- Spider-Man is a Marvel Comics character. For other uses see Spider-Man (disambiguation).
Template:Superherobox Spider-Man is a fictional character, the alter ego of Peter Benjamin Parker and a Marvel Comics superhero created by writer Stan Lee and artist Steve Ditko. He first appeared in Amazing Fantasy Vol. 1 #15 (August, 1962). He has since become one of the world's most popular superheroes.
The character expanded the dramatic potential of the fantasy and superhero subgenres by having a strong focus on a younger, more troubled character and his personal struggles. Since his creation, his popularity has led to many of the superheroes who predated him being reworked with more complex personas.
Spider-Man is tremendously popular and is, along with Superman and Batman, one of the most recognizable of all superheroes. Through the years, he has appeared in many media, including several animated series, a daily and Sunday comic strip and, recently, two very successful films, and a third one in production.
Meanwhile, Marvel has published multiple ongoing comic book series featuring the character, the flagship title being The Amazing Spider-Man. The character has grown from a shy high-school student to a troubled college undergrad to a married man and schoolteacher, but the core of the character has remained the same.
- 1 Creation of character
- 2 Character history
- 3 Powers and abilities
- 4 Appearance
- 5 Enemies
- 6 Other Spider-Men
- 7 Appearances in other media
- 8 Bibliography
- 9 See also
- 10 Footnotes
- 11 References
- 12 External links
Creation of character
Various accounts of the character's creation have been given.
Speaking in the 1980s, Stan Lee said the idea for the series sprang out of the apparent increased teenage interest in the new Marvel characters. He wanted to create a character that could cater to them specifically. One influence Lee has described, for the character's name at least, is the non-superpowered pulp magazine crimefighter The Spider. In the Spider-Man movie DVD extras, Stan Lee's Mutants, Monsters and Marvels and elsewhere, Lee said he was inspired by seeing a fly climb up a wall. (When discussing this in documentaries, he often comments "I've told this story so many times, it may actually be true.") Originally, Lee assigned Jack Kirby to illustrate the story, but after seeing sample pages, decided Kirby's style was "too 'larger than life'" for what he wanted. Lee turned to artist Steve Ditko, who found the concept particularly appealing and developed a visual motif Lee found satisfactory.
Kirby stated in a 1982 interview in Will Eisner's Spirit Magazine that Lee had minimal involvement in the creation of the character. "Spider-Man was discussed between Joe [Simon] and myself. It was the last thing Joe and I had discussed. We had a strip called the, or a script, called 'The Silver Spider'. The Silver Spider was going into a magazine called Black Magic. Black Magic folded with Crestwood [Simon & Kirby's 1950s comics company] and we were left with the script. I believe I said this could become a thing called Spider-Man, see, a superhero character. I had a lot of faith in the superhero character that they could be brought back ... and I said Spider-Man would be a fine character to start with. But Joe had already moved on. So the idea was already there when I talked to Stan." Template:Fn
Simon, in his 1990 autobiography, disputes this account. "[T]here were a few holes in Jack's never-dependable memory. For instance, there was no Black Magic involved at all. ... Jack brought in the SPIDERMAN logo that I had loaned to him before we changed the name to The Silver Spider. Kirby laid out the story to Lee about the kid who finds a ring in a spiderweb, gets his powers from the ring, and goes forth to fight crime armed with The Silver Spider's old web-spinning pistol. Stan Lee said, 'Perfect, just what I want.' [After obtaining permission from publisher Martin Goodman,] Lee told Kirby to pencil-up an origin story. Kirby...using parts of an old rejected superhero named Night Fighter...revamped the old Silver Spider script, including revisions suggested by Lee. But when Kirby showed Lee the sample pages, it was Lee's turn to gripe, He had been expecting a skinny young kid who is transformed into a skinny young kid with spider powers. Kirby had had him turn into...Captain America with cobwebs. ... He turned Spiderman over to Steve Ditko, who ... ignored Kirby's pages, tossed the character's magic ring, web-pistol and goggles ... and completely redesigned Spiderman's costume and equipment. In this life, he became high-school student Peter Parker, who gets his spider powers after being bitten by a radioactive spider. ... Lastly, the Spiderman logo was redone and a dashing hyphen added." Template:Fn
Elsewhere, Simon gave additional details. "In the late 1950s, Archie Comics asked me to create a new line of superheroes. I gave the Silver Spider sketches to Jack Kirby and I changed the name again, this time to The Fly. Jack held onto the sketches and when Stan Lee asked Jack for new ideas, Jack brought the original Spiderman pages to Marvel Comics. [Later,] Stan handed the pages over to Steve Ditko. Ditko, on first seeing those pages, commented, 'This is Joe Simon's Fly.' Steve Ditko worked up his own version of the character's costume. [
Ditko's recollections in Comic Book Artist #3 (Winter 1999) were similar. Much earlier, in a rare comtemporaenous account, Ditko specified his and Lee's contributions, in a mail interview with Gary Martin published in Comic Fan #2 (Summer 1965), and reprinted at the defunct but cached site www.ditko.comics.org/] Excerpt:
GARY - Who originated Spiderman?
