Captain George Stacy. Art by Salvador Larocca.
|First appearance||The Amazing Spider-Man #56 (Jan. 1968)|
John Romita Sr.
|Team affiliations||New York City Police Department|
|Supporting character of||Spider-Man|
Little did Peter Parker know, after falling in love with Empire State University classmate Gwen Stacy, that her father was Captain George Stacy, one of the most respected former police members in the NYPD. But even in retirement, Captain Stacy kept up with the happenings at the department - and had taken a keen interest in Spider-Man. It was not long before John Jameson called Captain Stacy out of retirement to assist in the return of a device called the Nullifier - which could render any electrical or mechanical apparatus inoperative - that Doctor Octopus had tricked an amnesiac Spider-Man into stealing.
After safely securing the weapon, Captain Stacy interviewed Peter, believed to have been held captive with Doc Ock and Spider-Man. After the interview, Captain Stacy revealed to Peter that he had spent time studying the career of Spider-Man, and that he was glad to have met Peter, known for photographing the wall-crawler on numerous occasions.[volume & issue needed]
Identifying himself as a strong supporter of Spider-Man, Captain Stacy wished to see the wall-crawler redeemed in the public eye. He also took an instant liking to Peter, and openly encouraged the growing bond between the youngster and his daughter Gwen. Shortly thereafter at a dance club which employed Mary Jane Watson, Captain Stacy was put under a hypnotic trance through a rigged camera operated by Mary Jane who took photos of him unaware that these actions were aiding Wilson Fisk (aka the Kingpin of Crime). Stacy was compelled into a backroom where he underwent additional brainwashing by the camera's inventor, Dr. Winkler.
Despite Spider-Man's efforts, George returned programmed to follow the Kingpin's directions. As such, Captain Stacy later stole police records for the Kingpin while Spider-Man's automatic camera captured the theft. Peter gave the photos to J. Jonah Jameson, hopeful that this apparent betrayal of the Stacy family would actually help expedite a discovery of the captain's innocence. While George and Gwen attempted to flee, they were kidnapped by the Kingpin's men and held captive at one of Norman Osborn's labs where Dr. Winkler worked. The Kingpin intended to eliminate the Stacys once they were used to lure Spider-Man into his crushing hands. While Spider-Man battled the Kingpin, Osborn arrived and tackled the Kingpin's henchmen holding the Stacy's at gunpoint. Though the Kingpin fled, and Winkler was apparently killed, the Stacy's were rescued. Osborn's testimony to the police exonerated Captain Stacy.
Captain Stacy started to suspect Peter and Spider-Man were the same person. After a feverish Peter admitted to being Spider-Man before his friends including Captain Stacy, Parker asked the Prowler to imitate Spider-Man so Peter and the web-slinger could be seen together, however, Captain Stacy could not be fooled. Called into action one night, Captain Stacy watched Spider-Man battle Doctor Octopus on a rooftop high above the city. A crowd had gathered nearby to watch the confrontation. As the two fought fiercely, chunks of concrete began to dislodge from the roof and rain on the spectators below. Spotting a child standing under the falling masonry, Captain Stacy leapt to shield the boy - and paid for his act of heroism with his own life. Abandoning the assault, Spider-Man swung down in time to hear Captain Stacy's final words, "Be good to her, son! Be good to her. She loves you so very much."
During the Dead No More: The Clone Conspiracy storyline, Jackal used a clone of George Stacy to convince the cloned Gwen Stacy to work with him as his business partner at New U Technologies. When Doctor Octopus pulls a switch which activates the Carrion Virus in all of the clones and causes them to start rapidly decaying, including George and Gwen. George deteriorates in Gwen's arms, he tells his daughter that keep Spider-Man safe while she can as the clone of George died.
In Spider-Man: 1602 Captain Stacey is the leader of the merchant vessel the May Flower and a former member of the Navy. When he and his crew set sail for England, they allow Peter Parquagh to come on as a powder monkey. Though his crew turns on Peter when they discover his powers, they accept Peter when he rescues them from pirates Wilson Fiske and The Bull's Eye.
In the timeline of the "House of M" storyline, George Stacy is a former police chief, and a personal friend of the rich and successful Peter Parker. This goes sour when Peter experiences a mental breakdown. Part of this manifests as diary filled with morbid imaginings. George Stacy reads an account of his Earth-616 death, along with the fate of his daughter.
