By ERIN ALLEN
Comic-book fans united in praise in April when the Library of Congress announced the acquisition of Steve Ditko’s original artwork for Marvel Comics’ “Amazing Fantasy #15”—the comic book that introduced Spider-Man in August 1962. (See related story.) The set of 24 pages includes the story of the origin of “your friendly neighborhood Spider-Man” along with three other short stories also written by Stan Lee and drawn by Ditko.
Although the Library announced the anonymous donation in an April 30 press release and on its blog, the blogosphere got wind of it a week earlier when mention appeared in Comics DC, moderated by comic enthusiast Mike Rhode.
Commenting on the Library’s blog, Mr. Grouchypants said “This is great news for people concerned about preserving Spider-Man’s legacy for geeksterity.”
Torsten Adair added, “I hope this brings some much deserved attention to the Swann Collection at the Library. I was lucky enough to live in D.C. for three years, and spent many a wonderful time doing comics ‘research’!”
LA Times blog commenter Paul Lonsdale said “’with great power comes great responsibility’ … this responsible donation makes many people very happy!”
Uncle Ernie of Uncle Ernie’s Creature Ink blog said “Comic book art is a narrative art form. Individual panels or parts of the art are interesting to see pulled out of context; but the art is still meant to be looked at in its entirety, as a part of a whole, and in sequence. To have the complete set of original art, together and now protected to such a seminal part of comic book history and popular culture, is amazing.”
Erin Allen is a writer-editor in the Library’s Public Affairs Office.