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Saturday, January 7, 2017

Silver Age Spider-Man Key Comics Part 4


Swinging into Part 4 of this Spider-Man key comics section, and we are nearing the end of Steve Ditko's amazing run on the character he co-created with Stan "The Man" Lee. No doubt that Ditko created many of Spidey's most classic and enduring cast of characters and villains.

With Ditko leaving the Amazing Spider-Man titled comic series, we will be getting into the very early Spidey works of fellow comic legend John Romita Sr. With that being said, there will be plenty of 1st appearances, 2nd and 3rd appearances, 1st published works on characters, and origins of some more iconic comic characters and villains.

Other than key issues, we'll also be taking a trip of sorts down memory lane here and there.  Plenty of information and maybe some you didn't know before. I sure learned some things in researching and writing this series up.

Alright, still definitely on the Silver Age of Spidey comics and here's more Spider-Man key issues to possibly add to your want list or even snag this new year. 

 1st appearance of Crime Master
4th appearance of Green Goblin

More early Gobby appearances and The Amazing Spider-Man #26 marks the 4th appearance of this iconic villain. Although readers at the time do not know it just yet, Green Goblin ends up being Norman Osborn but his character has yet to even have been identified.

This comic might have the 3rd unnamed cameo of Norman Osborn in a scene involving J. Jonah Jameson hanging out with his gentleman's club. Once again, I really can't confirm it nor know if the Stan and Steve originally intended Norman Osborn to even appear in this issue.

Here's the page that shows a possible Norman Osborn, and this is after Fredrick Foswell is rehired by J. Jonah Jameson after he serves his jail time for his crimes as the Big Man. J.J's friends are questioning and commending him for the deed.

So the red headed male in the right panel might or might not be Norman Osborn. What is clear is that the 1st or original Crime Master appears in the this comic, and Spidey and the villain would cross paths and duke it out for a tick.

Crime Master and Green Goblin even have a brief battle in this issue.  Not surprising since the two are vying for control of New York City's criminal underworld.

And then Spidey and Gobby would briefly go at it with Green Goblin finally winning. He would try to unmask Spider-Man unsuccessfully.

The original Crime Master would not have many appearances at all. He would die and be revealed as Nick Lewis in the very next issue. His son Nick Jr. would take up the legacy and become the 2nd Crime Master in the Bronze Age of comics.

No CGC data for pence copies in the census, so here's data for just the regular U.S. version. 

As noted in a previous part to this key issues series, Bennett Brant would become the 3rd Crime Master later in comics. With April 8th as the copyright date,  Amazing Spider-Man #26 is cover dated July, 1965.

5th appearance of the Green Goblin
3rd unnamed cameo Norman Osborn?
Death of original Crime Master

If that is Norman Osborn in that panel in Amazing Spider-Man #25, this issue without a question has a cameo of Norman Osborn out of his Green Goblin garb. Gobby was one of the earliest Spidey villains where his secret identity was left a mystery, and his face is in shadow in this issue.

Obviously this device was used to build anticipation as to who the Green Goblin really was. Stan Lee and Ditko were split when it came to who the Green Goblin should be. Lee wanted the character to be someone Peter already knew, but Ditko wanted it to be a new character that was introduced.

We all know what ended up happening, but at the time of this issue, I'm not sure whether the creative team had decided on Norman Osborn or not. So, Norman Osborn makes a cameo here for sure at the very end of this comic where his face is in shadow.

However, Norman Osborn as himself just might be fully seen in a panel in this comic two pages before those panels above. Apparently, both Norman and J.J are part of the same men's club. Here's the panels that depict this below.

Right there in that panel above to the left. Looks like Norman Osborn to me. There might be further proof of this when we get to issue #37.

In issue #37, where Norman Osborn is fully introduced as himself, J.Jonah mentions the club just before he calls Norman by name. You'll see the panels of this event when we get to issue #37. 

The Green Goblin does fully appear and has his 5th full appearance in this comic. Spidey and Gobby do battle again in this issue as well.

