Seeing a Batman and Superman thread, I figured it was time for everyone’s favorite web-slinger to get his due.
The reason Spidey is so popular has been stated countless times by so many people over the years: he’s your everyday man. Despite his great powers, he is not immune to the trials and tribulations of everyday life. He’s the original hardluck kid, but he still catches those much needed breaks.
If you want to check the Lee/Ditko, Lee/Romita era books, you can check either the Marvel Masterworks books, Essential Amazing Spider-Man vols., or pick up 40 Years of Amazing Spider-Man, a CD-ROM collection of over 500 ASM comics on 1 disc.
Actually, Spider-Man has had a TON of good runs with various different writers and artists. Those that say Spidey was only good back in '60s-'70s are drinking drano.
Remember, true believers, with great power, comes great responsibility!
Correction, the DVD-Rom is only one disc. Still has 40 years of comics like you said. Technology is scary…
I read an issue whenever I can on the DVD-Rom and I’m up to issue 15, 1964. Haven’t read the Lee/Ditko stories in years, and it’s cool because they reprint the old letters too! In 14 they started talking about the first annual in 1964 coming soon so I’ll go read that next, he fights the Sinister Six for the first time. After that in 15 he meets Daredevil and the Ringmaster, another story I haven’t read in a long time.
Spider-Man’s my favorite super hero and while not the first comic I read since I used to read my older brother’s comics behind his back whenever he wasn’t around, Amazing Spider-Man #269 was the first comic I ever paid money for. Some kid brought it into school and there were women wearing bikinis sunbathing on the roof, call it raging hormones lol! The story was called something like Cometh the Commuter and was written by Peter David, who would much later become my favorite comic book writer.
My favorite villain is Eddie Brock/Venom but the old school Hobgoblin really has a special place in my heart, that “Who is the Hobgoblin” storyline was great! They kept us guessing for years! I remember when he had his mask removed and underneath it was Flash Thompson! Course it was a ruse but it was quite a shock! I still recall when Peter Parker went to visit Flash and he told him how ironic it was that the guy he used to call Puny Parker was now his best friend.
I think the reason I like Spider-Man so much is because it’s easy to identify with him, his problems with school, girlfriends, paying rent, job troubles, marriage troubles, Civil War beefs and everything else that bothers him. But when he puts on a suit he becomes another person, like a class clown covering up everything that is bothering him. And when he is written the right way he is really freaking funny, I can’t count the number of times I’ve been reading a Spider-Man comic on the train and started laughing outloud! Even some of the things he says during the Lee/Ditko run still crack me up, a lot of the jokes still hold up!
My favorite Spider-Man writers are Bendis and Paul Jenkins, by far, especially in terms of writers with long runs.
Kraven’s Last Hunt was great stuff, too - DeMatteis is a really good writer. I reread that a year or two ago, and it’s still one of the most outstanding Spidey stories I have encountered. When I was younger, DeMatteis had a run on Spectacular with Sal Buscema on art. That was my favorite Spider-Man series in the '90s. It was all about Harry Osborn and how the Green Goblin was messing up his life and the life of his family. I think those comics came out around the same era as Carnage and shit, and Amazing always seemed to pale in comparison because of that. And I don’t like Carnage.
JMS has been solid. And I don’t care what other people think; I really enjoyed Sins Past. It is sad to have seen the good name of Gwen Stacy besmirched, but it was one of the few Spider-Man stories that really made me feel angry while I was reading it. (Angry at Norman Osborn, not angry at the stupid writer - though I understand why people would get pissed at JMS.)
I would have to think for a while about my all-time favorite stories, though. For me, generally, Spidey is one of those characters I love because the ongoing soap opera of his life just captivates me. Every issue is an adventure, and when you string together a bunch of good issues, that’s what I remember. It would be hard for me to boil it down.
I do know my absolute favorite Spidey story is the Clone Saga from back in the '90s. It was an epic piece of storytelling that spanned multiple decades (because it really began back in the '70s) and multiple titles. It’s amazing how well-thought out the entire saga was even though so many people were involved in writing and drawing it. The Clone Saga set the gold, nay, PLATINUM standard for comic book epics. I mean, it was long! But so consisitent. And the payoff at the end was, dare I say, AMAZING, SPECTACULAR, and WEB OF!!! That heart-rending ending when Ben Reilly (a true hero and, to many readers, the one true Spider-Man) melted away and the real Peter Parker swore to continue the legacy of Spider-Man was so touching. I cried when I read that - tears of sadness because poor Ben was dead but also tears of joy because I saw how much blood and sweat the fine folks at Marvel poured into the Greatest Comics Saga of All Time. I only wish it had been longer, because I stopped reading Spider-Man comics once it ended. I knew in my heart that after reading the Greatest Comics Saga of All Time, everything else that came afterwards would only be a disappointing letdown.
