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mike p. writes...

Hey greg,
first off, i love everything about spectacular spider-man. I think it's like 10x better than the 90's cartoon and a good deal of shows (animated and not) on right now. My question is that from a good amout of the interviews that you've done it seems like you're planning on doing the series for a while (approx. 60-some episodes) and then after doing dvd movies about when Peter's in college. Do you ever worry that the amount of new characters you're going to be able to use will shrink over time leaving only more obscure villains to introduce in later seasons? Or do you already have the story arcs and everything planned out? Also, would a character like Morlun(and the Other storyline) be too bizarre for what you have planned even in the dvd movies?

Thanks for being too legit to quit.

Greg responds...

Well, let's start by saying how many episodes I do isn't up to me. But as long as they want me, I'll keep doing this show, these characters, in whatever format they'll allow.

I'm not really worried about running out of characters to introduce. With each passing season, I'm sure we'll introduce fewer new villains, but we'll -- by that time -- plenty of already introduced villains to play with.

Nothing is "planned" beyond Season Two. But I have lots of notions for Seasons Three-Five and beyond.

Response recorded on September 22, 2008

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? writes...

Mr. Wiseman (or may I call you Greg?), I have to say I enjoyed Season 1 of Spectacular Spider-Man, I especialy liked how Venom was saved as the season's final villian (great finale, by the way).Seeing as how Venom is my favorite Spider-Man villian (I also like the Goblins, Doc Ock and Lizard) I have a few questions conserning his future.
1. Is Venom the only Symbiote villian you plan to use? I ask because I never cared for "Scorpion Venom" (Mac Gargan was better off as Scorpion if you ask me), Carnage or those other ones; I liked it better when Venom was the only Symbiote villian (not to mention when Eddie Brock was his human half).
2. Assuming you get your wish of making 65 episodes, do you intend to give Venom a fair amount of apperances (not too much, not too little)? The 90s series only gave the character 4 episodes as Venom (Eddie Brock and the Symbiote fused together); I can understand if he isn't used alot if you only get 3 Seasons or so. I know he'll return in Season 2 though I'm not sure if he'll get 1 or 2 episodes. If you're not sure yet that's OK, I completly understand.
3. What are your own opinions about Venom? Just for curiosity reasons I guess (wondering if your influence gave him his (pardon the pun) spectacular performance in Season 1's finale.
Thanks in advance for your answers! I may ask about the other villans one of these days.

Greg responds...

Greg's definitely better than "Wiseman" since my last name is "Weisman".

1. No comment.

2. He returns in Season 2. Otherwise, no comment.

3. I think I'll let the episodes stand on their own.

Response recorded on September 19, 2008

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Mike B. writes...

I was wondering...is Season 2 of SSSM going to feature Lance Banyon and the Daily Globe? It would be interesting to see how they could have a tie-in to Eddie Brock, so Peter could use those clues in his search.

Greg responds...

I'm not going to say at this time.

GENERAL NOTE: This is NOT a site for me to drop spoilers on request.

And frankly, I shouldn't even answer this, since it's an idea masquerading as a question. But I'm using it to make a point. And I'm a little safer with Spidey -- as I'm only ever borrowing from existing sources anyway.

Response recorded on September 19, 2008

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kyle tonarella writes...

hey greg i just want to say thank you once again for making Spectacular Spider-Man. It has become my second favorite cartoon after Batman The Animated Series becasue you handle the charcters just like bruce timm and paul dini did. I look forward to the second season. here is my question will we Doc Ock come back to lead the sinister six in the second group ?

Greg responds...

Bruce Timm and ALAN BURNETT. Not to knock Paul, but Paul and Michael Reaves and quite a few others were working for ALAN, and I just don't understand why Alan never gets credit for being (with Bruce) the driving force on that series.

Doc Ock will be back in Season Two.

Response recorded on September 19, 2008

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cartoonlover writes...

Hi Greg,
I heard from Animation Magazine (or at least that's what I heard) that season two of Spectacular Spider-Man will indeed air on CW. Is that true?

Greg responds...

I'm not allowed to say. I don't know why I'm not allowed to say. But I'm not. So I'm not saying. And if you think that's frustrating for you, imagine how frustrating it is for me.

Response recorded on September 18, 2008

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Spectacular Spider-Man on DVD

I can't believe I forgot to mention this:

The first Spectacular Spider-Man DVD, "Attack of the Lizard" has been out for over a week. This does more than "collect" the first three episodes of our season, i.e. the ones featuring Vulture, the Enforcers, Electro and the Lizard. We've recut the episodes into a movie. I won't pretend it works as a film perfectly, but I really do think it plays well ... also restoring footage and sound effects cut for time and S&P reasons.

If you like my work on Gargoyles, I'm fairly confident you'll like what me and the team are doing with Spidey.

And I know this sounds ridiculously self-serving, but good Spidey sales raises my profile in general, which can't hurt us on the Gargoyles front.

Check it out!


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klye tonarella writes...

what my question ment was will molten man have any connections to liz allen like he did in the comics and is there any chance the lizard might return

Greg responds...

No comments.

Response recorded on September 17, 2008

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vik writes...

vik again, wil any other symbiotes appear?

Greg responds...

Not in Bad Guys.

Response recorded on September 11, 2008

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vik writes...

will carnage appear?

Greg responds...

Not in Gargoyles.

Response recorded on September 11, 2008

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Arthur Jr. writes...

If Kingpin isn't going to be included in the show, what will this mean if there are plans for Silvermane, Owl, and Caesar Cicero since Kingpin is much powerful than them? I didn't mention Hammerhead since the series has him a servant of Tombstone and I'm not familiar with Top Man (whom Hammerhead succeeds over)! When I meant by this, there had to be other crimelords that Spider-Man fought before. For all we know, those outside of the Kingpin may be in the said gang war in the upcoming second season.

As for Montana as Shocker, I searched the entire archives on this site for the answer and no result...unless you are stating that the version of Montana (an alias of Jackson W. Brice in the comics) was Herman Schultz in a previous question. Could legal issues be the reason for Jackson becoming Shocker?

If the 90's series was successful with the part with Spider-Man meeting other heroes, there may be hope for this series yet!

Greg responds...

There were no legal reasons for Montana becoming Shocker.

Response recorded on August 25, 2008

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Arthur Jr. writes...

Hey Greg, I've been hearing rumors that the Avengers were stated to appear in the not-yet-confirmed third season of the Spectacular Spider-Man. If this is true, would that be a part in Spider-Man's life where he meets other heroes like Captain America, Thor, Iron Man, Hulk, Namor, Black Panther, Daredevil, Doctor Strange, the Fantastic Four, and the X-Men? Spider-Man did meet them in the comics and some of their enemies.

