The second trailer forÂ Spider-Man: Into the Spider-VerseÂ dropped this week, introducing a new twist on the likes ofÂ Miles Morales, Peter Parker, Gwen Stacy, Peni Parker, and a Nicolas Cage-voiced Spider-Man Noir. But, in a trailer full of goofy fun, there was one character who stood out as the goofiest by far: Spider-Ham, the anthropomorphic pig voiced byÂ comedian John Mulaney.If you’re not familiar with Spider-Ham, it’s easy to think he’s a one-off joke or maybe a reference to the “Spider-Pig” song inÂ The Simpsons Movie.Â In fact, Spider-Ham has a history going back three-and-a-half decades to the early 1980s. But, no need to worry! We’ll catch you up so you know all you need to know beforeÂ Into the Spider-Verse arrives in theaters.
Just Who Is Spider-Ham Anyway?
“This is astounding! Am I a spider with the limitations of a pig? Or a pig with the proportionate strength and agility of a spider? I’ve become something greater than either spider or pig… I’ve become aÂ Spider-Ham!”
Meanwhile, as a result of the nuclear-powered hairdryer accident, May Porker became convinced that Peter had actually been her nephew all along.
Are You Serious? Marvel Actually Published This?
There’s no way I would have made up that “spider bitten by a radioactive pig” thing, I swear.
So Why Is He in Into The Spider-Verse?
Spider-Ham got promoted to the big leagues of Spider-People in the 2015Â Spider-Verse comics crossover. Spider-Verse was famously billed as starring “every Spider-Man ever,” and while there were a few who were left out due to licensing issues (notably the movie and most cartoon versions of Peter Parker), pretty much everyone else was there, including good ol’ Spider-Ham, who served as much needed comic relief. With the usually quiptacular Peter Parkers distracted by all the death around them, Peter Porker filled the void and brought the funny, becoming a key part of the team that helped save the day.(It’s not clear yet how much the comicsÂ Spider-Verse crossover relates toÂ Into the Spider-Verse; from the trailers, it looks likeÂ Into the Spider-Verse borrows the concept of the Spider-People of multiple universes teaming up without using the actual plot ofÂ Spider-Verse.)
So What Should I Read If I Want to Know More About This So-Called Spectacular Spider-Ham?
The best place to start brushing up on Spider-Ham before the movie hits is probably theÂ Spider-VerseÂ crossover, and then you can move on from there to the theÂ Secret Wars: Spider-Verse miniseries andÂ Web Warriors. There was a 2010 trade collecting some of the classic 1980s Spider-Ham stories, but it’s been out of print and can now be a bit pricey online.
Featured image: Sony Pictures
Images: Marvel Comics