English professor’s “Spider-Man” comics reprinted

In a new trade book titled "The Adventures of Spider-Man: Radioactive," Marvel Comics has reprinted two Spider-Man comics written in the 1990s by Associate Professor of English Scott Proudfit.

Scott Proudfit, associate professor of English and coordinator of the Drama & Theatre Studies program, was surprised to learn this December that Marvel Comics was reprinting a pair of comic stories he had written in the 1990s.

The comics originally appeared in Spider-Man Magazine, a periodical for which  Proudfit served as assistant editor for two years.  This was his first job after graduating from Columbia University with a bachelor’s degree in English and a bachelor’s degree in drama.  Spider-Man Magazine was published by a division of Marvel Comics called Town Brook Press.  Indeed, the job ad that Proudfit answered had been placed under that business name.  As a result, he was not even aware he had applied to an editorial position at Marvel Comics until he showed up for his interview.  It was quite a surprise.

Proudfit served as assistant editor for Spider-Man Magazine and X-Men Magazine from 1994 to 1995.  He edited the copy in these comics and designed puzzles for them.  He also answered the many letters the division received from children hoping to reach Spider-Man.  After a year, Proudfit began writing comics for the magazines, including Spider-Man, X-Men and Iron Man stories.

For many years these comics have been available only in their original publications, and therefore have been very hard to find.  The two reprinted comics appear in the new trade book titled The Adventures of Spider-Man: Radioactive.  In one comic Spidey battles the Shocker, in the other the relatively obscure villain the Tinkerer.

In writing the Spider-Man/Shocker comic, Proudfit was able to collaborate with Marvel legend Marie Severin, who was semi-retired at that point.  Severin was one of the first and only women to work at EC Comics in the 1950s.  She was inducted into the Will Eisner Comics Hall of Fame in 2001.

The Adventures of Spider-Man: Radioactive (ISBN: 978-1302920449) is available for purchase on amazon.com.