Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Spidey Stories I've Yet To Read

The entire Lee/Ditko run? Read the whole thing. The Lee/Romita era? Check. The Death of Gwen Stacy and the first Clone Saga? Every word and the rest of Gerry Conway's run on Amazing Spider-Man. Yes, sir, I've read a lot of Spidey stories throughout the years. So what have I missed out on? Actually a lot. I want to read all the great Spidey stories I can get my hands on. These are chief among the ones I really want to check out.

Spider-Man vs. Juggernaut from Amazing Spider-Man #229-230

I have almost every issue from Roger Stern's run on ASM collected. His origin story on the Vulture, the death of the first Tarantula, his original Hobgoblin story, all terrific stuff. It kills me to not have read the two part story where Spidey goes up against Juggy. One of the things I've always liked about the web-head is that he always finds a way to win or stop his opponents no matter how much stronger than him they may be. Spidey's been up against a lot of tough cookies but none of them were unstoppable. This is the kind of threat Juggy is and wouldn't you know it, the X-Men and all the other super folks aren't around to help up. Despite the odds, Spider-Man manages to stop the unstoppable and avenge the injured Madam Web. I know it may not be as epic as Gwen's Death or the Master Planner Trilogy, but but from what I've heard, this is a pretty gripping story, one I hope to experience first hand one day.

The Kid Who Collects Spider-Man, Amazing Spider-Man #248

I have myself to blame for not reading this one. A few years ago when I was picking up old issues of ASM from the 1980s, this was one that I had seen and I (foolishly) didn't pick it up. I haven't seen an issue at my comic shop since. This kid thinks the world of Spider-Man and has collected every news article on our hero. Unfortunately the boy is dying from leukemia and only has days to live. The child's one wish is to meet Spider-Man, a wish the web-slinger gladly fulfills. He even tells the boy that he is Peter Parker and how he lost his uncle Ben. Of course Spidey is still a hero in the kid's eyes.

There was an adaption of this story in Spider-Man: The Animated series, with a girl named Tyena taking the boy's place. It was a two part episode which also brought in elements from the Spidey/Doc Ock story from ASM #53-56 when Spidey got amnesia and joined up with Doc Ock as a result. Tyena is told Spidey's origin story and at the end, Peter reveals his identity to her and at the end, the viewer is told that Tyena is terminally ill. Needless to say, these two episodes were quiet touching and are among my favorite.

Spider-Man vs. Firelord from Amazing Spider-Man #269-270

Another story where Spidey fights a foe who is world's stronger than he is. Guess I'm a sucker for these. If you don't know, Firelord is a cosmic being and cosmic beings in the Marvel world are guys you usually don't want to mess with. Anyway, Firelord has a nasty case of PMS and Spider-Man manages to take it to 11. After a lengthy game of cat and mouse, Spidey cuts loose and beats the crap out of Firelord. Some may find the idea of Spidey beating a guy like Firelord absurd. Firelord is strong but not invincible and I doubt Spidey was pulling his punches like he usually does.


Tommy said...

From those, I've only read the Firelord storyline via Marvel Tales. I do have the Avengers issue (#258) that ties into this story though.

Hercules keeps Firelord in line when he eventually wakes up and wants to immediately go after Spider-Man.

If I recall right, the brother of the 'Kid who collects Spider-Man' appears in Marvel Holiday Special 1991.

Anyhoo, I've got some scans done from that Avengers issue from some time back, and I'll e-mail you the links to where the files are uploaded if you want to check 'em out.

That, and maybe some other things.

Reggie White Jr. said...

Ah so an Avengers story ties in to those issues of Amazing Spider-Man. Guess that explains them showing up in ASM #270.

Sure, I'd like to check out those scans from that Avengers issue.

Todd Merrick Novak (aka beanlynch) said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Todd Merrick Novak (aka beanlynch) said...

The Firelord issues were my first issues of Amazing Spider-Man (Marvel Tales reprints of ASM #39-40 were my first Spidey comics, at least as a collector). I love those issues. In my opinion Ron Frenz is one of the best Spider-Man artist ever and Joe Rubenstein was his perfect inker (sorry, I think Sal Buscema is a bad inker on Ron). You don't need to read the Avengers story to enjoy these. They tie in, but they don't really add anything from the Spidey angle. Still, it was great material in the Avengers back then (John Buscema and Palmer, can't get much better than that!) so it's still worth a read on its own merits.

The other two stories you have listed there are really good as well. I personally think the Juggernaut story is overrated. It's good but it's not near the best Spidey story ever as some fans insist. From that time period, I'm a much bigger fan of the Hobgoblin issues. Especially ASM #249-251. I also really love all the Vulture stories that Stern and Romita Jr. did together.

As far as the Kid Who Collects Spider-Man, it is a charming little story, very heartfelt. It's also a very early Ron Frenz Spidey and Frenz started out drawing a lot like Ditko and slowly started to become more Romita-ish. I especially appreciate his earlier Ditko-ish Spidey work. This is a good example but also worth checking out for this is What If (Uncle Ben Had Lived) V1 #46 and Amazing Spider-Man Annual #18 (Scorpion Takes A Bride).

spideyfan said...

I might add the 1st 2 pages scans of each arc/story in my blog, but I won't right anything concerning the stories