The Craziest Spider-Man Movie You've Never Seen Gets Documentary You Can Stream Right Now

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3 Dev Adam, a Turkish Spider-Man ripoff, is the feature of this HD documentary.

By Zack Zagranis | Published

3 Dev Adam

Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse features a Spider-cat that spits webs like hairballs, and yet, it’s still only the second craziest Spider-Man movie. The first would be 1973’s 3 Dev Adam, a Turkish offering that features several off-brand Marvel characters, including a murderous, self-duplicating Spider-Man as the main villain. To celebrate the movie turning 50, film historian Ed Glaser has produced a mini-documentary about 3 Dev Adam for his Deja View YouTube series.

The documentary features HD footage from a newly-discovered 35mm print of 3 Dev Adam discovered by Glaser. The Turkish film is alternatively known as 3 Giant Men or Captain America & Santo vs. Spider-Man and, along with the above-mentioned wall-crawler, features Captain America and real-life luchador super-star El Santo.

The movie is technically the first-ever comic book crossover film, although its legitimacy is debatable.

That’s because the Turkish versions of Spider-Man and Captain America don’t exactly carry Stan Lee’s official blessing. 3 Dev Adam is an example of the Turksploitation craze of the ’70s and ’80s that saw Turkey produce a large number of low-budget films starring unauthorized versions of established characters.

Other examples of Turksploitation movies are Badi (an unauthorized remake of E.T.), Col (Turkish Jaws), and Dunyayi Kurtaran AdamThe Man Who Saved The World—an unofficial hodgepodge of Star Wars, Battlestar Galactica, Planet of the Apes and Flash Gordon set to the Indiana Jones score.

A poster for Badi, the Turkish remake of E.T.

Despite not having the most comic-accurate costumes, Turkish Spider-Man, and his nemesis, beat cop Captain America are easily identifiable onscreen. Perhaps not as familiar to American audiences is Captain America’s fellow crusader of justice, El Santo.

El Santo was a real-life Mexican wrestler by the name of Rodolfo Guzman Huerta, who was already a popular movie star in Turkey prior to the production of 3 Dev Adam. Including him in a movie featuring a couple of big-name superheroes isn’t as strange as it seems…relatively speaking, of course. Ultimately everything about the movie is strange, albeit endearingly so.

Turkish Spider-Man’s eyebrows, for example. Giving the masked hero eyeholes rather than his usual white lenses is already a choice, but to then give Spidey a pair of big bushy eyebrows that look like they’re constantly trying to escape the villain’s face is something else entirely. As is making the usually heroic Spider-Man a lecherous, vile antagonist for Cap and El Santo.

Turkish Spider-Man’s big eyebrows

Despite some…er…interesting decisions on the part of the director T. Fikret Uçak, 3 Dev Adam looks like a rather fun romp. Glaser does a good job of giving a complete overview of the film in a mere six-and-a-half minutes.

Plenty of time for fans to decide whether Turkish Spider-Man and his crazy brows warrant a longer look or if six-and-a-half minutes with the version of everyone’s favorite wallcrawler is more than enough.

The so-called “Turkish Avengers” is certainly an interesting look into the seedier side of foreign cinema. Moviegoers that associate films from other countries with artsy, serious fare like Fellini’s 8 1/2 might be surprised to learn that movies like 3 Dev Adam exist.

For anyone looking to find out more about the Turkish version of Spider-Man, you can watch Glaser’s documentary here.

Perhaps the best endorsement for 3 Dev Adam can be found on the cover of the movie’s English language press kit: action, sex, horror. How could anyone pass on that?

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