Greg responds...

The Avengers are NOT slated to appear in the third season of Spectacular Spider-Man? Did you really hear this or are you making this up?

Response recorded on August 22, 2008

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cartoonlover writes...

Are you concerned for the future of Specatcular Spider-Man? I know season two is a go, but what about season three? Surely the ratings have been good enough. In fact, it had the honour of being the last super hero show Kids WB ever had. Is there any indication Sony wants to keep going?

Greg responds...

The ratings have been fantastic, thankfully. Sony clearly wants to keep it going, but we still don't have a pick-up.

Response recorded on August 22, 2008

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JEB writes...

Gathering 2008 Journal - Day Three

Sunday, June 29, 2008

Forced myself out of bed a bit earlier so I could be sure to get to the Gargoyles and Bad Guys comic panel. Notable information:
- Bad Guys #4 is complete and will be out very soon. Bad Guys #5 is 3/4 inked, 1/4 still needing work, according to Karine. Bad Guys #6 was just over half scripted before Greg came to the con.
- Gargoyles #9 will be Hedgecock's final issue as artist; he simply can't keep up with the pace. Gargoyles #10 is being drawn at this time. Gargoyles #11 will be scripted after Greg finishes with Red Tornado #2. Greg doesn't know who will be doing the art for #11 or #12.
- Now that Disney has its own comic company ("Kingdom Comics", apparently), they may be reluctant to allow SLG to keep their license. Even if they let SLG keep it, they may increase the fee, in which case Dan Vado might have to drop it. (Although Gargoyles is SLG's best-selling title, the cost of the license fee cuts into those profits quite a bit already.)
- Although Greg originally planned otherwise, the next spin-off title after Bad Guys will be Dark Ages. There's a story for that that keeps poking him in the head, so he's placed it ahead of Pendragon. (The story wants told so urgently that he joked he might have to do it in some form even if he can't do it as a comic.) Unlike Bad Guys, Dark Ages will not be a series pilot of sorts, but rather a story that covers a substantial span of time. It will include the Children of Oberon; Othello, Desdemona, and Iago; and Hippolyta. Greg first conceived of the idea three years ago.
- Bad Guys is black-and-white for purely economic reasons, but both Karine and Greg think the story works well that way.
- There is every intention to release Bad Guys and the second six issues of Gargoyles as trade paperbacks. Bad Guys will remain in black-and-white when it becomes a trade.
- Dan Vado's main interest is in the primary Gargoyles title, so after Bad Guys is done, they will need to sit back and assess if doing a spin-off is worthwhile. If no more spin-offs are forthcoming, Greg may integrate elements from them into the main title.
- The new spin-off schedule is six issues of Dark Ages, then six issues of Pendragon, then six issues of Timedancer.
- Greg still has a second story arc in mind for Bad Guys.
- After Gargoyles #12, story arcs will be six issues long.
- Disney has been rather hands-off with Gargoyles, except for some issues with, of all things, grammar. They critiqued Hudson's accent in issue #1 (apparently not remembering that Hudson spoke that way in the series, too), and they though Shari's "The story is told..." introductions were too awkward. Greg won both times.
- The benefit that Coyote 5.0 receives from the Coyote Diamond is an enhanced A.I. (Coyote 5.0's mental processes are light-based, and the Diamond speeds them up.)
- No Children of Oberon will appear in the next few issues.
- Bad Guys is set around January 1997; the end of the Clan-Building arc in Gargoyles will catch it up to around that time.
- Greg decided Thailog was an Illuminatus after the series ended but a while back - maybe 1999. There's a story there that Greg would like to tell someday, but not in the immediate future.
- Oberon and Titania were consciously designed to be not white (as in, Caucasian).
- Sevarius isn't really worried about danger from Thailog, as he has more options for employment out there. Besides, Thailog isn't likely to harm Sevarius as long as he's useful. But Sevarius is just arrogant enough to overestimate his value.
- Greg noted how he and Neil Gaiman seem to write about a lot of the same stuff. He doesn't think it's likely they would collaborate on anything, because Neil either doesn't know him or might even think ill of him (after disapproving of Greg's use of Death of the Endless in a Captain Atom comic).
- The comic version of "The Journey" replaces the televised version, so all 13 episodes of The Goliath Chronicles are officially non-canon.

I considered going to the gargoyle biology panel, but instead I opted to return a call I'd received from my mom during the prior panel and recharge my phone. While waiting for my next panel I got a few more supplies from CVS, and read the last of my purchases from Comix Revolution. Returned for the Spectacular Spider-Man panel, with the following highlights:
- Season 2 is being animated, but Greg isn't sure when they're airing. Season 3 is hoped for but not confirmed.
- The basis of the series is the classic Lee-Ditko-Romita stories, although they are also using elements from other canon.
- Although Greg first interviewed to work on the series in February 2006, Greg only learned he had the job - more or less accidentally - in December 2006 (he'd assumed a fellow named Chris won it). He started in January 2007, and brought Vic Cook in to help.
- Greg's goal for the series was to make a Spider-Man series as definitive for the character as Batman: The Animated Series was for Batman.
- The staff followed four C's when making the show: Contemporary, Cohesive, Coherent, and Classic (Iconic). The overall theme was "The Education of Peter Parker."
- Season 1 takes place in September to November of Peter's junior year. Season 2 takes place in December to March of his junior year.
- When using characters who appeared later than Peter's high school years in the comic (such as Gwen), the staff tried to extrapolate them backwards to what they would have been like in high school.
- The chauffeur story Harry Osborn was telling in (I believe) the episode "Competition" was a reference to an incident with Greg W. and Greg B. following the 2003 Gathering.
- There are DVDs of the first season on the way, but each of the four blocks of episodes will be edited together into sort-of movies. The upside is that each "movie" will contain footage not aired on TV. Greg and Vic Cook want to record a commentary track, but they haven't. If a proper season set is released, it's unclear if the additional footage will be included.
- The opening theme was originally intended to be an update to the 1960s cartoon's theme, but the rights were too expensive. So a theme song with the same sort of energy was sought out instead. Greg sent out potential lyrics to all the prospective musicians, but the final musicians didn't use them. There were actually four finalists, and they wanted to put the ones that didn't win on the DVDs, but they weren't allowed.
- Greg would have liked Keith David to stay on as the Big Man, but he had a play to do instead (A Midsummer Night's Dream - he played Oberon).
- Season 2 will be 13 episodes long. There have been some issues with story length in this season. Black Cat will return in Season 2, as will Harry Osborn. One episode will deal with questions about how Peter gets his photos. The Tinkerer (played by Thom Adcox) will appear in episode #14.
- Greg and company can use anything from the Spider-Man corner of the Marvel Universe, but nothing outside it. This is why Kingpin wasn't used in Season 1. Although Greg would like to use the Kingpin, he can't really complain about getting an interesting character out of the Big Man.
- The new Eddie Brock was constructed as a dark mirror of Peter Parker, as Venom is a dark mirror of Spider-Man. So, Eddie lost his parents in the same way as Peter, but had no Aunt May or Uncle Ben; while Peter learned to appreciate life, Eddie learned to appreciate death. Eddie is reckless and flirts with death; the scene in "Group Therapy" where he appeared to be threatening Mary Jane was intended to show this recklessness (as well as his anger towards Peter), and not intended as Eddie being vicious towards her.
- Greg hasn't heard any confirmation of Season 3, and he's worried he might have to move on to another job before they decide to make it. (He'd happily do another decade's worth of seasons.) Season 3 would include Hobgoblin.
- Greg thinks J. Jonah Jameson was once like Peter, which is why JJJ can be nice (more or less) towards him at times.
- Greg first saw the voice actress for Aunt May when she played the nurse in Romeo and Juliet.

