Spider-Man actor Tom Holland paid tribute to legendary Marvel creator Steve Ditko on Twitter, following the news of Ditko's passing on Friday. As the latest actor to portray Peter Parker/Spider-Man, and having been a huge fan of the character as a kid, Holland expressed his gratitude to the man who co-created Spidey with Stan Lee in the early '60s.
"We all want to leave our mark on the world - this guy crushed it," Holland wrote in his Twitter post. "He made so many people so happy and changed lives - most of all, mine! Thank you Steve - your life lives on man, thank you #SteveDitko".
Holland's employer, the Disney-owned Marvel Studios, also paid its respects to the comics legend in its own Spider-Man post, simply writing: "Thank you Steve. Rest In Peace."
Ditko was found dead in his apartment on June 29 by New York police officers, who believe that he had actually died two days earlier. During his tenure at Marvel Comics, he also helped create the Master of the Mystic Arts, Doctor Stephen Strange.
Making his magical debut in 1963 (a year after Spider-Man), Strange was a groovy reflection of the budding hippie counterculture in America, which made liberal use of psychedelic drugs to induce the onset of hallucinations. Ditko was also responsible for the likes of Captain Atom, Blue Beetle, Mr. A, The Question (the inspiration for Watchmen's Rorschach), and The Creeper.
However, it is the creation of Spider-Man that has remained a controversial issue since the hero's first appearance in the pages of Amazing Fantasy #15. Debates continue to rage on how much input both Lee and Ditko had on the character at the time.
Even Jack Kirby made the claim that Lee's contributions were minor and that the idea for the web-slinging crime fighter would not have been possible without himself and Joe Simon, both of whom created Captain America in the early '40s. And despite Kirby giving Ditko credit for the character's massive popularity, Ditko himself allegedly once said, "I still don't know whose idea was Spider-Man," according to Ditko historian Blake Bell in Bell's 2008 book Strange and Stranger: The World of Steve Ditko.
Nevertheless, Spider-Man has become the iconic face of Marvel Comics over the last 56 years.
Holland's Parker was last seen tragically fading into nothingness at the end of Avengers: Infinity War, but he won't stay dead for long, as he needs to be present for next summer's sequel to Spider-Man: Homecoming, Spider-Man: Far From Home.