Steve Ditko, Spider-Man Co-Creator and Legendary Comics Artist, Passes away at 90

Comic Book icon Steve Ditko has passed away at the age of 90.

Known for co-creating Marvel superheroes such as Spider-Man and Doctor Strange alongside Stan Lee.


The New York Police Department confirmed his death to The Hollywood Reporter. No cause of death was announced. Ditko was found dead in his apartment on June 29 and it is believed he died about two days earlier.

In 1961, Ditko and Lee created Spider-Man. Lee, the editor-in-chief at Marvel Comics, gave Ditko the assignment after he wasn’t satisfied with Jack Kirby’s take on the idea of a teen superhero with spider powers. The look of Spider-Man — the costume, the web shooters, the red and blue design — all came from Ditko. Spider-Man first appeared in Amazing Fantasy No. 15. The comic was an unexpected hit and the character was spun off into The Amazing Spider-Man. Ditko helped create such classic Spider-Man characters as Doctor Octopus, Sandman, the Lizard, and Green Goblin. Starting with issue No. 25 Ditko received a plot credit in addition to his artist credit. Ditko’s run ended with issue No. 38.


Ditko was a private man, often shying away from the spotlight, feeling more comfortable only whispered about in conversations. Ditko did, however, have a falling out with co-creator Stan Lee. Details aren’t entirely clear. Rumors suggest Ditko had become fed up with Lee for not always sharing the credit of Spider-Man and Doctor Strange.


Among his last creations was Squirrel Girl in 1992, who has become a cult favorite in recent years.

Ditko maintained a Manhattan studio until his death, where he continued to write and draw, though how much and what unpublished material remain is unknown.

Ditko has no known survivors. He is believed never to have married. His contributions to comics will always be admired and he will always be remembered.