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PREMIUMS

THE SPIDER >> PREMIUMS

Premiums

Generally speaking, premiums are cool items offered for free or at a reduced price to inspire customer loyalty. In the 1930s and '40s, Radio properties like Tom Mix or Captain Midnight—who had big sponsors like Ralston and Ovaltine—offered lots of premiums to their listeners; Pulp characters, not so much. For heroes like Operator #5 or The Phantom Detective, the line of premiums began and ended with a ring or badge. The Spider magazine was lucky to produce two premiums: The Spider Ring, and The Spider Pencil ...

The Spider Ring
Originally offered to pulp readers in exchange for 25 cents in coin or stamp and the promise to curtail crime, Popular Publication's Spider Ring is one of the most sought after premiums today!

The Spider Pencil
The Spider kept his villain-branding seal in the base of a specially built cigarette lighter. That is until he briefly switched over to a pencil contraption with the May 1941 issue. Two months later the magazine began offering readers a Spider Pencil for 25.

The Spider Kit (PDF file)
In 1997,
Vintage Library started reprinting Spider novels in PDF format. What better way to create internet buzz and web traffic than to offer a new official Spider premium—also in PDF format? Thus I created The Spider Kit, a series of paper toys harkening back to the great Radio premiums, but downloadable off the internet for printing at home.

Photography by Chris Kalb
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