At one point, Keith told a funny joke about a fellow and his mechanical arm, albeit one rather Blue for an all-ages panel. Following the conclusion of the panel, I quickly went to get a light Burger King lunch and immediately returned for the auction. Even on low-bidding items, Gorebash and Seth Jackson kept things entertaining; Keith David also popped in a few times to spice things up. The big bids were $160 (Keith David, for the Goliath electronic talking bank), $275 (Leo (and others by proxy), for the set of six Applause figures (Goliath, the Trio, Hudson and a Demona with hair corrected to red), $95 (Hobdemona, for all four character mugs (Goliath and the Trio), beating out both Keith David and Thom Adcox), and $400 (Seth Jackson, for a rare lithograph image of Goliath). For my part, I was outbid on a Gargoyles stamp, and won a 200(-plus) piece Gargoyles puzzle for $8.

After retrieving my stuff and chatting with D. Taina, I hung out with Ed for a bit while he guarded his brother Leo's acquisitions. I dropped off my auction items, then returned to my room until the banquet. I was at "Table #7", which included Dracandros, Ed, Lacey and her sister Krystl, Gside and Phil. I tried to stir up conversation a few times, with mixed results; Keith David also briefly stopped by to see how we were doing and patted me and Dracandros on the back. (Perhaps he was trying to compensate for our lack of guest representation?) As for the food, I thought the main course was pretty good, but I find myself beginning to question whether I'm getting enough bang for my buck as far as Gathering banquets. After the trivia game started, I helped guide our table to near-victory, advising our spokespeople as needed. We were finally stumped by a question on something that had only popped up at the Radio Play (and is a spoiler at this time) - in other words, information that was about 24 hours old.

On the way back to my room (we took our chosen elevator to the ninth, as it skipped our floor) I talked briefly with Josh Silver. I returned a call to Dad, then updated my notes before going back to the Masquerade. Along the way, I shared an elevator with Karine-as-Hunter (who, no offense meant to the participants, had the best costume of the night). I won't cover the Masquerade itself much, as I'm sure others can detail the costumes and such better than I, but I will note that I was seated with King Cobra and Vid the Kid before prize deliberations began. Afterwards, they left, and were replaced by Lacey and Krystl. I talked at length with Lacey during and after the prize deliberations about previous Gatherings and general fandom matters, among other things, before they had to leave to walk back to their hotel (they were staying elsewhere).

Now on my own, I initiated my master plan. In previous Masquerades, I usually waited around awkwardly, not doing much, until things closed down or I'd had enough of nothing. This time, I brought my own entertainment - a laptop equipped with MUGEN, a downloadable 2-D fighting game engine with tons of characters (many from existing media) available for download. I walked over to Gside, who was also largely unoccupied, and asked if he wanted to try it out - but beforehand, I chatted with Emambu. Despite the increasing noise levels, we managed to catch up. (He also commented that if I'd wanted to show off my card game with its Gargoyles characters, I would have been well served to have advertised it beforehand. He had a point.) I eventually invited him along with Gside and King Cobra to check out MUGEN.

Once I set it up in the corner, the alternate activity attracted a respectable amount of attention - slightly fewer tried it out, but it appeared I had chosen well to bring it. Greg B. and Aaron attempted to settle a running debate on the merits of Galvatron vs. Megatron using MUGEN, which went somewhat unfairly in Greg (Galvatron)'s favor (he had played MUGEN before we left for the 2007 Gathering; Aaron was unfamiliar with fighting games in general). In the meantime, there continued to be increasingly themed dancing in the center. As we approached 1 am, people began to burn out on MUGEN, so (with company from Rob) I packed it up and left. (I was amazed the hotel let the dance run so late!)

I returned to my room for the night.

Greg responds...

We now know that Spider-Man Season Two will premier in March 2009.

Response recorded on August 22, 2008

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Jon writes...

I have heard that season three of Spectacular Spider-Man is running trouble, and you might have to leave if season 3 dosen't start production. I'm starting to worry. Please tell me, on a scale of one to ten (ten being you're staying, one being you're leaving)ehat are the odds of you staying? I know season 3 will probably come at some point (I hope) but you and the crew aren't there, it won't be the same.
thanks alot,
Jon

Greg responds...

I can't give you numbers. They still haven't picked us up for Season Three, and today we had a farewell party for the majority of the crew (that is the majority that still remains -- many have already been laid off). This includes our character designer Sean "Cheeks" Galloway. After a few more weeks, we'll be down to myself, Vic Cook and our post-production team. We're hoping when we get a pick-up that we'll be able to bring the whole crew back more or less intact, but we already know that a few individuals on our staff already have new jobs and probably will not be coming back. Vic and I and our post-team are on until early January. One would hope we'd get the pick-up by then, but if it doesn't come soon I'll HAVE to look for a new job. Preferably a new job that will allow me to come back and do Spidey if/when (probably WHEN not if) it's picked up. But beggars can't be choosers, you know, and I have a mortgage to pay and kids, dogs and a cat to feed.

By the way, after losing all our pets over the last year, we have two new (not young but new) Basset Hounds, Murray and Hermione, and a new cat (Emmy).

Response recorded on August 21, 2008

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Andres D. writes...

When will season two of the spectacular spiderman be released?

Greg responds...

March, 2009.