With the cover date of August, 1965, Amazing Spider-Man #27 is copyrighted May 11th and possibly has the 3rd or 4th cameo appearance of Norman Osborn in shadow and plain sight.

1st meeting of Doctor Strange & Spider-Man
1st Spider-Man & Doctor Strange team up

Peter Parker did meet Doctor Strange in Amazing Spider-Man Annual #1. There's two panels where Flash Thompson takes a swing at Parker and Strange chastises the two youths in his astral form.

While Strange acknowledges both Flash and Peter in ASM Annual #1 and Flash acknowledges Strange, Peter does not see the Sorcerer Supreme in astral form and just walks off after dodging Flash's punch. This issue has the first published meeting of Parker as Spider-Man and Doctor Strange.

This 1st meeting was later retconned, but this issue came out long before that. Strange and Spidey do not battle first and actually team up straight away in this comic. No mix up of whether one is good or bad.

When it comes to the CGC Census, there's data for three versions. The first is the U.S. cents copies.

There is actually data for the UK pence copies for Amazing Spider-Man Annual #2, and I could find an actual comic book cover example for this gem. The price box is very different from the other examples already displayed previously in this Spider-Man key comics series, so I will post it for viewing purposes in case there are collectors interested or starting to gain more interest in these pence copies or price variants

You can click on the image to enlarge it and get a better view. Not to any surprise, the census for this annual #2 so far is definitely very low at the time of this writing.

Once again, Canadian editions and their "blank interior covers" are up for debate, and some challenge that these were exclusively distributed in Canada. As I wrote before, I'm no expert when it comes to these and no concrete evidence has pointed either way. What is clear is that there definitely is a third version that have these blank interior covers. 

So some interesting stuff concerning the different versions of this issue. I'm not even sure if the blank interior covers are 1st printings or not, but CGC has them all listed with the same cover date.

Copyright of June 1st and the cover date of 1965, Amazing Spider-Man Annual #2 has a classic 1st published team up of Spider-Man and Doctor Strange.

1st appearance & origin of the Molten Man

As opposed to white covers which can be cleaned, black covers are starting to gain much favor to collectors since they are painfully harder to keep in good condition. At least, that's the argument.

Amazing Spider-Man #28 has a very black cover and debuts the villain of the Molten Man. It has become a pretty desired comic more so of the black cover than the actual first appearance of this villain. This comic is considered scarcer in higher grades.

This character, also known as Mark Raxton, is connected to Dr. Spencer Smythe and helped to create and develop an experimental new liquid metallic alloy for the Spider Slayers. Raxton once worked under the employment of Oscorp.

While trying to steal this new liquid metal alloy, a fight ensued between him and Symthe, resulting in the liquid being spilled on him and his skin absorbing it. 

In true comic book fashion, this accident somehow gave him the ability of increased resistance to physical injury, as well as generate intense heat and lethal radiation. He can also shoot out flaming projectiles at will.

There's data or registered copies for UK pence copies of Amazing Spider-Man #28. The pence data will follow the U.S. cents census for CGC slabs as of this writing.

As usual, I won't feature every pence copy cover, but I could easily find an example for this issue here.

Also, the price is different in the box and is now 10d. I'm not sure with which issue this UK price change started with.

If the regular cents copies are scarcer in higher grades, then I can only imagine just how rare they might be concerning higher grade UK pence copies.

Only one 8.5 Signature Series for pence copies to date registered, and that is the highest so far for UK versions of this comic. That one might definitely be considered a rare gem.
In later comics, it was revealed that Mark Raxton is the stepbrother of Liz Allen. Copyrighted June 8th, Amazing Spider-Man #28 holds the cover date of September, 1965.  

2nd appearance of the Scorpion

The Scorpion returns for a rematch against Spider-Man in this 2nd appearance of the character. I suppose there's no confusing the fact that everyone should know that Mac Gargan is the Scorpion if they captured him and relieved him of his Scorpion costume.

Well, he comes back with it on and the reason why the authorities let him have his costume back. Scorpion is definitely hell-bent on revenge against both Spidey and Jameson.

