TARAN

Real Name: unrevealed, possibly Taran

Identity/Class: presumably human (see comments), possible magic user;
    Peruvian

Occupation: sorceress, High Priestess of the Temple of the Great Weaver

Group Membership: Spider Clan

Affiliations: the Great Weaver (god, see comments), Spider-Man

EnemiesFaire de Lain, Snake Clan

Known Relatives: unnamed parents (deceased)

Aliases: High Priestess of the Temple of the Great Weaver

Base of Operations: the Temple of the Great Weaver in the jungles of Peru

First Appearance: Peter Parker: Spider-Man Annual 2001 (2001)

Powers/Abilities: Taran had unspecified magical abilities, stemming from the Amulet of the Spider Clan. She only demonstrated invoking the power of the Amulet to drive the Snake Clan from the Temple.
    She was able to speak English (unlike the rest of her Clan), she was courageous in battle, and she was skilled with the use of the blow gun.

History: The origins of Taran and the Spider Clan are unknown (see comments).

(Peter Parker: Spider-Man Annual 2001 (fb)) - Taran is one of the Spider Clan, who worship the Great Weaver and the river spiders, the latter of whom build great communal nests on the trees along the riverbanks of the Nacza. She claimed her people to be much like the river spiders. When she was a small child, she and the rest of the Spider Clan were driven from the Temple of the Great Weaver by the rival Snake Clan, during which time her parents were slain. As the leader of the Snake Clan, Faire de Lain, had stolen their Amulet and usurped their Temple, her people lost their power and lacked the strength to retake the Temple.

(Peter Parker: Spider-Man Annual 2001) - After the Spider Clan found an unconscious Spider-Man (who had just rescued a crashing bus on a summer vacation to Peru), Taran greeted him, explaining her people's plight and convincing him to help retake the Temple. After Spider-Man was injured by the Snake Clans' poison darts in the process, she led warriors to drive off the Snake Clan, giving Spider-Man the chance to recover. She then led him to the Temple, which he entered to confront Faire de Lain. Hearing the Snake Clan's sorcerer unleash a powerful energy bolt, she feared the worst and led the warriors to enter the Temple to help, but they were all snatched up by Faire de Lain's giant serpents. Faire de Lain dispatched Spider-Man into a pit and prepared to have his vipers slay Taran and her warriors, but Spider-Man recovered in time to save her and eventually defeat Faire de Lain. Taran then retook her people's Amulet and used it to drive the Snake Clan from the Temple.
    Taran was made High Priestess of the Temple of the Great Weaver, after which she reluctantly said goodbye to her hero, giving Peter a kiss and a necklace to remember her by.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Comments: Created by Fiona Avery and Juan Roman Cano.

    This story took place during a summer break in one of Peter Parker's High School years.

    Taran of the Spider Clan mentions that her people are like the river spiders, which MIGHT mean that they are not entirely human or are perhaps an offshoot of humanity. They COULD be more human spawn of  or some other spider god (see the next paragraph).

Similarly, the Snake Clan MIGHT be more human children of Set (see the Serpent Men, Man Serpents) or some other serpent god (see two paragraphs down). Anyway, this is totally all theory.

Their ancestors might have originally been Omm-worshipers, in antediluvian times. But, during the historical Spanish colonization of South America, escaped slaves of African heritage might have found refuge with the Spider Clan. And, this, in turn, might have led to a consolidation of Omm with Anansi.
--Carycomic

    Interestingly, I think this story came out before JMS started his KICK-@$$ run on Amazing Spider-Man, or shortly thereafter. Anyway, given the current storyline in Spider-Man, this would fit in perfectly with the Great Weaver being meant to represent Anansi, who--despite being a god worshipped primarily in Africa--seems to have been linked to the Peruvian (South America, to the unedu-ma-cated) Temple (and specifically to a descendent of Incans...or was it Aztecs?). That fits a little weirdly to me, but I guess when you're trying to think of a spider god, Anansi is the most obvious choice. However, if I wrote for Marvel, er, I mean, if I wrote new stories for the comic books, I totally would link Ezekiel and that Peruvian Temple to Omm. Still, great stories nonetheless.

    On that same line, though not specifically detailed, it only makes sense that the Snake Clan worships a Snake God. Plenty to choose from here, but I'd have to go with the big daddy serpent of them all: Set. Then again, since Anansi is of African origin, it also might make sense that if the Spider Clan worships Anansi (unconfirmed), then the Snake Clan might likely worship Dam-Ayido (Damballah), the African/Voodoo god. OR, they could worship Damballah, the spawn of Set, who is distinct from the African God. OR Sligguth (another spawn of Set), or any other Serpent Gods (Ishiti, Seth, etc.).

    At any rate, I think JMS should do a follow up on this issue. It's hard to believe Peter wouldn't remember another Spider Temple in the jungles of Peru, especially since he was diggin' Taran so much...I bets she's all grown up now.

    The Marvel Tarot confirms the Spider Clan as being associated with Gaea, who is the mother of the spider god Omm (see the Spider People). Gaea's OHOTMU Hardcover#4 fleshes this out a bit. Revealing that the Spider Clan are descendants of the Spider People.

    The Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe: Spider-Man 2004 identifies Anansi as the founder of the Spider Clan (though this might have strictly referred to the Peruvian Temple seen in JMS' Amazing Spider-Man stories with Ezekial -- a relationship is not confirmed). Any relationship b/t Omm and Anansi is speculative.

CLARIFICATIONS:
No known connection to:

The Spider Clan has no KNOWN connection to:

The Amulet of the Spider Clan has no KNOWN connection to:

The Temple of the Spider Clan has no known connection to:


Spider Clan

 

    A mysterious tribe dwelling worshipping the Great Weaver and dwelling within her Temple within the Peruvian jungle. When their shaman became old, the rival Snake Clan attacked and drove them from the Temple, killing many of their number in the process. Without their Temple, they lacked their source of power and the strength to fight the Snake Clan. Years later, they encountered Spider-Man, who helped them reclaim the Temple. After this, Taran became their High Priestess.

 

--Peter Parker: Spider-Man Annual 2001 (2001(fb), 2001

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Amulet of the Spider Clan

    The power source of the Spider Clan, it presumably drew power from the Great Weaver, and was held by the Spider Clan's former shaman. However, when the Shaman became old, the Spider Clan were driven off by the Snake Clan, and the Amulet usurped by the Snake Clan's sorcerer, Faire de Lain. Years later, Spider-Man defeated Faire de Lain, and Taran invoked the Amulet to drive the Snake Clan from the Temple. With the Amulet, Taran became the new High Priestess of the Spider Clan.

    It's exact powers are unknown, but the entire Spider Clan fled from its power, and Faire de Lain said that it amplified his own power sufficiently to grant him dominion of the entire Nazca River.

--Peter Parker: Spider-Man Annual 2001 (2001(fb), 2001

 

 


Temple of the Great Weaver

 

    Located within the jungles of Peru, it was home to the Spider Clan until their shaman grew old and they were driven off by the Snake Clan, who usurped it for themselves. Years later, Spider-Man joined Taran and several warriors in retaking the Temple for the Spider Clan.

 

-Peter Parker: Spider-Man Annual 2001 (2001(fb), 2001

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


images:
Peter Parker: Spider-Man Annual 2001, p11 (not including ads), top middle
    p36, panel 1
(Spider Clan) p9
(Temple) p15
(Amulet) p33, panel 1 (close up)
 


Appearances:
Peter Parker: Spider-Man Annual 2001 (2001) - Fiona Avery (writer), Juan Roman Cano (artist), Axel Alonso (editor)


Last updated: 10/29/07

Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.

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