Amazing Spider-Man designs

No, I have not seen the Amazing Spider-Man yet. Yes, I know it is getting rave reviews and made lots of money. I am a big fan of the character (esp the Ditko run) and avidly follow the series today so I am eager to check it out. When I do, watch this space for the best review ever.

In the making of these big budget movies, lots of decisions get made for various reasons. Along the way some beautiful artwork gets lost in the shuffle. The most appealing of these ‘almost-designs’ that didn’t make it is of Spider-Man by the legendary Alex Ross.

Spider-Man designed by Alex Ross

In the meantime, I thought it would be interesting to see some of the initial designs that were passed on by the Aaron Sims Company (click on the link for many more amazing designs). The same studio also designed creatures and costumes seen in Green Lantern, Black Swan, Wrath of the Titans, Rise of the Planet of the Apes, Sucker Punch, Transformers 3 and The Thing and their body of work is impressive.

From these images it is clear that the studio was trying to push the envelope on how far the design of the Spider-Man costume could go and how horrific the Lizard could appear on screen. Based on the outcome, what’s your opinion? Did the better designs win out or was gold left on the drawing table?

Below are a few samples:

Spider-Man- 1

Spider-Man- 2

Spider-Man- 3

Spider-Man- 4

17 year-old Spider-Man

The Lizard Vs. Spider-Man

The Lizard – 1

The Lizard – 2

The Lizard – 3

8 thoughts on “Amazing Spider-Man designs

  1. I’m not anti-change, but Spider-Man has a pretty good costume. There have been minor tweaks over the years, but the traditional look is still my favorite. I didn’t hate the black/alien costume… but that one doesn’t make sense in a movie as people miss out on knowing that it was patterned after a Spider-Woman costume that came before it.

    I really just like traditional Spidey as a costume design. I also miss the olden days where Peter had to sew it himself… he couldn’t just get them off the rack or have someone make them for him to order… his original costume was hand-sewn, and from a teenage boy that was pretty good work (if slightly unbelievable I suppose).

    The movie costume just screams “where did a teenage kid get that from?” whenever I see it. No way he makes that in his room that quickly. I’m not complaining that much, but it is a touch I miss. I do like this new movie bringing back the invented web-shooters rather the organic ones. I always liked the smart boy-genius aspect of the original Lee/Ditko Spidey that has gotten lost at times over the years.

    There’s a reason for the balance of red/blue too… it just works better when the balance is right… not too much of either color. I also remember reading before of how the good guys were red/blue traditionally, and the bad guys got the complimentary colors from the original 3-color printing process. This is why we get Superman red/blu and Lex Luthor purple/green. Similar purple/green with the Joker… and lots of Spidey villains like the Lizard and Green Goblin.

    The Hulk was a twist… green w/ purple shorts put him in the “bad guy” print colors, but he wasn’t a bad guy at all.


  2. That third Spider-Man image is godawful, why’s he wearing Stripper Boots (or are they red stockings?!)?! I wish they’d stuck to the comic book version of the lizard, he should be wearing torn purple pants and a lab coat! Why he have to be naked, Mommy, me am real scared, now!
    As an aside, to put Peter with a girl straight away misses the point but then so does the skateboard nonsense and the basketball stuff that they seem to have ripped off from Teen Wolf. As for the re-telling of the origin – YAWWWN! Reviews have been mixed for good reason. It’s tiresome that Peter is turned into a dreamy marshmallow to make him more marketable, he is meant to be awkward, the fun-loving, wise-cracking Spidey is as much a mask as anything else while he couldn’t care less about being “Kool” as is true of every right-minded person. Yeah. What it is. Heh. Fie on their Spider-Man he’s not-so Amazing! That said, some of the scenes with Peter as Webhead really bring to mind the wise-cracker of yore. Next time they’ll need a better script.
    P. S. What *is* it with their obsession with trilogies, is there any reason that there must be just three? Idjits.


    • I said that in the Iron Man post… If all they can do is a trilogy… fine… but it sure seems like they are planning trilogies now and done, even if they could go for more… it sure looks like the plan is 3 and done.

      Meanwhile, we get a half dozen or more Saw, Friday the 13th, Halloween, Nightmare on Elm St, etc. movies. Don’t get me wrong, I like those… some more than others… but they keep pumping those out as long as sales are good… I wish they would leave the door open for the Super-Hero movies.


    • Hal, you’re just dead wrong.
      You said they’re turning Peter into a dreamy marshmallow to make him more marketable–Now I ask: Have you ever read Stan Lee and Steve Ditko’s run? Or even John Romita’s?? Girls were always fawning over him!! They even call him dreamy! So I’d say this is pretty accurate.


