It's the same thing when someone reads Watchmen twenty years after it was first published and saying "what was the big deal?"
At the time, this was no joke. And you're right. Everyone's been trying to top what came before.
It's still a great story. But probably loses something if you can't put yourself in the frame of mind we were in when it was coming out.
When my Wife and I started dating she revealed that she has NEVER seen the Godfather... my mind was blown.
I immediately set a date for us to pop some corn and rectify this unforgivable oversight. About 45 minutes in she told me that she just wasn't feeling it. I was baffled and I asked why? The problem was, even though she had never seen the movie there were no dramatic reveals within the movie watching experience... she knew everything already. The movie
The Godfather had become the pop cultural phenomenon
The Godfather and all the intricate relationships and story twists and turns loose their POW factor.
This same thing happens in comics all the time.