Spider-Man Chronology ’63-’66: Indispensable Spider-Man Pt 1

Welcome, Spider-Fans, to our latest, greatest feature on this humble site, the indispensable Spider-Man chronology ! Lots of blood, sweat and tears went into bringing you this essential Spider-Man reading order (actually, none of those things went into this list, just a LOT of reading and note taking!).

What is this indispensable Spider-Man Chronology exactly? We are delivering to you a pared down list of issues of Spider-Man comics to bring you just the essential (or, as we call it, indispensable) issues. We’re trimming the fat, if you will, of the back issues from the Spider-Man chronology. If you are looking to read Spider-Man from the beginning, or just relive a certain era, but not wanting to read everything that published, this list is for you.

Every Friday during the Summer of 2012, we’ll bring you another chapter into the life of Peter Parker as Spider-Man.

The methodology used to slim down the Spider-Man Chronology was a bit subjective and objective. First, we ensured that the stories that are considered the best Spider-Man stories were central, as well as important moments that changed the status quo of the books (graduation, first appearances) in the hopes to create a list of comics that will make reading Spider-Man from the beginning a smooth and entertaining experience. Furthermore, we marked two degrees of importance for each issue, as the best and most important events in the indespensable Spider-Man chronology are marked with two hashtags (##), which can be searched for easy filtering, and a lower degree of importance of one hashtag (#) to indicate issues that connect to those important issues, whether they contain continuing parts to those stories or contain a smaller change in the status quo.

Spider-Man Chronology from 1963-1966 Features

What makes the cut of the indispensable 1963-1966 Spider-Man Chronology era

Most issues of the original Amazing Spider-Man run makes the cut, as with every other issue there’s a new character or villain introduced that still remains relevant today to the Spider-Man chronology.  We did cut much of the modern additions to this era, such as Untold Tales of Spider-Man and Amazing Fantasy issues 16+.  The really trimming down will occur when there are multiple Spider-Man titles, which also brought in many unnecessary storylines.

Creators of the 1963-1966 Spider-Man Chronology era

What makes this, the first era of Spider-Man, is that it is entirely comprised of one team: creators Stan Lee and Steve Ditko.  Well, that may not be entirely true, as we are including Kurt Busiek’s Untold Tales of Spider-Man run into this era as well, though we (perhaps controversially) didn’t have any issues of this run make the cut as indispensable parts of the Spider-Man chronology.

Titles of the 1963-1966 Spider-Man Chronology era

Many would consider this Spider-Man Chronology era to, similar to its creators, be comprised of just one instance, The Amazing Spider-Man.  While it is nearly entirely that title, we would be remiss not to include Amazing Fantasy in the Spider-Man chronology, as well as the aforementioned Untold Tales of Spider-Man, which is a modern age title set in this current era.

Events of the 1963-1966 Spider-Man Chronology era

This part of the Spider-Man chronology is marked with the origin of many of Spider-Man’s important players: Peter Parker, Aunt May, Uncle Ben, Flash Thompson, Betty Brant, Jonah Jameson, John Jameson, Chameleon, Doc Ock, Vulture, Kraven, Sandman, Electro, Mysterio, Green Goblin and the Sinister Six, to name but a few.  Perhaps the most important event, asides from Spider-Man’s origin, is the three-part story “If this be my destiny!” which introduces Gwen and Harry Osborne and is the pinnacle of the Stan Lee and Steve Dikto Partnership.

Collections of the 1963-1966 Spider-Man Chronology era

 This is perhaps the run of comics in the Spider-Man chronology most available in trade paperback form.  You can find it in hardcover, softcover, newsprint, and even digital.  Here are a few of the most popular trades collecting this run:
spider-man chronology
Spider-Man Chronology in the Marvel Essentials Collection (Black and White Newsprint but Affordable):
Essential Amazing Spider-Man, Vol. 1 (Marvel Essentials) (v. 1)
Essential Amazing Spider-Man, Vol. 2 (Marvel Essentials) (v. 2)

Spider-Man Chronology in the Marvel Masterworks Collection (Paperback Color ):

The Amazing Spider-Man, Vol. 1 (Marvel Masterworks)
The Amazing Spider-Man, Vol. 2 (Marvel Masterworks)
The Amazing Spider-Man, Vol. 3 (Marvel Masterworks)
The Amazing Spider-Man, Vol. 4 (Marvel Masterworks)

Spider-Man Chronology in Hardcover (Untold Tales Only)

