RUN: 25 (24+#0) issues+2 Annuals 1995-97+1 special 1999. There was also a later special and prose fiction book
KEY CREATORS: Kurt Busiek, Tom DeFalco, Roger Stern (writers), Pat Oliveri (sp?) (artist), Fred Hembeck (writer/artist)
OUTLINE: Spider-Man adventures during the early days of his crime-fighting career. Without actually contradicting Lee's work, stories took place during and between Lee's issues. Sally (the girl who rejected Peter in his first appearance) has a major sub-plot as Blackbird, with reprecussions later.
STANDOUT ISSUE: The last issue was a nice focus on the Green Goblin.
DUD ISSUE: Without Warning, mainly because it seemed to go out of its way to defeat the titular purpose of the story, giving readers plenty of warning as to the outcome. The circumstances were left up in the air, but you pretty much knew ahead of time what was going to happen to who in the issue in question, even if you skipped previews beyond the next issue blurb. I tend to think of the story in my head as With Plenty of Warning,
 -1 is also pretty boring unless you're a huge fan of Peter's parents or wish to see how far Hembeck has fallen as a humour writer/artist
OVERALL: At no point did this series even get spectacular, but we got some strong characterizations throughout. Busiek's ability to interweave the stories with the originals without contradicting anything is amazing. Wisely he chose to cover in greater detail areas that should have gotten more focus in the originals (e.g. the crime wave caused by Crime-Master).
 The series managed to remain suspenseful despite the fact that you knew the fate of certain people (which didn't stop some readers from predicting Betty's death), largely through the introduction of new characters and using blank slates like Sally.
Even the best issues something felt lacking though. I'm not sure what it was, but at no point did I ever get super-excited that the next issue was coming out. And the series did drop in quality near the end when DeFalco started doing the painful scripting. The Flashback issue had about as much to do with this series as the other Flashback Spidey issues did and probably could have been put in any Spidey issue that month.
 RECOMMENDED OR NOT? The Busiek scripted issues are worth reading due to the characterization and continuity flow (marginal recommendation), I'd avoid DeFalco's issues (despite Busiek's plots) and -1.
CONTINUITY NOTES: This series was designed to carefully interweave between the original Lee-Ditko stories and does not contradict them.  However early issues of UTOSM may have been contradicted by Amazing Spider-Man Chapter One (unsure).