Sin-Eater (comics)

Sin-Eater is a name given to several fictional characters appearing in American comic books published by Marvel Comics. The character usually appears in comics featuring Spider-Man and Ghost Rider.

Publication information
PublisherMarvel Comics
First appearancePeter Parker, The Spectacular Spider-Man #107 (October 1985)
Created byPeter David (writer)
Rich Buckler (artist)
In-story information
Alter egoStanley Carter
Team affiliationsS.H.I.E.L.D.
New York City Police Department

Spider-Man-related fictional character biographiesEdit

Stanley CarterEdit

Stanley Carter was born in Fort Meade, Maryland. He was an agent of S.H.I.E.L.D. working in research and development. He was injected with experimental drugs to increase strength and endurance, but when the program was designated too dangerous it was discontinued. Carter became violent and resigned from S.H.I.E.L.D., eventually becoming a detective with the New York City Police Department. After his partner was killed by several young criminals, he became obsessed with killing anyone who "sinned" by abusing authority.[1]

As the Sin-Eater, his first victim was Captain Jean DeWolff (in "The Death of Jean DeWolff" story arc). As a detective, he is assigned to find the killer, and works closely with Spider-Man.[2] His next victim is Judge Horace Rosenthal, a friend of Matthew Murdock. During his escape after killing Rosenthal, he is attacked by Spider-Man and kills a bystander during the battle.[3] When Spider-Man and Daredevil discover that the Sin-Eater's next victim is going to be Betty Brant, Peter Parker's first love, they rush to save her. Spider-Man goes into a fierce rage and beats the Sin-Eater nearly to death. As he is being transferred to Riker's, a vengeful mob including De Wolff's father tries to kill him, but Daredevil and Spider-Man intervene.[1]

Carter is put in psychological and medical care, but is crippled by the beating Spider-Man inflicted. S.H.I.E.L.D. purge all the drugs from his system during this time, but he still has visions of his Sin-Eater persona. After Carter is released, he returns the favor Spider-Man did him by rescuing him from an angry mob, and begins writing a memoir of his career as the Sin-Eater. However, he has trouble readjusting to society. Finally he snaps, taking an empty shotgun and goading police officers into opening fire on him.[4]

The public revelation of the identity of the Sin-Eater as Stanley Carter by Peter Parker was responsible for the ruin of Eddie Brock's journalistic career, as Brock had published a series of articles on the Sin-Eater in The Daily Globe, based on his interviews with another man who claimed to be the Sin-Eater, Mr. Emil Gregg ("a compulsive confessor"). This led to Brock's hatred of Peter and eventually to his joining with the alien symbiote Venom.[5]

Kindred later resurrected Sin-Eater in his next plot against Spider-Man.[6]

Michael G. EngelschwertEdit

A Sin-Eater copycat killer appears in the Venom: Sinner Takes All mini-series. Michael Engelschwert, a veteran of the Gulf War, bunked in a homeless shelter next to Sin-Eater copycat Emil Gregg. Gregg's late night ramblings drive Engelschwert to emulate Gregg's Sin-Eater delusions.[7] He appears on the steps of a courthouse wielding a shotgun and kills several people, while injuring Anne Weying, the ex-wife of the anti-hero Venom. He breaks into a hospital in order to finish Weying off, only to find that Venom has set himself up as her protector.[8] Despite his lack of super-powers, Engelschwert is able to consistently stay two steps ahead of Venom and the police as he continues his killing spree.[9] He is finally stopped when another psychopath with a shotgun shoots him in the back. Realizing the wound is fatal, he sets off a bomb strapped to his chest.[10]

Supernatural Sin-EaterEdit

During the "AXIS" storyline, a new and supernatural Sin-Eater emerges to terrorize New York City, gunning down members of the press. Carnage, whose morality had been altered by a spell cast by Doctor Doom and the Scarlet Witch, comes into conflict with the Sin-Eater when he stops him from murdering a reporter named Alice Gleason. The Sin-Eater later manages to track down and abduct Alice, taking her to his lair and implying that he is an undead Emil Gregg, the man who told Eddie Brock that he was the first Sin-Eater. Before the Sin-Eater can harm Alice, she is rescued by Carnage, who allows the Sin-Eater to absorb all of his repressed evil. Overwhelmed by Carnage's sins, the Sin-Eater grows to gigantic size and explodes as Carnage declares "Rest now, wandering soul. Your work is done".[11]

Empowered by the Grendel symbiote during the "Absolute Carnage" storyline, Cletus Kasady later resurrects Gregg as a zombie-like creature, which he lets loose in New York City. Donning a facsimile of the Sin-Eater costume, Gregg kidnaps several children with the intention of sacrificing them to the symbiote god Knull, but he is stopped and destroyed by Eddie Brock.[12]

Powers and abilitiesEdit

The first Sin-Eater had an artificially heightened physicality, similar to that of Captain America. Though his strength, agility, stamina and reflexes was greater than that of any Olympic athlete, it did not exceed the hypothetical natural limitations of the human body and would not be considered truly superhuman. The same clandestine experiments that heightened his physique probably also drove him insane. He had also undergone military training, though it was rendered less effective by his insanity. He is an expert hand-to-hand combatant and skilled marksman, with his signature weapon being a double-barreled shotgun.

