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The Spider's Web (1938)

A crime fighter known as The Spider battles a villain called The Octopus, who is out to sabotage America and install his own government.


Robert E. Kent (screenplay), George H. Plympton (screenplay) (as George Plympton) | 2 more credits »


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Cast overview, first billed only:
Warren Hull ... Richard Wentworth / The Spider / Blinky McQuade
Iris Meredith ... Nita Van Sloan
Richard Fiske ... Jackson
Kenne Duncan ... Ram Singh (as Kenneth Duncan)
Forbes Murray ... Police Commissioner Stanley Kirk
Donald Douglas ... Jenkins - the Butler
Marc Lawrence ... Steve Harmon
Charles C. Wilson ... Chase (as Charles Wilson)
John Tyrrell ... Grafton - Henchman
Eugene Anderson Jr. Eugene Anderson Jr. ... Johnnie Sands (as Gene Anderson Jr.)
Ann Doran ... Mason's Secretary
Paul Whitney Paul Whitney ... Gray - the Banker
Beatrice Curtis Beatrice Curtis ... Kate Sands
Gordon Hart Gordon Hart ... J. Mason
Byron Foulger ... Allen Roberts


Posing as "The Spider", terror of the underworld, as well as Blinky McQuade, underworld habitue, Richard Wentworth (Warren Hull), celebrated criminologist, wages a desperate battle to foil the plans of The Octopus, whose outlaw gang is completly demoralizing the nation's transportation system. Wentworth's activities are quickly discovered by The Octopus, who is a member of the board of transportation businessmen who have requested Wentworth's help. The villain dispatches his minion of henchmen to kidnap Wentworth. The latter escapes , and disguised as Blinky hangs out at a hash-house dive known to be frequented by Octopus gang members, and learns that a passenger bus, loaded with explosives, is to be blown up. Disguised as The Spide and with the help of his faithful Sikh servant Ram Singh (Kenne Duncan), empties the bus terminal and drives the bus from the depot. The police, however, blame The Spider for the bombing. The wave of transportation terrorism continues and The Spider ... Written by Les Adams <longhorn1939@suddenlink.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


"Beware, Spider! I Have You Marked For Death with The Most Fiendish Weapons Ever Concieved By The Human Brain!" See more »


Action | Crime | Drama


Passed | See all certifications »






Release Date:

22 October 1938 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Spider: Master of Men See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Columbia Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Columbia released this film featuring the Spider, whom Stan Lee cited as an inspiration for Spider-Man (especially due to the web-pattern imprinted cloak that the Spider wears in this film). Decades later Columbia released a Spider-Man film, and then a sequel to that film, where yet again a spider-themed protagonist fought an opponent named Octopus (also, in one of the Spider novels he fought an opponent called the Iron Man; Lee also created Iron Man). See more »

Crazy Credits

Main Title:"The Spider's Web" enclosed in a "Spider's Web". See more »


Referenced in Four Christmases (2008) See more »

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User Reviews

The Spider's Web, is one of the best serials ever made.
7 October 2000 | by i_am_legend_1See all my reviews

To truly understand and appreciate this serial, you'll have to be familiar w/ the Spider's pulp history. Action is plentiful, from intense shootouts, to realistic fistfights, to dramatic car chases, this serial has it all. The storyline/plot was brilliantly written and easy to follow. Warren Hull portrays the Spider as if he was in the pulp magazines. He was fearless, as both Richard Wentworth and the Spider, when confronting the enemy, especially during shootouts, where he would stand wide open as an easy target and using his double colt automatics. That I found true to the character, for he was not a stable man. This serial is on par w/ Quentin Tarantino's "Reservoir Dogs" and most of John Woo's movies. There are scenes, where it seems that there is a rope waiting for the Spider to climb on or swing on from every building, that is not a coincidence, for in the pulp magazines, the Spider does carry a (thin) rope w/ him for those purposes. My only disappointment, is w/ Columbia Pictures low quality visuals, and brutal editing jobs. (i.e. The Spider cold-bloodedly gunned down two men, as they were waking up from a beating-Chapter 5. The Spider's Hindu Mercenary friend, throwing a knife at an intruder-Chapter 14). You will see the intent of the actions, but not the following, only the end result is shown. Just use your imagination for those scenes, otherwise, this is a great serial. The Spider's webbed mask and cape, was the inspiration for the creation of the Amazing Spiderman, by comic books Great, Stan Lee. For more info on the Spider, I recommend Tim Truman's graphic adaption, "The Spider: Master of Men" Chapters 1-6, from Eclipse Books(1991-1992).

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