Friday, June 17, 2011

1984 - The Official Marvel Index to the Amazing Spider-Man

Loved this series as it was a great way to catch up on years of history. The wrap-around covers were always eye catching and done by some of Spidey's most amazing artists!

Cover by John Byrne
Unpublished cover to Amazing Fantasy by Steve Ditko
Beautiful wrap-around by John Romita Sr.


  1. Growing up, after making the switch from DC to Marvel, Spider-Man was hands-down my favorite ... looking back, to be the Big M's flagship title, Spidey had very few really talented artists working on the book. A lot of workaday, pedestrian artists like Ross Andru, Vince Colletta, Keith Pollard, Jim Mooney ... There were a couple of Frank Miller annuals, and John Byrne had a nice little run on Marvel Team-Up, but no real big names worked on the character for years. I'm not a huge fan of JR JR, but he was at least a step above some of the mediocrity.

  2. I was a staffer at Marvel during those indexes and I remember those covers! It seemed like all the cover artists had a lot of fun drawing them. As for the last comment, Andru and Pollard were very good and they were inked by top guys. I guess it's personal taste.

  3. Hi Don, welcome to the blog and thanks for sharing!

  4. Was any reason given why issue #10 of this wasn't released? I'm pretty sure at the end of issue #9 it said that issue 10 would be printed in the future, and it also announced a Spectacular Spider-Man index which I don't think was ever produced either.
    Great blog by the way!

  5. Hey Craig, thanks for the kind words. Good question, I'll have to dig those issues out and check. The Spectacular Spidey index sounds familiar as well...

  6. I remember seeing an answer to this some time ago and I managed to track it down on the site. Another person named Craig asked:

    At the end of the ninth issue of the Official Marvel Index to the Amazing Spider-Man, there's a blurb that reads "Issue #10 will be published later as the first index update, and will begin with the entry for Amazing Spider-Man #215. In the interim, the Index to Spider-Man's adventures will continue with THE OFFICAL MARVEL INDEX TO MARVEL TEAM-UP FEATURING SPIDER-MAN and THE OFFICIAL MARVEL INDEX TO PETER PARKER, THE SPECTACULAR SPIDER-MAN."
    Well sir, I've never seen them, they aren't on your awesome site either (I see they did indeed release a Marvel Team-Up index). Is it safe to assume that this 10th issue and Peter Parker index series were never released (and if so would you know why?), or should I just wait another 20 years?
    I loved the Indexes as well, Craig, but as you surmised, no more were produced. The main man behind the Indexes, George Olshevsky, moved on to indexing Avengers and X-Men. By the time those were done, there just wasn't the interest needed to complete the Spider-Man series.

    Here`s the link:

    Great blog by the way Jason!

  7. The index had fantastic covers, and a wealth of detail. In fact, that may have been the problem, coupled with the standars comic format. A 32 page comic,with basically a wall of text broken up by smallish reproductions of the cover, didn't exactly jump off the rack.It took about as long to read each entry as it would have taken to read the actual comic!
    A year or so after Marvel pulled the plug on the indexes, Eclipse Comics tried a line of DC indexes, using the same basic layout and format that Olshevsky had used for these(Eclipse gave Olshevsky credit as a 'consultant', or something, so there were no concerns about them 'stealing' the format).
    The Eclipse indexes were in a similar format, but on better paper, and contained (much) less detailed plot summaries, which allowed them to cover more issues than Marvel, in the same amount of space.
    Eclipse's line also died quickly, making it all the way through the Justice League, as well as a pair of one-shots for 'Crisis on Infinite Earths'(main series and crossovers; for the Crisis volume, they set aside their rule, and went for the longer, minutely-detailed plot summaries; the Crossover Index had an even more bare-bones description for each issue, on the assumption that Eclipse would do a full entry for every DC series at some point.



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