Episode 102: Artificial Intelligence (Amazing Spiderman #8) -- January 1964


In this episode:

Ed and Mike discuss a robot artificial intelligence that attacked a science class at Midtown High on its own initiative. If a robot is self aware, should it have rights? What will its motivations be? Will it be even more alien than actual aliens (who are at least biological)? And what is Spiderman’s involvement?

In this issue:

Scientists bring a robot they call the Living Brain to Peter Parker’s high school for a demonstration. Flash Thompson keeps needling Peter during the demonstration, and their teacher tells them to box each other to sort their issues out. Peter holds back but still knocks Flash over with one punch. Meanwhile, two thugs try to steal the Living Brain and cause some damage to it, which causes it to go on a rampage in the school. Peter changes into his Spider-Man costume and, after quite the battle, finally defeats the super smart, super strong Living Brain.

In a second story, Spider-Man antagonizes the Human Torch into a fight, and acts like a real jerk to him and the rest of the Fantastic Four. Well, other than to Sue Storm, whom he clearly likes.

This episode takes place:

After the Living Brain has been defeated.

Assumed before the next episode:

People know that AI exists, and are both excited and terrified by that development.