This issue does have a pretty long and impressive battle between Web-Head and Scorpion. It starts in the office of Jameson and then ends up in the water. Spidey leaves Jameson's office trashed and I suppose it is sort of revenge for the wall crawler.

CGC Census has both U.S. and UK data for both versions. Up first is the U.S cents copy and then the UK pence data.

Wow, a Silver Age Spider-Man key pence copy that finally hit the 9.0 range. 2nd highest so far is an 8.0 VF and no Restored copies yet. Then again there's only 3 so far in the CGC Census.

The title of this story is called "Never Step On A Scorpion", and it's the same title they used for the 1967 Spider-Man cartoon episode. I believe the story in the cartoon is somewhat based on this issue. Scorpion does go after J. Jonah Jameson in that animated episode like in this comic here.

2nd appearance of Scorpion, 2nd meeting of Scorpion and Spider-Man, and 2nd battle between the two as well. July 8th is the copyright date for Amazing Spider-Man #29, and that issue's cover date is October, 1965.

1st appearance Gwen Stacy
1st appearance Harry Osborn
1st cameo Professor Miles Warren

Double key issue awesomeness concerning this comic. Although Gwen Stacy has yet to be cast in the new Spider-Man movie reboot, her character is a classic love interest for Peter Parker during the Silver Age.

Gwen Stacy is a fellow college student at Empire State University, and that's where the two eventual love birds met. Although Mary Jane was already dating Peter at this time, Gwen Stacy would steal his heart.

Gwen Stacy is the opposite of Mary Jane. She is a science major and greatly appreciates Peter's intellect. While some fans forget, Peter later chooses to date Gwen over Mary Jane because he sees M.J. as shallow and self-absorbed at the time.

There's always been debate about Parker's one-true love being either Gwen or M.J. The character was portrayed twice on the big screen already. 

The first was Bryce Dallas Howard and the 2nd was Emma Stone. Both actors I really like and both versions were great. 

Harry Osborn is another classic Spider-Man supporting character. He is used a love-triangle device between him, Gwen and Peter in these early Silver Age comics.

As we already know, Harry Osborn would become the 2nd Green Goblin and that played out in the Sam Rami franchise already. Harry was played by James Franco and later Dane DeHaan in Marc Webb's Amazing Spider-Man 2.

I think this is an extremely important issue. It adds two iconic characters and Gwen Stacy's death is still considered a major, classic, and fan-favorite story. Here's the panels the first introduces these characters.

Although Harry and Peter would become best-friends, their first meeting in college was a different story. Worried to death about Aunt May who was hospitalized before he got to school, Peter is worried about May but seen as elusive to his peers. This comes across as snobbish to both Harry and Gwen. Actually, Harry thinks Parker is a jerk at first.

Not off to a good start between this trio who would become eventual friends later. It's obvious that Gwen is attracted but when Peter unknowingly shuns her in that panel, she becomes conflicted about what to think about Parker.

With the copyright of September 9th and the cover date of December, 1965, Amazing Spider-Man #31 has the 1st appearances of Harry Osborn, Gwen Stacy, and an unnamed cameo of Professor Miles Warren who ends becoming the Jackal later. 

5th appearance of Doctor Octopus
2nd appearance of Curt Conners

While Doc Ock was technically in Amazing Spider-Man #31 and did have dialog in that issue, he was amazingly not shown in any panel nor even named. Therefore and since he doesn't appear, I'll have to note this as Doctor Octopus' 5th appearance.

Yes, I am discounting Marvel Collector's Item Classics #1 since that reprints the story told in Amazing Spider-Man #3 as well as other Marvel classic stories. Also, I'm not counting issue Amazing Spider-Man #18 which is basically a cameo or would be seen as such by Overstreet and CGC. Neither recognize #18 nor this issue as a numbered Doctor Octopus appearance though.

If you don't believe in cameo this or minor that or brief this, #18 is Doc Ock's 5th and this issue is his 6th. Anyway, so Doctor Octopus is up to no good once again, and this will bring in conflict with our web slingin' hero.

