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  1. #91
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    The checks with the “contract” on the back were instituted by Marvel’s owner Cadence, probably in response to their belated realization of the jeopardy they were in over claiming to own all the Marvel characters. This is what I think I recall from Sean Howe’s book. I don’t think anyone could find one from prior to Cadence owning Marvel.

  2. #92
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brian B View Post
    I don’t think what you’ve written is controversial. I don’t think you’re giving Jack Kirby, and Joe Simon, enough credit, though.
    The fact is they spent 10 years trying to make Spiderman happen and kept going nowhere. They have a track record of successes in other fields -- Young Romance, Captain America, among others, but somehow Spiderman they could never get to work. It took Ditko to make that concept work. To the extent some collaborators are more equal than others, Ditko was the most equal and made the biggest lift to get Spider-Man over.

    I think Stan’s primary importance to the company was his patently false claims of sole authorship, so Marvel under various owners could maintain the legal fiction that the characters were all Marvel’s uncontested intellectual property. Stan’s value to Marvel was his willingness to participate in thievery.
    Legally that's definitely the case.

    On the grand scheme, Lee didn't want to be Brian Epstein, manager of the Beatles, he didn't want to be Kevin Feige. Those guys are valued for their role and contributions and neither of them took credit for stuff they didn't do. Lee wanted people to have the idea that he created those characters and stories and that he's the main writer. For me that has to overshadow everything else one can say about him. It's impossible to discuss Lee's importance as an editor and collaborator, which he definitely was, when the other stuff overshadows all he did.

    By the way, unmentioned in your blog post is Kirby insisted that he he also created Spider-Man’s costume, not just the rejected one.
    From my understanding, Kirby was referring to the original costume design. Bear in mind, that Pro-Stan Lee people often ventriloquize or exaggerate claims that distort his perspective. Kirby did say clearly that Spider-Man was ultimately Ditko's work. At the end of the day Kirby doesn't have to be a perfect narrator or a perfect person, merely more reliable and trustworthy than Lee.

    Ditko claimed he created it, too. Then there’s the whole Ben Cooper Halloween costume.
    Yeah I heard about that but that Halloween costume doesn't look all that similar to the Spider outfit to me. There are some general similarities but not enough. Ultimately, I didn't want to chase all the rumors and stuff about the development but hone in on the main specifics. My main focus on the article was the story and plot aspect because that tends to be most misunderstood since people assume reflexively that Lee did the writing and when people say that he gave a general outline to the artists and they plotted it out, it still sounds on the face of it that Lee was still the main writer. But if you break it down and say that Lee didn't come up with the plot twist of AF#15 and the artist-writer did it then you get a sense of what's at stake here.
    Last edited by Revolutionary_Jack; 10-09-2021 at 11:43 AM.

  3. #93
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    Quote Originally Posted by Revolutionary_Jack View Post
    ...Yeah I heard about that but that Halloween costume doesn't look all that similar to the Spider outfit to me. There are some general similarities but not enough....
    Most of it is general similarities, but that mask is beyond general similarity.

  4. #94
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brian B View Post
    Most of it is general similarities, but that mask is beyond general similarity.
    NYPost is maybe not the best source, lol.

    But either way, the colors are all wrong. It looks like a bagman or any traditional novelty mask and costume. For instance the head is an upturned pillow-case or ghost-head in shape, it's not a full face head-mask like Ditko's. The two-holes inside look like ghost-holes or pin-holes lacking the specific lens-shape that Ditko introduced.

    What I am saying is that with mass media and a mass society, multiple patterns are used and reused all the time. These patterns recurring time and again doesn't tell us a great deal in and of itself.

    You could find multiple masks like these similar in some respect here and there before Ditko's outfit but it wouldn't quite be Ditko's design.

    The outfit seems like a play of a baseball outfit in general complete with dark bottoms and dark sleeves.

    It's not really the same outfit.
    Last edited by Revolutionary_Jack; 10-09-2021 at 02:44 PM.

