Spider-Man (lost original design made by Jack Kirby of Marvel Comics character; 1962)

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Spider-Man comic.jpg

An image of the first public appearance of Spider-Man in the media.

Status: Lost

Spider-Man is a famous American comic character designed by Steve Ditko and Stan Lee in 1962 known for his full-face mask with large eyes and his red and black costume that features a spider web pattern and his ability to shoot spider web through his wrists. Despite his famous design being mostly attributed to Steve Ditko, he didn’t always look like this, and his first design was actually made by comic book artist Jack Kirby and it featured several different characteristics that were never used.


Spider-Man’s first appearance was first introduced in the issue of Amazing Fantasy #15 and it was first written by Stan Lee, planned to be designed by Jack Kirby and Steve Ditko was in charge of the inking of this comic. During the production stage of the character, Jack Kirby presented to Stan Lee the first design of the superhero, consisting of a muscular man that featured a half-face mask that exposed the mouth and jaw of the character similar to Captain America, another character that was designed by Kirby, a chest with a design similar to Ant-Man and also carried a gun that it was meant to shoot spider web through it. Lee rejected this design and several conflicts arose about the character’s design and its story.

Stan Lee then decided to fully discard this design and hand the work of visuals to Steve Ditko, who would later introduce a more childish-looking Spider-Man that would later become the version of the character used for the comic and that is still used in modern media.[1]

Hoax Image

Mock-up design of Spider-Man wrongly attributed to Kirby.

In 2012, an alleged image of the Jack Kirby version of Spider-Man surfaced online and it was considered to be the long lost sketches. This image would later be debunked by superhero comics fans who identified that said image actually came from the splash page of Tales of Astonish #51 and it was of the character Giant Man that was altered to look like the description of the lost drawings.[2]


While none of the pages that Jack Kirby did of the character in his early design remains available[3], we have a drawing made by Steve Ditko depicting how the early design was before being changed[1]