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  1. #16
    Extraordinary Member Celgress's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ozymandias View Post
    Johnny got his own mag first, but apparently sales didn't back him up.
    Yeah, they are supposed to be the same age, nice catch. For some reason, I always think Johnny is a few years older than Pete, my bad.
    "So you've come to the end now alive but dead inside."

  2. #17
    Astonishing Member Revolutionary_Jack's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Celgress View Post
    Yeah, they are supposed to be the same age, nice catch. For some reason, I always think Johnny is a few years older than Pete, my bad.
    Johnny IS a few years older. In the Lee-Ditko run, Johnny gives a talk at Peter's college.

    Basically when Peter's in high school, Johnny's in college (age-wise), if Peter's in college, Johnny is out, and if Peter's in his mid-20s, Johnny is in his late 20s.

  3. #18
    Extraordinary Member Celgress's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Revolutionary_Jack View Post
    Johnny IS a few years older. In the Lee-Ditko run, Johnny gives a talk at Peter's college.

    Basically when Peter's in high school, Johnny's in college (age-wise), if Peter's in college, Johnny is out, and if Peter's in his mid-20s, Johnny is in his late 20s.
    I think it was recently stated (in 616) they are the same age or supposed to be now. I could be wrong but I'm fairly certain this is the case. If so, I agree it is a retcon.
    "So you've come to the end now alive but dead inside."

  4. #19
    Astonishing Member Revolutionary_Jack's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Celgress View Post
    I think it was recently stated (in 616) they are the same age or supposed to be now. I could be wrong but I'm fairly certain this is the case. If so, I agree it is a retcon.
    The Fantastic Four canonically have aged 14 years since the Rocket. That would be enough for Johnny to age from around 15 to 29.

    Spider-Man has had at most 10 years pass in his continuity since the FF existed before him, so he could be mid-20s.

    Being the same age as the FF would age Peter greatly.

  5. #20
    Incredible Member Ozymandias's Avatar
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    In FF #35, ten months before Peter starts college, Johnny was still in High School, as can be seen in the thought balloon from panel 1, page 2.

    By skipping ahead a little, I can see he didn't start college the same year as Peter because he was too busy, but he should've. FF #44, page 3 panel 4.
    Last edited by Ozymandias; 01-12-2020 at 03:22 PM.

  6. #21
    Astonishing Member Revolutionary_Jack's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ozymandias View Post
    In FF #35, ten months before Peter starts college, Johnny was still in High School, as can be seen in the thought balloon from panel 1, page 2.

    By skipping ahead a little, I can see he didn't start college the same year as Peter because he was too busy, but he should've. FF #44, page 3 panel 4.
    I guess, but ideally Johnny Storm should be older than Peter.

    Of course the whole point of Peter's friendship with Johnny Storm is that Peter will be the more mature and the grown-up of the two no matter their age. Johnny is the perpetual big kid. This is best glimpsed in Spider-Man/Human Torch.

    Like even in USM, where Johnny is explicitly older...he still looks up to Peter, as a role-model and almost like an elder brother in spirit as Susan Storm admitted when she came to meet Peter in the issues right after Ultimatum (where Johnny agrees to stay at May Parker's).

  7. #22
    Astonishing Member From The Shadows's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Celgress View Post
    Relatability - Peter isn't a billionaire playboy, an alien from another world, or a legendary war hero, he is like us (genius-level intellect aside, which he grows into only over time). His problems are our problems (making ends meet, looking after a sick family member, juggling professional and personal responsibilities, fitting in). He stumbles into being a hero. He isn't a hero by intention rather he becomes one by several accidents of fate.
    I agree, though I don't need to relate to a character (though I did Peter) to like him/her or be even entertained I still felt Spider-Man was quite refreshing. I'll add the humor and wit of Peter, I suppose he can get a little carried away but there were moments where things seemed ridiculous or unfair he would respond with a dry wit and the stories would have an undercurrent of someone slapping there head and saying "screw this I'm leaving " If that makes sense. I laughed at many a Spidey comic.

  8. #23
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    There are a lot of factors for why Spider-Man is so popular:

    1) The aesthetics of his character design are just very good. A sleek, streamlined character design is always a good thing for a character. Just ask Batman, Daredevil, and the Flash.

    2) The long list of memorable and compelling villains that debuted relatively early on in the character's history. Again, just ask Batman how much that helps when it comes to popularity. There's a reason people say Spider-Man and Batman are the two characters with the greatest rogues galleries in all of comics.

    3) The humble "relatability" aspect (even though I think that really oversimplifies the concept of relatability). He's not a billionaire like Tony Stark or Bruce Wayne or a being with godlike strength like Thor or Superman or the Hulk (even though he is technically super-strong) or even a war hero like Steve Rogers. He's a kid from Queens who doesn't have a clue what he's doing half the time. Of course, sometimes writers take that too far and make Peter not only "relatable" but almost verging on screw-up territory, but I digress.

