The Thousand (real name: Carl King) is a minor, yet extremely despicable supervillain from Marvel comics, and an enemy of Spider-Man.



Carl King before becoming the Thousand.

As a child, Carl King was a bully who frequently targeted Peter Parker. King would extort money from Peter, force him to do his homework, and physically beat him. He continuously tormented Peter in both grade school and high school. During a science exhibit depicting the effects of radiation, King witnesses Peter getting bitten by a radioactive spider and gaining superpowers. He begins stalking Peter, and further witnesses his becoming of the superhero Spider-Man.

This causes King to become jealous of Peter. Wanting to gain superpowers as well, King returns to the science exhibit and eats the spider that bit Peter. King shows no signs of mutation for several days, until one morning when he discovers that his body is now composed entirely of spiders. He also discovers that he can consume the innards of other people and use their skin as a suit, after doing so to his mother accidentally. Curious as to whether or not he could do it again, he does the same to his father (the imagery implies that he had sex with him first). Seeking to master his new abilities, King consumes and takes over the bodies of his girlfriend, as well as various homeless people and children. King learned that he became stronger with each new host.

Years later, King decides to kill Peter Parker out of jealousy of the fame and glory he has received as Spider-Man. He kills and took over the body of Jess Patton, an employee at the Daily Bugle. At the Daily Bugle, King, as Patton, lies to Peter about being broke, alcoholic, and homeless after breaking up with a boyfriend. Out of pity, Peter takes "Jess" to his apartment to stay. Once there, King reveals his true identity and attacks Peter, defeating him easily after he changes into his Spider-Man costume. King bites Peter, paralyzing him, and then puts him in restraints.

Before King can eat Peter, Peter's landlord Mr. Ambrose enters the room. Not wanting a witness to his existence, King takes over Ambrose's body. King, as Ambrose, then tells Spider-Man his full origin story. In the time it takes him to do this, the venom in Spider-Man's body wears off and he attacks King. The two trade insults as they fight, and King gains the upper hand. Preparing to deliver the finishing blow, King accidentally strikes a transformer instead. This electrocutes him and kills the majority of his spiders.

Believing King to be dead, Spider-Man leaves the scene. Unbeknownst to him, however, one of the spiders survives and vows revenge. Seconds later, however, the spider is stepped on by an oblivious passerby.