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Essential Peter Parker: The Spectacular Spider-Man, Vol. 1 (Marvel Essentials) Paperback – May 2, 2007

4.3 out of 5 stars 9 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Age Range: 9 and up
  • Grade Level: 4 and up
  • Paperback: 568 pages
  • Publisher: Marvel; 2nd edition (May 2, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0785116826
  • ISBN-13: 978-0785116820
  • Product Dimensions: 1 x 1 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #871,672 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
I enjoyed these Spider-Man tales when they were new, and I'm happy to see them available again. Peter Parker, the Spectacular Spider-Man (PPtSSM) was fresh and new, and it invigorated Spider Man's character, bringing a younger group of readers to Spider Man's other titles.

Someone may be interested in this book to follow the development of the storyline of Peter Parker, the Spectacular Spider-Man (PPtSSM), or interested simply because it's Spider-Man. Particularly hot at the time were the Carrion issues.

A correction on the editorial description: The first issue of PPtSSM was dated December 1976 and this is when the title began, not 1968.

They have confused this title with two issues printed in 1968 called "The Spectacular Spider Man (tSSM)." Those two issues are rare collectibles and are not reprinted in the "Essential Peter Parker," but the second issue of tSSM is classic Spider-Man and Green Goblin - as well as Norman Osborn and Peter Parker at Thanksgiving dinner.
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Format: Paperback
From out of Marvel's celebrated vault of past titles comes the Essential Peter Parker, the Spectacular Spider-Man Volume 1. As a fan of the Essential line, I had been looking forward to some more vintage web-slinging action, although future installments of the original Amazing Spider-Man (if numbers 5 and 6 are any indication) will probably only come out the same weeks as future movies. So imagine my surprise when I learned that January 2005 would see the release of the earliest issues of 1976's popular follow-up series (the first 31 in fact).

In his first spectacular outings, ol' web-head meets up with plenty of old foes (the pointy-toed Tarantula, the cadaverous Vulture, Kraven, Morbius, Scorpion, and even the long-not-really-awaited return of the Enforcers) as well as new ones like the photogenic Lightmaster, the psychedelic Hypno-Hustler (who has the 70's written all over him), and the trigger-happy Hitman (whose second and probably last appearance I had already seen in Essential Punisher). Some memorable storylines include Spidey teaming up with a neophyte hero from Arkansas in a pig costume (it's better than it sounds), assisting two former X-Men through the final chapter in the ill-fated history of the Champions supergroup (and why can't they have an Essential), a throwdown with the Maggia with the mysterious Moon Knight at his side, and a guest appearance by Daredevil who assists Spidey after the Masked Marauder blinds him (and how could horn-head POSSIBLY understand what he's going through?).
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Format: Paperback
This book collects the first 31 issues of Peter Parker, the Spectacular Spider-Man, which debuted in 1976 as companion to the character's main series. It's hard to imagine now, but because Spider-Man was also in Marvel Team-Up there was some concern at the time about overexposure! So Peter Parker was pitched as a series focusing more on his college days and friends, and in that sense it worked wonderfully. The stories have a clean freshness to them and almost all of them have held up well over the years. The series did a great job of mixing long-established villains such as the Beetle, Vulture, Morbius, with more recent ones like the Tarantula and Hitman, and also served to introduce the White Tiger to Marvel's comic-book universe after his introduction in its black-and-white magazines. There's a few clunkers that reflect the late 1970s, like a CB radio superhero and a disco super-villain, but Bill Mantlo, who wrote most of the stories in this collection, did a great run of stories, ending this volume with the multi-part introduction of Carrion. I think this is a great book for any Spider-Man fan. For more in-depth book reviews I've done, search for goldenrulecomics on the Squidoo website.
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Format: Paperback
There were already two Spider-man titles when Peter Parker, the Spectacular Spider-man premiered in 1976. So what could this new series add? Quite a bit actually. This book collects the first 31 issues of the book.

Seven of the first eight issues were written by comics legend Archie Goodwin and Spider-man legend Gene Conway who contributed tales of classic Spidey villains like Kraven and the Vulture appearing for one-off adventures and then a sensational three parter involving Morbius the Vampire.

At that point, the book fell to Bill Manlo, who wrote all but two of the remaining twenty-three issues of the book. In many ways, the tales Manlo crafted were better than what was going on in the main series. It featured some epic story arcs such as Spidey teaming up with an Arkansas based superhero in a pig costume named Razorback to battle a new age cult, and Spidey teaming up with Moon Knight to battle the Maggia. The hispanic hero, The White Tiger made several appearances and became a regular guest star. Of course, there's some 1970s goofiness as Spidey battles a disco-based villain and the Carrion arc is not without its flaws, but had some great action and features Spidey losing his sight and declaring himself the worlds only blind superhero when standing a few feet from Daredevil. This book also includes Frank Miller's first art on Daredevil, a character he'd redefined a few years later.

The stories didn't always line up with what was going on in Amazing Spider-man but Manlo made an effort when he could. However, his blindness in two issues of Peter Parker, the Spectacular Spider-man made no impact on Spidey in his main book.

Still, these are great classic Spider-man tales and in many ways, far more similar to the character's glory days under Lee and Conway than what was going on in Amazing Spider-man at the time.
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