Wednesday, June 27, 2012

First 10 - Amazing Spider-Man

I went into the first 10 issues of Amazing Spider-Man fully expecting to love it, and I was right. One of the most amazing things about Stan Lee and Marvel comics of the 1960s is that they were constantly churning out iconic characters. In his interview with Kevin Smith, Stan Lee says he created Spider-Man because the Amazing Fantasy series was going to be cancelled and he wanted to try this Spider-Man idea he'd been kicking around for a while. Of course Amazing Fantasy #15 (pictured on the left) sold like hotcakes and fans clamored for a dedicated Spider-Man series.

I tend to love Marvel comics of the 1960's because Stan Lee wrote such fun and exciting stories and his artists (most notably Steve Ditko and Jack Kirby) were all top notch. When I read the first 10 issues of Amazing Spider-Man (starting, of course, with Amazing Fantasy #15) I found I couldn't get enough. One of the things I really love about Marvel is that their continuity tends to be a little more static than DC's (not that I dislike DC, it's just that DC has to deal with 30 more years of continuity than Marvel does, so things get a little convoluted. In another 30 years it'll pretty much be a wash). Everything you know and love about Spider-Man is all laid out in those first 10 issues. His early costume is not so different from his current one (especially when you consider the changes that have come over the years with a character like Iron Man). Many of his classic villains make their first appearance in the early issues (Vulture, Sandman, Doc Oc,  and The Lizard). Peter Parker is still the awkward teenager than can't catch a break, and his escapades in the Spider-Man persona don't make his personal life any better. He has exactly the sort of character depth that can carry multiple titles as a solo superhero character. He's Marvel's Superman and I don't see him running out of interesting stories anytime soon. I loved the First 10 issues of Amazing Spider-Man. From now on I'll keep a running tally of the standings of my First 10 series. When my First 10 series is done, the comic on top will be the next comic I read...assuming I'm done with X-Men (I've caught up to the present day with Uncanny X-Men, X-Men Legacy, Wolverine and the X-Men, Astonishing X-Men, and X-Men Forever. Now all I need to read is X-Men Unlimited, X-Men Vol. 3, X-Treme X-Men, and Ultimate X-Men). Anyway, here are the first ever First 10 standings:

  1. Amazing Spider-Man
  2. Fantastic Four
  3. The Punisher
  4. Golden Age Green Lantern

I am currently working on my next First 10 series and I can already tell you we'll have a new slot on the bottom of the totem pole. Look for that in days to come.

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