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Old 07-06-18, 07:48 PM   #1
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Steve Ditko has passed away

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JULY 06, 2018 4:29pm PT by Andy Lewis
Steve Ditko, Spider-Man Co-Creator and Legendary Comics Artist, Dies at 90
He also created Doctor Strange with Stan Lee during his years at Marvel.
Artist Steve Ditko, who co-created Spider-Man and Doctor Strange with Stan Lee, has died at age 90.

The New York Police Department confirmed his death to The Hollywood Reporter. No cause of death was announced. Ditko was found dead in his apartment on June 29 and it is believed he died about two days earlier.

In 1961, Ditko and Lee created Spider-Man. Lee, the editor-in-chief at Marvel Comics, gave Ditko the assignment after he wasn't satisfied with Jack Kirby's take on the idea of a teen superhero with spider powers. The look of Spider-Man — the costume, the web shooters, the red and blue design — all came from Ditko. Spider-Man first appeared in Amazing Fantasy No. 15. The comic was an unexpected hit and the character was spun off into The Amazing Spider-Man. Ditko helped create such classic Spider-Man characters as Doctor Octopus, Sandman, the Lizard, and Green Goblin. Starting with issue No. 25 Ditko received a plot credit in addition to his artist credit. Ditko's run ended with issue No. 38.

In 1963, Ditko created the surreal and psychedelic hero Doctor Strange. The character debuted in Strange Tales No. 110 and Ditko continued on the comic through issue No. 146, cover dated July 1966.

After that Ditko, left Marvel Comics over a fight with Lee, the causes of which have always remained murky. The pair had not been on speaking terms for several years. Ditko never explained his side and Lee claimed not to really know what motivated Ditko's exit. The best explanation suggests Ditko was frustrated at Lee's oversight and his failure to properly share credit for Ditko's contributions to Spider-Man and Doctor Strange.

Ditko went on to work for Charlton, DC Comics and other small independent publishers. He returned to Marvel in 1979, where he worked on Machine Man and the Micronatus and he continued working for them as a freelancer in the 1990s. Among his last creations was Squirrel Girl in 1992, who has become a cult favorite in recent years.

After his work at Marvel, Ditko is probably best known for creating Mr. A in 1967. The character embodied Ayn Rand's objectivist philosophy, which Ditko was an ardent believer in.

The reclusive Ditko was known as the "J.D. Salinger" of comics. From the 1970s on, he rarely spoke on the record, declining almost every interview request. He sat out the publicity booms that accompanied the Spider-Man films and the Doctor Strange movie.

“We didn’t approach him. He’s like J.D. Salinger. He is private and has intentionally stayed out of the spotlight like J.D. Salinger," Doctor Strange director Scott Derrickson told THR in 2016. "I hope he goes to see the movie wherever he is, because I think we paid homage to his work."

Ditko maintained a Manhattan studio until his death, where he continued to write and draw, though how much and what unpublished material remain is unknown.

Stephen J. Ditko was born in Johnstown, Pennsylvania on Nov. 2, 1927. His father worked at a steel mill and his mother was a homemaker. He developed an interest in comics from his father (who loved Prince Valiant) and from Batman and the Spirit, which both debuted as he entered his teens.

After graduating high school, Ditko served in the army in post-war Germany, drawing for a military paper. After being discharged, he moved to New York City in 1950 and studied under Batman artist Jerry Robinson at the Cartoonists and Illustrators School (later the school of Visual Arts).

By 1953, Ditko was getting work as a professional comics artist, including at the studio of Captain America creators Joe Simon and Jack Kirby. Ditko came down with tuberculosis in 1954 and spent the next year recovering in Johnststonw. He began drawing for Marvel Comics forerunner Atlas Comics in 1955. He had a successful collaboration with Stan Lee at first, as the pair worked on a number of science fiction stories together.

