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CSBG Archive

Comic Book Easter Eggs – Amazing Spider-Man Edition!

Every week, I will be sharing with you three comic book “easter eggs.” An easter egg is a joke/visual gag/in-joke that a comic book creator (typically the artist) has hidden in the pages of the comic for readers to find (just like an easter egg). They range from the not-so-obscure to the really obscure. So come check ‘em all out and enjoy! Also, click here for an archive of all the easter eggs featured so far! If you want to suggest an easter egg for a future column, e-mail me at bcronin@comicbookresources.com (do not post your suggestion in the comments section!).

Today, all three easter eggs are from the pages of Amazing Spider-Man!

First off, two suggestions from Brian W. for easter eggs from the pages of Amazing Spider-Man #411, by Tom DeFalco, Mark Bagley, Larry Mahlstedt and Al Milgrom!

The first one shows Spider-Man (who was Ben Reilly at this point in time) saving a familiar looking family from a mugging…

I like that on the next page, Bagley makes it explicit with the boy’s T-Shirt…

The next easter egg from #411 is when two cops come in to talk to Ben’s boss. The two cops are meant to look like Andy Sipowicz and Bobby Simone from NYPD Blue…

Next, Sam V. pointed out this cute bit from Amazing Spider-Man #332, by David Michelinie, Erik Larsen and Mike Machlan, where we see Jimmy Olsen taking a picture of Spider-Man holding two motorcycles with Jay Leno and Malcolm Forbes on them…

Oddly enough, Forbes died soon before this issue came out.

Thanks for the great suggestions, folks! Again, if you want to suggest a future easter egg, e-mail me at bcronin@comicbookresources.com


So does that make Amazing 332 an imaginary story?

Bagley’s got Dennis Franz down, but his Jimmy Smits needs work.

Both Forbes and Leno famously endorsed Harley-Davidson motorcycles, which is why they’re portrayed riding them in the story.

In the first Larsen panel is that Billy Batson to Jimmy Olsen’s right?

The NYPD Blue one reminds me of the time Bayliss and Pembelton from Homicide: LOTS showed up in Cable just before the Onslaught crossover.

That was a good one, Max. I believe I featured it. You can check the archive out to be sure.

One more:
In Spider-man (1990) – Issue 1: Todd McFarlane is drawn in a panel on page 2 or 3, I forget. He is wearing a baseball cap (Yankees?) and a kid is looking at him. Todd will deny this is him by the way. He told me he never puts himself into his comics, but if you look at the picture it is him.


You mean Spider-Man’s right, correct? Because that definitely does look like Billy Batson in the lower left hand corner of that panel.

That’s the character I meant; to Billy’s left is Jimmy Olsen – bow tie, vacant grin (better seen in panel two).

Forbes died from exposure to radioactive spider blood.

Could that also be Clark Kent and Brenda Starr below Forbes’ motorcycle? I wonder what other famous comic book reporters/photogs are in that panel?

Jimmy Olsen is not in the first panel, only the second. You can tell, because he’s standing in front of Spider-Man, not behind him. You know, to take pictures.

That said, the guy in the dark vest next to Billy Batson looks like Archie to me…

spacial relationships are our friends

It’s actually kind of cool to imagine that the tragedy that turned Bruce Wayne into Batman is such a mythical story that it would have happened in the Marvel Universe if Spidey had not intervened. My little nerd heart is atwitter with the concept that Batman almost existed in the MU.

Man, that is one caucasian-looking Jimmy Smits.

Unfortunately this will spell doom for the Marvel Universe when Doctor Doom III unleashes his fiendish master plan that only Batman could have figured out and foiled. Nice going, Ben.

Is that Wonder Woman between Jimmy/Archie and Spidey’s armpit as well? Her top looks like Diana’s, and she’s wearing the tiara.

Ian: I just figured that was Larsen’s own character Jennifer Murphy.

Yes, it is Archie Andrews beside BIlly Batson – not Jimmy, who is on the other side of the circle.

But I can understand your confusion – it is obvious that Jimmy Olson and Archie Andrews were separated at birth.

I wish Nick Spencer’s Jimmy Olson stores had lasted long enough that he could have made use of this obvious connection.

This wouldn’t be Jay’s last appearence in Spider-man comics, unfortunately.

“Is that Wonder Woman between Jimmy/Archie and Spidey’s armpit as well? Her top looks like Diana’s, and she’s wearing the tiara.”

I’m not sure where the timing of the respective books are, but it does kind of look like the Artemis version of WW to me.

found it interesting that spider man saving bruces parents now means the mu is forever denied batman if he existed in that universe. plus love jay look of being lifted by spider man on the bike.

President Kang

April 26, 2012 at 4:14 pm

Ben Riley saves the Wayne’s which does inspire Bruce to become a crimefighter out of pure heroism and reverence. Unfortunately, the happily non-orphaned Bruce Wayne turns out to be a bit of a sissy in the crimefighting department, makes a really weird Ben Riley knock off costume (“Criminals are a superstitious and cowardly lot, so I’ll just rip off that Spidey guy”) , and on his first night out crimefighting he unfortunately jumps off a building and falls to his death.

So, Peter Parker lets Carnage go (from what I’ve heard), but Ben Reilly gets the bad guy and saves people? O.K. :)

Malcom Forbes? I swear, I thought that was Ed McMahon. Because he was Carson’s sidekick and Jay took over for him. Alright! That was my thought process.

[…] got me thinking about how I read comic books and if these kinds of hidden references – dubbed “Easter Eggs” by some who dedicate regular columns to them – ultimately add or distract from the reading experience. I think in the cases of the Walter […]

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