STEVE - Stan Lee thought the name up. I did costume, web gimmick on wrist & spider signal.
When publisher Goodman was eventually presented with the concept, he was resistant to the unorthodox ideas of a teenage hero with a troubled personal life, but allowed the character to be used as a cover story for a dying anthology title, Amazing Fantasy, since content mattered little for a title slated to be cancelled. The story was published in issue #15, and months later, sales figures indicated that the cover story was unexpectedly popular. Goodman called for a regular series for the character.
Will Murray in Comic Book Marketplace #44, suggested that Lee originally might have been considering Spider-Man's debut for the anthology Tales of Suspense rather than Amazing Fantasy. Murray based this on the launch pattern of several Marvel characters at the time, including Thor (in Journey into Mystery), Ant-Man (in Tales to Astonish) and a solo Human Torch feature (in Strange Tales), as well as on the production numbers for individual stories. He speculated that Goodman's skepticism about the feature, and a possible attempt to revitalize Amazing Fantasy, led to Spider-Man appearing there. Although another issue of Amazing Fantasy was in production, he says, the title was cancelled to clear a space in the limited distribution schedule for another series.
Peter Benjamin Parker was born to Richard Parker and his wife Mary Fitzpatrick-Parker, both of whom were agents of the CIA and later of S.H.I.E.L.D. (a fictional secret agency). Their last assignment was the infiltration of the criminal organization of Albert Malik, the third Red Skull. Malik found out about their plans and arranged a plane-crash that resulted in their deaths.
The infant Peter Parker was left in the care of his Uncle Ben and Aunt May (Richard's older brother Benjamin Parker and his wife May Reilly Parker), who lived in the Forest Hills neighborhood of Queens, New York. Though Peter was always loved by the aging couple, he was unpopular among those of his own age. Over time he grew to be a lonely, timid teenager. The exceptionally bright Peter showed more interest in his studies, especially science, than in any kind of social life. He was often the target of jokes by more popular fellow students like Flash Thompson, the high school's star athlete. In addition, Aunt May made him wear non-prescription glasses to protect his eyes, since she was worried that his constant reading would have a negative effect on his eyesight. When these glasses were broken in a schoolyard fight with Flash Thompson, he didn't bother to get new ones, since they were never really needed in the first place and only made him look awkward. (Note: In virtually all retellings of his origin, Peter's eyesight really was poor and somehow got fixed by the spider bite, but this is not the case in the original comic book series.)
When he was 15 years old, Parker attended a science exhibit where he was bitten by a spider which had been irradiated. The spider bite gave Parker an array of spider-like powers. In addition to his physical powers, Spider-Man used mechanical web shooters of his own design to spin webs in a variety of ways. In current Spider-Man continuity, he produces his webs from organic spinnerets in his wrists and no longer requires the mechanical web shooters.
Upon discovering his powers, Parker designed a costume and adopted the identity of Spider-Man in order to win money as an entertainer. Debuting as a wrestler, Spider-Man quickly hired an agent and began making lucrative television appearances. One night, after a show, Spider-Man refused to help stop a thief running past him in the hallway, insisting that he was only going to "look out for number one." But his beloved Uncle Ben was later killed by the thug that Peter had allowed to escape. Realizing that stopping the thief when he had the chance would have prevented his uncle's murder, Spider-Man devoted himself to fighting injustice, driven by the realization that "with great power there must also come great responsibility."
Spider-Man consistently tries to do the right thing, but is viewed with suspicion by many authority figures. He is often considered little more than a lawbreaker himself, largely thanks to a smear campaign by J. Jonah Jameson, publisher of the daily newspaper the Daily Bugle. Ironically, Parker worked, until recently, as a freelance photographer for Jameson, selling photographs of himself as Spider-Man.
Despite having amazing spider-like abilities, Spider-Man cannot solve his emotional and personal problems with his super powers. Frequently, his powers complicate his relationships, his responsibilities as a student (in the earlier stories) and his varied careers as a photographer for The Daily Bugle and as a teacher at his old high school. His relationships with his Aunt, his co-workers, his best friends, and most importantly, his love interests, have always been hampered by his secret life as a masked super-hero. Although these problems have pushed him to the edge numerous times, he has always continued on as Spider-Man because of his strong belief that “with great power comes great responsibility”, the immortal words which his Uncle Ben instilled in him when he was a youth. This moral continues to serve as the major theme of Spider-Man’s story.