I think I would like to see Marvel receive an Academy Award for the Clone Saga. I realize that the Oscars are typically for movies only, but this is one case when I think we can all agree it would be fair and fitting to make an exception. Let us lobby for the formation of a new category: the Academy Award for the Greatest Comic Ever Made. 90s Spidey would be the only recipient.
Also, “heart-rending ending” is a hell of a catchy rhyme.
Honestly, my biggest problem with the whole Clone Saga was that it didn’t have enough symbiotes. Like everything else…love, drama, action, intrigue, tragedy…it was all there, but I really felt it was missing that crucial symbiote ingredient gives all stories that je ne sais pas element of awesomeness, you know?
I think that was the problem that all mid 90’s Marvel comics had. Not enough symbiotes. And not enough Wolverine as well, but you can only solve so many problems at a time. Why just stop at giving Venom 12 separate mini-series, his own monthly, Separation Anxiety, Planet of the Symbiotes, and that whole Hybrid thing? They should have pushed more of that MAXIMUM LETHAL PROTECTOR angle into even more stories, because I really feel that the grungy, slackerish, late 20’s/early 30’s loser male demographic didn’t take to Carnage and Venom as much as they could have.
If there was one thing the mid 90’s era of comics (otherwise known as the Golder Than Golden Age) missed out on, it was more symbiote stories.
Thank God that Marvel remembers all the good things that went right during that age and is trying to bring all those elements back, completely unchanged with more symbiote fun in New Avengers and that whole Venom vs. Carnage/Toxin thing from a couple months (or has it been years already?) back.
I really hope Venom takes off again - I don’t think we see enough Venom t-shirts around, and the other day I actually met a casual comic book fan that said Carnage was NOT his favourite villain. I mean…can you imagine!?!
Symbiotes and clones are definitely the key ingredients to a successful Spider-Man story. How many decent Spider-Man stories have there been that DIDN’T have symbiotes or clones? I can think of Kraven’s Last Hunt, and that’s about it. And even that had Spidey wearing a black suit, in clear homage to the original symbiote.
You know what would be really awesome? If they brought back Spidercide and had him bond with the Carnage symbiote. Soooo badass! Just imagine the baddest assed clone of Peter Parker combined with the ultimate expression of irrational hatred and power! It would be like if Batzarro and the Joker were combined into a single foe.
And the Spidercide/Carnage arc could even bring back the mysterious Kaine, for added drama. Kaine was another amazing character. That’s one reason why JMS’ story with Ezekiel wasn’t so hot - because Marvel already told the most mysterious, suspenseful, and thrilling storyarc ever when they introduced Kaine. Ezekiel just seemed like a cheap attempt to swipe a classic.
Ah, touche. I was a really bad French student though, in my defense. But c’est la vie, eh? Ah oui oui, mes amies! Ahauhauhau. <- please note that by using “amies” rather than “amis” I am thus referring to you as a singular female, which is a clever dig questioning your manhood.
It’s probably precisely my mandatory high school French credit that messed me up in the first place. Instead of “I don’t know what” I literally translated just “I don’t know” - and when you’re getting C’s and D’s all throughout ELEMENTARY French class, “je ne sais pas” is the go-to French phrase that you absolutely must need to know for when the teacher tries to ask you anything in front of the class, because you can’t speak in English while you’re in the French classroom. And also “puis je aller aux toilettes?”
Old habits die hard.
That crossover wouldn’t work without some Image representation, to truly grasp the glory of that era. May I suggest some Youngblood?
You know who was an awesome character that I really wish they would bring back? Judas Traveller. I don’t think there’s enough characters in comics that are both all mysterious AND all powerful. I really think we need to fill that void, especially with characters in western style cowboy hats as well.
Thankfully - as again, Marvel always knows whats up - we have the Sentry to fill that role of the mysterious, all powerful character with the impossibly vague, yet extreme powerset. We just don’t have enough of those characters, I think - we never did.
But by adding the S you made it plural and called us all females. At least you would have if we were your friends. As it stands, the only people who should be offended exist solely in your head. ZING! And you fail again because of that. First math, now French… I’m beginning to see a pattern here…
I just had an epiphany. Spawn. The Sentry. Precrisis Superman. Crossover. I skeeted twice while typing.
Aren’t they being rebooted for what the 27th time. Sounds like a legal headache to me. Just use one of the other colorful and original teams those creative peeps at Image made. Team Youngblood, Bloodstrike, Bloodpool, or Bloodsport.
40 Years of Amazing Spider-Man is on a single disc now? Cool. They still charging $40-50 for it? I’ll buy it eventually.
Spidey didn’t meet Daredevil and fight Ringmaster until ASM#16. In ASM#15, Kraven entered Spidey’s life for the first time. Just thought I’d throw that out there while we’re correcting each other. :bgrin:
I like Spider-Man for all the reasons you listed. This comic really is a soap opera for guys. It has hot babes, drama, and sweet action. As much as Peter has hated his powers and the grief that comes with them, getting bitten by that radioactive spider was the best thing that ever happend to him. One bite turned a nobody into a somebody. Thanks to that spider bite, he went from a nerd to being a nerd who fights crime, spouts wisecricks and dates hot babes that most guys will only dream of getting. Peter has changed so much since being Spider-Man, but at the same time, he’s still the same. Peter has grown to the point where we really don’t have to ask who is the real ID, Peter, or Spider-Man. In early stories he was still timid as Peter Parker but as Spider-Man, it was like he was so above it all. Now there really is no black and white between Peter and Spidey. Even before he reavled his ID in Civil War, he didn’t have to do anything to hide his ID to keep people form suspecting Peter and Spidey were the same guy.
