On November 2nd, Steve Ditko turned ninety! The rather reclusive Ditko, in his usual fashion, kept out of the spotlight altogether.
If you are reading this column, you are likely well aware of the incredible amount of work that Mr. Ditko has done, from the Golden Age, through the Silver Age, into the bronze and even still publishing new independent comics today. I did not know this until doing some research for this article.
Ditko currently publishes with Robyn Snyder ,who was an occasional Batman writer in the 1980s. You can see what he is up to here.
Steve Ditko lives in New York, his address is not secret and he is listed in the phone book. If the internet is to be believed (It must be true! It’s on the internet!) his net worth is 5 million dollars. I guess being the co-creator of Spider-Man and Doctor Strange has rewarded him well.
There are very few pictures of Steve Ditko available, which is why we always see the one attached, but if I had to guess, I would peg him as Adrian Toombs, the original Vulture, from Spider-Man #2.
Here is a link to an interesting BBC hour long documentary “In Search of Steve Ditko” from 2007 which is really quite enjoyable.
And another interesting article about a 8 year old fan who sent him a letter, and actually got a reply!
Dennis is an admitted "Son of the Silver Age", having grown up with the influences of Silver Age greats: Kirby, Colan, Romita and Buscema.Three decades later, he is the creator of Crash!! and Galloway Park. More is definitely on the way.
Even though Ditko had what always seemed to me to be a very idiosyncratic style, he still appealed to my young eyes as incredibly visually appealing. Most of my friends at the time were largely Kirby fans, as was I too, but they couldn’t get their heads around those retro fashions. Many of them only began to buy Spider-man when Romita took over, whereas I turned my back on the title in disappointment. I’m sure most Romita fans to this day think I’m out of my mind, bu he just didn’t seem different enough from many of the mainstream romance artists.
Ditko’s tenure on Doctor Strange is my favourite period of his work. Nobody, but nobody, could fashion such weird images of other dimensions, oddball villains, and those amazing sorcerous battles.
I really felt his work began to suffer later, especially when he endeavoured to pull off some of those comics which were little more than a philosophical rant, and I think the less said about Rom the better.
The fact that he is still publishing at his age is an accomplishment in itself.
But all those years ago, one little kid was ecstatic whenever a new Spidey or Doc Strange went on sale, and I know he wasn’t alone!
Thanks for the memories.
Hey Mel, Ditko did have a style that seemed to never change.The fashions and hairstyles have always stayed the same.I started buying Spidey with issue number 62 and was blown away after a couple of issues when Jim Mooney came on as inker.I thought it was perfect Spidey.
Nostalgia is huge in our hobby but I have always appreciated Ditko’s ability to tell a story and for me some of the ink wash stories he did for Warren magazines in the sixties were my favorite.
Romita may have polished the wallcrawler but Ditko created him! And you can’t take that away from him!