  3. Great Minds Think Alike, SJV ;). It really makes no sense to stop at three, Lord of the Rings, Back to the Future, and even the original Star Wars trilogy ended up telling a single linked-story (and in Rings case it was down to the novels which Tolkien intended to be one long epic anyway) but that isn’t true of most of these films. Nolan is turning his Batman films into a trilogy because he doesn’t want to do any more and doesn’t want anyone playing with his toys, even though it’s rather illogical in terms of the amount of time Bruce Wayne spends as Batman (as an aside and despite the praise they’ve received both Nolan Batman films are flawed and pretentious, after all Begins spends the entire movie setting up a status quo which *Knight* then spends a whole film destroying and the new status quo will last for *one* picture in which Bats – who is considered a murdering outlaw, remember – may die, so erm he doesn’t get to *do* a lot does he?!) similarly there’s no real reason for Iron Man or Amazing Spider-Man to be trilogies other than corporate cowardice and backwards thinking, why don’t they just get another actor to take the lead if say Downey doesn’t want to do anymore? As it is the movie versions of superheroes don’t seem to do a lot, at least in the Burton Batman movies and the Salkind Superman films you got the sense that they had adventures outside the flicks themselves which makes sense and is closer to the comics. It makes no sense. Rant Ends Now 🙂


    • Yeah… with the earlier Batman “quadrilogy” I thought it was actually fine that we went from Michael Keaton to Val Kilmer and then finally to George Clooney. Those actor changes weren’t the reason the movies bit… IF there was a better script in play, there’s no reason a movie series can’t just continue with new actors.

      Soap operas do it all the time… and in comics, we are used to seeing a new artist make the characters look different over time.

      My biggest gripe about the “trilogy” plan… is that it results in us never getting around to more stories. Every time they “reboot” they do an origin again… and while sometimes it is fine… that’s one whole movie of each new trilogy that really doesn’t cover new plot. Just look at the rich comic history of DC and Marvel characters that goes back to the 1960s (for Marvel and Silver age DC) and 1930s for DC and a couple of Timely (Marvel) characters. There is SOO much gold to mine for stories, but they literally take 2 steps forward and then one step back each time they reboot!

      I don’t think movie fans are stupid either… I don’t think they need an origin story every time you reboot. They can watch Spider-Man and say “oh, I get it”… then Amazing Spider-Man wouldn’t really have to start there at all… It might be good… but imagine if in the comics they do a 6-part story, then have to do the character origin again after every couple of 6-part stories… how long would you stick with that comic?

      Consider something even with limited history… The Walking Dead just hit issue 100 today. Two seasons on TV takes you through about 12 issues of the comic in total + a few tidbits from the next 8, though not the major plot points. So maybe in a couple more seasons we will be around issue 30-40 or so… That’s still only half the story told to date in the comics (and more still to come)… so imagine if the network suits decided 4-5 seasons were enough and they wanted to “reboot”… We’d never get the rest of the story!

      That’s the shame of the movie trilogy… IF you create a movie character or story, fine… like Star Wars… or if you take something finite (like JRR Tolkien’s “ring” series) where there are no more books… then that’s fine too… but when you have 50-75 years of history… why on earth would you limit yourself to a trilogy?

      Just keep mining the good Batman, Superman, Spider-Man, Avengers, etc. etc. stories and if the actors and directors want to move on… ok, recast and move forward. There are countless stories I would love to see in a movie that we will never approach because they keep wasting movies on origins.

      On a tangent… in the modern era, I would also love to see some alternate universe and crossover stories. Why couldn’t DC have a movie like some of their comics and have a movie with Nolan’s Batman meeting Burton’s Batman? Or how about Toby McGuire’s Spider-Man meeting the new guy? Even if the older actors age out a bit, those movies still are possible, you can always have a crossover with young vs old in an alternate universe. Just another example of things that could be awesome if the suits would open up to possibilities.


  4. Excellent points, SJV. You are so right about the lack of story created by the 1 – 2 – 3 then-do-it-all-over-again approach. I also think that although Amazing Spider-Man has got quite a lot of praise for its characterisation and backstory, in actuality a lot of it is poorly written (oh look he spends the movie in school zzzz, oh he’s in an romance with Gwen *already* zzzz, ooh what happened to his parents? Well, even the makers don’t know, apparently zzzz, oh, I wonder what’ll happen to Uncle Ben before the end?! Zzzz) and draggy; it’s an okay film but not enough happens! I’m going to commit blasphemy and say that tho’ I liked Batman Begins well enough, I found The Dark Knight not bad but pretentious and underneath the supposed complexity rather thin and smug. So to see it hailed as a work of genius was annoying, particularly as it negated the ending of Begins. I found the convolutions of the ending with Bruce framing himself so that Harvey Dent could remain a source of hope was pretty dumb, particularly because Dent wasn’t convincingly written while Aaron Eckhart can’t play earnest or inspiring, creepy and untrustworthy yes, inspiring no. The three-act structure that the Nolan films will now make up is irritating. There going to start from Square One with the next Batman picture but the Nolan movies are going to be seen as the hard-to-beat template even tho’ the Batman doesn’t do very much successful Batman-ing in them. Argh. I wish the studios could make more superhero series that *don’t* require them running into one another. Continuity – Yes, Stifling Straitjacket Stories – No. Some of these series take place over several years but nothing interesting seems to happen between the movies. Also an X-Men movie that *didn’t* feature Magneto would be a great thing! There’s so much to draw from, why then do they limit themselves. Why treat audiences like idiots?


    • Irony, twist of fate, or whatever… Every time I watch Dark Knight now I find it odd that the movie leaves the Joker hanging to be arrested and put back into Arkham, while Harvey Dent falls to his death… while in real life we tragically lost Heath Ledger… the result being neither character can be re-used in Nolan’s trilogy. I like some incarnations of Catwoman. I don’t care for Bane at all. That whole “break the Bat” story in the comics was awful to me… and every time I see Bane back in a comic or on the cartoons or now the movie, I hate that character was ever invented.


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