Marvel Celebrates it’s Seventh Anniversary, and the first celebration is publishing the first 10 stories of Spider-man in trade paperback. It’s not hardcover, which means the collection is only $25. Not too shabby considering the hardcover version is $50. So how does the collection stand? Well, it depends. First, these are the first 10 issues about one of the greatest teenage superheroes in comic history. Writer Stan Lee produced groundbreaking story lines about the troubles of a teenager as he faces super-villains and real-life troubles. This was unheard of since teenage superheroes were sidekicks and one-dimensional. Spider-man also faces for the first time with classic villains like Doctor Octopus, the Lizard, the Vulture, Electro, the Chameleon, the Sandman, and J. Jonah Jameson. We’re also handed the first team-up with the Fantastic Four and support from characters like Betty Brant, Flash, and Aunt May.
But while many of these issues lay the foundation to the Spider-man mythology, Stan Lee produces some of the kookiest stories of the Silver Age. They’re not for everyone. All the characters have a cocky streak with a overdrawn thought process that barely lends itself to the art by Steve Ditko. There are a few comparisons to Superman such as the newspaper connection and the secret identity, and for some reason, they constantly popped up in my head. Spider-man hasn’t matured yet into the angsty character we’re grown to love. But these tales are good from a historical perspective and provides the best superhero origin story with a morale to boot. Check it, but be forewarned that the tales are outdated.
My Rating: C+