Ditko has no known survivors. He is believed never to have married.
https://www.hollywoodreporter.com/he...was-90-1125489

It's sad that he was found 2 days after he passed away, but that's the way he lived his life.
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Old 07-06-18, 08:04 PM   #2
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Re: Steve Ditko has passed away

Oh shit, that's very sad news. RIP Mr. Ditko.
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Old 07-06-18, 08:09 PM   #3
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Re: Steve Ditko has passed away

Aw, damn. Ditko has always been one of my all-time favorite Spider-man artists. I really feel his style matched the early Spidey world perfectly. Sad to hear the news.
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Old 07-06-18, 08:25 PM   #4
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Re: Steve Ditko has passed away

Ditko was an "amazing" artist. I had always wished his run on the Spider-man comic was much, much longer.
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Old 07-06-18, 08:31 PM   #5
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Re: Steve Ditko has passed away

I don't even have words for how I feel about this.
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Old 07-06-18, 10:05 PM   #6
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Re: Steve Ditko has passed away

I discovered Dr. Strange and Spiderman in the summer of 1965 and Ditko was drawing both of them. I'll always give props to Marvel for letting us know who the artists were.
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Old 07-07-18, 12:44 AM   #7
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Re: Steve Ditko has passed away

RIP. He truly advanced 'comic book' art.
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Old 07-07-18, 12:59 AM   #8
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Re: Steve Ditko has passed away

A true legend in the industry!

Thanks for the great times as a kid reading Marvel Tales (old Spider-Man reprints).
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Old 07-07-18, 02:10 AM   #9
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Re: Steve Ditko has passed away

On a technical level, his artwork was primitive and a little sloppy.

On an artistic level his artwork was amazing.

His style was unique and immediately identifiable. His art perfectly told the stories that he and Stan were trying to tell. And the full page art in ASM #33 where Spidey is lifting the equipment so he can get free is my single favorite panel of his entire career - and one of my favorites of all time.

I think it's a shame that he and Stan had a falling out, but I think it's more of a shame that he didn't seem interested in how his art affected comic readers for decades. He was so reclusive that it's easy to imagine that he had no idea just how beloved he was. His work on ASM and Doctor Strage really defined what those characters were all about.

He will be missed.
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Old 07-07-18, 02:25 AM   #10
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Re: Steve Ditko has passed away

By the way, Amazing Spider-Man 31-33 is one of the greatest Spidey stories of all time, and a HUGE part of that is Ditko's artwork.



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Old 07-07-18, 10:32 AM   #11
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Re: Steve Ditko has passed away

My favorite work of his was the original The Creeper series at DC around 1968. The writing wasn't the best but the art was WOW!
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Old 07-07-18, 11:11 AM   #12
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Re: Steve Ditko has passed away

Big loss. One of the giants. RIP.
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Old 07-07-18, 05:21 PM   #13
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Re: Steve Ditko has passed away

RIP

His style on those early Amazing Spider-man comics really stood out compared to everything else at the time.
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Old 07-07-18, 05:27 PM   #14
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Re: Steve Ditko has passed away

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Old 07-07-18, 09:23 PM   #15
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Re: Steve Ditko has passed away

I've always wondered how Spider-Man would have progressed under Ditko if he hadn't gotten upset with Stan Lee and left. I give Ditko the bulk of the credit for Spider-Man's creation, a character that will outlive everyone reading this forum. The comic world would have been drastically different if Ditko hadn't left his mark on Marvel during the 1960s.

There aren't many of the early comic book legends still living. It's amazing that Stan Lee might outlast all of them.
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Old 07-08-18, 02:39 AM   #16
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Re: Steve Ditko has passed away

Didn't Ditko quit Spider-Man over the reveal Green Goblin's identity? Lee revealed him to be Norman Osborne, whereas Ditko wanted him to be an unknown person, and he walked off the series because of that. Or maybe it's just an unconfirmed rumor.
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Old 07-08-18, 03:39 PM   #17
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Re: Steve Ditko has passed away

My understanding was that the split came about because of the tone of the book. Stan Lee wanted it to be more fun while Ditko wanted to be more serious. Apparently, this was also around the time that Ditko became a more fervent believer in Ayn Rand's Objectivism.
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Old 07-08-18, 04:00 PM   #18
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Re: Steve Ditko has passed away

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Originally Posted by Josh-da-man View Post
Didn't Ditko quit Spider-Man over the reveal Green Goblin's identity? Lee revealed him to be Norman Osborne, whereas Ditko wanted him to be an unknown person, and he walked off the series because of that. Or maybe it's just an unconfirmed rumor.
I think that move was the final straw for Ditko, but problems had been brewing for awhile before it.
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Old 07-08-18, 09:46 PM   #19
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Re: Steve Ditko has passed away



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Old 07-08-18, 11:34 PM   #20
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Re: Steve Ditko has passed away

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Originally Posted by PhantomStranger View Post
I've always wondered how Spider-Man would have progressed under Ditko if he hadn't gotten upset with Stan Lee and left. I give Ditko the bulk of the credit for Spider-Man's creation, a character that will outlive everyone reading this forum. The comic world would have been drastically different if Ditko hadn't left his mark on Marvel during the 1960s.

