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Madame Web Reading Order (Cassandra Webb and Julia Carpenter)

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Madame Web Reading Order (Spider-Family)

Sony is developing a ‘Spider-Man’ Spinoff ‘Madame Web’, with Dakota Johnson as the lead role. As much as I like the character, it’s a peculiar choice on Sony’s part when you think about all the other members of the Spidey family with more issues and presence under their belt than Madame Web.

Madame Web is not your typical member of the Spider-family. The original Madame Web, which appeared for the first time in the pages of The Amazing Spider-Man in 1980, was not swinging or fighting. No, Madame Web possesses psychic sensory powers including telepathy, clairvoyance, prescience, and the ability to sense the presence of psionic powers in others. The first time Peter Parker heard about her and her clairvoyance, he thought she looked like a fraud. But soon enough, Spider-Man will realize she is everything but a fraud.

Madame Web was first introduced as the elderly blind woman Cassandra Webb, helping Spider-Man, giving him very bad news or asking for his help. As she possesses also the ability to transfer her mutation to another individual, when the time will come, she will transfer it to Julia Carpenter (who has been a Spider-Woman in the past) who then became the new resident Madame Web.

Madame Web has been called the ‘Creepy Clairvoyant’ and she is without a doubt a mysterious character. She specializes in brief appearances. It’s a fact to keep in mind when following this reading order, as her appearances are oftentimes limited to a few panels, a few issues in bigger storylines. For a better understanding, it’s often recommended to read the whole story.

Madame Web Reading Order

Madame Web (Cassandra Web) Reading Order

Cassandra Webb as Madame Web (1980-2010)

Created by Denny O’Neil and John Romita Jr., Madame Web first appeared in The Amazing Spider-Man #210, published in November 1980 to help Spider-Man to find a kidnap victim. Her real name is Cassandra Webb, a woman born and raised in Salem, Oregon. Born blind, she also suffered from a neurological condition known as myasthenia gravis. She was paralyzed and during a time, was connected to a life support system designed by her husband Jonathan Webb, consisting of a series of spider web tubes. As a side effect, she developed powerful psychic abilities and used them to become a medium.

Spider-Web - Madame Web Reading Order

The Gathering of Five – A controversial Spider-Man storyline from 1998, The Gathering of Five sees Norman Osborn bringing five people together to perform a ceremony which will give three gifts to three of them while one gets death and the other gets madness. You guessed it, Madame Web is one of the five!

  • Spider-Man: The Gathering of Five
    Collects both Gathering of Five and Final Chapter storylines with Amazing Spider-Man (1963) 440-441, Spider-Man (1990) 96-98, Sensational Spider-Man (1996) 32-33, Spectacular Spider-Man (1976) 262-263. Madame Web is present in Spider-Man (Vol. 1) #96 & Amazing Spider-Man Vol 1 #441.

Spider-Web - Madame Web Reading Order

Spider-Women – There is a new Spider-Woman in town! Or two? Mattie Franklin became the official Spider-Woman with Jessica Drew’s blessings after fighting Charlotte Witter, a villain Spider-Woman who is also Cassandra Web’s granddaughter. After introducing Mattie and the story in The Amazing Spider-Man vol. 2 #5-6, the new Spider-Woman headline her own title, in which Cassandra Web has a recurring role (as well as the other Spider-Women). She sometimes is present only in a few panels.

Madame Webb in Spider-Woman #14

A few years later, private investigator Jessica Jones tracks down a missing Mattie Franklin in Alias #16-21 (collected in Jessica Jones: Alias Vol. 3) and she talks to Madame Web in issue #17.

Spider-Web - Madame Web Reading Order

Feral – Taking place near the end of J. Michael Straczynski’s run on Spider-Man and Civil War, Madame Web helped Spider-Man in his investigation about a strange grouping of animal-themed villains in Sensational Spider-Man. She also helped Peter talk to Aunt May, who was comatose at the time.

