Sep 25, 2019

Spider-Rama: Amazing Spider-Man #44

Welcome to Spider-Rama! Each Wednesday, Ben and Duy will look at a Spider-Man issue from the very beginning, in chronological order, and answer questions for various categories, inspired in large part by one of our favorite podcasts, The Rewatchables by The Ringer. Our goal is to make it to Amazing Spider-Man #200. Will we make it? Grab your Amazing Spider-Man Omnibus or crank up your tablet to Marvel Unlimited, and then tune in every Wednesday to find out!

by Stan Lee and John Romita Sr.

The Lizard returns!


BEN: Villain appearance count:
  • Green Goblin: 7
  • Doctor Octopus: 5
  • Sandman: 4
  • The Vulture: 3
  • Mysterio: 3
  • The Enforcers: 3
  • Kraven the Hunter: 3
  • The Rhino: 3
  • The Chameleon: 2
  • Electro: 2
  • The Ringmaster: 2
  • Scorpion: 2
  • Molten Man: 2
  • The Lizard: 2
BEN: With 38 issues since, the Lizard easily holds the record at this point for biggest gap between appearances for a major Spider-Man villain. And Mary Jane meets Flash, Gwen, and Harry.

DUY: So I guess this is obvious, but MJ didn't go to college, did she?

BEN: She was already on the model/actress path. This is the first time I remember Peter wishing he could quit being Spider-Man. Am I wrong on that?

DUY: He did throw his costume into the trash when Aunt May was sick.

BEN: That was more of thinking he had to quit.


BEN:  “An invincible army of super strong giant lizards.”

DUY: It's pretty cool that Connors being the Lizard again was built up on and off over several issues. That's just standard now, but I don't think it's a stretch to say it was weird for the 60s.

BEN: I’m not going to claim to be an expert on the matter, but it seems like having a girl like Mary Jane hit on you in front of the girl you really like (Gwen) is a good way to make that girl take notice of you even more.

DUY: So I'm reading the novel version of The Princess Bride, and that's pretty much how Buttercup realizes she's in love with Westley. Count Rugen's wife takes notice of him.

BEN: Why are you reading The Princess Bride?


DUY:  I don't think we needed a page's worth of panels to recap the Lizard's previous appearance. And Romita draws everyone prettier than Ditko, which is great for everyone except JJJ, who now looks more like an ogre.


BEN:  Why doesn’t Curt’s family live with him?

DUY: As I understood it, the Connors moved to Florida and then Curt went back to New York for his research. Their permanent residence is Florida.


BEN: For some reason I was drawn to how perfect this Spidey face looks.

DUY: This one for me, the first complete shot of the greatest supporting cast he'd ever have.


DUY: The Flash/Peter rivalry, which takes an interesting turn here. They're still bantering, but they're smiling like each other as if they're happy to see each other. I wonder if Stan actually told John to draw the characters smiling at each other, to the point that no amount of bantering is going to make it look like they're still fighting, or if John did it himself.

BEN: It is a great touch that I didn’t even notice because I barely look at the art. Unless it’s Gwen, who wins this issue.

DUY: That's it for Spider-Rama this week.

BEN: Thank you, Stan Lee and Steve Ditko—

DUY: —for telling us we aren't the only ones.

Leave us a comment below or on our Facebook page. See you next week!

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