Welcome one and all to The Time Capsule! In this feature I’ll be highlighting an entire month of core titles for one character until his/her story is complete. The character that I’m currently focusing on is none other than Spider-Man. I’ll list any notable debuts, big moments, and favourite scenes from each issue. Hope everyone enjoys it as much as I enjoyed journeying back through time to put it together. Let me share the memories with you!
And it doesn’t end well. No identification, no money. Meanwhile, we get our first appearance of legendary Spider-Man character J. Jonah Jameson, a man who would plague the wall-crawler for years to come. The power of the press is strong indeed! ________________________________________________________
Jonah’s true motivation for attacking Spider-Man is revealed: he wants the public to look up to “real heroes” like his son, John Jameson, who also makes his first appearance in this very comic.________________________________________________________
All hope seems lost for the young astronaut were it not for Spider-Man jumping into action to save the day. A job only he could have the chance to succeed at despite Jonah’s protests.________________________________________________________
Peter is ecstatic and thinks the future is bright considering he just saved the life of the son of the man who was previously rallying everyone against him. His money problems are solved! Performances can begin anew!________________________________________________________
Jameson’s vendetta against Spider-Man intensifies as he creates an outlandish conspiracy theory.________________________________________________________
Even Aunt May is against Spider-Man! Peter’s problems are wearing on him, making him consider the possibility that he should in fact become a true menace to society if that is the only option given to him.________________________________________________________
But this does not “impress” them and a battle ensues. Spider-Man does battle with the man who would one day be a very good friend, Johnny Storm.________________________________________________________
Amazing Spider-Man #1 marked the first appearance of classic Spider-Man villain, the Chameleon. In his first appearance, all his disguises were located on his “multi pocket disguise vest” which would aid him in stealing whatever he chose.________________________________________________________
Disguised as Spider-Man, the Chameleon succeeds in stealing the missile plans and flees just as the real Spider-Man arrives at the predetermined moment.________________________________________________________
The police take chase after the real Spider-Man who quickly realizes he’s been had. He uses his slingshot technique for the first time to try to catch the fleeing helicopter.________________________________________________________
He manages to disguise himself as a police officer and in order to elude a suspicious Spider-Man he turns off the lights. This doesn’t deter our hero but, for the first of many times, he runs out of web fluid at the most inopportune of times.________________________________________________________
Spider-Man flees the situation but he has inadvertently helped the cops catch the master criminal by tearing his shirt and revealing the fake Spider-Man costume underneath. Spider-Man – 1, Chameleon – 0.________________________________________________________
Spider-Man runs into the night, depressed at his lot in life and wishing he never had these powers to begin with. Meanwhile, the Fantastic Four contemplate just how dangerous Spider-Man could be if he turned to a life of crime. An ominous ending for sure…________________________________________________________
In Spider-Man’s second appearance, but first issue of his own ongoing series, Stan Lee and Steve Ditko gradually expanded Spider-Man’s universe. It was an inspired choice not to bombard us with a flood of new characters all at once but instead to introduce them little by little, slowly shining the spotlight on each one. Another inspired choice is the fact that, unlike other heroes before his time, Spider-Man just doesn’t suddenly decide to use his powers to actively fight crime. His previous appearance had taught him that with great power comes great responsiblity, that when the opportunity presents itself for him to make a difference he must try everything to the best of his abilities to help out but Spider-Man is not ready to accept his true identity as a superhero yet. Instead he is consumed with the thought of making money, of supporting his Aunt. While a noble cause he has yet to learn that being a superhero does not transcend into a life of wealth and fame but is instead a task to standup for those that can’t protect themselves or standup to a dastardly villain that wishes to commit some illegal activity. At the end of the issue, Spider-Man is in a dark place, a place that he has been driven to by the smear campaign started by Jonah. This negative press is really wearing on the young man who is no stranger to bullying having been constantly picked on in school by Flash Thompson. Spider-Man’s first addition to his rogue’s gallery in the form of the Chameleon worked well as it furthered the idea of the public distrusting Spider-Man by having the villain commit a crime dressed as the wall-crawler. Though Spider-Man is victorious in both stories, Peter is anything but happy at their conclusions and the numerous hints that perhaps he should turn to a life of crime is an intriguing concept and a realistic portrayal of a confused young man, a man who is in a strong need of a mentor figure with his Uncle’s passing. This not only makes our hero more compelling but also more relatable as the reader is firmly entrenched in the corner of this underdog, a status and a feeling that still resonates to this very day.
Have any of your memories you’d like to share in relation to this issue? Any other comments? Comment Below!