I landed a pretty nice copy of AMAZING ADULT FANTASY #11. The only real flaw with the book is that someone along the history of this copy used a watercolor marker to put a jacket and tie on the middle figure of the alien. Other than that, the book is in excellent condition and a welcome addition to my collection. I am very close to completing a set of the Ditko-inspired comic series that was THE AMAZING SPIDER-MAN.
As recounted here before, the book began as AMAZING ADVENTURES, a comic of fantasy and science-fiction stories illustrated by Jack Kirby, Steve Dikto, and various other artists, including Don Heck. This comic also featured what is now considered Marvel's first continuing superhero, a mysticist named Dr. Droom. This anthology series came to an end with #6 and was thereafter retitled with...
#7 of the series appeared as AMAZING ADULT FANTASY. With this book, Stan Lee, the editor-in-chief, gave free reign to his most daring artist, Steve Ditko. Ditko filled each issue of AMAZING ADULT FANTASY with several stories from (I will assume) plots delivered by Lee and almost all copped from stories by far more talented authors. This book lasted for seven issues and there was another change in title after issue #14 when it became...
AMAZING FANTASY. This book lasted precisely one issue. The first story introduced a new character created wholly by Ditko--a new kind of superhero that had never been seen and which has never been matched for sheer originality. His name, of course, was Spider-Man: Steve Ditko's ultimate stroke of genius.
Thereafter, the book became THE AMAZING SPIDER-MAN and its sole creator stayed with the title until issue number 38 when he walked away from it forever.
Steve Ditko was obviously having fun with this book. I have to think that he was still feeling some youthful exuberance in these days, before he turned his life completely over to his obsession with Ayn Rand's diseased philosophies.
Five Ditko stories. Good grief! Pure comic magic. This title page isn't as dynamic as some others he'd done, so I'm wondering if it was done in a hurry.
This is a classic Ditko monster. I've always liked his monsters, which are always as good as the ones by his fellow Marvel creator, Jack Kirby. Those guys could whip up some truly great creatures.
I slam Stan Lee fairly often here in my blog. For good reason, of course. But he was the finest huckster that the comic book business ever had. Jack Kirby and Steve Dikto created everything, but Stan Lee sold it lock, stock, and barrel to the world at large. The industry never had such an effective bullshitter. One thing that he did better than anyone else was to make the fans a part of the action. There had been letters pages in comics before, and fan clubs and such. EC Comics did that effectively in their day. But Lee drew it larger and made the fans feel like part of the family. It was among the innovations by others that Lee took and polished to a high shine.
The top shelf in part of my re-fitted office. Amazing Spider-Man #s 31 through 33, the greatest superhero comic book ever created by a single artist. Steve Ditko wrote it, he penciled it, he inked it. No one has come near the perfection that he achieved with this total work of art and philosophy. Steve Ditko is the greatest!