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Essential Amazing Spider-Man, Vol. 6 (Marvel Essentials) Paperback – December 28, 2011

4.2 out of 5 stars 17 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 576 pages
  • Publisher: Marvel; New edition edition (December 28, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0785113657
  • ISBN-13: 978-0785113652
  • Product Dimensions: 6.8 x 1.5 x 10 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #364,888 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By K. W. Schreiter on May 28, 2008
Format: Paperback
This sixth "Essential" volume collects black-and-white reprints of "Amazing Spider-Man" issues #114-137 that Marvel Comics originally published between November 1970 and October 1972. Gerry Conway is the credited writer for all stories and Roy Thomas is the editor-in-chief. John Romita, Sr. provides the penciling for #114-119 and #132 and Gil Kane resumes his run for #120-124. Ross Andru assumed penciling duties for #125, beginning a run that would last until 1978.
Issues #114-115 conclude the three-part Hammerhead story that started in the "Essential ASM #5" collection. Stan Lee gets a co-writer credit for the three-issue (#116-118) reworking of Marvel's short-lived 1968 "Spectacular Spider-Man" oversized magazine. These issues feature a popular yet suspicious mayoral candidate Richard Raleigh promising "change" while the sinister Smasher wreaks havoc on New York.
Spidey tackles The Hulk in a mediocre two-parter before the highlight of this run of issues comes in #121-122: "The Death of Gwen Stacy and Norman Osborn". Another memorable run is #135-137 "The Green Goblin Lives Again" where Harry assumes his father's villainous mantle. Each of these two plotlines was adapted for key elements of the recent Spider-Man films.
#129 features the first appearance of The Punisher and #130-131 features the threat of Aunt May marrying Doctor Octopus. Other appearances include: Luke Cage (#123), Man-Wolf (#124-125), The Kangaroo (#126), The Vulture (#127-128), Molten Man (#132-133) and the Tarantula (#134). Many of these issues were also reprinted as #93-114 of the late 1970s "Marvel Tales" series (and reprinted again in MT #192-193).
I prefer the Amazing Spider-Man DVD-ROM for its complete collection of the entire ASM run in full color PDFs. However, the Marvel Essentials series offers convenient, inexpensive access to these 40-year old Spider-Man comics without needing a computer.
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Format: Paperback
The sixth volume in the Essential Spider-Man series does not disappoint. Though Stan Lee steps down as script writer and artists change, the integrity of the original series is maintained admirably. True, story and art quality tend to be somewhat uneven from time to time, but the overall tone and spirit of the comic still shines through--Spider-Man as the good and decent but always beleagered super hero, eternally faced with agonizing decisions, choices, losses. Characterization in the first Spider-Man series was always unusually good for a comic book, and it is something of a minor miracle that reasonably consistent high quality was maintained through four decades, although the series tended to grow darker and edgier over time. In any case this volume, like the five that preceded it, was a joy to read for a long-time fan like me, who grew up in the sixties and seventies. It's a thousand pities that the second series, which revamped the whole Spider-Man saga, lacks the heart, wit and appeal of the original. With insipid art, sophomoric humor, and cynical tone, the second series is unlikely ever to make it into an "essential" format, nor is the embarrassingly adolescent character now portrayed as Spider-Man likely to win over all the fans the original did. Sarcasm passes for humor, sexy innuendo for tenderness, and a scrawny, awkward-looking little gremlin takes the place of the once-grown man in hero's costume. Luckily the original still lives on in the "essential" volumes, and, with all the comic stores and web sites selling back issues, the original Spider-Man will be with us for a long, long time.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
These issues cover Nov. 1972 to Oct. 1974, the first Giant-Size Superheroes, and the first two Giant-Size Spider-Man issues. Contrary to what it says above, the only writers in this edition are Gerry Conway and Len Wein (GSSM 1&2). John Romita, Ross Andru, and Gil Kane share credits for the art work. Stan Lee has a hand in the stories about the Smasher and the Disruptor.

This volume will be unforgettable because Gwen Stacy dies ("The Night Gwen Stacy Died"), the Green Goblin, a.k.a. Norman Osborne dies ("The Green Goblin's Last Stand"), Doc Oc almost marries Aunt May, and he gets killed along with Hammerhead in the same issue ("My Uncle...My Enemy") Jonah Jameson's son becomes a werewolf ("The Mark of the Man-Wolf" and "The Man-Wolf Strikes Again"), a new vulture tries to kill off MJ (in "The Dark Wings of Death" and "The Shadow of the Vulture"), Liz Allen returns and the Molten Man returns to meet his death ("The Master Plan of the Molten Man" and "The Molten Man Breaks Out"), and finally Harry Osborne picks up where his father left off, becoming the Green Goblin ("The Green Goblin Lives Again" and "The Green Goblin Strikes"). Thus Conway offers SM readers a superhero epic which combines action and melodrama quite adroitly even though some plot elements may be far-fetched, or left unexplained. Gwen Stacy's death is the most pivotal event here because Peter Parker's sentimental life revolved around her, and it is a source for internal conflict because Spidey has to deal with feelings of revenge as well as with depression.
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