Monday, November 30, 2020


I am constantly amazed that, after more than thirty years, people continue to read, discuss, and dissect my 1987 Spider-Man story, Kraven's Last Hunt.  Believe me:  When we were creating that tale, none of us had the faintest idea that anyone would remember it—let alone consider it a classic—three decades later.  Why some stories echo down through the years and others evaporate a month after publication remains a mystery I've yet to fathom, but I am profoundly grateful for the long life KLH has had. 

What prompted these thoughts?  First:  This article by Archie Comics co-publisher (and gifted novelist) Alex Segura.  Then, just this morning, I happened across this video (embedded below) from Matt Draper—first posted back in July—which takes a very deep dive into the story.  Thanks to Alex and Matt both for their insights and enthusiasm.

And thanks to Mike Zeck, Bob McLeod and the entire KLH creative team for being part of something that's turned out to be bigger than all of us.


  1. As I get older, I am noticing I'm getting more forgetful. It's just part of getting older. So, when I say this, I say it with all due respect to you Mr. DeMatteis. You posted this Matt Draper video back on July 8, 2020 under the title "KRAVANALYSIS". I'm not posting this to make me look smart, or you forgetful. I am doing this in case you were wondering why there weren't more comments on this post. Still a good video though, and as I always say, Kraven's Last Hunt is the reason I still collect and read comic books to this day.

  2. It has less to do with ageing brain. George, and more to do with the continuous stream of KLH articles and videos I see. Hard to keep track of 'em all!

    But thanks for alerting me to the double post. Much appreciated!

  3. Something I've really come to appreciate about KLH in recent years is how it fully embraces mysticism without compromising Peter Parker's more grounded perspective. We as readers know that Peter's vision of "The Spider" is alarmingly similar to Kraven's in spite of them having never openly discussed it. But the story avoids the temptation of letting Peter know that! Which is just another reason why it's so brilliant.

    Another point of interest for me is its connection to the Clone Saga. "Pursuit" makes it clear that Peter never entirely got over the trauma of being buried alive, and when you consider that from his perspective everything that followed happened in the span of a few months, it gives a much better sense of why he's at his breaking point when the Clone Saga begins. (Unfortunately, "Pursuit" is not collected, but I get that Marvel had to draw the line SOMEWHERE since it's already eleven volumes!)


    1. Thanks, David.

      My chapter of "Pursuit" was also my first issue as writer of AMAZING SPIDER-MAN. And that the story was a chance to do a deep dive into the psyche of the Chameleon—a character who fascinated me. More Dostoyevskian anguish!

  4. Hey Dematteis, have you ever noticed how weird they draw Atlanta in Namor comics?

    I'm no expert, but I am pretty sure it is landlocked... witch makes it a weird hangout for Namor...not underwater, I don't think all its buildings are a type of roman design, I also am pretty sure they are part of the United States so they wouldn't have a king.

    They also spell it wrong most of the time.


    1. Well, in 1,000 years maybe the world will prove Marvel right...

  5. I mean... I agree with you Dematteis, Squadron Supreme is insanely under appreciated, but the rest of your hypothesis.

    Are you saying that the ultimate testament to the work is that was in part adopted by comics? Kingdom Come, Injustice, and the Justice League story in the cartoon where the JLA become Fascists in trying to save the world and Clvi War had divided heroes on philosophy for example.

    Or, are you staying that it was that Gruenwald saw the potential trends coming decades years, and perhaps decades in advance? Perhaps even acting as a potential warning of the endless parade of "but what if superheroes were the bad guys" stories. sort of trying to mitigate it with the humanity and a logic on why it happened, while still clearly framing the friendly fascism as bad?

    Either way, I do agree his PKD fandom (something I know thanks to those old Marvel Pro-Files) shines through, and does what sci-fi always does, warn of possible societal issues down the road.

    However it is your theory that it predicts the real world I find the most intriguing. How in a hyper partisan world we now find ourselves in, has people as dedicated to their beliefs as the Squadron... presumably often having as much of human reason to follow these ideas as either the Squadron or the resistance.

    A also agree that where it stands out IS the strength of how it differs, where as the fad is to show "a heroes are just villains with good PR" this Squadron Supreme was directive. The only villain was the idea, the people enacting it were just tragedies of good people who walk down the wrong wrong path.

    In fact, it was the shock of what the [plan came to that ultimately defeated the Squadron.

    Perhaps that is the greatest lesson to learn from it, as you said, "hate the evil idea, reform the people when you can. IF you are truly the virtuous path and the other evil, good people can understand that"

    SO.. is that what you were trying to get it across?


    P.S. Happy Hanukah. I know it is almost over, and I would have wished it earlier... but I didn't.

    and now, a song about the holiday...

  6. Uh...yeah. That's exactly what I was saying...

    Happy Hanukkah right back at you, Jack!