The 30 best Spider-Man moments from the movies, games, and more

Spider-Man might be a young chap in most comics, movies, and video games, but the character is in fact 55-years-old. Having first appeared in the anthology comic Amazing Fantasy #15, he's been slinging webs for decades and has made a fair few memories making spiders less scary and more heroic. Over his 55-year career there were hundreds of moments where our mouths dropped open in awe, so we've rounded up the top 30.

The story begins - Spider-Man (2002)

The moment: Peter takes MJ's picture at the beginning of the first film, failing to notice the mutated spider that takes a sizeable bite out of his hand. 

Why it's great: It's at this point that the adventure really begins. We couldn't very well leave it out, could we?

Enter the Goblin - Spider-Man: The Animated Series (1996)

The moment: It took three seasons of Spider-Man: The Animated Series for the Green Goblin to show up, but when he did, it was in suitably menacing style, raging against Manhattan as a reaction to a serious injury. 

Why it's great: The Goblin's arrival in the animated show had been hotly anticipated, and it didn't disappoint, thanks in no small part to Neil Ross's suitably OTT vocal work.

Reign of Pain - Spider-Man: Reign (2006)

The moment: Spider-Man: Reign sees an aged Peter Parker living in a New York controlled by a brutal police force known as The Reign, working as a florist and mourning his dead wife, MJ. That is until J. Jonah Jameson pays him a visit to snap him out of his torpor. 

Why it's great: It might borrow heavily from The Dark Knight Returns, but this is still one of the more enjoyably adult Spider-Man outings.

Confession - Spider-Man 2 (2004)

The moment: Peter confesses to Aunt May that he lied to her about his whereabouts on the night his Uncle Ben died. The resultant slap he receives is like a dagger to the heart. 

Why it's great: May's reaction is what really makes this one so affecting. That slap is a real bucket of water over the audience.

Buried alive - Kraven's Last Hunt (1987)

The moment: Kraven's Last Hunt is one of the more adult Spidey books, with the brutal Kraven burying Spider-Man alive in order to take his place and prove his capacity for heroism. 

Why it's great: There's no long-winded speechmaking here, as Kraven simply shoots Spider-Man with a tranquilliser and tosses him into a grave. Not very sophisticated then, but plenty effective.

Naming Ceremony - Spider-Man (2002)

The moment: J. Jonah Jameson and Hoffman attempt to come up with a name for Doc Ock, Jameson rejects all of Hoffman's suggestions (including a nice reference to Dr. Strange, in which he comments, "that's pretty good, but it's taken") before settling on his first one and claiming it as his own. Nice editing.

Why it's great: J.K Simmons and Ted Raimi share some excellent screen chemistry, and this is one of their more chucklesome exchanges from the second film.

Odd couple - Maximum Carnage (1993)

The moment: Spidey teams up with arch-nemesis Venom for the early '90s storyline Maximum Carnage. Their opponent? A serial killer housing Venom's symbiote offspring, otherwise known as Carnage. 

Why it's great: Superhero team-ups are one thing, but pairing a hero and villain? That's even cooler.

Reboot - Ultimate Spider-Man (2000)

The moment: Brian Michael Bendis and Mark Bagley carefully relocated Spidey's origin story to the year 2000 for the excellent Ultimate Spider-Man, bringing the character up to date with modern society while offering new fans a refresher on how Peter Parker came to be the friendly neighbourhood Spider-Man. 

Why it's great: Instead of pushing the character into ever more ludicrous scenarios to keep him fresh, Marvel's decision to reboot Spidey proved to be a masterstroke, going into his origins in more detail while offering a very accessible story for new fans.

It's cameo time - Spider-Man: The Movie (2002)

The moment: Any of the Spider-Man movie games' tutorials. You fire up the game, want to know how to navigate the sprawling metropolis that is Manhattan and boom! Bruce Campbell.

Why it's great: Campbell made cameo appearances all throughout Sam Raimi's Spider-Man trilogy, confounding and obstructing Parker in the most obnoxious ways possible. To see that carry over to the games is a treat - plus Campbell's voice work actually manages to spin the "I don't really want to be here and don't care about games" attitude into something fun.

Hey everyone! - Captain America: Civil War (2016)

(Image credit: Marvel)

The moment: An epic fight between Captain America and Iron Man's two sides is about to kick off when Tom Holland's Spider-Man swings in from out of nowhere and grabs Cap's shield only to make a speculator landing. 

Why it's great: The cheeky "Hey everyone!" greeting after he lands made this the perfect MCU debut for the character, and had fans around the world excited to see a new movie iteration of the web-slinger. 

George Wales

George was once GamesRadar's resident movie news person, based out of London. He understands that all men must die, but he'd rather not think about it. But now he's working at Stylist Magazine.