Spider-Man has amassed a slew of major enemies over the years, most taking a particular interest in harming the hero, and some even targeting Peter Parker himself. His amazing abilities, combined with his natural intelligence and inclination towards science, have allowed him to emerge victorious against these odds on a great number of occasions. Oddly enough, his most notable ability, that of generating webs, was not originally a superpower. The instincts he learned from the spider that bit him combined with his bent for chemistry, enabled him to concoct a webslinging device that he wore on his wrist. The first exception to this was the movie version of the story, in which his famous webbing emanates naturally from his wrists. Shortly after the second film, the Spider-Man of the comics was captured by a supervillain named Queen and during this incident gained some "upgrades" to his powers, including not only new, organic webbing, but a spider-sense made more sensitive in ways yet to be disclosed.
As originally conceived by Stan Lee and Steve Ditko, Peter Parker was something of an Everyman character. However, as with many characters published for many years and handled by multiple creators, Spider-Man's history is convoluted. He continued working as a freelance photographer for the Daily Bugle and living with his elderly and somewhat fragile Aunt May until he graduated from high school. He then enrolled in the fictional Empire State University where he befriended Harry Osborn — who was in fact the son of his archenemy the Green Goblin — and Gwen Stacy, with whom he would have a lengthy romance before the Goblin killed her.
After a lengthy on-again off-again relationship with cat burglar and sometime crimefighter Black Cat, Parker eventually wed his longtime girlfriend, Mary Jane Watson, a fashion model and actress. Later, the stresses of Parker's dual identity, combined with Mary Jane's tempestuous career, led to a separation, though the couple later reconciled.
Currently, Parker works as a science teacher for his old high school. In 2004, an altercation with a former classmate turned superhuman, Charlie Weiderman, led to the arson of both Peter's apartment and Aunt May's house. Thanks to Spider-Man's membership in the latest incarnation of the Marvel Universe superhero team the Avengers, Peter, Mary Jane and Aunt May were able to move into Tony Stark's Stark Tower.
Spider-Man and the Comics Code
In 1971, Spider-Man was the first comic to challenge the rigid Comics Code. Previously, it was totally forbidden to show any use of drugs, even in a totally negative context. However, Amazing Spider-Man #96-98 featured a story arc that showed the negative effects of drug abuse (a storyline conceived at the request of government drug-prevention authorities). Most notably, Harry Osborn started taking pills and became so ill that - when Spider-Man fought Norman Osborn, a.k.a. the Green Goblin - Peter vanquished Norman by simply showing him his sick son. The three comics were sold without the Comics Code approval, but met with such critical acclaim that the industry's self-censorship was undercut.
Powers and abilities
As the lore goes, Peter Parker became Spider-Man when he was bitten by an irradiated spider, which caused a variety of changes in his body that give him his superpowers.
Spider-Man gained the ability to adhere to any smooth surface using any part of his body. With this, he is able to support something many times his own weight while clinging to a hard vertical surface such as the side of a building. It follows that he can grip an object with any part of his body with this talent. While the exact nature of this has never been pinned down in comics (and various attempts to explain it have contradicted one another), in the live-action movies Peter is shown to have barbed hairs or bristles similar to those of real spiders which extend or retract through his skin. At one point in the comic series, it was suggested that his ability to adhere to surfaces was due to the fact that he could create a field of static electricity around his body. This posited explanation became crucial in his fight against the villain Electro, who used his powers of electricity to nullify Spider-man's "sticking power."
He is super-strong, allowing him to lift weights of 15 tons or greater, and the muscles in his legs have developed to the point where he can jump the distance of several city blocks in a single bound, or multiple stories straight up. Another aspect of his physical prowess is his superhuman agility and amplified reflexes. This allows him to outmaneuver foes and to dodge automatic gunfire. Training with the New Avengers, Spider-Man has further honed his speed and can now snatch a bullet in mid flight.
His bodily tissues are substantially more durable and resistant to impact or trauma than an ordinary human, making it more difficult to injure him (although he is not bulletproof). His recovery time from injury is somewhat faster than that of an ordinary human, although not nearly as much as those with true healing factors. He can also recover from poisons, but he is not immune to natural diseases. His vision also lost its myopia as a result of the spider bite.
Apart from his physical abilities, Peter has prodigious aptitude in the physical sciences. In the comics, he has a facility for chemistry and physics, and later pursues a graduate degree in biochemistry from Empire State University. In the recent films, he maintains his superb intellect with a mastery of physics and a degree from Columbia University.
