Spiderman is a character that is simple in nature and yet has a bit more going on in the background to keep him continually interesting for over 40 years. Spidey is a teenager called Peter Parker who gets bitten by a radioactive spider and ends up being turned into a superhero. He develops amazing abilities which allow him to crawl up walls and stand upside down on ceilings. He also develops super human strength and a spidey sense which warns him of oncoming danger. He's apparently a great inventor so he also develops devices that shoot web from his wrists. That's awfully convenient. In theory anyone could have invented them and through the use of them developed the ability to swing through New York.
At its heart the Spiderman story revolves around Peter dealing with the responsibility of having these powers. Should he have fun with them or use them for good. His mantra is that 'With great power comes great responsibility'. So Spiderman is about a teenage kid trying to deal with getting through life like everyone else all the while having to live a double life and stop bad guys doing what they do.
The comics and the movies in my humble opinion don't seem to capture what should be a fun adventure filled superhero. One that also has to fight his teenage urges to do what's right. What the movies have showed us is an angsty teenager who is always troubled by his own personal gain and not so much in figuring out what's right. The new movie looks like it's also going for the angsty route but it's too early to tell for sure.
The comics used to be fun filled and full of action. Then they got complicated. Really complicated. In the 1990's comics had to have mind boggling stories with multiple characters otherwise they weren't doing their job properly. The infamous Clone series of Spiderman stories turned fans off in their droves. I still don't know who the real Spiderman was and neither do I care to find out.
Spiderman has been relaunched in the Ultimates universe time and again but that just adds to the confusion for me. This is one character that I would be quite happy seeing rebooted all the way. These days he shows up in Amazing Spiderman, The Scarlet Spider, Ultimate Spiderman, and the Avengers. There will probably be a return for future Spiderman too. How about one Spiderman comic featuring Peter Parker as Spiderman that could be bought every week to keep up with his antics? It'll never happen.