Clipped from Esquire:
Coincidentally, Joe Ramacieri’s backroom management was already working wonders in this department. Marvel Comics, the home of Spider-Man, Captain America and Thor, wanted to license a comic strip about The Human Fly.
A deal was agreed and though Marvel executive editor and historian Tom Brevoort speculates that little money changed hands, it gave The Fly huge credibility. (Curiously, the person charged with delivering cheques and artwork back and forth between Marvel and Ramacieri was a young Cyndi Lauper.)
Marvel writer Bill Mantlo, who had worked on The Incredible Hulk and The Spectacular Spider-Man, was tasked with reverse-engineering a backstory for the new superhero.
“Let’s backtrack a little and catch a glimpse of where this zany ambition began,” Mantlo’s account began, in the first issue of The Human Fly. “We’ll have to start with an automobile accident sometime in the early Seventies. An accident so serious it took four years of hospitalisation and only after all the bones in both legs and hips were completely crushed; half the stomach removed; and both arms shredded to uselessness; that he could honestly aspire to be the greatest daredevil of all time! Out of these surroundings, the concept grew of The Human Fly. And he would be it. To everyone’s amazement he walked out of the hospital a man, but a man remade of steel in 60 per cent of his body. Obviously there is no stopping this man.”