It’s been nearly 60 years since Marvel’s Spider-Man made his first appearance back in 1962’s Amazing Fantasy #15. And in honor of that anniversary, prestige book publisher TASCHEN is putting out a new hardcover collection that reprints all the noteworthy comics and behind-the-scenes details from the character’s first two years.
Inside Spider-Man. Vol. 1. 1962–1964, you’ll find reprints of the first 21 Spider-Man comics—including Amazing Fantasy #15, Amazing Spider-Man #1-19, and Amazing Spider-Man Annual #1. These reprints are taken from high-quality photographs of the issues themselves, making them as authentic to the original newsstand versions as possible. So authentic, in fact, that many of the original letters pages and ads featured in the comics made their way into this collection (though that offer for Mike Marvel’s muscle-building Dynaflex workout method probably isn’t valid anymore.)
The book itself has larger dimensions than a typical comic and is closer to the size of the original artwork by Spider-Man co-creator Steve Ditko (comic art gets shrunk down for printing). This makes it easier to fawn over even the most minute details in Ditko's work, from the fire escapes jutting out from his Manhattan apartment buildings to the individual feathers on the Vulture's wings.
Along with the comics, you’ll also get a history of the character’s creation, punctuated by a historical essay by longtime Marvel editor Ralph Macchio and an intro by David Mandel, a prolific comic collector who also worked on shows like Veep, Seinfeld, and Curb Your Enthusiasm. It's here that you'll get insight into how creators Stan Lee and Steve Ditko crafted the character and why he broke the mold of what a superhero could be.
Spider-Man. Vol. 1. 1962–1964 will be available on Thursday, December 30, and you can order it now on the TASCHEN website for $200. You can also expect similar books centered around The Avengers, Fantastic Four, and Captain America in 2022 and 2023.