Earth-138 played a critical role in turning Hobie Brown into Spider-Punk, long before he debuted during SPIDER-VERSE in AMAZING SPIDER-MAN (2014) #10 by Dan Slott and Olivier Coipel. While sleeping in an alleyway, Hobie was corralled by police into a river filled with illegally dumped toxic waste. As he swam through the water, an irradiated spider bit him, giving him superhuman abilities. 

As his world's Spider-Man, Hobie led an uprising against President Osborn in a SPIDER-VERSE (2014) #2 story by Jed MacKay and Sheldon Vella. After inspiring his followers to unite as the Spider-Army, Hobie confronted Osborn and his troops, who wore Variable Engagement Neuro-sensitive Organic Mesh (V.E.N.O.M.) symbiote suits. Using the ear-crunching sound of his guitar to neutralize the symbiote suits, Hobie decapitated Osborn with his guitar. Hobie subsequently traveled around the Multiverse and embraced his Spider-Punk identity, while Earth-138 still deals with the fallout of that battle and a world without President Osborn.

THE HEROES OF EARTH-138

Much like Spider-Punk, most of the heroes of Earth-138 are influenced by punk iconography. Spider-Punk's closest ally is Karl Morningdew, AKA Captain Anarchy. Hailing from the Cowlitz Nation, Captain Anarchy was empowered by the Super-Insurgent Serum and wields a shield in battle. With a costume that draws equally from Earth-616's Captain America (Steve Rogers) and Flag-Smasher, Captain Anarchy has operated alongside Spider-Punk in his Spider-Army and the Spider-Band.

Bringing together the counterculture heroes of Earth-138, the Spider-Band stands as this world's most prominent group of heroes. Beyond Spider-Punk and Captain Anarchy, it includes Robbie Banner, this world's Hulk, who can trigger his transformation through rock music, as revealed in EDGE OF SPIDER-GEDDON (2018) #1 by Jed MacKay and Gerardo Sandoval

Another Spider-Band member, Riri Williams, operates as the hi-tech armored hero RiotHeart out of the Spider-Base, the team's headquarters at the Brooklyn Community Center. The group also includes Mz. Marvel, Kamala Khan, who has size-changing "embiggening" powers much like her Earth-616 counterpart. 

The Spider-Band's newest member is Mattea Murdock, the Daredevil Drummer of Philly. Although this Daredevil initially operated out of Philadelphia, she met the Spider-Band when they traveled to Washington to face a resurgent Osborn and joined the team after that encounter. The Spider-Band also includes a few unpowered members, including Robbie Banner's boyfriend Rick and Paola, another friend of the group.

Beyond the Spider-Band, Earth-138 also includes heroes like T'Challa, the leader of a prosperous and stable Wakanda, and Shuri, the head of the Wakanda Design Group, who share the title of Black Panther. Spider-Punk has discussed working in the past with the mystical hero MC Strange; he also revealed he was inspired by the late Gwen Stacy of this world. On Earth-138, J. Jonah Jameson is a music promoter at the Daily Bugle, his music venue, which hosted a Battle of the Bands featuring Man-Wolf, a rock band led by his son Johnny Jameson.

THE VILLAINS OF EARTH-138

Through the brutal policies of his presidential administration, Norman Osborn made a major impact on the world of Earth-138. While in office, Osborn ran the Thunderbolt Department, which used V.E.N.O.M. symbiote suits to carry out his will. After he was ousted, he survived thanks to symbiote and cybernetic technology, and he began operating from the shadows with weapons caches hidden around America. 

Osborn relied on a few key lieutenants to carry out his plans. With a V.E.N.O.M. suit of his own, Eugene "Flash" Thompson served Osborn as Officer Venom. Robert Reynolds operated as the armored War Sentry until RiotHeart hacked into it and stole it. With the ability to mimic the moves of his opponents, Anthony Masters worked for Osborn as Ta$kma$ter, and he hired Kraven and the Hunters to carry out his mission to prepare Brooklyn for gentrification in SPIDER-PUNK (2022) #1 by Cody Ziglar and Justin Mason.

Outside of Osborn, several other Spider-Man villains also exist on Earth-138. Adrian Toomes, the Vulture and C.E.O. of Toomestone Records, bought the Free Medianet so he could shut down a Spider-Punk concert. After that failed, the Vulture offered Lizard and the Lzrdz—a reptilian group including Stegron and Sauron—a record deal to take out Spider-Punk. 

The Spider-Band also faced the Sinister Six-Piece, a band of villains including Beetle (Janice Lincoln), Scorpion, Electro, White Rabbit, Sandman, and Dok Ock. After that failed, Dok Ock began working with Justin Hammer to create robotic Sentinel-Slayers to take down the Spider-Band. Spider-Punk and his allies also faced Wilson Fisk, the Kingpin and a Philadelphia-based promoter, as well as the Marauders, his mutant enforcers. 

Additionally, part of a V.E.N.O.M. symbiote briefly bonded with serial killer Cletus Kasady to form Carnage before taking a more benign, dog-like form. With Captain Anarchy, Hobie fought Earth-138's Annihilation Wave, a gang of humanoid insects obsessed with surf rock. After killing the fascistic Thunderstrike, Spider-Punk also defeated the time-traveling Kang the Conglomerator, who owns the rights to Spider-Punk's likeness in Earth-138's possible future.

SPIDER-PUNK AND EARTH-138

The world of Earth-138 is still feeling the long-term effects of Spider-Punk's initial defeat over Osborn. Even after his apparent death, Osborn still holds considerable sway over much of America, which set the stage for his unlikely return. After a V.E.N.O.M. symbiote saved him, Osborn saw he had become an inspiring martyr to his loyalists; the Lincoln Memorial was even transformed into the Osborn Memorial to honor him, as revealed in SPIDER-PUNK (2022) #4 by Cody Ziglar and Justin Mason. With his vast network of resources, Osborn operated from behind the scenes and made plans to run for political office again. 

When Osborn sent Ta$kma$ter to take out the Spider-Band, Spider-Punk and his allies found one of Osborn's weapons caches beneath their central base. This sent them down a path that led to another hidden base in Philadelphia, which then drove them to Osborn's main base underneath the Osborn Memorial in Washington, D.C. After discovering Osborn's operation, the heroes were captured. With the Spider-Band in his clutches, Osborn revealed himself and threatened to execute them publicly. Thanks to the Hulk and Daredevil Drummer, the Spider-Band revolted against Osborn's forces, and Spider-Punk defeated the former president once again. 

After minor battles with Carnage and the Sinister Six-Piece, Spider-Punk focused on rebuilding his community with support from Wakanda in SPIDER-PUNK: ARMS RACE (2024) #1. While the Spider-Band is busy dealing with street-level threats like Vulture and Lizard, Dok Ock and Justin Hammer are developing robotic Sentinel-Slayers to take them out. In fact, despite all their powers and abilities, the Spider-Band barely managed to defeat one of these giant tentacle-wielding machines. While that one experimental Sentinel-Slayer almost destroyed Spider-Punk's neighborhood, Dok Ock is already developing even stronger projects to push Spider-Punk and his allies to the limit.

Get your tickets to Earth-138 in SPIDER-PUNK: ARMS RACE #1, now on sale!

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