Response recorded on August 18, 2008

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KingCobra_582 writes...

My Gathering 2008 Con Journal, the conclusion.

SUNDAY, JUNE 29TH

Woke up. Showered. Went to the comic book panel, hosted by Greg W. and Karine. A fun way to kill an hour. Didn't really get anything out of it, but it was pleasant.

Killed some time at the library.

Returned to the hotel a little while and headed upstairs for the 'Spectacular Spider-man' panel hosted by Greg w., Jennifer Anderson, and Thom Adcox. Asked Greg (no pun intended) a couple of questions ('Will Harry return in season 2?' 'Will we have Spiderman DVD season sets, like Gargoyles?') but mostly I just sat and listened. There will be DVD sets coming soon, but not as a season compilation. More like those 3 episodes per volume kind that I generally tend to associate with Anime. Not that Spiderman is anime, of course.

Though now I'm pondering what an anime version of Spiderman would be like. Damn you, overactive imagination!

Didn't stick around for the live auction, but I returned to the Bonbright Room at 3:30 for Autograph Signing (I'd figured there would have been a anthology signing session. Boy, was I dead wrong.) and did... nothing. Boredom the entire time. Only one person had asked for my autograph, and that was in line for Radio Play auditions. And it was more of a 'you're here and I have my anthology, so I might as well ask' thing then a 'Thanks for writing this submission! You rock and I want your John Hancock!'

Eh, no sense complaining.

Joined A Fan, Ranmaru, Azariel (sp?), VidTheKid, and those 2 girls with the camera (the ones filming a documentary about the con) for the 8th annual Anti-banquet at Giordano's. Pizza was delicious, but rich, so I got full fast. Halloweenking had come in and asked if he could join us, and we said sure, but apparently the waitress had seated him elsewhere. Oh, well. If I ever go to Chicago again, for whatever reason, I definitely need to eat at Giordano's again. That pizza was like heaven. Not too saucy, delicious pepperoni, and the crust was flaky in a exquisite crunchy sort of way. Big thumbs up to them. If they have Giordano's in L.A., (though I somehow doubt they do) Greg, you should definitely go there. Assuming you like pizza.

Rained heavily. Again. What was it with Illinois weather??

The 4 of us (minus Hal and the girls) went back to the Orrington. Ranmaru and Azariel changed into their costumes in our room, and we headed down to Masquerade.

The Masquerade. Lots of picture taking. Got one with Ranmaru and Azariel, just b/c I hadn't had any taken of me yet and I wanted at least one. Kudos to Flanker for playing Odin and to the guy (girl?) who played 'The Gargoyle Tourist'. Kind of looked it could've been Brooklyn's grandma or something. :P

Lot of dancing afterwards, though I'm not enthused in that activity, so I just watched a lot. Wandered around the room in boredom and hoping to mingle. Eventually got caught up in Jeb's 'Mugen' video game he had set up in one corner of the room. I played such characters as Piccolo from DBZ, Naruto from, well, Naruto, Sonic The Hedgehog, and even Fat Albert. A decent sized crowd remained constant, and everyone alternated between watching participating.

I eventually started having trouble keeping my eyes open, so I called it a night and sluggishly dragged my tired ass upstairs. Comfy bed, how I have missed you.

MONDAY, JUNE 30TH

The last day was here. Fast and bittersweet. Some things never change. At least I've made a few new friends. :)

On my way out of the hotel, Thom got on my elevator and we were so busy talking that I forgot to pay attention what floor I got off at, and I couldn't get back on. My response? 'Oh, s**t.'

After all that, my first panel of the day (because it snatched my curiosity) was the 'Blue Mug Productions' thing, at 11:30, in the Bonbright Room, (as I write this, I'm suddenly thinking of Clue, for some reason. :P) hosted by Greg W., Jen Anderson, Karine, and Mara Cordova. They showed off some artwork, gave some character descriptions for their first online comic, plugged their new website (www.BlueMugProductions), and answered some questions. Sounded intriguing, and I approve. Trouble is, I kept thinking to myself (God, I must sound so cheap) that due to finances and my not splurging too often, I'd probably just look at the free stuff.

Closing Ceremonies. What I wouldn't have given for the con to have gone a little slower. Like I said, bittersweet. Some plugging for next year's con (back in L.A. so I am definitely gonna be there!) and the usual handshakes. Saluted Thom.

And, with that, the con was over.

For another year.

VidTheKid and I, having decided to skip the Navy Pier trip (how did that go BTW?), left right afterwards, the three of us having already packed up and checked out. Dropped A Fan off at O'Hare and drove home, stopping once for gas in Indiana. Had lunch at a Steak N' Shake (another highly recommended restaurant, though service can be a bit slow, from experience) outside Lafayette. We were several miles down the freeway when I realized I'd left my hat there (Doh!), but we decided it wasn't worth it. Price of gas was/still is 3 times as much as I'd paid for that dumb cap.

Tried twice to watch 'Futurama' with commentary on the portable DVD player. The first time the car was moving so much that the disc was skipping. The second time we tried, VidTheKid couldn't hear the audio. We gave up.

We eventually hit 70-West and followed it onto state route 142, following it home. It was after 11:00 PM when we finally ended our journey.

Another year, another fun con.

Until G2009 in L.A., good luck.

I'll watch for Spiderman season 2.

Greg responds...

Spider-Man, Season Two - coming in MARCH!

As for www.bluemugproductions.com ...

Don't assume it's going to be that expensive. Charter members will get a HUGE discount. So sign up for alerts at the website.

Response recorded on August 15, 2008

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Kyle writes...

1. Are you planing on introducing Hydro-Man, Menace (the new villain), Spot, Carnage, or Jackal anytime soon?
2. I think when Harry comes back from Europe, he should find out Peter's Spider-Man. Do you think that'll happen?
3. Do you have any plans for the Secret Wars story arc?

Greg responds...

1. Not in Season Two, and we don't have a pick-up yet for Season Three.

2. Did you seriously think I'd answer that question?

3. No.

Response recorded on August 13, 2008

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Arthur Jr. writes...

Hey Greg, I was wondering if you have any plans to have John Jameson's Man-Wolf form appear in "The Spectacular Spider-Man." If so, would Frank Welker be a good candidate for Man-Wolf's vocal effects?

Greg responds...

No comment.

Response recorded on August 11, 2008

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Spazz writes...

Will Morbius the Living Vampire appear in the series?

Greg responds...

Eventually.

Response recorded on August 11, 2008

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Stuart writes...