Spider-Man's most subtle power is his spider-sense. A form of clairvoyance or sixth sense, it unconsciously activates and alerts him to any threat to himself, manifesting as a tingling at the back of his skull. While it cannot tell him of the exact nature of the threat, Spider-Man can judge the severity of it by the intensity of the tingling.
The spider-sense not only alerts Spider-Man to threats to his physical safety, but it also warns him to threats to his privacy such as being observed while changing identities. Spider-Man also uses the spider-sense as a means to time his evasive maneuvers to the point where he can avoid multiple gunshots or machine gun fire. When combined with his superhuman reflexes and agility, this makes him an extremely difficult target to shoot in combat and formidable in close quarters.
Although his spider-sense has saved his life innumerable times, Spider-Man has learned the hard way that it can be beaten. For instance, the Green Goblin once secretly attacked him with a gas that temporarily suppressed this perceptive ability, allowing the supervillain to shadow him and learn his secret identity. Additionally, the alien symbiote Venom and its offspring Carnage are not recognized by the spider-sense. This is believed to have been caused by the Venom symbiotes' bonding with Peter Parker. The spider-sense recognizes both as a part of Parker's physical body. For instance if Peter were to slap or punch himself his spider-sense would not perceive the act as a threat and would not activate. Ben Reilly did not suffer from this problem as he never bonded with the symbiote. The ability to avoid Parker's spider-sense gives some supervillains an edge that Spider-Man often has trouble countering.
In comics, the activation of the spider-sense is often shown by wavy lines emanating from Peter's head, with his mask occasionally being half-drawn as an additional cue.
Although the details and proportions have changed somewhat over the years, with a few notable exceptions, Spider-Man's costume has remained fairly consistent. The standard costume is a form-fitting fabric covering his entire body. From the waist down, it is dark blue (or sometimes even black, depending on the colorist), except for mid-calf boots with a black web pattern on a red background. From the waist up, the fabric is the red-and-black web pattern, except for his back, sides, and insides of his upper arms, which are dark blue. There is a large red spider outline on his back, and a smaller black spider emblem on his chest. The mask has large white eyes rimmed with black, that allow him to see but hide his eyes. He is sometimes depicted with "under-arm webbing" connecting his arms to his torso.
Several alterations occurred when Ben Reilly replaced Peter Parker in the role. He placed more emphasis on the spider on the chest, making it large enough to cover the entire torso. Instead of a large red spider on his back, the web pattern and spider emblem were repeated there. The gloves had web-shooters on the outside, and the web design on the boots and gloves was partially replaced with dark blue.
The most significant alteration to Spider-Man's costume came about in the mid-1980s, after his return from the Secret Wars. He appeared in an almost all-black costume, with a large white spider emblem on the chest and back, and with built-in webshooters on the back of his hands. The costume turned out to be a living symbiotic creature, capable of generating its own webbing and improving most of Spider-Man's abilities. Spider-Man rejected the symbiote after finding out it was alive. He did however wear a non-living version of the black costume until the new occupant of the living costume, Venom, frightened Mary Jane so badly that she could no longer stand to see Peter in the non-living black costume.
Although he is usually of limited financial means, Spider-Man has developed personal equipment that plays an important role in his superhero career. Every so often he will concoct a special armor or web fluid for a specific threat. For example he donned a padded suit to battle electro.
Spider-Man's web-shooters are one of the character's most distinguishing traits. They are wrist mounted devices that fire a fibrous adhesive very similar to material spiders use to construct webs. The trigger rests high in the palm and requires precise pressure from the middle and ring fingers to activate, so Peter can't accidentally fire the shooter if he makes a fist or his hand hits the trigger. The placement of the trigger and the finger pressure needed to activate it yield Spider-Man's distinctive hand gesture, with the two outer fingers extended, and the two inner fingers on the palm.
The default setting has the adhesive threaded through a special mesh to take on a spider web like design. The substance dries almost immediately into a strong material that can support very heavy loads: into the one-ton range. Typical uses of his webs include creating long swing lines which he uses to travel through the chasms between the Manhattan high-rises. He can change the setting to a wide spray to ensnare criminals, and to form protective shields or nets. He can also form crude objects with a heavy application. In addition, when Spider-Man desires it, he can fire the web fluid as a straight liquid when he needs to use the substance's maximum adhesive strength. However, the default meshed spray generally allows for sufficient strength while being more versatile in its use and easier to remove when desired. The substance is formulated to dissolve after one hour which is generally sufficient time for Spider-Man's needs while ensuring the webs he makes do not cause undue litter. In addition, Parker can modify the fluid formulation to suit particular specialized needs when called for (this explains why the webbing sometimes conducts electricity, but can also be used as an insulator). The web-shooters can also be used to expel other liquids, using interchangeable cartridges, but are seldom used to do this.
