|Images copyright MARVEL COMICS|
Friday, 16 November 2012
SPIDER-MAN AT 50-PLUS...
Believe it or not, back in August, SPIDER-MAN was officially 50 years old. I say 'officially' because, although the comic in which he made his first appearance (AMAZING FANTASY #15) was dated August, it actually came out on or around the very merry month of May, 1962. To commemorate this landmark event, PANINI BOOKS have released a '50th Anniversary Edition Vintage Annual', containing Spidey's debut from AF #15, THE AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #s 1 & 6, and the first U.S. ANNUAL from 1964, including various pin-ups and features.
All in all, it's a nice little package, but a tad expensive at £12.99. Panini have added 'age' effects to the cover and interior pages which are somewhat overdone in places, but, in the instances where their application is more subtle, it actually delivers a not-unpleasing result.
One of the main problems, however, especially in the case of the origin tale, is that Panini have utilised inferior proofs which have been 'revised' in places. Originally, these proofs were used for the early '80s MARVEL TALES reprint, and contained altered lettering and artwork. For example, 'Spiderman' was changed to 'Spider-Man', 'costume hero' to 'costumed hero', etc., and some lettering was re-created in a couple of instances. Also, on the last page, the final caption was omitted as it referred to the next issue of Amazing Fantasy and the dots on Spidey's eye-pieces were deleted as they were considered too 'cartoonish'.
The same proofs were again used for the first printing of the Spidey MASTERWORKS volume in the late '80s, but were revised at a later date in an attempt to return them to their original 'unaltered' state - with rather lacklustre results it has to be said, as a couple of instances were overlooked. Fortunately, however, with the release of the latest softcover Masterworks and OMNIBUS books, superior proofs were used, and a far more faithful presentation of this classic issue became available to collectors. It's just a shame that Panini apparently didn't have access to these superior proofs for their own publication, as they used the ones which had been clumsily 'restored' to their pre-altered state.
Anyway, here's a few images from this (relatively) recently released 126 page, hardback tome.
Posted by Kid at Friday, November 16, 2012