New York Spider-Man fans cherish his city roots
Spider-Man's superpowers and cool costume may be some of the factors that made him one of the most popular superheroes of all time, but comic book fans say his New York attitude really put him at the top.
With the release of "The Amazing Spider-Man" Tuesday, area webheads said they are eager to see how the Marvel hero represents the city on the big screen.
"I'm sure 99% of people who know the character know he's a New Yorker, and New Yorkers have a connection to him," said Chris Hermus, who works at Comic Book Jones comic shop on Staten Island.
Unlike most of the Marvel heroes who operate in New York, Spidey was born and raised in Forest Hills, and his adventures often kept him in the city.
"He has the perspective of someone from the city but also that fresh look of a tourist where he appreciates the city," Hermus said.
The three previous movies -- which have grossed more than a billion dollars in the United States -- and comics have wowed fans with awesome sights of Spider-Man swinging through the city streets. Some said they flocked here to look at those iconic cityscapes firsthand.
"My interest in comics as a medium [is that they] can do fantastic things with words and pictures arranged on a page," said Giahem Johnston, 50, a Scottish artist who visited the city for the first time over the weekend.
Spidey's love for the city has always been reciprocated and helped to spread his popularity beyond comic book pages.
All of the movies have filmed on location and, despite initial mishaps and bad reviews, "Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark" is a hot ticket on Broadway.
Frank Gulluscio, the district manager of Community Board 6 in Forest Hills, said Spidey's popularity attracts fans to his hometown all the time.
"People know that area is really the home of Spider-Man and come out here and see the great things we have to offer," he said.