In some versions of the character (such as the popular Spider-Man movie series), the character generates webs organically from his own altered spider-like biology, instead of mechanical web shooters.
Recently, Spider-Man and Captain America crossed paths with a villain called the Queen. During this encounter, the Queen transformed Spider-Man into a human-sized spider. The end of the situation saw the Queen presumably dead and Spider-Man reverting back to human form. The transformation, however, seemed to give Spider-Man organic web glands in his wrists. For now (until Marvel decides to change this), Spider-Man is able to produce webbing without the aid of his web-shooters.
Spider-Man has also developed small electronic "spider-tracers" which allow him to track objects or individuals. The outer casing is shaped like a spider and is designed to cling to a target without attracting attention. While he originally threw his tracers at a target in the hopes that at least one hits, he later developed a wrist launcher which ejects tracers above the wrist while the web is fired from below to allow for more precise and reliable applications of the tracers.
Spider-Man originally used a small receiver device to follow the tracers. However, he eventually learned that he could tune the tracer signal frequency to his own spider-sense for more convenient use, but the receiver is still used as a back-up and long-range measure.
Spider-Man keeps his regular field equipment in a specially designed utility belt that contains his web fluid cartridges and his tracers.
It also carries his camera, which has an extended rear metal plate that allows him to use his web to position it without interfering with its functions. The camera also has an automatic shutter mechanism linked to an internal motion detector so it will take a picture whenever Spider-Man moves in front of the camera lens.
Finally, the belt contains a strong light called a Spider Signal that creates an image of his mask when activated. He typically uses it not only for a light source, but as a way of unnerving opponents and to call attention.
In addition, the Human Torch once helped Spider-Man build a car called the Spider-Mobile which had a paint job and modifications that follow his spider motif. Unfortunately, Spider-Man had never learned to drive a car and he crashed the car into the Hudson River soon after receiving it.
- See also: Spider-Man villains
In the comics, others have used the Spider-Man identity. These include:
- Ben Reilly, a clone of Parker, who also fought crime as the Scarlet Spider.
- Kraven the Hunter donned Spider-Man's costume for a short time in Kraven's Last Hunt.
- Mattie Franklin, the niece of J. Jonah Jameson, who assumed the role with a padded costume when Parker temporarily quit. She later became Spider-Woman for a time.
- May "Mayday" Parker a.k.a. Spider-Girl, the daughter of Peter Parker, set in an alternate reality.
- Miguel O'Hara, the Spider-Man of Marvel 2099.
- Yu Komori (小森ユウ Komori Yū) in Spider-Man: The Manga.
- Peter Parquagh in the 1602 miniseries.
- Peter Porker a.k.a. Spider-Ham (a pig in a funny animal version of the Marvel Universe.)
- Pavitr Prabhakar in the Indian adaptation of Spider-Man, Spider-Man: India.
- Blood Spider was an evil version of Spider-Man created by the Taskmaster and the Red Skull.
- Note: with the exception of Ben Reilly, Kraven, Mattie Franklin, and the Blood Spider, these characters all exist in alternate versions of the Marvel Universe.
Appearances in other media
- The first, animated series was simply titled Spider-Man, and ran on ABC from 1967 to 1970. The show's first season was produced by Grantray-Lawrence Animation, which soon went bankrupt. In 1968, animator Ralph Bakshi took over. Bakshi's episodes, which suffered from extremely low budgets, were stylized and featured dark ominous settings and pervasive background music. One episode reused complete background animation, characters, and storyline from an episode of Rocket Robin Hood. The series may be best remembered for its theme song. Spider-Man was voiced by Paul Soles. 
- Spider-Man was also an occasional character in the 1970s children's educational show The Electric Company which presented brief tales using a combination of animation and live action called the Spidey Super Stories. In addition, in the educational spirit of the series, Spider-Man communicates only in word balloons for the viewer to read. Comic book adaptations of these stories were included in a companion kids-oriented comic book, Spidey Super Stories, published by Marvel.
- In 1977, a short-lived live action television series was produced called The Amazing Spider-Man, starring Nicholas Hammond in the title role. Although the series earned good ratings, fans complained about its low-budget production values and its writing, which neither followed the comics' spirit nor provided adventures that were distinctively appropriate for the character. It also suffered from a sporadic broadcast schedule. The CBS Television Network cancelled it, along with Wonder Woman, to avoid being called "the superhero network." Several episodes from this series were released as full-length motion pictures outside the U.S. Three movies were released overseas, including Spider-Man (the original TV-movie pilot from 1977), Spider-Man Strikes Back (1978), and The Dragon's Challenge (1981).
