The original Black Spider first appeared in Detective Comics #463 (September 1976) and was created by Gerry Conway. Eric Needham is a small-time crook who is addicted to heroin. Eric was first sentenced to prison after mugging and nearly killing an elderly woman but, as a minor, he was out in three years. Over the next two years, Eric married his friend Linda Morrel and they had a son, Michael. Desperate for money to buy more drugs, he robs a liquor store. He kills the owner, who turns out to be his father. After being arrested, he kicks the habit out of remorse and begins a war on the drug trade.