10 Best Spider-Man Comic Book Covers From The 80s

In the 1960s, Stan Lee and Steve Ditko created The Amazing Spider-Man, and their run on the book introduced classic villains like Doctor Octopus and Green Goblin. In the 70s, Lee left the series. With new creators came new, daring stories like “The Night Gwen Stacy Died” and “The Original Clone Saga.”

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During the 1980s, Marvel Comics went cosmic, transporting their greatest heroes and villains to an alien world for the Secret Wars. Spider-Man was specifically affected by this event, gaining a new black costume that would alter the Spider-books forever. The best artists in the industry worked on Spider-Man comics, crafting some of the best covers in the franchise that featured Black Cat, Hobgoblin, and the newly-created symbiote. With these classic stories came some of the greatest covers in comic book history.

10 Spider-Man Stops The Juggernaut In ASM #230

After Spider-Man failed to stop the Juggernaut from attacking Madame Web in the previous issue, he vows to get revenge and not let the villain escape. Spider-Man tracks the “unstoppable” villain down and throws everything he has at him. Spider-Man is at his best when he’s up against seemingly unbeatable odds, and “Nothing Can Stop The Juggernaut” may be one of the best examples of that.

In Amazing Spider-Man #230, Spidey tries to stop Juggernaut with a wrecking ball and even a collapsing building. The cover, beautifully illustrated by John Romita Jr., perfectly depicts the uphill battle Spidey faces in the comic.

9 Venom Debuts In Amazing Spider-Man #300

Peter successfully got rid of the symbiote suit back in Amazing Spider-Man #258, but continued to wear a copy of it given to him by Black Cat. In ASM #300, a centennial issue written by David Michelinie and illustrated by Todd McFarlane, the symbiote returns with a vengeance. The issue itself is astounding, as Venom debuts, haunts Mary Jane and battling Spider-Man inside a gothic church.

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The cover, featuring a black-suited Spider-Man with the number 300 splashed across the background, would be recreated on many comic book covers in the future. Venom is incredibly iconic, and so is the cover of the issue he first appeared in.

8 Peter And Mary Jane Get Married In ASM Annual #21

John Romita Sr., the second artist to work on the Amazing Spider-Man title, returned once more to illustrate the cover for Amazing Spider-Man Annual #21, otherwise known as “The Wedding.” After Mary Jane turned down Peter’s initial proposal, the two finally decided to get married.

The decision was fairly rushed, and the marriage itself caused a bit of a divide among fans. Some liked them together, while some preferred Peter to be single. On the cover, Spider-Man stands with Mary Jane, dressed in a beautiful gown, while Spider-Man’s greatest allies and villains clash in the background.

7 Spider-Man Vs. Black Cat In ASM #227

After making her debut in Amazing Spider-Man #194, Black Cat returned many times in Spider-Man comics throughout the ’80s. Felicia and Peter started a romantic relationship, and she became one of the main recurring characters in the Peter Parker, The Spectacular Spider-Man title. In ASM #227, Felicia and Peter’s conflicting worldviews clashed.

Black Cat wanted Spider-Man to join her in her life of crime, while Spider-Man wanted Black Cat to reform. The cover was beautifully drawn by John Romita Jr., depicting Spider-Man and Black Cat’s rooftop battle under the moonlight.

6 Enter: The Hobgoblin In Amazing Spider-Man #238

Writer Roger Stern and artist John Romita Jr. introduced a new villain into the Spider-Man universe in Amazing Spider-Man #238 with the creation of the Hobgoblin. Like the Green Goblin before him, the Hobgoblin’s identity was initially a mystery. Unlike the Goblin, the Hobgoblin’s mystery would dominate the character’s storyline for years.

The cover, penciled by Romita Jr. and inked by Romita Sr., shows Hobgoblin menacingly tearing Spidey’s costume in two. In just one issue, the Hobgoblin proved to be a deadly villain who would use his intelligence and resourcefulness to defeat Spidey many times.

5 Spider-Man Hunts Jean DeWolff’s Killer In Spectacular Spider-Man #109

The hunt for Jean DeWolff’s murderer continued in Peter Parker, The Spectacular Spider-Man #109. Both Spider-Man and Daredevil scoured the city, looking for any leads on the Sin-Eater, the serial killer confirmed to be DeWolff’s killer. Matt Murdock went to shady bars while Spider-Man interrogated Kingpin.

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Jean DeWolff was a popular character in the Spectacular series. One of the first allies Spider-Man gained in law enforcement, DeWolff developed a close professional relationship with the Wall-Crawler. Issue #109’s cover, illustrated by Rich Buckler, is ominous and chilling, much like the entire “Death of Jean DeWolff” storyline.

4 The Symbiote Suit Debuts In ASM #252

After the events of Marvel’s Secret Wars (though before the comic event actually concluded), Spider-Man appeared on the cover of Amazing Spider-Man #252 sporting a brand-new costume. This alien costume was discovered by Peter during Secret Wars, though its true nature would not be revealed for several issues.

For this issue, artist Ron Frenz paid homage to the classic cover of Amazing Fantasy #15, the comic that Spider-Man first appeared in, showing the black-suited Spider-Man swinging over New York with two civilians in his arms. The black suit, aka the symbiote, has become an integral part of Spider-Man’s mythos, and it first appeared here.

3 Peter Remembers Gwen Stacy In Spectacular Spider-Man #101

While the cover for Peter Parker, The Spectacular Spider-Man #101 is absolutely beautiful, it should be noted that it has absolutely nothing to do with the story inside. Some fans may have bought this issue expecting a black-suited Spidey in the story, but they received a story about Peter remembering the death of Gwen Stacy.

Despite the misleading cover, the art itself cannot be overlooked. John Byrne crafted a cover that practically demands to be turned into a poster. In an all-black-and-white image, Spider-Man leaps over New York, Spidey’s silhouette blending into the silhouetted city. Only building windows and Spidey’s eyes and emblem are highlighted.

two Spider-Man’s Costumes Fight For Him In ASM #258

Ron Frenz crafted one of the greatest Spider-Man covers of all time that probably doesn’t get enough praise. After discovering what the alien costume he acquired in the Secret Wars really was, Peter tried to discard it, only to find that the symbiote wasn’t willing to let him go.

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The cover image for Amazing Spider-Man #258, which shows Peter struggling to break free from the grasps of his classic red and blue suit and the new black suit, was later adapted during the three-part “Alien Costume” saga in Spider-Man: The Animated Series. Though Peter successfully removed the symbiote, fans know that it was far from the last time the black suit would appear.

1 Spider-Man Rises From The Dead In Web Of Spider-Man #32

“Kraven’s Last Hunt” is easily one of the darkest Spider-Man stories ever told. Kraven’s death at the end of the story was shocking, but there were many other moments throughout the arc that were just as haunting. Web of Spider-Man #32 was an incredibly executed issue on all fronts.

Written by JM DeMatteis and illustrated by Mike Zeck, the story was well-paced and the panel structure was beautifully crafted. Zeck also drew the cover for the issue which depicted a muddy, black-suited Spider-Man emerging from his own grave. The same event occurred within the comic after Peter experienced a series of visions that unleashed his “inner spider of him.”

Next: 10 Best Issues Of Amazing Spider-Man By Stan Lee & Steve Ditko, Ranked

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