Spider-Man is an animated television series that ran from September 9, 1967 to June 14, 1970. It was originally produced in Canada and was the first animated adaptation of the Spider-Man comic book series. It first aired on the ABC television network in the United States but went into syndication at the start of the third season.
It featured the adventures of Marvel's most famous character and it has proven to be the most famous, as well as the final, production by Grantray-Lawrence Animation in Toronto, Ontario. Some Canadian talent was employed on the project, while animators from the United States were brought in at considerable expense and made up most of the crew behind the show. Grantray-Lawrence was contracted by Krantz Films, Inc. and Marvel Comics to yield 52 shows.
The show's acting talent included Bernard Cowan who was the dialogue director, narrator, and voice of some supporting characters. Paul Soles was both Peter Parker and Spider-Man. Peg Dixon provided the voice of Betty Brant and various of Peter's love interests, and Paul Kligman's distinctive, high-pitched voice was utilized on J. Jonah Jameson and several villains.
After Grantray-Lawrence went bankrupt, the second and third seasons were produced at a dramatically reduced budget by Krantz Films under Ralph Bakshi. This cost cutting is most apparent with two episodes reusing almost the entire footage from two Rocket Robin Hood episodes as well as remaking previous episodes with minimal changes. In addition, the episodes took a darker tone with darkly colored settings and atmospheric music.
Spider-Man was initially broadcast in the U.S. on Saturday mornings on ABC. The first episode that aired was "The Power of Doctor Octopus"/"Sub-Zero For Spidey" on September 9, 1967. For the full run of the first season and of the second season, the show was seen at 11 am Atlantic Time. ABC's last Saturday morning broadcast of Spider-Man was on August 30, 1969, with 39 half-hour episodes (many with two separate stories) aired. The show went on hiatus until the following March, when a third season began a six-month run, from March 22 to September 6, 1970, on Sunday mornings, at 11:30 am Atlantic Time.
The entire series was released as Spider-Man: The '67 Collection on DVD in 2004.
In particular, the theme song of the show has become a popular standard. The lyrics were written by Academy Award winner Paul Francis Webster, while the music was composed by Bob Harris, Stu Phillips, and D. Kapross. The song begins "Spider-Man, Spider-Man / Does whatever a spider can". Variations on the song were used in the 2002 Spider-Man film.
The song has been covered by:
- Aerosmith for the soundtrack of the 2002 film adaptation (albeit with semi-altered lyrics). It is also notable that Aerosmith lead guitarist Joe Perry performed a new theme song for the 1994 Spider-Man animated series, playing the lead guitar track and speaking lyrics through a vocoder that referenced the 1967 series' theme song, specifically the line "Spider-Man, Spider-Man, radioactive Spider-Man" and references to "radioactive blood" (changed to "radioactive Spider blood" for the 1994 theme).
- Apollo 440 for the original Spider-Man game created for PlayStation, Sega Dreamcast, N64 and PC by Neversoft.
- Michael Bublé for the soundtrack of the 2004 sequel.
- The punk band The Distillers have also recorded their own unique version for the Spider-Man 2 console game.
- The Hyannis Sound on their Aged 10 Years album.
- Brian May reinterpreted the theme for the 1995 BBC Radio 1 serial.
- Moxy Früvous in the 1993 album Bargainville.
- The Mr. T Experience on their 1989 album Big Black Bugs Bleed Blue Blood.
- The Ramones as a hidden track in the vinyl version of their 1995 album Adios Amigos! and their 1996 album Greatest Hits Live
- String Cheese Incident play an extended instrumental version during concerts.
- Somewhat unfaithfully by Tenacious D at concerts.
- Remixed by Norwegian group Ugress on their 2002 album Resound.
- Actor Jack Black did his own version of the theme song in a part of a Spider-Man movie spoof on MTV.
- The Power of Dr. Octopus
- Sub-Zero for Spidey
- Where Crawls the Lizard
- Electro the Human Lightning Bolt
- The Menace of Mysterio
- The Sky Is Falling
- Captured by J. Jonah Jameson
- Never Step on a Scorpion
- Sands of Crime
- Diet of Destruction
- The Witching Hour
- Kilowatt Kaper
- The Peril of Parafino
- Horn of the Rhino
- The One-Eyed Idol
- Fifth Avenue Phantom
- The Revenge of Dr. Magneto
- The Sinister Prime Minister
- The Night of the Villains
- Here Comes Trubble
- Spider-Man Meets Dr. Noah Boddy
- The Fantastic Fakir
- Return of The Flying Dutchman'
- Farewell Performance
- The Golden Rhino
- Blueprint for Crime
- The Spider and the Fly
- The Slippery Dr. Von Schlick
- The Vulture's Prey
- The Dark Terrors
- The Terrible Triumph of Dr. Octopus
- Magic Malice
- Fountain of Terror
- Fiddler on the Loose
- To Catch a Spider
- Double Identity
- Sting of the Scorpion
- Trick or Treachery
- The Origin of Spider-Man
- King Pinned
- Swing City
- Criminals in the Clouds
- Menace from the Bottom of the World
- Diamond Dust
- Spider-Man Battles the Molemen
- Phantom from the Depths of Time
- The Evil Sorcerer
- Pardo Presents
- Cloud City of Gold
- Neptune's Nose Cone
- Thunder Rumble
- Spider-Man Meets Skyboy
- Cold Storage
- To Cage a Spider
- The Winged Thing
- Conner's Reptiles
- Trouble with Snow
- Spiderman Vs. Desparado
- Sky Harbor
- The Big Brainwasher
- The Vanishing Dr. Vespasian
- Scourge of the Scarf
- Super Swami
- The Birth of Micro Man
- Knight Must Fall
- The Devious Dr. Dumpty
- Up From Nowhere
- The Madness of Mysterio
- Revolt in the Fifth Dimension*
- Specialists and Slaves
- Down to Earth
- Trip to Tomorrow
ABC did not air Revolt in the Fifth Dimension episode with the rest of the third season possibly because of the incidence of death, spatial creepiness, and great psychedelia in that episode. ABC aired Sting of the Scorpion/Trick or Treachery in its place.
- The films Spider-Man and Spider-Man 2 pay homage to the original TV series. This is especially notable towards the end of the second film, which was made identical to the "swing-off scene," displayed at the end of every episode of the first season. Several shots were approximated elsewhere in the films.
- Spider-Man (1967) at TV.com
- Wallopin Websnappers! - Paul Sole's personal memories of the series
- 67 Spider-Man @ Marvel Animation Age
- Spider-Man Crawl Space: All Spidey, All The Time
- Spyder-25 - Detailed description
- Spiderfan description
- retroCRUSH tribute