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Spider Society
CURRENT MEMBERS: Ted Mankowski, Mr. Sanderson, Nina Smith, Phil, Alice, many others unidentified
FORMER MEMBERS: Araña, Sophia Corazon (deceased), Spider-Woman (I), Miguel Legar (deceased), Todd Matheson, Smitty McJameson, Roberto Ramirez, Paulo Ramistas, Gabe Roberson, Ezekiel Sims (deceased), Ralph Thompson, Theodore Whitefoot
FIRST APPEARANCE: Amazing Spider-Man #30 (2001)
BASE OF OPERATION: New York City, New York

HISTORY: In the year 1099 AD, a group formed in Castile pledging to act as self-appointed guardians of peace while operating from the shadows. Their league, named the Spider Society, engaged in combat during the medieval Crusades. They discovered the ancient writings of the Arabs, instructing them in arcane secrets and offering protection from totemic (i.e. animal-linked) magical resources. In time, the Sisterhood of the Wasp became an offshoot from the Society of the Spider. While the Spider Society preferred more peaceful methods, the Wasps opted for lethal attacks. After fighting over the true meaning of power, the two groups soon became mortal enemies and have remained so to this day.

The Spider Society operates with a mystically bonded pair at the vanguard of their team: the Mage and the Hunter. When they are together, the power of each individual is enhanced. Hunters are born with special powers, and the affinity to become a future Hunter is passed through bloodlines. Activating the Hunter persona is a transformative process which increases the prowess for fighting to an animalistic, near-intuitive level, while temporarily dulling the Hunter's cognitive abilities, leading to potential for acts of savagery. The ritual to select an initiate replacement Hunter if a Hunter retires or is killed can only be performed once a year. In modern times, the Spider Society has often covertly operated within a shell corporation acting as a front. The corporation, managed under the direction of Ezekiel Sims, funded the Society for 22 years. Sims used his illicitly obtained spider-powers for personal gain, his heart focused on the corporation's profits while avoiding the debt he owed for the powers. When supernatural forces sought to claim Ezekiel's life to pay the debt, Sims tricked Spider-Man into taking his place in a ritual sacrifice at a Peruvian temple; however, the mystical ritual linked Sims to Spider-Man, enlightening Sims as to the errors of his ways. Sims saved Spider-Man, allowing himself to be killed instead.

After Sims' corporation folded, the Spider Society moved their operations under the name of WebCorps, run by Mr. Sanderson. Anya Corazon (Araña), a descendant of one of the first Hunters, Benicio Del Corazon, was initiated to become the next Hunter, paired with mage Miguel Legar. Although the true Hunter was supposed to be Miguel's love, Nina Smith, Miguel made Araña a Hunter to both save her life, and attempt to avoid a premonition of Nina's death if she were selected to be the Hunter. Though impetuous and immature, Area proved to be a formidable adversary to the Wasps and their soldiers (the Drones), aiding Miguel twice in interrupting the Wasp ceremony to summon their Hunter (a ritual that can only be performed once a year). In the second such interruption, both Miguel and Nina were killed, but Araña resurrected Nina by surrendering the Hunter's power to her. Araña retained many of her powers, and left WebCorps to become a government-sanctioned superhero.

NOTE: The above information was copied from “All-New Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe #10”

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