    And this is what I think is the most important factor:

    4) The strength of his supporting cast. I heard it explained to me once like this: Spider-Man comics, especially of the late 60s and early 70s, tapped into something that the TV show Friends would tap into about 20-30 years later. The story of Spider-Man wasn't just about Spider-Man. It was also about all of his friends and family and the people around him that were witness to it all. It was about how all of them loved each other and were there for each other.

    I mean, let's talk about Captain America or Iron Man or Thor. How many non-powered/hero characters can you name that are mainstays of their supporting cast and whose relationships to the lead character are so well defined? Maybe like one or two: the obligatory love interest and maybe one other person. Now, think about Spider-Man's cast and how many characters we can name that fit that description: Aunt May, Mary Jane Watson, Gwen Stacy, Liz Allan, Harry Osborn, Flash Thompson, J. Jonah Jameson, Betty Brant, Ned Leeds, Robbie Robertson, Randy Robertson, and the list goes on from there. That's something that is actually very unique in the superhero genre. The only other big-name character that I think has a similarly strong cast of supporting characters who are a key part of their mythology would probably be Superman.
    Last edited by Zeeguy91; 02-16-2020 at 10:14 PM.

  9. #24
    Astonishing Member Revolutionary_Jack's Avatar
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    There's a cool YouTube video on it:

  10. #25
    The King Fears NO ONE! Triniking1234's Avatar
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    As someone who grew up in a place where comics aren't popular, Marvel did a lot of promoting for him outside of the comic books which is also how the X-Men became so popular internationally in the 90s. Like older generations here know about him because of the 60s cartoon and that real-life TV series.
    "Cable was right!"

  11. #26
    Astonishing Member Revolutionary_Jack's Avatar
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    My four year old nephew plays with Spidey toys and he’s too young to know Peter’s origin, him being relatable and so on. The same is true for most Spidey merch sold to kids.

    Children like Spider-Man for the costume and powers. So that’s what it comes down to. Ultimately it’s Ditko’s design that sells Spider-Man. Far more than the writing. The writing works for older fans or kids when they age up.

    But at its core Spider-Man is Spider-Man before he is Peter Parker got a majority of his fans in terms of the medium he is introduced with.

  12. #27
    The King Fears NO ONE! Triniking1234's Avatar
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    To be honest I think children these days are born knowing Spidey's, Batman's and Superman's origins.
    "Cable was right!"

  13. #28
    Astonishing Member Revolutionary_Jack's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Triniking1234 View Post
    To be honest I think children these days are born knowing Spidey's, Batman's and Superman's origins.
    Well it depends. For a lot of children, and by that I mean 1-4 year olds, I mean toddlers, their first exposure to these characters is simply images from toys, action figures, stickers, pictures on bed-spreads, stuff other kids have on their clothes and bags at daycare. At that level, stuff like Superman is clark kent, Batman is bruce, Spider-Man is Peter or Marvel/DC being a thing doesn't even count.

    Likewise there are these bizarre videos on YouTube for kids (of which the most famous is the viral "baby shark") which often has an algorithm bashing together characters randomly. This video talks about it (and it's better than seeing these videos as an adult).

    For these small kids, Spider-Man/Elsa from Frozen is the OTP.

    Even then, these kids like Spider-Man and respond to him and his costume and powerset, as well as a name. Kids are fascinated by insects in general at that early age, and they like crawling around and here's a guy who is a semi-insect and crawls around. So it's not hard to see the appeal.

    So ultimately if you want to reduce to formula the secret of Spider-Man's appeal...remove the story, remove the continuity, remove the adaptations, and so on..."take away my house, my tricks and toys" and so on, what is the one thing you can't take away then. And still these characters have an appeal.

  14. #29
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    Spider-Man is ubiquitous. More children are exposed to Spider-Man - through toys, cartoons, video games, birthday cards, movies - than they are, let's say Green Lantern. Any kid born into the world today has more chance of receiving Spider-Man toys than Green Lantern toys.

    What got Spider-Man to that level in the first place, that's a different question than what attracts kids to Spider-Man today.

  15. #30
    Astonishing Member Revolutionary_Jack's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lee View Post
    Any kid born into the world today has more chance of receiving Spider-Man toys than Green Lantern toys.
    Let's see...
    -- A character with a simple one-sentence powerset (man with spider-powers) versus a character with a complex powerset (human being with a magic ring that he points stuff at to produce green constructs with his imagination).
    -- A character with a full body-suit in bright colors that allows a child of any race to picture themselves behind versus a character who is mostly white human or creepy alien in some weird green-black uniform.

    I think it's pretty safe to say which character lends itself well to simple classic design principles in terms of toys and action-figures. Hint, it's not the DC dude.

    Wonder Woman as merchandise has always done well among girls even if in comics it has dropped in and out and in any case never had the highs that even Green Lantern did with Geoff Johns. Whereas Green Lantern has never been a hit in merch.

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