- In 1978, a Spider-Man tokusatsu series was produced for Japanese television by Toei Company Ltd., but apart from Spider-Man's costume it was not based on the original source. It also had little-to-nothing to do with the Manga Spider-Man from 1970.
- In 1980, with the creation of the animation studio Marvel Productions Ltd., Marvel endeavored to translate more of their comic characters to television. To garner the attention of the major networks, Marvel first created a new syndicated Spider-Man cartoon that was partially based on the old 60s show. The strategy worked, and NBC became interested in having their own Spider-Man cartoon.
- Towards this end the cartoon series Spider-Man and His Amazing Friends was created for NBC featuring Spider-Man, Iceman of the X-Men, and a new character, Firestar. Actor Dan Gilvezan gave voice to this incarnation of the wall-crawler. This series also featured a number of Marvel guest stars, and shared many of its character designs with the solo Spider-Man show produced just before it.
- In 1994, Spider-Man: The Animated Series was made for the Fox Network, (to accompany their X-Men series) with Christopher Daniel Barnes providing the webslinger's voice. This series had a bigger budget and used a novel system of one large story arc per season developed by John Semper. As a result each of the individual 65 episodes (starting with season 2) were called "chapters." This series more closely reflected the comic book as it focused on the personal conflict Peter Parker felt as Spider-Man, instead of following the action-oriented shows that preceded it. 
- In 1999, an animated series named Spider-Man Unlimited was developed for Fox (intended to be an Expanded Universe final season of the 1994 show) in which Spider-Man is transported to an animated Counter-Earth. Here Spidey was voiced by Rino Romano. 
- In 2003, another television series adaptation, Spider-Man: The New Animated Series this time using computer animation was produced by Mainframe Entertainment and broadcast on MTV; it featured characters and continuity from the 2002 Spider-Man film, as well as the character Kingpin as depicted in the Daredevil movie. Spider-Man was voiced by Neil Patrick Harris.
- In 2006, Ultimate spider-man, based on the comics Ultimate spider-man, re-creating of the amazing spider-man. Every issue wil be an episode, the characters voices will be the same voices in the video game: Ultimate Spider-Man.
- Spider-Man: On May 3, 2002, the film Spider-Man was released. It was directed by Sam Raimi and starred actor Tobey Maguire as Peter Parker. The film featured a number of impressive CGI effects to bring Spider-Man to life. Though the film adaptation took a number of liberties with the character's history and powers, most notably giving him organic web-shooters rather than mechanical, it was essentially true to the character and was widely embraced by the viewing public. Earning more than $403 million at U.S. box offices, it was the highest-grossing movie of the year while also opening up at a record $114.8 million. Spider-Man went on to become the sixth highest-grossing film in North American history and is ranked 11th worldwide with a total take of more than $821 million internationally.
- Spider-Man 2: It was 2004's second-most financially successful movie and 15th-most financially successful movie of all time. It premiered in more North American movie theaters (4,152) than any previous movie. Its first-day gross ($40.5 million) surpassed its predecessor's $39.4 million record. The only higher single-day movie grosses were Shrek 2's $44.8 million in the first weekend of its May 2004 release and Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith's $50 million on the first day of its May 2005 release. Spider-Man 2 was also the first motion picture released in the Sony UMD format for the PlayStation Portable, being included for free with the first one million PSP systems released in the United States.
- Spider-Man 3: Currently this movie is being in production, and is expected to be in theaters on May 4, 2007. It will again be directed by Sam Raimi. 
In 2002 2MA produced the world's first live action Spider-Man stunt show in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.
Main article: Spider-Man (games)
Spider-Man first appeared in video game form in 1982, in the Parker Brothers game Spider-Man for the Atari 2600.  Subsequently, Spider-Man games were created by Acclaim, Sega, Paragon Software Corporation, LJN, and Activision for various video game consoles over the years. Spider-Man has also been featured as a character in several fighting games made by Capcom, beginning with Marvel Super-Heroes and continuing in the Marvel vs. Capcom series.
Two three-dimensional Spider-Man games (Spider-Man and Spider-Man 2: Enter Electro) were developed for the PlayStation. The first game was developed by Neversoft, using a similar engine to their Tony Hawk's Pro Skater games (Spider-Man was also a secret character in Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 2). The second game was developed by Vicarious Visions. The first title also appeared on Sega Dreamcast, N64 and PC. The second was PlayStation only. Both games were successful.
In tandem with the 2002 release of Spider-Man the movie, Activision released Spider-Man, the first Spider-Man game for all the major video game console systems, including Nintendo GameCube, Xbox, PlayStation 2 and PC, as well as a portable version for the Game Boy Advance.