Hello Mr. Weisman,
I hope you're doing well. I was just wondering if you could answer a few quick questions regarding the future of "The Spectacular Spider-Man", if you don't mind:
1.) Will we see Dr. Curt Connors in Season Two, even if we don't see the Lizard next season?
2.) Do you think it's possible we will see any of the lesser-known Spider-Man villains on this show? Like Swarm or Beetle, or Jack O'Lantern maybe?
3.) One storyline from the Spidey comics I've always wanted to see animated is the near-marriage of Aunt May and Doctor Octopus. Do you think this story could pop up on the show in a future season?

Thanks for reading. Keep up the excellent work, sir.

Greg responds...

1. Yes.

2. Given enough episodes.

3. Less likely.

Response recorded on August 11, 2008

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Bruno writes...

Hey, Greg.

Congratulations by Spider-Man! It's great, and I'm looking forward to more!

I'm writing this one to link everybody to IGN:

Season 1 review (they gave the show a 9, and the readers a 9.5!):
http://tv.ign.com/articles/883/883805p1.html

Greg's interview with Eric Goldman about what's next:
http://tv.ign.com/articles/884/884897p1.html

Oh, and while I'm on it:
1 - Working with Spider-Man is as intimidatingas it looks?
2 - Is it weird to work knowing that Season 2 WILL air, but don't knowing WHEN or WHERE?
3 - Had any writers or artists at Marvel ever talked to you about the series?

Greg responds...

1. At times.

2. It has been, but I now know when AND where. The when is March 2009. The where is a secret for the time being -- though I don't understand why.

3. Craig Kyle.

Response recorded on August 11, 2008

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cyrus writes...

hi greg as you probobly guessed ive got a question
any news on when we can expect spectacular spider man dvds or on content or anything live in canada and it
does not air i need to know
thanks for your time
sorry about the bad spelling

Greg responds...

I don't know specifically about Canada, I'm afraid, though the first DVD goes on sale in the States on 9/9/08.

Response recorded on August 11, 2008

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Delthayre writes...

I have noticed that the episodes thus far aired of the excellent "The Spectacular Spider-Man" have titles that are thematically related to the episode in question and also across the small arcs of the series, viz. episodes four, five and six, all with the common theme of Spider-man contending with villains created at the Big Man's behest, have titles drawn from economics. The first season also had an general scientific theme to its titles as terms from evolutionary theory (1-3), physics (7-9), and psychology (9-13) also appear.

I rather liked that and am curious, provided that I have not erred in my interpretation, about who proposed the use of thematic titles and if the next season will have a similar pattern in its titles. I have guessed that you at least suggested the idea of thematic titles, which would fit with the alphabetical titles used for the second season of W.I.T.C.H., and hope that the practice will be repeated again, but drawn from something other than scienes, but only because I would find the diversity interesting.

Greg responds...

Yeah, the basic title scheme (though not all of the individual titles) was my idea. Each DVD has a title provided by Sony Home Entertainment, like "Attack of the Lizard" -- and also a title provided by us that fits "The Education of Peter Parker" theme. Our titles are:

BIOLOGY 101
ECONOMICS 101
CHEMISTRY 101
PSYCHOLOGY 101

And the first arc of Season Two will be...

ENGINEERING 101

Response recorded on August 11, 2008

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Michael Byrne writes...

Was Eddie Brock originally planned as in the comics, as a shallow photographer exposed for his lack of talent? Or was he planned as a childhood friend of Peter like in USM all along?

Greg responds...

You mean in Spectacular Spider-Man? If so, then what we planned from day one is exactly the same as what we did from episode one.

Response recorded on August 07, 2008

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Anonymous writes...

Hello, Mr. Weisman,
I wanted to ask a few quick questions regarding "The Spectacular Spider-Man" series, if I may:
#1.) You said there will be direct-to-DVD animated movies eventually. Will we see any team-up movies with Spider-Man pairing with other Marvel heroes, like Daredevil, the Hulk or Captain America?
#2.) Will we ever see the Parker parents storyline on the new cartoon series?
#3.) Will Doctor Octopus show up in season two and/or season three, should there be a third season?
By the way, keep up the excellent work on "The Spectacular Spider-Man". It's my favorite Spider-Man cartoon series to date. Thanks for reading!

Greg responds...

1. There are no current plans for that, but never say never.

2. Eventually, given enough episodes/seasons/dvds/whatever.

3. Yes.

Response recorded on August 05, 2008

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Greg Bishansky writes...

This here seems to have caused some debate. So, if you don't mind.

1. Does Gwen realize that Eddie Brock and Venom are one and the same?
2. If the answer above is no, what happened, from Gwen's perspective, after Eddie led her off during the parade?

Greg responds...

1. No, which will eventually be made clear in Season Two.

2. She got ahead of him and was jumped. She didn't see what happened to Eddie -- but fears the worst (i.e. that Venom killed him, not that Venom IS him). She has no reason to suspect that Eddie is Venom or vice-versa.

Response recorded on August 05, 2008

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Todd Jensen writes...

One of my favorite touches in the first season of "The Spectacular Spider-Man" was the sense of the passing year. The first episode was set in September, with Peter returning to school. Spidey's big battle with the Green Goblin was set on Halloween, and his confrontation with Venom in the season finale was set on Thanksgiving.

Will you be showing more of the year's cycle in Season Two? I hope so, because I thought it made Season One all the better.

Greg responds...

Yes, indeed. Season Two runs from December through March of his Junior year of high school.

Response recorded on August 04, 2008

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Arcturus writes...

Thanks for the response Greg! I have been able to view all 13 episodes of Spectacular Spider-Man season 1 and I've got to say that you and the crew have really brought us a wonderful show. Every episode was impressive, the plots were compelling and overall, Spectacular Spider-Man has turned out to be my favorite Spider-Man show. I can't wait for season 2 to start! I do have one more question for now, is there a possibility that you may include Hydroman in the series?

Greg responds...

Yes, eventually (given enough seasons/episodes).

Response recorded on August 04, 2008

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Webhead2006 writes...

Hello greg, I just wanted to say season 1 of SSM was very good and i cant wait to see many many more seasons come for the series. I loved it alot besides a few changes here and there i didnt like at first but grew on me over time and it works for the show itself. I just had a question i was wondering on the production side of things for the show. How long does it take to animate a single episode for the series?

Greg responds...

It takes eight to ten months - give or take.

Response recorded on August 01, 2008

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Jesse B. writes...

One more question: since Molten Man is appearing next season in SSM, does that also mean we'll be seeing Spencer Smythe?

Greg responds...

No comment.

Response recorded on August 01, 2008

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Jesse B. writes...

