NEPHILIA
(of Earth-8107)

Real Name: Dr. Bradley "Brad" Shaw

Identity/Class: Extradimensional (Earth-8107) human mutate

Occupation: Scientist

Group Membership: None

Affiliations: Spider-Man (Peter Parker); formerly Penny

Enemies: J. Jonah Jameson, Penny; formerly Spider-Man (Peter Parker)

Known Relatives: None

Aliases: "Dummy" (insult from Penny), "Spider-Man" (he briefly thought he was Spider-Man), "Ugly" (insult from Spider-Man)

Base of Operations: His personal lab in New York City, New York (Earth-8107)

First Appearance: Spider-Man cartoon episode, "The Web of Nephilia" (January 23, 1982)

Powers/Abilities: Dr. Bradley Shaw did not normally possess any superhuman powers but he was a brilliant biophysicist and scientist. After being mutated into Nephilia, Dr. Shaw resembled a humanoid spider, complete with a six-legged spider body below the waist. He was also capable of clinging to solid surfaces, allowing him to scale walls with ease, and he could generate and project organic orange webbing capable of holding even superhumanly strong opponents like Spider-Man. His mutation also gave him superhuman strength, sufficient enough to unlatch train cars mid-travel.

Height: (as Dr. Bradley Shaw): 5'8"; (as Nephilia): 6'0" (all by approximation)
Weight: (as Dr. Bradley Shaw): 150 lbs.; (as Nephilia): 250 lbs. (all by approximation)
Eyes: (as Dr. Bradley Shaw): Brown; (as Nephilia): orange (no visible irises)
Hair: (as both incarnations): Black with white streak

History: (Spider-Man cartoon episode - "The Web of Nephilia") - As scientist Dr. Bradley Shaw slept, his assistant Penny taped a Daily Bugle television report on Spider-Man and placed the tape among many in a large collection. Passing by numerous posters and other research on Spider-Man, Penny placed a spider on top on the sleeping Dr. Shaw, wishing both the spider and Shaw sweet dreams. Penny then went out to witness Spider-Man in action, secretly taking samples of his web and even his blood, while Dr. Shaw awoke to find Penny's spider knocking over chemicals in his lab. Dr. Shaw was then surprised when Penny returned and put her spider back in its cage. Dr. Shaw then warned that Penny's obsession with Spider-Man was getting dangerous but Penny insisted that she was obsessed with Dr. Shaw, not Spider-Man. When Penny revealed the piece of Spider-Man's webbing she had obtained, Dr. Shaw quickly had her hand it to him for examination under his microscope. An excited Penny then revealed the drop of Spider-Man's blood that she had obtained using a hidden pin within her ink pen and Dr. Shaw immediately examined the blood sample, finding arachnid properties and what he determined to be the key to the secret of Spider-Man's powers: radioactivity. When Dr. Shaw expressed concern over the risks of unlocking Spider-Man's power, Penny prodded him, suggesting he had come too far to back out now and reminding him that in any scientific experiment, there were risks. She also explained that if he succeeded, his brilliant mind would finally be recognized. Admitting that unlocking the secret to Spider-Man's power had been his dream, Dr. Shaw was scolded by Penny, who proclaimed him a coward and announced that if Shaw loved her, he would go through with the experiment. Not wishing to make Penny cry, Dr. Shaw agreed to go through with the experiment and a short time later, he had devised a serum from the nephilia spider and Spider-Man's blood, which he then injected into himself. Hurrying to have Penny help with the next step, Dr. Shaw laid down and had Penny subject him to high levels of radiation to ignite the experiment's effects. When Dr. Shaw asked for Penny to turn the radiation up, the manipulative Penny replied "with pleasure" and turned the radiation dial into the "danger" levels, prompting Dr. Shaw to scream for Penny to turn it off. Penny did not do so and Dr. Shaw began transforming into a humanoid spider. At first feeling as if he had become a monster, Dr. Shaw was assured that he was magnificent by Penny and he immediately began announcing that he was indeed magnificent as well as powerful.