There aren't many of the early comic book legends still living. It's amazing that Stan Lee might outlast all of them.
In the early days of comics there almost always was a dispute between the writer and the artist as to who deserved the most credit for the creation of the character. Siegel and Shuster were the rare exception in those days. As for Ditko's art design's for how spider-man would look--well........

Maybe he didn't rip off the look of the other villians or character's in Spider-man's world, but clearlywith Spider-man, that wasn't the case. There is no way the similiar look between these two characters is coincidental.
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Old 07-09-18, 12:18 AM   #21
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Re: Steve Ditko has passed away

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Originally Posted by movieguru View Post
In the early days of comics there almost always was a dispute between the writer and the artist as to who deserved the most credit for the creation of the character. Siegel and Shuster were the rare exception in those days. As for Ditko's art design's for how spider-man would look--well........https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZiDCxKqD5Mo

Maybe he didn't rip off the look of the other villians or character's in Spider-man's world, but clearlywith Spider-man, that wasn't the case. There is no way the similiar look between these two characters is coincidental.
Holy crap, that video is impossible to watch with the sound on ...

If Ditko ripped the look from a costume, he changed it enough to avoid copyright infringement, OTOH a web motif for a spider-themed costume is basically the first thing anyone would think of ...
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Old 07-09-18, 12:51 AM   #22
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Re: Steve Ditko has passed away

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Holy crap, that video is impossible to watch with the sound on ...

If Ditko ripped the look from a costume, he changed it enough to avoid copyright infringement, OTOH a web motif for a spider-themed costume is basically the first thing anyone would think of ...
A web motiff is one thing, but the black surrounding the eyes, the spider in nearly the same spot on the chest, the lack of the webbing right where the nose is, and the webs are missing on part of Spider-Man's arm just like the Halloween costume which is colored or black just like from AF #15.

Don't get me wrong, I liked Ditko's art from the early Spidey comics, but there's is no doubt he very heavily borrowed many elements for his Spider-Man from Ben Cooper's Halloween costume.
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Old 07-09-18, 04:39 AM   #23
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Re: Steve Ditko has passed away

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Originally Posted by movieguru View Post
There is no way the similiar look between these two characters is coincidental.
Quote:
Originally Posted by movieguru View Post
Don't get me wrong, I liked Ditko's art from the early Spidey comics, but there's is no doubt he very heavily borrowed many elements for his Spider-Man from Ben Cooper's Halloween costume.
I don't want to believe this...
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Old 07-09-18, 10:23 AM   #24
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Re: Steve Ditko has passed away

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A web motiff is one thing, but the black surrounding the eyes, the spider in nearly the same spot on the chest, the lack of the webbing right where the nose is, and the webs are missing on part of Spider-Man's arm just like the Halloween costume which is colored or black just like from AF #15.

Don't get me wrong, I liked Ditko's art from the early Spidey comics, but there's is no doubt he very heavily borrowed many elements for his Spider-Man from Ben Cooper's Halloween costume.
Maybe. IF he ever saw it. Ditko had no children. By the 1950's he was way too old to be concerned with Halloween costumes. Maybe he saw one if he lived in a neighborhood where kids trick or treated, maybe he didn't. Maybe he saw an ad for the costumes, maybe he didn't. It's a stretch to say that he remembered something he maybe glanced at 5 or 6 years earlier when designing Spider-Man's costume, but it's not impossible.

I tend to think it's just a remarkable coincidence given the facts of Steve's life as we know them.
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Old 07-09-18, 11:13 AM   #25
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Re: Steve Ditko has passed away

For those who have missed this before

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