Looking at How Time Passes for a Super-Hero
By Alan Cowsill & Matthew K. Manning
DK Publishing, $50.00, 352 pages
It’s hard for even a comic book geek to remember how much Spider-Man has been up to over the years. Spider-Man Chronicle: A Year by Year Visual History looks at Spider-Man’s history one year at a time, giving a synopsis of each month’s various comic appearances. There are also sidebars on various characters and creators along the way, as well as a timeline of what happened in general world events. It’s a great overview of Spider-Man’s career and a celebration of his life.
Although a great summary of Spider-Man and the suffering he’s been through over the years, there are some issues with the presentation. The type is just barely visible against the background, and there are some problems with the order of the comics. The real-world events timeline is a pretty good idea, but feels weird in a comic; it fits because Spider-Man is one of the few heroes who has maintained a foothold in the real world, with comics featuring characters that have been in the Vietnam War and student strikes. The highlighted stories are well chosen, and the additional materials work well. This book will definitely be a welcome addition to any comic fan’s shelf!
Reviewed by Jamais Jochim