I do believe this issue would mark their 5th ever battle.

CGC does note this as the 2nd appearance of Doctor Curt Conners, and he does appear in this issue in about 12 panels on 4 pages. He does not turn into the Lizard in this issue though.

The battle is pretty long between the two in this one and well-worth the read in my humble opinion. Love seeing Spidey get tangled up in Doc's mechanical arms.

CGC Census U.S. Cents Stats

Extremely scarce when it comes to pence copies of this issue and the highest is a single 8.0 VF in the census so far concerning CGC slabs. Pence price is 10d on this cover and there it is for reference purposes. Would love to see Doc Ock in the new Spider-Man rebooted franchise. I thought the character was well-portrayed in the Spider-Man 2 flick. Actually, I wouldn't mind seeing the Lizard again either.

Then again, not really that well of a recognized key issue to be honest. Anyway, below is the CGC Census for UK Pence copies of Amazing Spider-Man #32 to date or as of this writing:

So this issue holds the 5th full appearance of Doctor Octopus, the 2nd appearance or full appearance of Doctor Curt Conners non-Lizard, and the 5th battle between Spidey and Doc Ock. October 12th of 1965  is the copyright date and the date of January, 1966 is on the cover of this issue of Amazing Spider-Man #32.

2nd appearance of Gwen Stacy
2nd cameo of Harry Osborn
4th appearance of Kraven the Hunter 

Since Overstreet and most Spidey fans make a big deal about cameo appearances of Mary Jane Watson with her face not shown and all that jazz, I'm gonna make a big deal about Gwen Stacy as well. Why not? She is one of Peter's earliest crushes and loves.

Liz Allen doesn't count cause Peter actually loved Betty Brant and wanted to marry her by the time Liz Allen came around and started liking him. However, Betty Brant would quit the Daily Bugle and leave without even saying goodbye to Pete. I believe this happens in issue #35, and it would pave the way for Gwen.

Gwen Stacy makes her 2nd full appearance in this issue and she shows up quite a bit. Like Harry, Gwen is still mistaken about Peter.

Definitely an obvious attraction there and Gwen seems sore because Peter is shy and has a lot of things on his mind. Good lesson about jumping to assumptions concerning Gwen and Harry.

Harry Osborn only shows up in those 3 panels in this comic, which is and should be deemed a cameo according to Overstreet's standards. 

CGC Census U.S. Cents Stats

CGC Census UK Pence Stats

I swear that by the time you're done with this series, you'll know all the CGC columns by heart. In case you forgot it's Grade, Universal, Qualified, Signature Series, Restored and the total number of copies for each grade registered. 

Cover dated March, 1966 with the copyright date of December 9, 1965, Amazing Spider-Man #34 has the 4th appearance of Kraven, 2nd cameo of Harry Osborn, and 2nd full appearance of Gwen Stacy.

2nd appearance of the Molten Man

Here we have the 2nd appearance of the Molten Man and perhaps his last appearance in the Silver Age. I almost forgot to include this one twice, but realized it was not present during my 5th check up on the Silver Age section as a whole.

So Molten Man is left off the hook and is allowed to walk free again. Of course, this would be a mistake by the judicial system as Molten Man goes back to being up to no good.

Trying to rob a safe in a jewelry store, this baddie once again meets up with the Web-Head.

In the end, Raxton is once again defeated by our hero and handed over to the law, but this time Spidey took pics of him changing into his disguise before committing the crime.

There are pence copies that have emerged for this issue. CGC is starting to note pence copies as UK Editions on their new labels. 

Molten Man would not appear fully in another Amazing Spider-Man story until the Bronze Age of comics, or at least that's known so far. So the copyright date for Amazing Spider-Man #35 is January 11th, and the date on the ole cover is April, 1966.

1st appearance & origin of the Looter
3rd appearance of Gwen Stacy

While Gwen Stacy still feels sore about being snubbed by Peter Parker, Sally Green is minor character that tries to convince Gwen she is wrong about Peter. Seems like Peter is getting a lot of attention from the ladies in college.