Spider-Web - Madame Web Reading Order

The Gauntlet – Old Spider-Man villains are coming back with upgraded or new abilities to take on Spider-Man as the supposed wife and daughter of the late Kraven the Hunter watch on the sidelines and slowly manipulate Spider-Man’s world, leading us to the Grim Hunt storyline…

Madame Web appears in the following issues during this story-arc:

  • Amazing Spider-Man Vol 1 #600, #606, #611, #617, #630.

The storyline has been collected in Complete Collections:

  • The Amazing Spider-Man: New Ways To Live
    Collects Amazing Spider-Man (1999) #602-611, Spider-Man: A Chemical Romance digital comic, Spider-Man: The Root of All Annoyance digital comic, Amazing Spider-Man Presents: Anti-Venom – New Ways To Live #1-3, Amazing Spider-Man Presents: Jackpot #1-3 and material from Web of Spider-Man (2009) #1, Amazing Spider-Man Family #6.
  • Spider-Man: The Gauntlet – The Complete Collection Vol. 1
    Collects Dark Reign: The List — Amazing Spider-Man, Amazing Spider-Man (1999) #612-626 and Annual #37 and material from Web Of Spider-Man (2009) #2-5.
  • Spider-Man: The Gauntlet – The Complete Collection Vol. 2
    Collects Amazing Spider-Man (1999) #627-637, Grim Hunt: The Kraven Saga (2010) #1, Amazing Spider-Man Presents: Black Cat (2010) #1-4, material from Web of Spider-Man (2009) #6-7.

Or In Trade Paperbacks:

Grim Hunt: The Kraven Saga. The follow-up to The Gauntlet – The Inheritors from Spider-Verse weren’t the first ones to hunt Spiders, as the Kravinoff Family is doing that in order to resurrect Kraven. A Very Important story for the future of Madame Web.

  • The Amazing Spider-Man: Grim Hunt
    Collects Amazing Spider-Man #634-637, Grim Hunt Prologue And Material From Web Of Spider-Man #7 & Spider-Man Origin Of The Hunter.

Following the conclusion of this story, Cassandra Webb will reappear later, in the Spider-Event Dead No More: The Clone Conspiracy see below!)

Madame Web (Julia Carpenter) Reading Order

Julia Carpenter as Madame Web (2010-)

Julia Carpenter seems to be destined to occupy second place. The Second Spider-Woman, the second Arachne and the second… Madame Web. As we don’t have a reading order for the character yet, let’s take a quick look at Julia Carpenter’s history before she became the new resident Madame Web.

Created by Jim Shooter and Mike Zeck, Julia Carpenter first appeared in Secret Wars #6-7, in October and November 1984 as the new Spider-Woman. Born Julia Cornwall in Los Angeles, California, she married her college sweetheart Larry Carpenter and together they had a daughter named Rachel. But the relationship deteriorated and they divorced. Then, Julia Carpenter was recruited by her college friend Valerie Cooper, leader of a secretive project for the secretive government group named the Commission, to be part of what was called an “athletic study.” Unknown to her, she became a test subject in their experiments, and they injected Julia with a mix of spider venom (not the Venom) and exotic plant extracts, giving her powers similar to those of Spider-Man.

She was first on the wrong side of justice but soon enough, she helped the Avengers and launched her career as a super-hero. She became a member of Avengers West Coast and Force Works before appearing as a supporting character in the third Spider-Woman series (centered on Mattie Franklin, the third Spider-Woman). Julia also headlined her own four-part Spider-Woman miniseries which explained her origin and the origin of her enemies, Death Web. At some point, and after a few difficult events (the loss and regain of her powers), Julia Carpenter walked away from the superhero life to take care of her daughter.

When Julia reappeared, it was first under the codename Arachne during the famous Civil War (in the Ms. Marvel title), then she spent some time in Canada working for the team Omega Flight.

Her destiny changed with the Grim Hunt storyline, in which Cassandra Webb passes her powers on to Julia Carpenter. She is now the new Madame Web!

  • The Amazing Spider-Man: Grim Hunt
    Collects Amazing Spider-Man #634-637, Grim Hunt Prologue And Material From Web Of Spider-Man #7 & Spider-Man Origin Of The Hunter.