He soon became erratic, claiming that he was Spider-Man and subsequently kidnapping J. Jonah Jameson. Upon hearing Jameson' scream, Spider-Man arrived and learned that someone else calling himself Spider-Man had left Jameson hanging from a building by a web. Despite accusing Spider-Man of being in cahoots with Dr. Shaw, Jameson nonetheless allowed Spider-Man to rescue him and help remove Shaw's webbing from his clothing. Realizing he had to find this other "Spider-Man," Spider-Man swung through the city, only to be caught in one of Shaw's webs. Announcing himself as Nephilia, Dr. Shaw bragged that his webs were stronger than Spider-Man's and, with Spider-Man stuck in the web, Nephilia prepared to impale Spider-Man with his pointed legs but instead opted to cut Spider-Man loose with a warning to stay out of Nephilia's way before hurling Spider-Man across town. While Spider-Man researched "nephilia" at the New York Public Library, Nephilia returned to Penny, who chewed him out for letting Spider-Man go despite Nephilia's reminder that he had hurled Spider-Man across town. Penny then showed Nephilia the bad press J. Jonah Jameson had written about him and ordered Nephilia to make Jameson pay. She also showed Nephilia an article about an upcoming gold shipment and Nephilia set out to take care of Jameson and gather gold. First stopping at the Daily Bugle, Nephilia shot a web line and pulled Jameson out of the building and again hung him from the roof. After learning from an exotic pet dealer that a nephilia spider was purchased by Dr. Bradley Shaw, Peter Parker left and quickly heard Jameson's screaming once more. While saving Jameson, Spider-Man was given a note about the gold shipment that Nephilia had ordered Jameson to deliver to Spider-Man and Spider-Man next visited Dr. Shaw's lab, where Penny informed Spider-Man via video message that both Nephilia and herself had escaped before Spider-Man could find them. After she taunted Spider-Man, daring him to keep Nephilia and herself from stealing the gold shipment, Spider-Man deduced that Nephilia and Dr. Shaw must be one and the same and devised a formula capable of reversing his mutation. The next day, Nephilia waited for the train carrying the gold to pass him then attacked the train, unlatching the gold-carrying cars from the rest of the train mid-travel. After halting the train cars, Nephilia used his web to remove the car's door and Penny drove a truck up to the train to load up the gold. His gathering of the gold was interrupted by Spider-Man, however, who announced that he could help Nephilia despite Penny's angry orders for Nephilia to get rid of Spider-Man. Nephilia quickly trapped Spider-Man in webbing but Spider-Man, having devised a solvent against Nephilia's webbing, freed himself as Penny cut the webbing holding the train car in place. Betrayed by Penny, Nephilia agreed to help Spider-Man stop the runaway train car and the two soon slowed the train car to a stop before also stopping Penny's getaway truck. After Penny admitted she had never loved Dr. Shaw, an emotionally crushed Nephilia agreed to accompany Spider-Man back to his lab, where Spider-Man revealed a serum capable of restoring Nephilia's humanity. When Spider-Man warned that the untested serum could kill him, Nephilia sullenly remarked that he had nothing else to live for and downed the serum. Laying down, Nephilia was restored and when Dr. Shaw awoke, he had no memory of his time as Nephilia. Spider-Man told Dr. Shaw that if he ever needed help to just send out a web.

Comments: Created by Creighton Barnes, Doug Booth, Francis X. Feighan, Donald F. Glut, Jack Hanrahan, Christy Marx, Larry Parr, Jeffrey Scott and Marvel Productions (see Appearances list for full list of artists involved).

The name "Nephilia" was likely taken from the "nephila spider," which is also called the golden silk orb-weaver. That might also explain why Nephilia's webbing was golden-orange in color.