Untold Tales of Spider-Man Omnibus

The Indispensable Spider-Man Chronology 1963-1966

OrderYearAgeIssueCreatorsDetails**
0.501962SilverAmazing Fantasy #15 BUY ES1 OB1Stan Lee, DitkoBest! 1st Spider-Man**
1.011963SilverAmazing Spider-Man 1st series #1 BUY ES1 OB1Stan Lee, Ditko1st Chameleon, 1st Jonah, meets Fantastic Four**
2.011963SilverAmazing Spider-Man 1st series #2 BUY ES1 OB1Stan Lee, Ditko1st Vulture, 1st Tinkerer, Peter freelances for 1st time**
3.011963SilverAmazing Spider-Man 1st series #3 BUY ES1 OB1Stan Lee, Ditko1st Doc Ock**
4.011963SilverAmazing Spider-Man 1st series #4 BUY ES1 OB1Stan Lee, Ditko1st Sandman**
5.011963SilverAmazing Spider-Man 1st series #5 BUY ES1 OB1Stan Lee, DitkoDoom*
6.011963SilverAmazing Spider-Man 1st series #6 BUY ES1 OB1Stan Lee, Ditko1st Lizard, 1st Connors**
7.011963SilverAmazing Spider-Man 1st series #7 BUY ES1 OB1Stan Lee, DitkoPeter and Betty Brant get together, Vulture*
9.011964SilverAmazing Spider-Man 1st series #9 BUY ES1 OB1Stan Lee, Ditko1st Electro, May collapses**
10.011964SilverAmazing Spider-Man 1st series #10 BUY ES1 OB1Stan Lee, Ditko1st Enforcers, Betty Brant has a secret**
11.011964SilverAmazing Spider-Man 1st series #11 BUY ES1 OB1Stan Lee, DitkoBetty Brant's brother is killed, blames Spider-Man, 1st tracer, Doc Ock**
12.011964SilverAmazing Spider-Man 1st series #12 BUY ES1 OB1Stan Lee, DitkoRevealed! Spider-Man unmasked by Doc Ock**
13.011964SilverAmazing Spider-Man 1st series #13 BUY ES1 OB1Stan Lee, Ditko1st Mysterio**
14.011964SilverAmazing Spider-Man 1st series #14 BUY ES1 OB1Stan Lee, Ditko1st Green Goblin, Hulk**
15.011964SilverAmazing Spider-Man 1st series #15 BUY ES1 OB1Stan Lee, Ditko1st Kraven, 1st mention of MJ, Chameleon**
16.031964SilverAmazing Spider-Man Annual #1 BUY ES1 OB1Stan Lee, DitkoBest! 1st Sinister Six, Sandman, Vulture, Electro, Mysterio, Kraven, May meets Doc Ock**
17.011964SilverAmazing Spider-Man 1st series #17 BUY ES1 OB1Stan Lee, DitkoSpider-Man fan club, May collapses, Green Goblin*
18.011964SilverAmazing Spider-Man 1st series #18 BUY ES1 OB1Stan Lee, DitkoBest! Quits! Sandman, Aunt May recovers, Flash unmasked as Spidey**
19.011964SilverAmazing Spider-Man 1st series #19 BUY ES1 OB1Stan Lee, DitkoBest! 1st Ned Leeds, Sandman**
20.011965SilverAmazing Spider-Man 1st series #20 BUY ES1 OB1Stan Lee, Ditko1st Scorpion**
23.011965SilverAmazing Spider-Man 1st series #23 BUY ES2 OB1Stan Lee, DitkoGreen Goblin**
25.011965SilverAmazing Spider-Man 1st series #25 BUY ES2 OB1Stan Lee, Ditko1st Spider Slayer, Revealed! Spider-Slayer targets Peter, Aunt May finds costume, 1st MJ Watson - face hidden**
26.011965SilverAmazing Spider-Man 1st series #26 BUY ES2 OB1Stan Lee, DitkoBest! Green Goblin vs. Master of Crime**
27.011965SilverAmazing Spider-Man 1st series #27 BUY ES2 OB1Stan Lee, DitkoBest! Green Goblin vs. Master of Crime**
28.011965SilverAmazing Spider-Man 1st series #28 BUY ES2 OB1Stan Lee, DitkoPeter Parker Graduates High School, 1st Molten Man**
29.011965SilverAmazing Spider-Man 1st series #29 BUY ES2 OB1Stan Lee, DitkoNed Leeds returns from Europe, Scorpion*
30.011965SilverAmazing Spider-Man 1st series #30 BUY ES2 OB1Stan Lee, DitkoPeter and Betty Break Up**
31.011965SilverAmazing Spider-Man 1st series #31 BUY ES2 OB1Stan Lee, DitkoBest! If This Be My Destiny, 1st Gwen Stacy, Harry Osborn, Doc Ock, Aunt May faints**
32.011966SilverAmazing Spider-Man 1st series #32 BUY ES2 OB1Stan Lee, DitkoBest! If This Be My Destiny, Doc Ock, Connors moves t New York**
33.011966SilverAmazing Spider-Man 1st series #33 BUY ES2 OB1Stan Lee, DitkoBest! If This Be My Destiny, Doc Ock, Connors, Aunt may needs blood**
36.011966SilverAmazing Spider-Man 1st series #36 BUY ES2 OB1Stan Lee, DitkoGwen tries to get Peter's attention, 1st Looter*
37.011966SilverAmazing Spider-Man 1st series #37 BUY ES2 OB1Stan Lee, Ditko1st Norman Osborn, Green Goblin, 1st Stromm**

As with all of our lists, we invite you to share your thoughts on what should or shouldn’t be included, and to what degree.  Drop us a line in the comments for changes to this era, which will be reflected in our larger Spider-Man Chronology list here:

Click Here For the complete Spider-Man Chronology

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