Talk Nerdy to Me: Comics that inspired Spider-Man’s massive success

by | Feb 2, 2022 | Entertainment

By Daniel Eisenhut

Spider-Man No Way Home (2021) is already the sixth-highest grossing movie in the history of cinema. An incredible feat, especially considering it was released during the pandemic, which restricted movie theatre options, session times and, in some cases, even caused the cancellation of exhibitions. 

This last piece of the new spider hero trilogy revolves around the idea of ​​a multiverse, which is being developed in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU). In addition to the movies, the MCU includes television series, short films, digital series, and literature. 

No Way Home brings different versions of Spider-Man, as well as the return of several villains from the franchise, in an engaging and tightly tied story. This film seems to have pleased everyone, from those who enjoy action, adventure or science fiction, to the most ardent Marvel fans in different media.

Stan Lee and Steve Ditko created No Way Home’s titular character in 1962 during the so-called silver age of comic books. Since then, “your friendly neighbourhood Spider-Man” has become one of the most–if not the most–loved of Marvel’s heroes. 

Peter Parker, is an intelligent, nerdy young student that deals with typical everyday difficulties for his age. He receives incredible powers, goes through great losses, and becomes an often-contested hero. He also takes on great responsibilities and protects the most vulnerable while struggling to keep his secret identity, all without losing his characteristic good humour.

Like all MCU productions, No Way Home is inspired by comic books. As a comic collector for over 30 years, I bring some reading recommendations, accompanied with a brief description of this art form that has grown a lot in recent years. If you are interested in the character, want to know more from the ideas and references that inspired the movie, or are just looking for a good read and entertainment, this list is for you.

Spider-Man Blue
by Jeph Loeb and Tim Sale

The famous duo Jeph Loeb and Tim Sale deliver a sensitive, nostalgic, and emotional story about Mary Jane’s entry into Peter’s life, who was still in a relationship with Gwen Stacy. A masterpiece.

Kraven’s Last Hunt
by J. M. DeMatteis and Mike Zeck

Spidey’s enemy gallery is one of the most respectable. In what is considered one of the best stories of the hero, Kraven steals the show. Don’t be surprised if he appears on the big screen soon. 

Civil War
by Mark Millar and Steve McNiven

This epic story inspired the third Captain America movie, although it was greatly modified for the big screen. Spider-Man plays a central role in the plot and decides to make his identity public with tremendous consequences.

Birth of Venom
by David Micheline and Todd McFarlane

This is the first appearance of the favourite antihero. This beloved symbiote has already starred in two solo movies, and it looks like it’s finally going to meet Spider-Man on the big screen.

The Death of Gwen Stacy
by Gerry Conway and Gil Kane

A classic story, published in an arc in mid-1973 about the greatest tragedy in the hero’s life. This issue has been referenced several times in the movies.

by J. Michael Straczynski and John Romita Jr.

This is a great phase for Spider-Man as he is pushed to physical and mental limits. Major revelations that influenced the films take place here.

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