The second Sin-Eater wielded a heavy assortment of guns, bombs, knives, and rocket launchers, and wore a bulletproof costume.

The third Sin-Eater introduced claims of being able to detect the evil within others, and of absorbing a green energy which he claims is all of their sins after killing them. He is also unaffected by being repeatedly shot with a handgun, and regrows his own head (which is merely a skull) after it is destroyed by Carnage.[11]

Ghost Rider related fictional character biographiesEdit

Ethan DomblueEdit

An earlier character named Sin-Eater first appeared in Ghost Rider #80. Ethan Domblue was a pastor obsessed with having a sinless congregation. Ghost Rider foe Centurious gave Ethan the power to "eat" his congregation's sins, leaving them in a passive, "sinless" state. He did not realize that by placing his parishioners' souls in the Crystal of Souls, he was creating an army of zombie-like slaves loyal to Centurious. Eventually, Ghost Rider defeated Centurious and freed the souls in the Crystal. As a last redemptive act, Ethan Domblue removed Zarathos from Johnny Blaze and placed the demon in the Crystal of Souls, freeing Blaze from the curse of Ghost Rider.[13]

Reverend StygeEdit

The Dan Ketch Ghost Rider also had a foe that was referred to as the Sin-Eater. Reverend Styge was granted power by Chthon to raise the dead by eating the living.[volume & issue needed]

In other mediaEdit


  • Stan Carter appears in the animated TV series The Spectacular Spider-Man, voiced by Thomas F. Wilson.[14] He is a uniformed police sergeant partnered with officer Jean DeWolff and expressed a short temper with Max Dillon after he refused to return to the hospital. Stan shows support of Spider-Man's activities, as opposed to his partner, even barricading a construction area so Spider-Man can finish fighting Sandman.



  • In Jeff Mariotte's 2008 Spider-Man novel Spider-Man: Requiem, Stanley Carter appears not as Sin-Eater but instead as the newest incarnation of Carrion, who was brought back to life by S.H.I.E.L.D. The Cabal of Scrier uses the Carrion virus (created by Professor Miles Warren) to bring Stanley back to life in an attempt to steal the Darkhold from S.H.I.E.L.D. Spider-Man and the new Stanley Carter/Carrion come into conflict, but eventually Carter subsequently fights Carrion for control of his own body, and when the Cabal of Scrier brings back the ancient god Chthon, who threatens to destroy the world, Carter/Carrion sacrifices himself to stop the Chthon. While Stanley was still alive, he had hidden from the authorities in his uncle Emory Carter's house, and Emory had been infected by the Carrion virus when he was around Stanley. When Stanley dies, Emory becomes the next Carrion but is later defeated by Spider-Man.


  1. ^ a b Peter Parker, the Spectacular Spider-Man #110. Marvel Comics.
  2. ^ Peter Parker, the Spectacular Spider-Man #107 (October 1985). Marvel Comics.
  3. ^ Peter Parker, the Spectacular Spider-Man #108 (November 1985). Marvel Comics.
  4. ^ Spectacular Spider-Man #134-136. Marvel Comics.
  5. ^ The Amazing Spider-Man #300 (May, 1988). Marvel Comics.
  6. ^ Amazing Spider-Man Vol. 5 #37. Marvel Comics.
  7. ^ Venom: Sinner Takes All #3. Marvel Comics.
  8. ^ Venom: Sinner Takes All #1 (August 1995). Marvel Comics.
  9. ^ Venom: Sinner Takes All #2-5. Marvel Comics.
  10. ^ Venom: Sinner Takes All #5. Marvel Comics.
  11. ^ a b Rick Spears (w), Germán Peralta (p), Germán Peralta (i). AXIS: Carnage #1-3 (29 October 2014 - 10 December 2014), United States: Marvel Comics
  12. ^ Donny Cates (w), Juan Gedeon (p), Juan Gedeon (i), Jesus Aburtov (col), VC's Clayton Cowles (let), Devin Lewis (ed). Venom v4, #16 (11 July 2019), United States: Marvel Comics
  13. ^ Ghost Rider #80. Marvel Comics.
  14. ^ Comics Continuum by Rob Allstetter: Monday, February 4, 2008
  15. ^ Cushing, Kate (July 18, 2013). "What is Next for the NYPD?". Tumblr. Retrieved October 22, 2013.
  16. ^ "Shocking Midtown Heist Foiled by Spider-Man!". Tumblr. December 28, 2013.

External linksEdit