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Why Do We Celebrate Spider-Man Day on (Probably) the Wrong Day?

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Where the greatest story in comics first began, nearly 60 years ago.
Where the greatest story in comics first began, nearly 60 years ago.
Image: Jack Kirby and Steve Ditko

Every August 1, social media lights up in celebration of one of comics’ greatest heroes: the amazing, spectacular, ultimate, and every so often sensational Spider-Man. It does so because August 1 is “Spider-Man Day,” a celebration of the character’s debut in August 1962’s Amazing Fantasy #15. But why do we celebrate it on August 1 specifically?

Although Amazing Fantasy #15’s iconic cover is simply emblazoned with an August release date, the comic itself was probably not first released to unsuspecting readers—unaware of its moment in history, or how, in hindsight, deeply silly it is for Peter Parker to just be yelling his hidden identity like that in public—on August 1. Even going to Marvel’s own site and digging through its archives tells us that, according to Spidey’s own publisher, the issue first released on August 10, 1962. But in all likelihood, Amazing Fantasy #15 didn’t come out on that day, either.

In fact, it may have been off shelves at that point—and people had already been reading the heroic origins of the amazing Spider-Man for a good while before it. As Brian Cronin wrote for CBR a few years ago, the history of comic book cover dates at the time Amazing Fantasy #15 was hitting shelves has a much different connotation in comparison to how we see monthly issues released today.

Back in the golden and silver age of comics—and, as Cronin wrote, well into the ‘90s before the mainstream publisher’s retreat into the direct market distribution to comic book stores—comic books were primarily sold at newsstands, alongside papers and magazines. What that meant is they also followed along with the same distribution practices as those periodicals: they’d come into a newsstand, be available for a few weeks or months, and then any copies left would be sent back to the publisher and replaced with new stock.

To help indicate when an issue should be sent back to the distributor, the cover date was for retailers, not regular readers: to let them know what month it was time to take that issue off shelves, not when it should be put on them. Most periodicals, including comics, had a three-month stay before those issues were pulled. Which means a comic like Amazing Fantasy #15 with an August 1962 cover date could’ve actually started appearing on shelves across the U.S. as early as May. According to copyright indicia for the issue on the inside of Amazing Fantasy #15, it was actually meant to have a September cover date—meaning it would’ve actually been closer to June, matching up with other copyrights for the issue with a publishing date of June 5, 1962.

The full cover to the retitled Amazing Fantasy #15—ultimately the last issue of the series, in spite of Spider-Man’s success. The Amazing Spider-Man would kick off just seven months later.
The full cover to the retitled Amazing Fantasy #15—ultimately the last issue of the series, in spite of Spider-Man’s success. The Amazing Spider-Man would kick off just seven months later.
Image: Jack Kirby and Steve Ditko

All this started in the decades after Amazing Fantasy #15’s release, when Marvel and DC began to lean more on distribution directly through comic shops, which would release issues earlier than newsstands could and had a higher turnover than the usual 2-3 month cycle. As Cronin explored, this evolving relationship with what would become known as the direct market—which we still see major comics publishers primarily dealing with today for monthly releases, give or take the occasional global pandemic shaking things up—led to cover dates at Marvel getting an overhaul in the late ‘80s, giving them only a two-month window instead of three.

Nowadays, Marvel doesn’t even put cover dates on its comics. In an age where the direct market is pretty much the only major avenue for monthly releases and where digital is more important than ever, the rotating shelves of general stores and newsagents aren’t really of import to its comics (although there are still publishers who distribute Marvel stories in those markets, like Archie Comics’ digest releases). But even with cover dates lost to time, and their original meaning long out of need, it’s funny how, from an archival perspective—when it comes to celebrating the enduring nature of creations which have stood the test of time—they still carry a semblance of weight, albeit without their original context.

So why did we pick August 1 as Spider-Man day, if his game-changing origins swung onto shelves months prior? It’s most likely because it’s the easiest option, given the vagueness of old comic book covers. But maybe we should just embrace that vagueness and give Spider-Man and his amazing friends (across the whole spider-verse) a whole month of celebration anyway. They’re worth it!


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Source : Gizmodo Read More

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Charge Your Phone Wirelessly With 50% off a Multifunctional LED Lamp

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Best Tech DealsBest Tech DealsThe best tech deals from around the web, updated daily.

White Wireless Charge Lamp | $18 | Amazon | Clip coupon + code ABC88699
Black Wireless Charger Lamp | $20 | Amazon | Promo code ABC88699

When you’re ready to turn in for the night, you don’t want to forget to charge your phone— especially if your mobile device doubles as your alarm clock.

With this wireless charger lamp, you can make this crucial step of your nightly routine even easier by just setting your phone on the wireless charging pad and… well, that’s all there is to it!

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Other functions include multiple lighting modes as well as a sleep timer option for auto shut-off of the light after 30 or 60 minutes.

This lamp can be yours in white for $18 if you clip the coupon on Amazon (it’s below the original $40 price) and add promo code ABC88699 at checkout.

You can snag the black version for $20 using the same code—no coupon though, sorry.

Don’t sleep on this deal! Who knows how long stock or the coupon code will last?

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Keep That Hotdish Hot With 65% Off a Luncia Casserole Carrier, Only $11 With Promo Code

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Best Home DealsBest Home DealsThe best home, kitchen, smart home, and automotive deals from around the web, updated daily.

Luncia Double-Decker Dish Carrier | $11 | Amazon | Promo code SDDU9S7F

It has been a long time since the days we could safely have a potluck or other gatherings, but we have a fantastic deal perfect for once those times return. These double-decker Luncia dish carriers can be had for 65% off when you add promo code SDDU9S7F at checkout and clip the coupon on the site (it’s just below the price). These holders fit 9″x 13″ sized baking dishes.

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That means you can insulate and keep two dishes of food warm for only $11 instead of $30. What’s more, your Luncia carrier will arrive by Christmas if you order today as a Prime member.

Just add promo code SDDU9S7F and clip the 5% off coupon to bring the price down to $11 for the blue or the grey option.

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Grab this offer while it’s still around!


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Conquer Your Pup’s Dander and Fur With $700 Off a Cobalt or Charcoal Bobsweep PetHair Plus Robot Vacuum

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Best Home DealsBest Home DealsThe best home, kitchen, smart home, and automotive deals from around the web, updated daily.

Bobsweep PetHair Plus Robot Vacuum & Mop (Cobalt) | $200 | Best Buy

Bobsweep PetHair Plus Robot Vacuum & Mop (Charcoal) | $200 | Best Buy

Allergies can be bad enough as the seasons change. Don’t let pet hair and dander add to that by vacuuming it up early and often. That chore is easier said than done— unless you have a robot vacuum to do the work for you. This lovely bright cobalt Bobsweep PetHair Plus robot vacuum and mop, only $200 today at Best Buy seems like an ideal option. That’s a whopping $700 off, by the way.

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You can get the same deal for the charcoal version of the robot vac, too. This model is not only specially made for picking up pet hair, it self docks and charges when it’s finished with the work.

It also comes with a mop attachment, so it can take care of those kitchen floors for you as well. Grab it while it’s still available for this fantastic price!

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