  5. #95
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    Quote Originally Posted by Revolutionary_Jack View Post
    NYPost is maybe not the best source, lol.

    But either way, the colors are all wrong. It looks like a bagman or any traditional novelty mask and costume. For instance the head is an upturned pillow-case or ghost-head in shape, it's not a full face head-mask like Ditko's. The two-holes inside look like ghost-holes or pin-holes lacking the specific lens-shape that Ditko introduced.

    What I am saying is that with mass media and a mass society, multiple patterns are used and reused all the time. These patterns recurring time and again doesn't tell us a great deal in and of itself.

    You could find multiple masks like these similar in some respect here and there before Ditko's outfit but it wouldn't quite be Ditko's design.

    The outfit seems like a play of a baseball outfit in general complete with dark bottoms and dark sleeves.

    It's not really the same outfit.
    You won’t find any mask resembling Spider-Man’s prior to this because this is it, this is where it starts. As for the NY Post, it was just the best image of the mask. John Cimino’s blog covers all the details of what he found much better. The bag shape obviously isn’t like Marvel’s Spider-Man, and the color, nose and eye holes are different, but otherwise it looks so much like Spider-Man. Kirby or Ditko had to have taken some inspiration from it, consciously or not.

  6. #96
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brian B View Post
    You won’t find any mask resembling Spider-Man’s prior to this because this is it, this is where it starts.
    How many novelty Halloween shops existed in the 1950s in NYC? Who has seen 'em all?

    The bag shape obviously isn’t like Marvel’s Spider-Man, and the color, nose and eye holes are different, but otherwise it looks so much like Spider-Man. Kirby or Ditko had to have taken some inspiration from it, consciously or not.
    Well on that level it's kind of hard to answer. It'll be at best like Alan Moore's finale of Watchmen having the whole "alien invasion hoax" to create world peace only to learn that The Outer Limits did an episode with the same plot and Moore who hadn't seen it was a tad disappointed but felt that Watchmen was too far in advance to back out and have a new plot so they went ahead anyway but he inserted a reference to The Outer Limits in the last three pages of the comic.

    My feeling is that the Spider-Man outfit which Ditko designed is substantially different and unique from that, but that's my take. Obviously if you look hard enough then damn near nothing is original. Superman ripped off this novel called Gladiator, Batman was basically cobbled from The Shadow, The Phantom and the early '30s movie The Bat Whispers and the art of the original comic was full of swipes from Phantom comics. They all draw on concepts from pulp fiction and cheap disposable junk culture produced en masse. So if you investigate you'll find wacky coincidences all over the place. They'd be all kinds of mashups across mass culture so someone feeling that they want to whip up a Halloween outfit quickly would kitbash a baseball costume and draw spider-weblines across the outfit and put a pillowcase on top to make it somewhat scary...that would be a stroke of random inspiration but it wouldn't count as identical to Ditko's design.
    Last edited by Revolutionary_Jack; 10-10-2021 at 02:02 PM.

  7. #97
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    I think you should read Cimino’s blog post. He covers a lot of this, including how widespread the Cooper Halloween costumes were (very widespread in NY and other places throughout the US).

  8. #98
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    LegalEagle addresses this fracas:


  9. #99
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    As far as the movies go, this may impact Sony more so than Marvel/Disney.

  10. #100
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    Quote Originally Posted by Iron Maiden View Post
    As far as the movies go, this may impact Sony more so than Marvel/Disney.
    All they have to do is strike a new deal with Ditko estate and boom.

  11. #101
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    Quote Originally Posted by Revolutionary_Jack View Post
    All they have to do is strike a new deal with Ditko estate and boom.
    They may have already. In that interview I posted a page or two back, there is that incident where a resident in the same building where Ditko rented an office claimed to have accidentally opened a misdelivered piece of mail that contained a large check for Ditko. She said it was from a movie studio. Sure would like to know what entity that came from and it could have been Sony. Has Sony ever been involved in these cases?

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