Hey Greg,

Stellar first season of Spectacular Spider-Man. This show has been everything I've been hoping for and even more. I hope that your current creative team is able to soldier forward together for all 65 episodes and any DTVs that follow. Although this show has clearly been able to push the envelope for content in not only a Spider-Man cartoon but also Saturday morning cartoons in general, I've noticed that it's still been sprinkled with the occasional "S&P moment". As far as I can tell, all of these moments involve either guns or references to death. In regards to the former, while I'm very impressed that you guys managed to get actual guns that look like guns into the show, it always seems like you have to pull off some kind of trick in order to fire them. Things like the silencer on the chauffeur's gun or the burglar firing while hidden in shadow seemed like very clever ways to get around restrictions. However, other times we have instances where guns are pointed but not fired, or that bizarre moment in episode 11 where the police are barraging the Rhino with gunfire coupled with laser sound effects, despite the fact that some kind of projectile is clearly being fired at him. However, you've mentioned before that some S&P things are going to be changed for the DVD release. Since you guys have been careful not to have police or regular thugs firing random laser weapons (unless they were experimental weapons stolen from Oscorp), this struck me as a change for broadcast. Are we going to be seeing more use of guns on the home video release, or at least hear more definitive gunfire sound effects?

And in regards to death references, I've been kind of disappointed by how the script has obviously been forced to dance around the words "die" or "kill", which was especially apparent when Uncle Ben's death was being discussed in episode 12. Is there any chance that we'll also hear some of this dialogue "fixed" on the video release? Or are we still going to have to deal with the frequent "I will destroy you" syndrome that cartoons have been inflicted with on-and-off for the past decade?

Greg responds...

More definitive gunfire sound effects.

Listen/watch episode 12 again. I wasn't restricted on it. When the audience and the characters share knowledge, it can be more potent NOT to say obvious things. And I'm sure when Pete confronted the Burglar, the language didn't pull any punches.

Some of the "destroy" language is inevitable, but if that's your only complaint... well, I can live with that.

Response recorded on August 01, 2008

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Durkinator writes...

This is question in regards to censorship in Spectacular Spider-Man. Back in the 90s series, there was an obnoxious amount of censorship (Spidey couldn't throw a punch?!) that sometimes hindered the story in obvious ways. Now, Spectacular Spidey is obviously a bit of a lighter tone, so I don't expect to see people dying all over the place or anything, but I am curious about how the censorship from the studios of this series differs from other shows you've worked on, like Gargoyles--which I think was great about being delightfully edgy whilst still obeying the censors. Gargoyles was much darker that Spider-Man currently is, obviously; I'm just curious as to how similar the rules regarding the amount of death and violence and such are and if it has changed a lot since your work in the 90s.

And just to be clear, I'm not complaining or asking for Spider-Man to be darker or more violent or anything, I'm very happy with how everything has been handled and balanced without getting too "gritty" thus far (and I'm usually a sucker for dark stories). I'm just curious, you know?.

Greg responds...

I'm hinky about the way you throw the word "censor" around. The biggest rule is, was and always has been our own personal standards of what's right and wrong, what is and isn't appropriate. After that, both Gargoyles and Spectacular Spider-Man benefited from having smart, intelligent and understanding S&P executives (Adrienne Bello for Gargoyles, Patricia Dennis for Spidey). As I've mentioned before, there wasn't much we wanted to do on Spidey that was disallowed. The realistic sound of gunshots comes to mind... and those are being restored on the DVDs. I think it has less to do with the era, and more to do with the individual looking over your shoulder.

Response recorded on July 31, 2008

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Derek G writes...

Hi Greg,

I know you've probably gotten about a billion "When is Spectacular Spider-Man on DVD?!!" questions, which so far it seems you have absolutely idea about, but I do have a question in regards to it.

Just out of blatant curiosity, do you have any idea about (or choice regarding) audio commentaries on episodes on a future DVD? I imagine that's probably more related to Culver Entertainment or whoever, but I am just curious as to if you are planning on doing any commentaries, and if so, whether you have any idea what episodes you would (or would like to) do. Commentaries are my favorite features on any DVD, and your Gargoyles commentaries were absolutely fascinating and entertaining, so I know I would LOVE to hear your thoughts on any of the Spider-Man episodes.

Can't wait for Season 2!

Greg responds...

The first Spidey DVD will be released on September 9th, 2008. Vic and I would like to do audio commentaries, but none have been recorded so far.

Response recorded on July 31, 2008

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avalon writes...

A spectacular SpiderMan question (one of these days you'll probably need to devote a separate SpiderMan Ask Greg! :))....some of the script and storylines are flat out funny and witty, I love it! Do you come up with these lines in your writing as well or is there a separate staff that does this?

Greg responds...

There isn't a SEPARATE staff. There's just THE staff: myself, Randy Jandt, Kevin Hopps, Matt Wayne and Andrew Robinson on Season One. Nicole Dubuc joined the staff for Season Two. It's a team effort on breaking stories. Dialogue generally comes from the writer credited on the episode with an assist from me.

Response recorded on July 30, 2008

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Todd Jensen writes...

My comments on the season finale of "The Spectacular Spider-Man".

I enjoyed it, just like all the others. It had many fine moments in it. A few that I'll mention:

Spidey visiting Tombstone again to make it clear that the deal's off - after which Venom comes by, and Tombstone comments "I'll need to start locking the windows".

Venom's web with the words "Guess Who?" written in it (looking like a twisted version of "Charlotte's Web").

Spidey's spider-sense not working against Venom's attacks (which makes Venom all the more threatening).

The twist in making Venom's target Gwen Stacey rather than Mary Jane (which Peter and most of the audience would have initially suspected). And the part about Flash Thompson and his football buddies helping to rescue her.

The revelation that Aunt May had been writing a cookbook. (I definitely hadn't seen that one coming.)

Peter's disastrous attempt at cooking Thanksgiving dinner, and the consequences of his disposing of the gene cleanser. (I laughed at that last one - it fits Peter's characterization so well.)

Thanks for an enjoyable first season, Greg.

Greg responds...

You're very welcome. We worked hard -- and still had fun -- doing it.

Response recorded on July 30, 2008

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Algernon writes...

I wish I could keep a bit more up to date with these Spider-Man reviews but time is a tad scarce for me at the moment…

S
P
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INTERVENTION
One of the reasons it's taken me over a week to review this episode is that it was so mind blowingly fantastic that when I first saw it I was left in a state of mind numbing euphoria! If you had asked me my opinion at the time it would probably have been something along the lines of "spidey, good!". So I decided to put it off for a few days before putting my thought in some sort of order.

