Spider-Man: Homecoming is right around the corner. This highly anticipated third relaunching of the Spider-Man cinematic franchise sees the birth of a big screen partnership between Sony Pictures and Marvel Studios that has many fans hoping that Tom Holland’s version of Peter Parker will have some staying power. Given his upswing in popularity following a brief appearance in Captain America: Civil War, the groundwork seems to have been laid for a successful solo film.
Spider-Man has undergone a lot of growth since that original Sam Raimi movie hit big screens in 2002 and even more since his debut in comics in 1962. For people interested in learning more about the boy behind the mask, narrowing down a list of titles covered in adjectives can be a daunting task. As with all comic book characters there is as much good as bad. (Be honest: how interested ARE you in clones…?)
But there are a few traits that unite the very best Spider-Man stories ever told. They revolve around emotion and they revolve around family. Now, “family” may not always mean the nuclear version that you might traditionally think of, but it runs deep through the webslinger’s tales. You might think of Spidey has mouthy and jokey – and he is those things – but he’s also living up to the legacy of a ghost that can never meet. At his core, he is a very tragic hero.
In the hopes of spreading the Spider-Man love and highlighting some of Peter Parker’s most important moments of personal and heroic growth, we have compiled a list of…