Sally Green makes her cameo debut in this issue, and although she tries to prove that Peter is a nice guy, this makes Gwen even more jealous and spiteful towards him.

Another minor character also makes his debut in this issue. This happens to be the minor Spider-Man villain of the Looter, real name Norton Fester.

Known as a crackpot scientist to his peers, Fester discovered a meteor that crashed and decided to get funding to test the cosmic space rock but was declined. In fiddling with it himself, he got a dose of some kind of gas from the meteor which endowed him with super strength and agility. 

Devoting to use his powers to serve him in a life of crime and taking the name of the Looter, Fester was successful at robbing banks, but when the meteor he found runs out of the mystery space gas, he crashes in on a science museum with the intent of stealing another meteor on exhibit there.

Hoping this meteor would also have the same gas that endowed him with powers, Looter is unaware that Peter Parker, Gwen Stacy, and some of their science class are present. In keeping his identity a secret, Peter runs away to change into Spider-Man discreetly.

Unfortunately, Gwen thinks Peter is running away because he is a coward.

Spider-Man arrives and bests the Looter, but poor Peter! Now Gwen is really disgusted with him.

And I thought I had trouble with women. Harry Osborn does not show up in this issue.

CGC Census U.S. Cents Stats

Remember that the order of the columns for the CGC Census is the Grade, stats for the Universal label, Qualified label numbers, then Signature Series label stats, Restored, and the over-all total for each individual grade.

CGC Census UK Pence Stats

So a long with the 1st appearance and origin of the Looter who becomes Meteor Man later and 3rd full appearance of Gwen Stacy, Amazing Spider-Man #36 has the copyright date of February 10th and cover date of May, 1966.

1st John Romita Sr. Spider-Man
1st appearance Masked Marauder
1st Spider-Man in Daredevil comic series
2nd meeting and battle 

Okay, Daredevil did cross-over in Amazing Spider-Man #18 in a single panel and actually has dialogue but with himself and not Spider-Man. He's actually no where around Spidey in that issue.

Most know this issue as being John Romita Sr.'s first Spider-Man artwork, and so far it is. What's interesting is that in later interviews, he actually couldn't believe that Steve Ditko would walk away from such a popular comic title. Romita Sr. didn't even really want to do Amazing Spider-Man and actually wanted to stick to drawing the Daredevil title.

He did eventually decide to do the titled comic. So, this is Romita Sr.'s first Spider-Man, but there is more key issue goodness that this issue holds.

It is the 2nd time the pair met after Amazing Spider-Man #16. Also, because there's a bunch of misfits runnin' around in Daredevil costumes, Spider-Man thinks that DD attacked him earlier and ran off.

When the Spidey confronts the real Daredevil in his new red costume (Spidey has yet to see it until this issue), he cheap shots Daredevil as pay back for the earlier hit and run done by an imposter.

So another middle-weight bout between the two superheroes. In typical comic fashion, the two later realize that the Masked Marauder is behind all the sinister happenings going on. Issue also holds Masked Marauder's first appearance as well.

Pence copies! Pence copies! What about the pence copies? 

There are verified pence copies for this one in existence, and it looks like some have hit the secondary market. Not surprising that pence copies have come forth for this issue as it is one of the more sought out Spidey-related keys, and rightly so!

So there's the cover to the pence copy of this issue, and nothing different except the price and currency displayed on the cover. Below we'll see how scarce graded copies are for those in the CGC Census after the cents data.

And below is the census data for pence copies. Who's hoarding all these secretly? Kiddin' sort of.

There are raw pence copies out there for this issue. Saw a lot on Heritage that contained both UK copies of Daredevil #16 and #17. Not sure if they're high grade though.

Other key issue notes that this issue holds and is pretty over-looked is that it is the 1st John Romita Sr. drawn Aunt May and J. Jonah Jameson. Daredevil #16 has the copyright of March 3rd and cover date of May, 1966.