Spider-Web - Madame Web Reading Order

Spider-Island – The population of Manhattan developed spider-powers in this Spider-event by Dan Slott. Julia Carpenter is a recurring character throughout the event, appearing in all the main event issues, and a few tie-ins. To know more about it, check out our Spider-Island Reading order.

Julia Carpenter as Madame Web appears in the following issues during this story-arc:

  • The Amazing Spider-Man #664 (last page), #666-673, Spider-Island: The Amazing Spider-Girl #2-3, Spider-Island: Deadly Hands of Kung Fu #1-3
Julia Carpenter in Amazing Spider-Man #667

This event is collected in two trade paperbacks:

  • Spider-Man: Spider-Island
    Collects The Amazing Spider-Man #666-673, Venom #6-9, Spider-Island: Deadly Foes #1, and Amazing Spider-Man #659-660; 662-665 (Infested stories).
  • Spider-Man: Spider-Island Companion
    Collects Spider-Island: The Amazing Spider-Girl #1-3, Spider-Island: Cloak & Dagger #1-3, Spider-Island: Deadly Hands of Kung Fu #1-3, Herc #7-8, Spider-Island: Avengers #1, Spider-Island: Spider-Woman #1, Black Panther #524, Spider-Island: Heroes for Hire #1, and Spider-Island Spotlight #1.

Spider-Web - Madame Web Reading Order

Spider-Man’s Big Time – Following the events in Spider-Island, Julia Carpenter stays as a recurring player in the Spider-Man’s Big Time era by Dan Slott until her powers are overloaded and she is plunged into a coma at the beginning of issue #696.

Julia Carpenter appears in the following issues during this part:

  • The Amazing Spider-Man (1963) #678-679, The Amazing Spider-Man (1963) #689-691 & 695-697.

Those issues are collected in:

or in:

During that time, she also made appearances in Scarlet Spider (2012) #6 & #15 and Superior Spider-Man (2013) #20.

Spider-Web - Madame Web Reading Order

Dead No More: The Clone Conspiracy – When Julia Carpenter woke up in the Spider-verse epilogue (in issue The Amazing Spider-Man #15), she’s lost her powers as those come from the Web of Life which was destroyed. She next appeared in Daredevil (during the Mark Waid/Chris Samnee run) in a story about The Shroud, confirming being without powers but still blind.

A few years down the line, Julia Carpenter AND Cassandra Webb both appeared in Dead No More: The Clone Conspiracy event. This Spidey event marks the Jackal’s return, more driven and determined than ever and dead are coming back to life! That’s the case with Cassandra Webb who is a recurring character in the tie-in series Prowler, whereas Julia Carpenter is more of a co-lead in this title. It’s advised to read the main event for a better understanding and for more information on The Clone Conspiracy, check out our reading order.

Jumia Carpenter in Prowler #2

Spider-Web - Madame Web Reading Order

Sins Rising and The Last Remains – Julia Carpenter resurfaced several years later, with her Madame Web powers back. How and when did Julia Carpenter regain her Madame Web powers? As The Web of Life is the source of Madame Web’s precognition, we can only suppose that Julia Carpenter regain her powers when a new Web of Life and Destiny has been woven (see Spider-Verse: Spider-Zero) even if nothing has been said on that subject in the comic pages.

What we know is that when Julia Carpenter next appeared in Amazing Spider-Man’s run by Nick Spencer, she has her Madame Web powers back. Check out our The Last Remains reading order to know more about this storyline, in which she appears in almost all issues.

Spider-Web - Madame Web Reading Order

The End of the Spider-Verse – The end of the Spider-Verse is coming! The ancient and powerful Shathra, who controls spider-warps, looking to replace the Web of Life with her own equivalent, the Great Nest. To stand against the villain, Julia Carpenter’s Madame Web has to recruit Spider-Heroes to her side and built a plan to maybe have a chance to win this fight…

  • Edge Of Spider-Verse
    Collects Edge Of Spider-Verse (2022) #1-5
  • Spider-Man Vol. 1: End of the Spider-Verse
    Collects Spider-Man (2022) #1-7

The story continues…

Did we forget an important issue? Did we make a mistake? Let us know in the comments!

Last Updated on January 27, 2023.

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