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'Spidey" The Amazing Spider-Man

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Jack Kirby had ideas for a character to be called The Silver Spider or Spider-Man during the 1950s. His early concept had the super-powered hero gaining his abilities from a magic ring which he found, and he fought criminals armed with a 'web gun.' (There was a character called Spiderman which appeared in 1959 by Kirby's longtime friend and frequent creative partner Joe Simon. Read more about it on the Spider-Man Paternity page).

Head editor at Marvel Comics Stan Lee brought in Steve Ditko to work on the concept, and Ditko overhauled the idea, changing the outfit and using a mask which completely covered the face, which was a rarity in superhero comics at the time. Ditko also developed the peculiar non-heroic personality of Peter Parker. Ditko resisted pressure to alter this to make the character conform to the more usual expectations of comic book superhero personalities of that era. Ditko's battles over this counter-pressure was one of the contributing factors ultimately leading to his quitting the series after issue #38. (Ditko also had complaints about other matters having to do with not receiving writing credits, payment and other matters in his relationship with Stan Lee and Martin Goodman, the owner of Marvel Comics. At the time Ditko quit, Spider-Man was the second biggest selling title at Marvel.

Venom and Spiderman

Venom and Spiderman

Spider-Man and Venom

by Stephen Segovia - Spider-Man and Venom

Art by Stephen Segovia

The Web

THE WEB - Art by Alberto Cortes - Venom and Spider-Man

Art by Alberto Cortes

Venom V Spiderman

Venom V Spiderman

Art by Zach Howard

Original Page May 2012 | Updated Dec 2015