When Spencer Smythe died because of his prolonged exposure to radioactive chemicals, Alistair inherited his legacy and his hatred for Spider-Man. In his first attempt to kill Spider-Man, he mistook Mary-Jane Watson for Spider-Man who was playing along with it to give Peter time to come up with a plan. Mary-Jane claimed she used a super suit built by aliens to deceive Smythe until the real wall-crawler defeated him. He then tried to kill Spider-Man again when he and Mary-Jane were trying to get her sister out of prison for helping their father in a crime. He worked for the Kingpin at first, but only after a disagreement over how to deal with Spider-Man.
Alistair Smythe was created by Louise Jones Simonson and Pat Redding and first appeared in Amazing Spider-Man Annual issue 19 (1985).
Major Story Arcs
Asylum and Experiments
After being sent to an asylum, Alistair escaped and took several other inmates along in order to build a new Spider-Slayer. After sending a series of slayers, after Spider-Man, that were destroyed by him with help from Black Cat, Alistair lured Spider-Man to his home for one last fight. Alistair modified his body with cybernetics and began a battle with Spider-Man, but was defeated and taken into custody with the other asylum inmates.
While the Scarlet Spider worked in the city, Smythe began a war with a new slayer he wanted to sell on the black market. These Cyber-Slayers, as he called them, were controlled by turning one's thoughts into the slayers' actions—and they were probably so named because the initial target was Carolyn Trainer (Lady Octopus) and her group, not Spider-Man or the Scarlet Spider.
However the Scarlet Spider ended up in the middle of things and temporarily worked with the Cyber-Slayer although Smythe was eventually brought to justice.
Revenge against Jameson
Smythe escaped prison and wanted revenge on Spider-Man and J. Jonah Jameson for his father's death. He made Jameson alter the stories in the Daily Bugle or he'd kill his wife and son. Spider-Man caught Smythe's trail, and followed it back to the Bugle, but was attacked by every version of spider-slayer ever sent after Spider-Man plus a pair of new ones, a miniature model designed to latch onto Spider-Man's face and invade his mind through use of radiation and a large six-armed model stronger than any other. The miniature spider-slayer psionically connected to Spidey's mind, copied thoughts of his loved ones, and broadcasted it to other mini-slayers. Smythe gave Spider-Man the choice of either stopping the others or preventing the six-armed one from killing Jameson. Spidey eventually defeated all the spider-slayers at the same time, but Jameson knocked Smythe out with a baseball bat for threats on his family.
Smythe returned again and used a poisonous spider to send John Jameson, aka Man-Wolf, into a hospital.
Allistair appeared at the Raft as a newly made Spider-Slayer. He kidnapped Mac Gargan turning him into a cyborg Scorpion, and convinces him to join his crusade against J. J. Jameson. Smythe has amassed a small army of cyborg minions (the Army of Insects) and attack the site of John Jameson's latest space mission, sabotaging the launch and holding John for ransom Smythe's new plan was to kill all those close to Jameson, but not to kill Jameson himself so Jameson could feel the same suffering that he did losing his father. Smythe's actions get Jameson's wife Marla killed.
During the Spider-Island storyline, J. Jonah Jameson brings Alistair Smythe from Ryker's Island to demand his help in resolving the spider-flu plague transforming ordinary citizens into "Homo Arachnis". Alistair Smythe laughed at the irony of how Jameson has gained spider powers. At the moment, J. Jonah Jameson transforms and seriously wounds Smythe by biting a chunk out of his neck.
Despite his injuries, Smythe is seen alive and well as a prisoner in the Raft.
During a riot in the Raft, the Superior Spider-Man (Doctor Octopus in Peter Parker's body) intervenes and first manages to destroy Alistair's bodyt. He was however not defeated because Alistair managed to get a hold of other people by taking over their bodies. Spider-Man was prepared for this and finally kills Alistair on both the physicall and spritual plane, finally ending the rampage of a madman.
Powers and Abilities
Alistair wears a carapace that gave him increased strength and gave him the ability to walk again by interconnecting with his spine. Alistair had bird-like talons for feet; a long, curved blade-like weapon jutting from each shoulder; a pair of smaller, jagged blade weapons on each forearm; and a specially made web-shooter that fired from the forearm area. Alistair, like his father, is skilled in the field of Robotics and has rebuilt and created his own Spider-Slayers.
The Amazing Spider-Man 2 (2014)
Alistair Smythe appears in The Amazing Spider-Man 2, portrayed by The Office star B.J. Novak. This version of the character is an Oscorp employee and Max Dillon's boss. The events of the film seemingly retcon and ignore the video game listed below.
The Amazing Spider-Man (2012)
Alistair Smythe is the primary antagonist of the game. He was voiced by Nolan North. Here, he was put in charge of disposing the remains of Dr. Curt Connors's research. Also, he was mentioned as the original creator of the Spider-Slayers (possibly). He also became paralyzed, similar to the comics in the climax of the story, instead of him having it already a long time ago. In the beginning of the game, Smythe caught Peter Parker and Gwen Stacy breaking into OsCorp Tower. He showed what was OsCorp doing with Connors's data. He reveals that they are making a project where in the fusion of human and animal DNA is used. These specimens are called "Cross-Species" while also showing his nano robotics and robotics operation. Cross-Species Scorpion suddenly broke free of a containment tube upon sensing Peter's DNA and soon after the other Cross-Species broke free along with him. Scorpion infected Smythe and many other scientists while Cross-Species Vermin infected Gwen and Cross-Species Rhino and Iguana caused rampage as they escape the tower. Spider-Man then put Gwen and Smythe, together with other contaminated scientists in a quarantine. He activated his SO-1 robot and tried to exterminate the Cross-Species. Spider-Man then destroys it because it is destroying the city. Once Spidey goes to the sewers in search of Vermin, Smythe's Sentries, Hunters and Seekers, who were ordered to hunt Vermin, interrupted their battle, thus nearly losing Vermin's DNA. When returning to OsCorp Tower, Smythe tested Spidey and Connors's untested antidote. The test was unsuccessful when the antidote paralyzed his legs and made him a lunatic, though it slowed his infection. Angered, he decides to unleash his Advanced Combat Sentries and later, his SO-2 machine. Smythe was later fired by the board of directors and decided to go rogue. He took the infected scientists to OsCorp's Biological Facility to test his own version of an antidote, but with nano bots. Once the scientists are cured, including Gwen, Smythe takes over OsCorp's Robotic Facility to continue his Sentry production. He later activates his Spider-Slayers and destroyed Stan's apartment. Smythe contacted Spider-Man and challenged him to rescue Connors. His Sentries captured him and took away his powers, loosing his life in the process. He activated the Sentries to kill Spider-Man in a building wide chase. He then launches his SO-3 robot while fueled with Smythe's nano bot cure. The powerless Spidey escapes from the collapsing building and watched in horror as his robots wreck the city. Spider-Man, with the aid of Whitney Chang and the Lizard, was able to destroy the SO-3 and Smythe's EXO-01 armor. Finally regaining his sanity, he later regretted all his doings as the police arrest him and Spidey chase the crazed Lizard through the sewers and later, finishing the cure. In the post-credits scene, Smythe was able to regain his legs and escaped arrest, according to Whitney's news report. Smythe made it to an unspecified laboratory and activates a Hunter while wallowing with the fact he is still infected. His final fate was met when the Hunter shoots him, observing he is still infected with the virus.