More recently, the 2004 video game Spider-Man 2 by Activision was released along with the Spider-Man 2 movie, also for GameCube, Xbox and PlayStation 2, a version was made specifically for PC, plus a handheld versions for both Game Boy Advance and the N-Gage. Like the movie, it opened to critical and commercial success.
Ultimate Spider-Man came out in September 2005. It is based on the Ultimate Spider-Man comics, and serves as a missing issue of the series. It is cel shaded and features both Spider-Man and Venom as playable characters. The game is available on PC, GameCube, PlayStation 2, Xbox, PlayStation Portable and Nintendo DS.
Also in September 2005, Marvel Nemesis: Rise of the Imperfects was released, which includes both Spider-Man and Venom as playable characters. The game was released for GameCube, PlayStation 2, Xbox, PlayStation Portable and Nintendo DS.
Spider-man imitators in real life include :
- "Spider Dan" Goodwin, who in 1981, climbed the glass of the Sears Tower and the John Hancock Center in Chicago using suction cups.
- Alain Robert nicknamed Spiderman, rock and urban climber who has scaled more than 70 tall buildings using his hands and feet, without using additional devices. He sometimes wears a Spider-Man suit during his climbs. In May 2003, he was paid approximately $18,000 to climb the 312-foot, Lloyd's of London, to promote the premiere of the movie Spider-Man on the British television channel, Sky Movies.
- The surname Parker was chosen to honor a Mr. Richard Parker, childhood friend of Stan Lee and father to famed injury attorney Larry H. Parker. Peter's father is named Richard Parker for the same reason.
Spider-Man in music
The 1994 Veruca Salt album American Thighs has a track entitled Spiderman '79. It is unlikely that this song is about the comic book character, however. The Ramones played "Spider-Man theme" in many live concerts.
Spider-Man in pop culture
On Halloween 2004, an estimated 2.15 million U.S. children dressed up as Spider-Man, making it the year's most popular costume.
- The Amazing Spider-Man, written by J. Michael Straczynski, creator of the television series Babylon 5
- Friendly Neighborhood Spider-Man, written by Peter David and penciled by Mike Wieringo.
- Marvel Adventures Spider-Man, written by Sean McKeever, set during Spider-Man's high school years.
- Marvel Knights Spider-Man, written by Reginald Hudlin
- Spider-Man Loves Mary Jane, written by Sean McKeever and illustrated by Takeshi Miyazawa. Set outside the regular Marvel continuity.
- Spider-Man Unlimited, showcasing Spider-Man in stories by new writing talent
- Ultimate Spider-Man, written by Brian Michael Bendis and pencilled by Mark Bagley, set in the Ultimate Marvel Universe
- New Avengers, written by Bendis and pencilled by David Finch, includes Spider-Man as a member of this superhero team
- Astonishing Spider-Man, part of Marvel UK's "Collector Edition" line
Spider-Man also has had a number of series that are since cancelled or have been given new names:
- Marvel Team-Up, a series that featured Spider-Man paired with a different Marvel Comics super-hero each month. That original version was replaced by Web of Spider-Man in 1985. The current version features Spider-Man heavily, but not in every issue.
- The Sensational Spider-Man, cancelled with issue #33 in 1998, at the same time Spectacular Spider-Man was cancelled & Amazing Spider-Man and Peter Parker: Spider-Man were relaunched.
- The Spectacular Spider-Man, originally called Peter Parker, the Spectacular Spider-Man at its debut in 1976, was renamed in 1988 with issue #134 and cancelled with issue #263 (1998). A 2003 relaunch of the title (replacing Peter Parker: Spider-Man) was cancelled at issue #27 (2005).
- Spider-Man, a series created in 1991 specifically for creator Todd McFarlane, later renamed Peter Parker: Spider-Man at the end of the Clone Saga. Renumbered and relaunched after #98 in 1998 and cancelled with volume 2 #58 in 2002.
- Spider-Man: Chapter One a retcon miniseries retelling Spider-Man's earliest adventures, ran for 13 issues 1998-1999.
- Spider-Man's Tangled Web an anthology series where new, alternative and Vertigo comics creators were given a shot at telling stories featuring the character. Ran for 22 issues from 2001- 2003. The title was replaced by the Marvel Knights Spider-Man series in 2004.
- Untold Tales of Spider-Man, a retcon series that told new stories set in Spider-man's early super-hero career, lasted 26 issues and two Annuals from 1995 - 1997.
- Web of Spider-Man, created in 1985 and cancelled in 1995 with issue #129.