I really liked the way you handled Pete's turn to the dark side in this story arc. It's been a subtle and gradual change, symbolized by the black suit's often evolving appearance. But it truly reaches a crescendo here with Pete viciously lashing out at his friends and even asking Tombstone for a job.

The "Journey to The Centre of Peter Parker" portion of the story is the real heart of this episode particularly with the rather surreal take on the classic origin. It was also a neat surprise to hear Ed Asner as Uncle Ben, I'm amazed you managed to keep that under wraps in the age of the internet. Liked the way you gave the symbiote More of an actual character here, hearing it talk to Pete in his own voice was particularly creepy. And I found the battle between the symbiote and the memory of Uncle Ben very dramatic.

I know I complained about Eddie Brock last time but I thought he was well portrayed here. His descent into homicidal mania is put in context, between losing his Job, education and the not so subtle influence of the alien.

Other random bits I liked…

A more three dimensional flash.

MJ telling Gwen to go for it.

"even Sally feels sorry for you.", so she does have a soul after all!

Curt Conners' rather cavalier approach to science, "genetically engineered super spider on the loose? What could happen?"

Thanks again, I'm looking forward to the season finale.

Greg responds...

Hope you liked it.

Response recorded on July 30, 2008

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Greg Bishansky writes...

"Nature Vs. Nurture"
So, a couple of days ago, I listened to a podcast interview of, perhaps my favorite Spider-Man writer, Roger Stern. Stern is perhaps best known for creating the original Hobgoblin (Roderick Kingsley), as well as the classic "The Kid Who Collects Spider-Man" story. He was also in the brainstorming sessions for the black costume story back in the 80s, and as a joke, suggested "it's alive." Stern then proceeded to apologize for Venom. As a non-Venom fan, that was very nice to hear.

So, drum roll...

I liked this. I liked it a lot. I actually liked Venom. I didn't expect to like Venom in this. I wasn't prepared to like Venom in this, but I did. I think that as long as this series avoids the traps the character in the comics fell into, he should be fine. So, no over-exposure. None of that "Lethal Protector" anti-hero nonsense, and we may have a winner here. He wasn't my favorite of the villains this season, but I liked him. Oh, and no Carnage. For the love of all that is holy, please, no Carnage.

So, in a sense, I think I finally get this version of Eddie Brock. Like he said, his and Peter's parents may have died together, but Peter had Aunt May and Uncle Ben. Eddie had no one, and from his point of view, Peter came off looking like this incredibly spoiled, petulant child who took all the good things he had for granted, and that was before he, from his point of view, screwed Connors over. I also think, that with the Connors' he was trying to fill a void, which is why he took it so damn hard. He wanted his own Aunt May and Uncle Ben.

I did enjoy the way Spidey beat Venom... right out of "Amazing Spider-Man #317." Nice homages to Venom's first two appearances in the comics, back when he was tolerable. Before Marvel decided to kill the golden goose... so to speak. The fanboy in me wishes that the Green Goblin was the first to unmask Spidey and use that to make his life a living Hell, but I am hoping for that in season two.

"We know who you love the most," yup, because we often tend to be the last people to realize when we're in love with someone. Peter/Gwen was built up really well over these thirteen episodes. Very subtly. I am sure some might complain that it came out of no where, but it really didn't. From my experience, a lot of people don't do subtle too well. I am also sure that the Mary Jane fans are upset, but to them I say, have patience. Gwen is the First Love. That is an important aspect of the mythos. While, MJ might be the one he is ultimately destined for, I think previous adaptions dropped the ball on it. She was The One in the 90s toon (with a tiny bit of Felicia Hardy as competition) and the movies declared MJ to be The One since birth. They'll get there, they just shouldn't be there yet. But in the mean time, I am definitely looking forward to seeing where and how things go with Gwen. The Gwen romance has never been done anywhere since the 1970s.

Oh, and I loved the "Romita's Pizza" nod.

As for the first season as a whole? The best "Spider-Man" we have gotten in any medium in a very, very long time. The movies weren't this good. The comics haven't been anywhere this close in a while either. I knew when this was announced that this series was in great hands. When you have the mind that created "Gargoyles", perhaps the best animated series of the last three decades, how can you go wrong?

Overall though, I think as far as this season goes, Tombstone was the greatest surprise. A nobody character in the comics, who I never cared about, is now a major character. A real break-out star. The three-episode Green Goblin arc was perhaps the height of it all for me, though I think that will also be a lot better in hindsight once we have a lot more Goblin material. As far as single episodes go, I think "Group Therapy" did it for me with their portrayal of Dr. Octopus.

But the real treat was having fun and admiring the work of two of my best friends. Greg Weisman, of course; and Post Production Assistant, Jennifer L. Anderson. Excellent work, you two. Excellent work, indeed. I wish I had the time and space to name everyone who contributed to the series, because this was great and I don't want to leave anyone out.

It's a shame to be getting off the roller coaster, but I can't wait to get back on it in the next few months. I can't wait for season two.

Greg responds...

"Oh, and I loved the "Romita's Pizza" nod."

Did anyone notice the Dit Co. sign in episode six?

Response recorded on July 30, 2008

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Aldrius writes...

"Nature vs Nurture" The Review!

I loved this episode. I loved the 'creepy thriller' vibe the scenes at the parade had going. (With Spider-man searching the crowds.) And I loved each character's moment, I liked Liz, I liked Gwen (I really liked Gwen in this episode), I liked Mary Jane, I liked Peter and Flash, I liked Rand, I even liked Eddie. Well, no, I didn't like Eddie, but I understood Eddie.

Which is quite a leap from '*grumblegrumble*Eddie's an idiot.*Grumblegrumble*'. I got it in this one. The Connors are his Aunt May and Uncle Ben, and Peter was the one guy he thought he could really count on and depend upon. And then Peter hurt his Uncle Ben and Aunt May, and the symbiote manipulated him into being hateful and desiring nothing but solitude. After his 'Aunt May' turned him away (because he thought more of their relationship than was actually true), and after it seemed like Peter was no longer worthy of his friendship. A lot of the stuff in this episode made more sense, Peter calling Eddie to apologize about his job, after being responsible for him losing it. Eddie's comment about Peter saving Gwen to 'be the hero', clearly shows what he thinks of Spider-man's heroics: just another way to get glory and fame, by helping people. This was all stuff that I had considered before, of course, but for some reason it all clicked in this episode. It all made a lot more sense. I didn't need that 75 on the jerkometer anymore.