Bendis has done a great job on Ultimate Spider-Man, another of my fav books. Paul Jenkins is also dope. Man is one of my fav writers because of his work on the Spider books.
I love JMS run on ASM. Screw those haters, I loved the Sins Past story arc. The only reason those fags hate the story is because it discraces the memory of Gwen to Gwen lovers. My opinion of the Gwen wasn’t high even before I read Sins Past. Gwen was a whinney broad. Everytime Peter had to be Spidey, she pissed and moaned. That and her opinion on Spider-Man flip flopped like crazy. though in later stories, it was pretty clear that she hated Spider-Man because she believed he killed her father. Dem right there, was the breaks for Peter and Gwen. I honestly don’t think she would have been able to handle the Spider-Man aspect of Peter’s life. Gwen was also very much the damsel in distress type of woman, the complete opposite of MJ. It’s actually funny that although I really don’t care much for Gwen in the comics, I loved her in Spider-Man 3. Conversely, I hated MJ in Spidey 3 and not because of Kirsten Dunst. I enjoyed her as MJ in the first two movies but in 3, they wrote her to be the whinney broad Gwen was in the comics. Talk about a role reversal.
I’ve only read two stories in the Kraven’s Last Hunt storyline but I remember really enjoying them. They were also very dark. We saw a side of Kraven we never saw before. Not only did he “kill” Spider-Man, he BECAME Spider-Man. Justice was swifty and deadly with Kraven Spider-Man patroling NY. I need to pick up the trade of this story. It is a must read for all Spidey fans.
DeMatties is indeed a dope writer. I have issue #189 of Spectacular Spider-Man. Harry becomes the Goblin again and things go nuts. I really want to read The Child Within story arc. Was another of DeMatties works. Spidey has to deal with Harry AND Vermin at the same time. Has it been collected into a TBP?
Hang on there, bub. You’re saying that like all the other women Spidey ever dated didn’t feel weirded out every time he had to “go buy some medicine” for Aunt May and sneak off to fight some costumed whacko. Mary Jane married him, and she still bitches about it all the time.
Did you forget about the time MJ faked her death and then tried to live as an actress in California? Huh? What kind of allegedly loving and supportive wife does that?
So what if she was against Spidey most of the time? She still loved Peter Parker. Gwen Stacy was a smart lady; she went to college. She would have been able to reconcile her feelings if she knew the truth.
Almost every single female character in the Marvel Universe has been a damsel in distress at one point or another. MJ’s been a damsel in distress before. How about the time when Peter Parker was hypnotized by the Jackal into attacking her (and their unborn child) and Ben Reilly (aka, The One True Spider-Man) had to rescue her?
But you’re right about Gwen being the complete opposite of MJ. Gwen was always portrayed as intelligent and mature. MJ started off as an airheaded party chick. The only reason MJ matured was because Gwen died.
Also, Mary Jane’s a smoker. Absolutely disgusting. Remember those '90s comics when she’d be so stressed out by Peter’s life as Spider-Man that she got addicted to tobacco? Doesn’t sound like a very strong woman to me. Gwen’s got pink lungs; the autopsy proved it.
Gwen had better hair, too. It was always so nice and straight. Every time I see a picture of Gwen in a comic book, I wish she were real so I could grab her hair and rub my face in it like a starving dog being presented with a juicy t-bone steak. Gwen always wore that cute hairband, too, like any classy dame from the '60s. MJ, on the other hand? Every day has the potential to be a bad hair day for her. Just look at Todd McFarlane’s run. When he drew MJ, it was like her hair was pregnant and about to give birth to Spawn. Seriously, go back and look at a late '80s/early '90s T-Mac Spidey comic. MJ’s hair was like a precursor to Spawn’s cape. (Her butt was like Spawn’s giant boot.) Not very flattering.
Most importantly, Gwen is dead and MJ is alive. That is why I will always love and prefer Gwen more than Mary. Gwen is dead - she’s a saint by default. A living woman cannot compare to a corpse, no siree. She’s the perfect woman because she no longer has the ability to do something stupid with her life. It’s like dear old Raul Julia, who was able to perish while at the peak of human existence - no one alive will EVER be able to measure up.
The point is, Gwen S. is the perfect woman and you are no doubt out of your mind for hating on an angel, a sacred lamb. Mary Jane ain’t nothing but a Hollaback Girl. Clean them spiderwebs outta your brain.