The Amazing Spider-Man

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The Amazing Spider-Man is an American comic book series published by Marvel Comics, and additionally a spin-off television program and a daily newspaper comic strip, all featuring the adventures of the superhero Spider-Man.

Spider-Man first appeared in the comic book Amazing Fantasy #15 (Aug. 1962). The series was cancelled with that issue, but response to the character was so positive that a solo title, The Amazing Spider-Man, was launched with a March 1963 cover-date.

The character was created by writer-editor Stan Lee and artist and co-plotter Steve Ditko, and the pair produced 38 issues from 1963 to 1966. Since then, many writers and artists have taken over the monthly comic through the years, chronicling the adventures of Marvel's most identifiable hero.

The Amazing Spider-Man is the character's flagship series. Most of the major characters and villains of the Spider-Man saga have been introduced here, and it is where key events occur. The title was published continuously until 1998 when Marvel Comics relaunched it with a new issue #1 (Jan. 1999), but on Spider-Man's 40th anniversary, this new title reverted to using the numbering of the original series, beginning again with issue #500 (Dec. 2003), and is currently published three times a month as part of Marvel's "Brand New Day" event.

Newspaper comic strip

The daily newspaper comic strip began on January 3, 1977. It was first written by Spider-Man co-creator Stan Lee and illustrated by John Romita. The strip was surprisingly successful in an era with few serialized adventure strips. The strip slowly grew in circulation and as of 2007 is still being published. Lee's brother Larry Lieber illustrated and later wrote the strip for much of its run. In 1992, Paul Ryan took over the penciling (with Joe Sinnott inking) on the Sunday version of the strip, and drew that feature for just over three years. While the strip and the comic book feature the same characters, they do not share the same continuity, and the strip has had a decreased emphasis on supervillain enemies. A rare exception was the 1987 wedding of Peter Parker and Mary Jane Watson which occurred in both the comic book and the comic strip. Guest stars in the newspaper strip include Wolverine, Daredevil and Dr. Strange. Villains include Dr. Doom, Kraven the Hunter, and The Rhino. Stories from the strip have been reprinted in paperback and in Comics Revue magazine.

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