This Spider-Man episode was later reworked into an episode of Spider-Man & His Amazing Friends but the character of Nephilia was renamed the Arachnoid and his real name was changed to Zoltan Amadeus. Since both Spider-Man and Spider-Man & His Amazing Friends cartoon series take place in the same reality, Earth-8107, one can only assume that Spider-Man fought two different scientists who transformed themselves into humanoid arachnids, both with near-identical backstories and origins.

Profile by Proto-Man.

CLARIFICATIONS:
Earth-8107's Nephilia (Bradley Shaw) has No KNOWN connections to:

Earth-8107's Penny has No KNOWN connections to:

Penny

Penny was the manipulative assistant/lover of Dr. Bradley Shaw. She was dangerously obsessed with Spider-Man and did everything in her power to spur Dr. Shaw's research into unlocking the secret of Spider-Man's power. Not above obtaining samples illegally, Penny kept video tapes of every publicly televised Spider-Man appearance and when a fire broke out in New York, Penny visited the scene, suspecting Spider-Man would show up. When he did, Penny walked right up and stole a sample of Spider-Man's webbing from a net he had created and, after Spider-Man rescued a family, Penny walked away and feigned interest in getting Spider-Man's autograph. Using an ink pen that had a secret pin built into it, Penny acquired a sample of Spider-Man's blood when the pen pricked Spider-Man's finger. She then walked off with no explanation, leaving Spider-Man to wonder what had happened. Penny then returned to Dr. Shaw and gave him the samples, prodding him to go through with an experiment to unlock Spider-Man's power. After looking over the samples under a microscope, Dr. Shaw began to worry about the possible risks in unlocking Spider-Man's power in a human being but Penny feigned an emotional outburst to further convince Dr. Shaw to use himself as a test subject. Not wishing to make Penny cry, Dr. Shaw went through with the experiment and when Dr. Shaw asked for Penny to increase the radiation levels, she uncaringly increased them to dangerous levels, causing Dr. Shaw's transformation into a humanoid arachnid. When Dr. Shaw became depressed at his no longer human form, Penny continued manipulating Shaw, claiming that he was now magnificent. After Shaw dubbed himself Nephilia and hurled Spider-Man across town, Penny angrily scolded Shaw for letting Spider-Man go and suggested they rob a gold shipment to draw Spider-Man back out. Suspecting that Spider-Man was soon deduce that Shaw and Nephilia were one in the same, Penny recorded a video that taunted Spider-Man into stopping their gold shipment robbery. The next day, Penny drove the getaway truck as Nephilia robbed the gold shipment but when Spider-Man intervened, Penny used a saw to cut the webbing holding the train in place and escaped, leaving Nephilia to die on the runaway train. Realizing he had been betrayed, Nephilia instead helped Spider-Man stop the train and when they both stopped Penny from escaping, Penny exclaimed that she had never loved Shaw, thoroughly depressing Dr. Shaw.




--Spider-Man cartoon episode, "The Web of Nephilia"

images: (without ads)
Spider-Man cartoon episode, "The Web of Nephilia" (all images in this profile)


Appearances:
Spider-Man cartoon episode, "The Web of Nephilia" (January 23, 1982) -
Creighton Barnes, Doug Booth, Francis X. Feighan, Donald F. Glut, Jack Hanrahan, Christy Marx, Larry Parr, Jeffrey Scott (writers), Rick Hoberg, Cullen Houghtaling, Larry Houston, Sherman Labby, Henry Tucker (storyboards), Mario Piluso (storyboards, layouts), Lyle Beddes, Bruce Bennett, Norm Cabral, Dan Faucett, Neil Galloway, Greg Garcia, Gary Graham, Rick Graham, Karl Hepworth, Stuart Heimdall, Larry Huber, Elaine Hultgren, Boyd Kirkland, Debra Pugh, Keith Sargent, Dave Sharp, Roy Smith, Grant Wilson, Roy Wilson, Bill Wray (layouts), Gerry Chiniquy, Steve Clark, John Gibbs, Sid Marcus, Bob Richardson, Nelson Shin, Kay Wright (animation directors), Robert T. Gillis (supervising editor)


Last updated: 07/07/17

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