In 1962, writer Stan Lee and artist Steve Ditko introduced Spider-Man to the world in Incredible Fantasy #15. 60 years later, with the release of some of the most successful films of all time and the launch of a new volume of amazing spider manthe character was still going strong.
Ditko would illustrate the amazing spider man book for the first 38 issues, with John Romita taking over art duties in issue 39. During the two artists’ run in the 1960s, Ditko and Romita created some of the best amazing spider man covers of all time. Stories like “If it’s my destiny…!” and “Spider-Man No More” are fantastic for their scripts but even more memorable for the art inside and the covers that introduced them to the world.
ten Spider-Man battled the brilliant mind of Doctor Octopus
Decades before taking over Spider-Man’s body and learning the ultimate lesson in power and responsibility, Otto Octavius was one of Spidey’s greatest enemies, and he appeared frequently throughout the along the first decade of Spider-Man comics. One of the most famous Doc Ock stories from the 1960s was “Doc Ock Wins!” in amazing spider man #55.
Doc Ock’s face takes up the entire cover with mirrored images of Spider-Man reflected in his goggles. The cover, illustrated by John Romita, visually represented the story inside, where Doc Ock took advantage of Spider-Man’s recent amnesia to make him his partner in crime.
9 Spider-Man facing death in issue #75
As the amazing spider man As the series neared its 100th issue, Stan Lee and John Romita began crafting more mature stories that dealt with heartbreak, drugs, and even death. Publish #75titled “Death Without Warning”, featured the apparent death of a criminal named Silvermane.
Spider-Man has juggled several conflicts with the Lizard, the Maggia, and Silvermane. As the number ended, he watched helplessly as Silvermane aged into oblivion. The cover, illustrated by John Romita, depicted a saddened Spidey with his head in his hands. The art was dark, dramatic, and set the tone for the tragic and heartbreaking Spider-Man stories to come.
8 Spider-Man fought the Sinister Six for the first time
Many of Spider-Man’s greatest enemies would join the Sinister Six, or some version of it, but the original Sinister Six lineup – which included Doctor Octopus, Mysterio, Vulture, Kraven the Hunter, Sandman and Electro – remains the most iconic.
The Sinister Six first appeared in Annual Amazing Spider-Man #1, illustrated by Steve Ditko. Only two years after his debut, Spider-Man has already built up a list of incredible enemies. The comic book villains had never teamed up like the Sinister Six had. Most of the original team reunited at the Nick Spencer events Sinister War limited series.
7 Spider-Man met the mind-bending illusions of Mysterio
Mysterio is one of Spider-Man’s coolest villains due to his power to seemingly warp reality. Whenever Mysterio is involved, nothing was as it seems. Spider-Man learns this the hard way in just about every one of his first encounters.
Mysterio returned in amazing spider man #67, illustrated by John Romita, trapping Spider-Man in a miniature amusement park. Spider-Man struggled to avoid Mysterio’s giant hands until he deduced the giant was just a robot. The concept created an incredibly striking cover image of Mysterio’s monstrous hands dominating a tiny Spider-Man.
6 Spider-Man discovered the truth about his parents
Amazing Spider-Man Annual #5 featured a fantastical, psychedelic cover image illustrated by John Romita. Spider-Man heads into a spiraling vortex with the faces of his closest friends and allies descending towards two unknown figures. “Peter Parker’s Parents!” saw Peter travel the world, uncovering the truth about who his parents were and why they disappeared.
The fifth amazing spider man annual was one of the most interesting because it delved into a piece of Spider-Man history that hadn’t been explored before. The truth about Peter’s parents would be changed and retconned many times, but the foundations for these future stories were laid here.
5 Spider-Man battled the Avengers in ASM Annual #3
Seeing Annual Amazing Spider-Man #3 on the comic book stands in 1966 must have been a real treat for comic book fans. Spider-Man battled the Hulk and the rest of the Avengers on a cover that featured artwork by Steve Ditko and John Romita.
Just four years after his comic book debut, Spider-Man has already crossed paths with the Fantastic Four and Earth’s Mightiest Heroes, establishing himself as one of Marvel’s most popular characters. The Avengers were torn over whether to invite Spider-Man to join their team, and Spidey grew impatient, leading to a superhero brawl.
4 The Green Goblin learned Peter’s secret
The Green Goblin and Spider-Man had fought several times during Steve Ditko’s run on amazing spider man, but in issue #39 – John Romita’s first issue on the book – the goblin made his legendary return. Determined to crush the spider once and for all, Norman Osborn devised a plan to uncover Spider-Man’s true identity.
Knowing Spidey’s face behind the mask, the Green Goblin had officially elevated himself to Spidey’s greatest enemy. The story was told over two issues, but the cover of issue 39 is legendary. An unmasked Spider-Man dangles helplessly from the Goblin Glider. This battle would mark the first of many personal confrontations between Peter and Norman.
3 Spider-Man broke free in “If Such Be My Fate…!”
After Spider-Man chased the Master Planner to his secret underwater lair in the previous issue, he was trapped under rubble as the facility collapsed on itself. Trapped under tons of debris, with water filling the room every second, it felt like the end of Spider-Man.
Steve Ditko’s cover for amazing spider man #33 was fantastic, depicting the pivotal scene of the issue and one of the most famous scenes in Spider-Man comic book history. After thinking about all the people who depend on Peter Parker, in and out of the mask, Spider-Man summoned the power to break free in a triumphant feat of strength and determination.
2 Spider-Man debuted in Amazing Fantasy
amazing fantasy #15 is an essential Spider-Man story because it features everything any fan would need to know about Peter Parker and Spider-Man in one concise story. Peter gained spider powers, used those powers for personal gain, and suffered the consequences of his actions.
This is perhaps one of the best origin story issues in the comics because of how it set up the character of Peter Parker and why he chose to become a superhero. The cover image, illustrated by Steve Ditko and Jack Kirby, was new and exciting. The costume was unlike anything seen in superhero comic books. Spider-Man’s red and blue costume shone against the contrasting gray background.
1 Peter Parker gave up being Spider-Man
In what is perhaps the best-known Spider-Man story of the 1960s, Peter Parker abandons the role of Spider-Man to pursue his own wants and needs. amazing spider man #50 has been adapted into many Spider-Man movies and TV series, including Sam Raimi’s Spiderman 2.
John Romita’s clutch is iconic. Peter Parker is stepping down as Spider-Man. An equally iconic panel inside the issue literally depicts Peter stepping away from his Spidey costume, another image that would be recreated in many adaptations. This issue features an incredible story with an even more memorable cover that is easily considered one of the best Spider-Man comic book covers of all time.
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