- Webspinners: Tales of Spider-Man another retcon series, similar to Untold Tales of Spider-Man, lasted 18 issues (1998-1999)
- Spider-Man: The Other is the first Spider-Man crossover since 2000 and runs from October 2005 to January 2006. It takes place in Friendly Neighborhood Spider-Man #1-4, Marvel Knights Spider-Man #19-22, and Amazing Spider-Man #525-528.
- Clone Saga - encompassing almost every Spider-Man comic over the course of two years.
- Maximum Carnage
- Spider-Man: Identity Crisis: Amazing Spider-Man #434-#435, Spectacular Spider-Man #257 - #258, Sensational Spider-Man #27 - #28, Spider-Man (Vol. 1) #91 - #92.
List of significant stories
- Amazing Fantasy #15; "Spider-Man!" - First appearance and origin of the character.
- Amazing Spider-Man #1; "Spider-Man" - Spider-Man was given his first title. Spider-Man attempts to join the Fantastic Four.
- Amazing Spider-Man #31-33; "If This Be My Destiny...!"/"Man On a Rampage!"/"The Final Chapter" - Doctor Octopus/Master Planner saga, ending in an oft-homaged sequence with Spider-Man lifting impossibly heavy machinery to retrieve an antidote to save Aunt May.
- Amazing Spider-Man #39-40; "How Green Was My Goblin!"/"Spidey Saves The Day!" - Green Goblin discovers Spider-Man's identity, before revealing his own to Spider-Man and apparently becoming amnesiac in an explosion.
- Amazing Spider-Man #96-98; Issues infamously published without the Comics Code Authority seal due to the use of drugs
- Amazing Spider-Man #121-122; "The Night Gwen Stacy Died"/"The Goblin's Last Stand!" - A sequel to ASM 96-98, the Green Goblin returns again as Harry Osborn relapses into using drugs, and kills Gwen Stacy in the first example of a hero's girlfriend being killed, before dying himself.
- Amazing Spider-Man #149; "Even If I Live, I Die!" - The Jackal clones Spider-Man before one of the Spider-Men and the Jackal are apparently killed.
- Amazing Spider-Man #185; "White Dragon, Peter's College Graduation" - Peter Parker's college graduation day. Peter couldn't actually graduate, on the day of graduation, because he missed one credit, gym class.
- Amazing Spider-Man Annual #21 - Peter Parker marries Mary Jane.
- Spectacular Spider-Man #200; Harry Osborn, having since become the second Green Goblin, attempts to destroy his one-time best friend and now enemy, Spider-man. Realizing his errors, he instead saves Peter from one of his own traps, shortly before falling victim to his father's imperfect Goblin serum and dying, sharing one last smile with his friend as he does.
- Web of Spider-Man #117; "Power And Responsibility, Part 1" - Spider-Man's clone, going by the name of Ben Reilly, comes to town demanding the identity and life of Spider-Man.
- Peter Parker: Spider-Man #75; "Revelations, Part 4" - Green Goblin is revealed to be alive; kills Ben Reilly and revealed to behind the entire events of the "Clone Saga"
- Amazing Spider-Man Vol. 2 #35; "Coming Out" - Aunt May discovers that ner newphew, Peter, is Spider-Man.
- Amazing Spider-Man Vol. 2 #50; "Doomed Affairs" - Peter reconciles with Mary Jane, after a long-term separation.
- Amazing Spider-Man #512; "Sins Past, Part 4" - Spider-Man discovers that Gwen had slept with and gotten pregnant with Norman Osborns' kids.
- Spectacular Spider-Man Vol. 2 #20; "Changes, Part 4" - Spider-Man develops new powers, such as organic webbing and the ability to read the minds of insects.
- Amazing Spider-Man #518; "Skin Deep" - Aunt May's house and Peter's apartment are destroyed by a old friend of Peter's, Charlie.
- Template:Fnb "Shop Talk: Jack Kirby", Will Eisner's Spirit Magazine #39 (Feb. 1982)
- Template:Fnb Simon, Joe, with Jim Simon, The Comic Book Makers (Crestwood/II, 1990) ISBN 1887591354
- Marvel.com - Official webpage
- Official Spider-Man movie webpage
- BBC article on the Indian Spider-Man
- Spider-Man Crawl Space-All Spidey, All The Time
- SpiderFan.org - Unofficial Spider-Man webpage
- Spider-Man Online, Unofficial Spider-Man webpage
- Official Marvel Picture site
- Superhero Hype! - Spider-Man movie-news site
- Spidey Kicks Butt! - Essays and commentary on the Amazing Spider-Man
- The Religious Affiliation of Peter Parker: Spider-Man
- 1981 Spider-Man Cartoon @ Toon Zone
- Other Spider-Man animated series
- DRG4's Spider-Man: The Animated Series Page
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