The Forgotten Amazing Fantasy Stories

By | Wednesday, March 08, 2023 Leave a Comment
Amazing Fantasy #15 is, of course, famous for the debut of Spider-Man. The story has been reprinted quite often, and I'm sure many visitors to this site know it well. But the original Spider-Man story only takes up half of the issue. The second half features a series of short mystery tales, also by Stan Lee and Steve Ditko. So if you haven't seen them, here's the back half of Amazing Fantasy #15 that you never hear about...

Interestingly, the two stories with the particularly unnecessary splash pages ("Man in the Mummy Case" and "Martians Are Among Us") were created before the Spider-Man story, according to their job numbers. Which suggests to me that Lee found he was two pages short when he was writing the stories -- possibly due to the new format stemming from the Spidey tale -- and had Ditko draw up what amounts to a filler page for each to pad out the issue. As "The Bell-Ringer" already had a three-quarter splash with some of the story running across the bottom, adding filler to the other two stories made the most sense. That's all idle conjecture on my part, but you have to admit that those two splash pages look pretty out-of-place relative to the rest of the issue, and the layout of the "Martians" one looks unusually awkward for Ditko. I wonder if anyone's done any actual research into those pages.
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