Intro Norman Osborn
1st time Norman is named
2nd full appearance of Harry Osborn
3rd appearance Harry Osborn ever 
1st Mendel Stromm 

Norman Osborn showed up in unnamed cameos prior to this issue. One of them I'm really not sure if that's really him.

This issue definitely sees the full introduction of the infamous Norman Osborn. As stated before in Part 3, Stan Lee and Steve Ditko had differences in opinion to who the Green Goblin should be, and they both knew that they needed to unmask him eventually and quite soon.

Ditko wanted the identity of Gobby to be someone knew who hasn't been introduced. Lee wanted him to be someone that Peter knew.

It worked out for the best and even added more drama and tension to the Spider-Man stories that Norman Osborn was the maniacal Green Goblin. As most already know, Norman is the father of Peter's best-friend Harry Osborn.

Great stuff when it comes to story-telling and there's a reason why these Spidey stories are so beloved. So Norman 1st appears in this issue in those panels below.

In the above panel, it's revealed and established that this guy is Harry Osborn's father.

Then J. Jonah calls Norman by name, and mentions "our club" in first panel above. Could very well be an unnamed Norman Osborn in Amazing Spider-Man #27 and Amazing Spider-Man #25 that I mentioned earlier in this post and in Part 3 of this Spider-Man key comics series.

Thought the U.S. CGC Census total would be higher for this issue since this is a pretty important comic and has had movie hype for it quite a few times already.

The character of Norman Osborn has been played by actors William Dafoe and Chris Cooper. Dafoe's Osborn was closer to the comic version and I have no idea what they were thinking when it comes to the character's portrayal in Amazing Spider-Man 2.

Copyrighted March 10th and cover dated June, 1966, Amazing Spider-Man #37 finally introduces and names Norman Osborn in this comic and also debut the pretty minor villain of Mendel Stromm. 

It would not be long afterwards when Norman Osborn is revealed to be the Green Goblin

3rd Spider-Man & Daredevil battle
3rd meeting Spider-Man & Daredevil
2nd John Romita Sr. Spider-Man
2nd appearance Masked Marauder

For some reason, these two just can't play nice with each other during their early meetings with each other. After their 2nd battle in the previous issue comes to a halt and the two go their separate ways, they manage to find each other once again and have a go.

Finally, the two realize that the Masked Marauder is the real culprit and the duo go after him. Actually, Spidey is cocky and goes after him first, telling Daredevil not to get in his way.

However, Marauder does get the best of Spidey, and just before the villain can end him, Daredevil swoops down and saves Web-Head's butt for the 2nd time (1st time in Amazing Spider-Man #16 against Ringmaster). 

Alright, here's the data below for the U.S. version of this comic in the CGC Census.

Covers for pence copies of this issue were found out there in cyber space, so they'll be displayed here for reference purposes. As mentioned before, I won't display every single pence cover, but I will try to post as much as I can find in this key issues series.

Same number of copies registered in the CGC Census as issue #16. However, the highest is an 8.5 VF+ so far. 2nd highest is an 8.0 VF and no Restored copies out of the 2 in the census. Here's what it looks like so far.

No Spider-Man on the cover of this issue. Daredevil and Spidey's 1st encounter was in the Amazing Spider-Man #16 issue.

Other lesser key notations is this comic holds the 2nd time Romita Sr. draws J. Jonah Jameson and Aunt May. Is this J. Jonah Jameson's 2nd cross-over with the first being in Daredevil #16? Not 100% sure about that but it could be.

Daredevil #17 has the copyright date of April 5th and the cover date of June, 1966.

2nd cameo Mary Jane Watson
Last Steve Ditko issue

This issue would mark the changing of the guard in Spidey's comic art. Yep, much to the amazement of John Romita, Steve Ditko left one of the highest selling and most popular comic titles of the era after this issue.

It is his last of his famous run on not just the title but the character of Spider-Man that he co-created. Then again, I'm pretty sure he wanted to do something different.

Before this time, Stan Lee started to grant plotting credits to Steve Ditko, but there had been a drift between the two comic legends. They had not been on speaking terms for quite a while, and there are different accounts as to why.