In Spider-Man Loves Mary Jane Gwen Stacy mentions George Stacy in Spider-Man Loves Mary Jane #9 as being the reason she moves to Queens. In this version he is not a fan of Spider-Man and views him as a vigilante getting in the way of real police work.
In Marvel Adventures Spider-Man, George Stacy is given a hint from Emma Frost in issue 53 by the arrival of his daughter Gwen, who is a new student of Midtown High. In issue 54, George makes his full debut as a slightly younger character with light brown hair. He recently discovered that Peter is Spider-Man when he accidentally yelled a quote that George knows. With his identity now known, George now calls him, requesting support on some of his cases. He later feels he should not use Peter, but Peter allows George to call him if he needs help, which pleases George.
The Ultimate Marvel version of the character is named John Stacy. Much younger than his mainstream counterpart and with brown hair, he is more athletic and carries his own gun, and is not a fan of Spider-Man but admires the young hero's vigilante work. He has trouble handling his teenage daughter Gwen Stacy and has a troubled marriage. He is first seen arriving at the warehouse where a criminal is hiding out when Spider-Man catches up, and then investigates a house being attacked by Doctor Octopus while finding out that Gwen caused trouble by bringing a knife to school. He has been contacted by Daily Bugle reporter Ben Urich about his investigations.
Stacy was also critical of Urich removing the Kingpin from control of New York as it led to a disorganized and chaotic scramble to gain the Kingpin's territory. His marital problems reach a conclusion when his wife abandons their family, leading Stacy to ask May Parker to watch over Gwen while he is away at a conference. During the "Public Scrutiny" story arc, he is killed by a bank robber posing as Spider-Man, as the criminal robs an armored truck and throws a bag with a bomb in it onto a nearby child. Stacy sacrifices his life to save the child. Stacy's death causes Gwen to develop a grief-stricken hatred for Spider-Man, which continues even after her father's killer confessed. May Parker eventually invites Gwen to live with the Parkers, though Gwen's animosity towards Spider-Man eventually subsides and comes to learn of Peter's secret identity.
In the Spider-Verse storyline, Earth-65's version of George Stacy ends up in the pursuit of Spider-Woman's arrest following the death of Peter Parker unaware that his daughter Gwen Stacy is Spider-Woman. When George is alone with Spider-Woman following the assassin's defeat with the intent to arrest Spider-Woman. Gwen ends up unmasking which surprises her father. A shocked George tells Gwen to run before he changes his mind. After the attack, Stacy was relieved from the command of the NYPD's Special Crimes Task Force by Mayor J. Jonah Jameson who feared Stacy would undercut him. George remained in an advisory capacity helping Foggy Nelson and the District Attorney's office until the Vulture would be caught.
For example, he has both his admiration and respect for Spider-Man, like his mainstream counterpart, and is younger and athletic and good with firearms, like his Ultimate counterpart. In "Group Therapy", Stacy was caught in a disbelief when Spider-Man nearly beat Doctor Octopus to death under the alien symbiote's influence. He later joins the Parkers with Gwen for Thanksgiving, thankful that his daughter was saved by Spider-Man. Captain Stacy is later forced by the Master Planner to steal secret codes from Homeland Security when the villain kidnaps Gwen, however, Spider-Man saves his daughter. Later, Stacy joins Midtown High School as an instructor for a criminal justice class in order to get close to his daughter (or to keep a closer eye on her). When both Venom and the Chameleon separately impersonated Spider-Man, George was unconvinced either was the genuine article.
When Chameleon tried to frame Spider-Man by committing crimes while disguised as the web-swinger, Stacy defended Spider-Man, pointing out that the robber is taller than Spider-Man. And he was able to back up the second claim by noting the distinct differences between the black-suit Spider-Man and Venom. Venom attempts to out Spider-Man's secret identity, but Ned Lee 'proves' it cannot be true. Stacy also warned Spider-Man that as long as the latter wore a mask, people would wonder. While everyone else agrees and moves on, Stacy has a private conversation with Peter Parker about Spider-Man's need to keep the identity a secret. It is strongly hinted that he knows the truth and gives his approval in his own way. He often speaks in innuendo and encrypted dialogue to both Parker and Spider-Man that aids him in his endeavors, and provides covers and alibies to aid Peter in slipping away from school activities to do the superhero work.
In The Amazing Spider-Man #56 fans met retired police Captain George Stacy, father of Gwen.