Ready to get down and dirty with Spider-Punk? Then you’ll need to make sure you have the right mixtape! Hobie Brown, the Spider-Man of Earth-138, is all about that Spider-Band life, and he’s got the lyrical allusions to prove it.
If you’ve been keeping up with the ongoing Spider-Punk five-issue series by Cody Ziglar, Justin Mason, Jim Charalampidis, and Travis Lanham, you already know that it’s filled with references to punk rock music.
And if not? No sweat! Everyone should have what they need—and this list has your Spider-Punk songs covered.
1. Misfits - 'We Are 138'
'We Are 138' by The Misfits is referenced in the number of Hobie’s homeworld: Earth-138. The reason for the number’s inclusion in the lyrics of the song is disputed, with some band members claiming they allude to THX-1138. However, Glenn Danzig, who wrote the song, states that the number was "simply made up." The lyrics describe the dampening of emotion in order to commit acts of violence (which coincidentally are sometimes necessary in order to fight back against fascism).
2. Peaches — 'Search & Destroy' (Iggy Pop Cover)
Originally designed by Coipel to be Earth 833's Spider-UK, the British Spider-Man's first design wasn't Union Jack enough to be drafted as a Web Warrior for Captain Britain Corp in Edge of Spider-Verse #2. Instead, Hobie was first introduced as part of the Spider-Verse storyline in 2014's Amazing Spider-Man #10 by Dan Slott, Olivier Coipel, Guiseppe Camuncoli, Justin Ponsor, Wade von Grawbadger, Cam Smith, Livesay, and Chris Eliopoulos.
However, at the very beginning of Spider-Punk #1, Hobie gets the opportunity to re-introduce himself through some narration boxes. He accomplishes this using lyrics from 'Search & Destroy,' originally by Iggy Pop and The Stooges (and covered by Peaches): "I’m a street-walkin’ cheetah with a heart full of napalm." This is one of the most direct lyrical references in the series, and it sets the tone for this Spider-Punk lyric-saturated miniseries.
3. MC5 — 'Kick Out the Jams'
Spider-Punk #1 opens with Earth-138’s Kraven the Hunter terrorizing citizens in the streets of New York City. Fortunately, that’s when Karl Morningdew, AKA Captain Anarchy, and Spider-Punk arrive to save the say. As they do so, they shout their battle cry: "kick out the jams, $&%$&!" This is an allusion to the first line of 'Kick Out the Jams' by MC5. The song was later famously covered by Rage Against the Machine.
4. Dead Kennedys — 'Nazi Punks Fuck Off'
As the street fight with Kraven and his hunters continues, Hobie shouts, "Nazi-punks can #@($ off!" This alludes to the Dead Kennedys song 'Nazi Punks Fuck Off.' The allusion is especially apt in this battle, in which one of the hunters even says to Morningdew, "See how tough you talk with a boot in your mouth." However, given Morningdew’s experience growing up dealing with bullies on the rez, he knows how to deal with Nazi Punks quite effectively: a shield to the jaw works wonders!
5. The Ramones — 'Pinhead'
In Spider-Punk #2, the Spider-Base is invaded by not just Kraven and his Nazi punk goons, but also by Ta$kma$ter (who is a lot like the Taskmaster of Earth-616… just with a slightly more capitalistic bent). While Ta$kma$ter may have the upper hand for the first few pages of the issue, he eventually gets knocked back by Kamala’s embiggened fist! As the tides of the battle turn, Hobie notes "you pinheads came to the right place." This alludes to 'Pinhead' by The Ramones.
Want to learn more about the history of the term 'pinhead'? Check out Nobody’s Fool: The Life and Times of Schlitzie the Pinhead by Bill Griffith.
6. The Ramones — 'Blitzkrieg Bop'
At the conclusion of Spider-Punk #2, the Spider-Band climbs aboard the Spider-Van and begins their tour, with the aim of arriving in Washington, DC at the journey's conclusion. To underscore this, the sophomore issue concludes with a two-page splash featuring every member of the band shouting, "Hey ho, let’s go" as they barrel down the road. This is an allusion to the lyrics of 'Blitzkrieg Bop, another classic jam by The Ramones. I also enjoyed the license plate, which reads "FNSM" and alludes to the 'Friendly Neighborhood Spider-Man.'
7. Testors — 'Good Stuff'
According to the note from Ziglar in the back of Spider-Punk #1, he and the rest of the team "were given almost complete creative freedom to remix, mash-up, and deconstruct a lot of really fun, classic characters."
As the Spider-Van arrives in 'Killadelphia' in Spider-Punk #3, the extent of what the team was able to accomplish with this free reign begins to become clear. There, they meet Mattea Murdock, the Daredevil Drummer of Philly, and she's "not the kinda girl who will go down without a fight," an allusion to the lyrics of the Blondie song 'The Tide is High' (and yes, she's punk). But that's not the only punk rock allusion from the newest Spider-Band member: while Earth-138's Daredevil is blind just like Earth-616's Matt Murdock, she possesses the "good stuff," AKA the power of echolocation. While her vision looks similar to Matt's, Mattea uses a drumstick in order to send out sound waves and probe into Kingpin's stronghold. Plus, Mattea is not the kind of girl who will assume Spider-Gwen’s gender, even after hearing her name.
8. Johnny Thunders — 'Born to Lose'
In the final pages of Spider-Punk #3, the Spider-Van is back on the road and heading towards Washington, DC. As they leave Killadelphia, Hobie declares that "just because they were born to lose doesn't mean they can’t win." This is an allusion to the song 'Born to Lose' by Johnny Thunders. However, what the Spider-Band doesn’t realize is that a Venomized Osborne—as well as that pesky Ta$kma$ter—are watching their progress from one of his secret underground bases. Does corruption never sleep? Will the Spider-Band get themselves banned in DC? Watch out, Spider-Punk! (Listen to the 'Banned in DC' song from Bad Brains).
Zig’s Spider-Punk Playlist
If this still isn’t enough music for you, well, Zig has you covered. In honor of the series, the clearly well-listened wordslinger has put together a Spider-Punk Spotify playlist. There are 35 songs on this playlist, which provides readers with seven songs for each of the five issues in the miniseries (although the playlist doesn't cover all the musical references in the series). And if reading Spider-Punk hasn’t convinced you Zig has the chops to put together a playlist like this, then it’s hard to believe anything will!
Here's six Spider-Man recommendations for new readers.