[Midnight. The Oval Office. President Barack Obama is pouring over the budget figures. Suddenly, the Amazing Spider-Man swings in through the window.]
The one and only.
What are you doing here, wall crawler? I haven't seen you since we teamed up in Amazing Spider-Man #583.
I was in the neighborhood and thought I'd swing by. How's it hanging?
Not so good. First I got elbowed in the mouth in a pickup basketball game over Thanksgiving.
I know the feeling. So far, three actors have been injured in my new Broadway musical, "Spider-Man: Turn Off The Dark." And that doesn't even count the producer who dropped dead of a heart attack before we opened.
Now I'm wrestling with the budget deficit. The country's hemorrhaging red ink thanks to Bush's tax cuts, unfunded drug program, and unjustified war in Iraq.
I know that feeling too. You should see the cost overruns for "Turn Off The Dark." $65 million and counting. I don't know how Bono expects to make his money back.
Pocket change. Try $14 trillion. That's how deep in the hole we are. It's a good thing the Chinese need a trading partner, or they could foreclose on us tomorrow. Now Rand Paul is threatening to filibuster any increases in the debt ceiling, and drive us into default.
The Aqua Buddha dude? I've fought Hydro-Man a couple of times, but I've never faced Aqua Buddha. What's his secret power?
He's the son of Ron Paul.
The kook who wants to do away with the Fed and go back to the gold standard?
That's the one. He wants to do to the Federal budget what Swiss Miss, that new super-villainess who looks like a human Cuisinart, wants to do to you.
They remind me a little bit of the Osborns.
Sharon and Ozzy?
No, Norman and his son Harry -- AKA the Green Goblin I and II. Crazy as fruit bats, and dangerous too.
The question is how to stop him.
I suppose accidentally impaling him with a flying jet platform is out?
Tempting, but no. He's the darling of the Tea Baggers, so we have to proceed cautiously. And no WikLeaks. I'd hate to have to send Hillary on an another apology tour. Do you have any idea what she had to do to get Berlusconi to forgive her? Do the words "bunga, bunga" mean anything to you?
Every bad guy has a weakness. That's why they're bad guys. My spider sense tells me he's not going to get along well with Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell. There's going to be red blood in the Bluegrass State.
McConnell? The Turtle Who Walks Like A Man?
Yeah, I know, he makes the Lizard seem positively mammalian.
But McConnell's the one who really hates me. He's been babbling about me being a one-termer ever since I was elected -- like that New York Post columnist who keeps predicting your musical is about to close.
I know. But the enemy of my enemy is my friend. It's like when I teamed up with Sandman to take down Venom. McConnell is an establishment Republican, not a Tea Bagger. He backed Paul's opponent in the primary. And he supported earmarks before he flip-flopped and opposed them.
Can a turtle flip-flop? Wouldn't he get stuck on his back?
Leave the bad jokes to me. Sometimes you catch more flies with honey than spider webs, as my Uncle Ben used to say. Let him keep the Bush tax cuts for another year in exchange for extending unemployment benefits. Have him over for dinner at the White House. Just don't serve turtle soup.
But how can I socialize with him when he's holding my political agenda hostage?
These hostage situations are tricky. They usually end badly -- for the hostage. I remember when the Green Goblin kidnapped Gwen Stacy. Well, let's just say that's why I'm dating Mary Jane Watson now. The best thing to do is play along, then give him the ol' Zap! Pow! Ka-Blam! when the time is ripe.
Uh, I'm not really the Zap! Pow! Ka-Blam! type. I'm more into rational discourse.
How's that working out for you? Look, Barack, after 600 plus issues, I know something about the superhero biz. There's a time for rational discourse, and a time for Zap! Pow! Ka-Blam! As my Aunt May used to say, grow a pair. Maybe you could be bitten by a radioactive Kenyan or something.
I'll think about it.
You do that. Now if you'll excuse me, I've got to swing back to the Foxwoods Theater. Somebody's got to keep an eye on the receipts. [He exits.]
God speed, Spider-Man. What an amazing superhero. I wonder if he plays basketball?