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The Burglar
Carradine.png
Name: Dennis Carradine
Alias(es): Carjacker
Spike
Portrayed by: Michael Papajohn
First appeared: Spider-Man (film)
Last appeared: Spider-Man 3 (flashback)
"Thanks!"
―Dennis Carradine to Peter Parker[src]

Dennis Carradine was a robber and carjacker in New York City. He is based heavily on the role of The Burglar from the Marvel comics created by Stan Lee and Steve Ditko in 1962. He was portrayed by actor Michael Papajohn in Sam Raimi's Spider-Man film series. His character was left unnamed in the first film, credited as "Carjacker", and was revealed in Spider-Man 3.

History 

Early Life 

Dennis Carradine was born in October 31st 1964 and raised in Brooklyn, New York. He was a criminal, and often robbed and mugged many people with his partner Flint Marko.


The Murder of Uncle Ben

In 2002, Dennis robbed a fight promoter of his money, shortly after Peter Parker had been cheated by the promoter. 

"Get in! What are you doing?"
―Dennis to Flint after Flint realizes that he killed Ben[src]

Dennis Carradine was not responsible for Ben's death as assumed. The true killer was Carradine's partner Flint Marko.

He accidentally shot Ben when Carradine distracted him trying to get into the car. Shocked at the murder, he stole the car and left Marko behind to take the fall; Marko escaped, however.

Death 

"Don't hurt me. Just give me a chance. Just give me a chance!"
"What about my uncle? Did you give him a chance? Did you?! Answer me!
"
―Dennis, terrified as Peter corners him.[src]

The robber was caught by Spider-Man in an abandoned warehouse. He begged to give him another chance, and Peter realized that this was the same man who robbed the fight promoter. Despite his best efforts to kill him, Carradine ends up falling through a window to his death, his body soon being found by police.

Legacy

"The night Ben died, I hunted down the man who I thought did it. I wanted him dead. I got what I wanted. It didn't make it better. It took me a long time to learn to get through that darkness."
―Peter to an alternate version of himself.

Two years following his death, Parker confessed to Aunt May that he let the thief go resulting in Uncle Ben's death. May, though understandably shocked at first, lets Peter know that she does not blame him after a few days of coming to terms with the information.

A few months later Parker and May were shocked to learn from the police about Flint Marko being Ben's actual killer, a revelation which had troubled Parker as he believed he caused the death of an innocent man. Although he discovered that Marko hadn't intended to actually kill Ben, and that he was jolted when a fleeing Carradine bumped into him.

Over two decades following Ben's death, a now grown up and matured Peter Parker convinced an alternate and younger version of himself not to kill his Aunt May's murderer Green Goblin, citing him causing Carradine's death as not making the pain of Uncle Ben's death any easier.

Trivia

  • In the Spider-Man 2002 video game, his weapon of choice was a shotgun and a flash grenade instead of a gun and a knife. He was the first boss in the game.
  • While Dennis Carradine is only a minor villain in the long run, he is by far the single most important villain since if he did not exist, Peter would never have become Spider-Man as we know him today. In essence, Carradine's actions were necessary for Spider-Man to become a hero as Uncle Ben's death is the main reason Peter became a costumed hero and adopted his famous "with great power comes great responsibility" morality.
  • The retconning of Dennis Carradine into the accomplice of Uncle Ben's killer, who turned out to be the Sandman, rather than the killer himself was one of the main criticisms Spider-Man 3 received, as most fans feel like this undermines the emotive talk scene between Peter Parker and Aunt May in Spider-Man 2, where Peter admits his fault in Uncle Ben's death by letting Carradine escape. With the retcon, it can be seen that ultimately, Peter was not responsible at all and even if he had stopped Carradine, Flint Marko could have still killed Ben due to someone else distracting him.
  • Before Spider-Man 4 was cancelled in favor of The Amazing Spider-Man reboot, Michael Papajohn was approached to reprise his role as Dennis Carradine once more in the film. However, it's unknown if Carradine was intended to appear in flashback sequences like in the previous film or if he was going to appear in some other way.
  • In The Amazing Spider-Man reboot, Michael Papajohn made a cameo playing the driver of Rajit Ratha, making him the only actor alongside the late Stan Lee to play a role in both the films of Sam Raimi and Marc Webb. Interestingly, Papajohn actually asked if he could portray Uncle Ben's killer again, but the part of the Cash Register Thief was given to Leif Gantvoort.

See Also


Raimi Film Series
Films: Spider-Man | Spider-Man 2 | Spider-Man 3
Characters: Peter Parker/Spider-Man | Mary Jane Watson | Harry Osborn | J. Jonah Jameson | Uncle Ben | Aunt May | George Stacy | Gwen Stacy | Robbie Robertson | Betty Brant | Curt Connors | Flash Thompson | Dr. Stromm | Mr. Ditkovich | Ursula Ditkovich | Maximillian Fargas | Henry Balkan | Rosalie Octavius | Hoffman | Bernard Houseman | Mr. Aziz | Bonesaw McGraw
Enemies: The Green Goblin | Doctor Octopus | The Sandman | New Goblin | Venom | The Carjacker
Locations: The Daily Bugle | Oscorp Technologies | Quest Aerospace | Osborn Penthouse | Goblin Lair
Video Games: Spider-Man | Spider-Man 2 | Spider-Man 3
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