The Ominous Octopus

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Son Of A Spider

Marvel Comics' Spider-Man made his first appearance in AMAZING FANTASY #15 in 1963. The character's history is said to go back further than that.

Part of the story involves the Ben Cooper "Spider Man" costume of 1953.

It even says "Spider Man", right across the top of the mask.

After Marvel's Spider-Man became established, Ben Cooper switched to selling a costume based on that character. So it's clear that there were dealings of some sort between the two companies.

The Marvel Comics version and the Ben Cooper version share a number of similarities.


But a Spider Man with a striped hood goes even further back.

Stan Lee claimed that Spider-Man was inspired by a pulp hero called "The Spider". Here is The Spider as he was ordinarily depicted on the magazine covers, in a costume which makes him look a great deal like his fellow pulp hero The Shadow.

But we also see a few covers that show him with a more horrible disguise - which evidently was even the way his "Spider" getup was described in these stories.

But nowhere in the pulp magazines do we see The Spider wearing a costume with lines suggesting a web. However, that was something they did in the serials THE SPIDER'S WEB ( 1938 ) and THE SPIDER RETURNS ( 1941 ).



The familiar "Spider-Man" costume of today may well have been at least partly inspired by the costume worn by the serial version of The Spider.
Finally, another movie which can be seen as related to the Spider-Man of the comics was HORRORS OF SPIDER ISLAND, which was made in 1960, although it wasn't seen in this country until 1965. I  doubt if the makers of the Marvel comic books had seen it when they were working on their version, but there are still similarities between the two stories, both of which involve a man who gains strange powers after having been bitten by a spider.

Although the "Spider Man" in this story was really just a monster.

The Spider:



  1. That picture of the kid wearing the 1954 Spider-Man mask is a copyrighted image from Tellshiar. Where did you take the image from?

  2. You have been reported to Google for copyright violation. Next time, ask permission to post an image from a website.

  3. I've been having a little trouble following this, there was also a message on an unrelated blog entry which said "You did not remove the 1958 picture of the kid wearing the 1954 Ben Cooper mask that I own the copyright to. You have been reported to Google for copyright violation."
    The original message didn't say anything about removing a picture, it just asked where a picture came from.
    I'm not sure where the pictures came from, it's been a while since I got them. You say you own the copyright on a picture, but give no details. Are you a photographer that took photographs of something?

    1. Hello, yes I own the copyrights for this picture (and negative). I have made YouTube videos about it and place my watermark on any site that wants to use it. The website you copied this image from was asked to remove it and he replaced it with a copyrighted example. Please remove it.


  4. You say someone else replaced the picture with a copyrighted example. How about if I do that, too?

    1. That is fine. You can take the image from here.


      When you do that I will have the pending Google case ended.