In 2003, Stan Lee confessed that he never really knew Steve on a personal level, but Ditko later revealed that it was Stan who broke off contact. He disputed the belief that the rift was caused by the disagreement of Goblin's true identity.

In a 2010 deposition, John Romita Sr. said that the two, "ended up not being able to work together because they disagreed on almost everything, cultural, social, historically, everything, they disagreed on characters...." Whatever, the real reason, Ditko left and Fantastic Four #52 (1st appearance of the Black Panther) had a farewell note to Ditko in the Bullpen Bulletins of that issue.

Steve Ditko would leave Marvel and return to Charlton Comics, creating the Ted Kord version of the Blue Beetle. He would not return to Marvel Comics until 1979.

This issue is also famous for the 2nd cameo appearance of Mary Jane Watson, and her face is not shown as well. There's a tree branch full of leaves blocking her head, but she has her back turned towards the readers anyway.

Also notice that Peter is distraught over Betty Brant. Ned Leeds does have something to do with that.

Pence copies of this issue have emerged in the secondary market. Cover price is still 10d, and the regular U.S. cover price is still 12 cents.  

April 12th is the copyright date for Amazing Spider-Man #38, and it's cover-dated July, 1966.

John Romita Sr. begins in comic series
Green Goblin identity revealed
1st John Romita Sr. Green Goblin
2nd Romita Spider-Man cover

This is a pretty big one. While Romita is a comic legend that has penciled many different comic characters and titles, he is a well-known comic artist for Spider-Man.

John Romita has admitted that he initially didn't want to do the series and wanted to stay on Daredevil. He also admits that most of his early work on the Spider-Man comic series was mimicking Steve Ditko's artwork. 

As noted, this issue is where the famed comic artists begins his long run on the series, and it is one of the longest runs. Therefore, he pencils a lot of Spidey characters for the first time, and one of them is the Green Goblin.

Yep, Green Goblin finally learns that Peter Parker is Spider-Man in this issue, and after Gobby gives Parker a beat down, he finally reveals that he is Norman Osborn at the end of this comic also.

I guess this is the 1st time Peter met Harry Osborn's dad? His response seems to suggest so.

Pretty important Spider-Man key comic all around and should be considered such. This issue also marks the 1st John Romita Sr. Gwen Stacy, Flash Thompson, and Harry and Norman Osborn as well as the 2nd cover Romita produced with Spidey on it. 1st Amazing Spider-Man cover, however, and it should be considered a classic.

The age of John Romita Sr. has begun for Spider-Man comics starting with this issue, and with the cover date of August, 1966, Amazing Spider-Man #39 was copyrighted May 10th in the same year.

We have ended Part 4 with the beginning of John Romita Sr.'s run on the Amazing Spider-Man volume 1 comic series. Part 5 will definitely be continuing this amazing moment in Spidey comic history.

However, let's recap on the huge influence and impact that Steve Ditko had on the Spider-Man mythos. Stan Lee and Steve Ditko co-created almost every major supporting cast member connected to Peter Parker, including and not limited to Aunt May, Uncle Ben, Flash Thompson, Betty Brant, Mary Jane Watson, J.Jonah Jameson, Gwen Stacy, Harry Osborn, Norman Osborn, and Ned Leeds.

Every single one of those characters has seen live-action in one franchise or another with Ned Leeds and Liz Allen coming soon in Spider-Man Homecoming. Villains that have or will soon make it to the big screen that Dikto helped to create are the Sandman, Green Goblin, Doctor Octopus, Lizard, Electro, and soon to be the Vulture and Tinkerer.

That's just supporting characters and villains that have seen live-action in the Spider-Man universe. I've said it before and will say it again, but Spidey has an unbelievable amount of supporting characters that have become iconic, many of which I've named in the 2nd paragraph to this outro.

Alright, let's see if we can get your Spidey senses tinglin' in Part 5. Click the link below to swing into some more Spider-Man Silver Age key issues.

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  1. I think ASM 31 is the most undervalued silver age Spider-Man key issue.

    1. I agree and think it's an important Spidey key.