I am not a fan of the damsel in distress routine normally (even Lois Lane isn't really a 'damsel in distress' anymore), but here it kinda worked better for me. I think it was because Rand, Flash, Liz, Gloria, Mary Jane and even Sally helped out in rescuing Gwen. So she wasn't a 'damsel in distress', she was just someone who was in danger and needed helping out from her friends.

Loved the last scene too. Gwen finally works up her nerve and tells Peter how she feels (so to speak). All in the theme of 'responsibility' of course. Gwen not being able to date Peter has nothing to do with his ignorance, it has everything to do with her nervousness. She needed to take responsibility for her own feelings. And the theme of responsibility is prevalent in Eddie as well of course. He's allowed himself to be alone, because he's been too dependent on others for reassurance. He wanted the Connors to become his surrogate family, but they already had a family of their own. He wanted Peter to be his brother forever, but Peter had to grow up and branch out too. And that's Eddie's problem, really. He didn't look for another job after he lost his job at the lab. He didn't look for new friends after he 'lost' Peter. He just wallowed and wasn't proactive.

Where's Norman Osbourn to give an encouraging speech when you need him? "Man up!!"

And that really shows how different the stakes are here. With Gwen it's all about her romance with Peter. Her love of him. With Eddie it's all about his hatred, it's life or death. But both problems are equally important, because of the emotional stakes involved. It's just as important that Gwen tells Peter how she feels, as it is that Eddie kills Peter. And that's really good writing.

I did have some problems with this episode however. Nothing mind-shattering, as, as I've said before... I've enjoyed every single episode.

Problem 1 I had was that Peter still hasn't told Aunt May that he's Spider-man, but this is something that's always bothered me in any Spider-man story. The woman is supposed to be his surrogate mother, and yet he still won't be completely honest with her.

Problem 2 was that the 'Spider-man working for the Big Man' thing didn't really go anywhere, it just ended up being a set-up for Venom working for the Big Man. And now that Eddie's passed out on a roof top somewhere (was that resolved, by the way? If it was I must not have been paying close enough attention.) and the Symbiote is buried under a few feet of concrete, so that doesn't really seem to be going anywhere fast either.

But other than that, fantastic finale to a fantastic season, and I can't wait for next season. Let's hope it finds itself on a network that allows the show the same freedoms it was allowed on the KidsWB.

Greg responds...

We have a new network, though I'm forbidden from announcing what network yet.

Response recorded on July 29, 2008

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evr4 writes...

(spectacular spider-man questions)
first let me say you are too good (for Gargoyles and for bringing back interest in spider-man)!
anyway,
1) did you watch "Intervention"? it was amazing and passed all my expectations of venom's origins. It was the perfect weave (of THE story (second most known history behind Peter's back story) I would think everybody knows) with a beautiful stylistic approach. All episodes so far, but especially this one, showed an approach with "we are going this direction with the storyline, but wait you (the viewer) were wrong because we are going to make a 180 degree turn and make you say, 'I can't believe they just did that!'" Genious...Utter Genious! My friends and I agree we can only dream the SEASON FINALE WAS A 2 PARTER. An interesting statement one of my friends made was Uncle Ben reminded him of Ben 10's grandfather. But one thing felt weird to me....was the episode's animation rushed or was it exactly how it was suppose to be...I can get the "it's in your (Peter Parker/Eddie Brock) mind" sequence so it resembles that of a "dream/fantasy" sequence....but during the episodes some of the lines didn't seem solid...and there was a scene where I think a screenshot stood still on Flash emotionless (though I do understand where the story was going with this) for an entire 1.5 seconds (AWKWARD)..but yeah was it rushed?

2) when Green Goblin has his first serious encounter with Spider-Man (after Spidey just saved Tombstone from Gobby), there was a scene where the glider went right through a building and GG acrobatically jumped over the building and landed on his glider, I saw this scene and immediately said, "TOO GOOD," and lowe and behold Spidey, says, "Okay wow, just wow." any information on who came up with Gobby performing the feat, and who wrote the lines, "Okay wow, just wow"?

finally, let me say, my circle of friends are either 20 or 21, and we love the direction spec spider-man takes every episode. One of my friend's girlfriends younger brother immediately hated the show when it came out but then changed his mind with the great direction and writing of the show (ironically he hated The Batman at first, then fell in love with it). And let me say for myself for one who notices all the smallest details and little intricacies of all your shows (not just Garg and Spec Spid), I will continue to say Greg Weisman is TOO GOOD!

Greg responds...

1. No. Or no moreso than usual.

2. It was some combination of myself and episode writer Andrew Robinson.

Response recorded on July 29, 2008

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kyle tonarella writes...

well i actually have seen the joker episodes you've written and they are tureley works of art a shame that they could not make joker like that through the rrst of the series oh well anyone on to a new question i've heard molten man will be in the show and we he actaully have connections to Liz Allen like the comics is he part of the firs or second arc of season 2

Greg responds...

Punctuation would really enhance your post.

Response recorded on July 28, 2008

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Matthew Roye writes...

Dear Greg.

I am an 18 year old comic book nut, one who's often been criticized by my friends or others for having differing opinions on what makes something great (My tastes never really went into the 90's "everything must be bad ass and with GUNS" attitude, so i didn't cling to wolverine or venom much into my childhood, not to offend anyone who did) so I'm used to getting into arguments to defend my stance on what i enjoy, but boy, did Spectacular Spider-man ever change that!

Not a single person I've met can say anything negative about this show, including me! You and everyone involved have crafted, what i believe, is the single greatest rendition of spider-man the world has EVER seen. i was so happy that a show with great emotion, dialog, action, and acting has been so loved by all who have seen it.

So i should probably get to the question huh? Well this stems from the FIRST argument I've had with my best friend about a certain identity mystery on the show... Tombstone/ The big man, now, I'm not asking for a straight answer, I'm pretty sure you not only can't straight out say it, but you really wouldn't WANT too, but I'm pretty frustrated at being called naive in thinking that the big man may be someone else pulling the strings... like a certain daily bugle reporter perhaps?

If you could, all I'm asking for, and you can outright reject... but all I'm asking for is a clue, something small, I'm good at picking up on little details. you could outright tell me I'm absolutely wrong but throw in a strange word like BAGEL or something non-sequitur that'll let me know something is off. I'm BEGGING sir, with a smile, but still begging.

If not, i would just love to let you know that 'spectacular' has become my favorite show of all time... and I'm a LOST fan, so... theres that...

-Matt

Greg responds...

Hey, Matt. I'm afraid to write anything here, since you've pretty much said anything can be regarded as a clue. I'm glad you like the show though.

Response recorded on July 22, 2008

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Todd Jensen writes...

A few comments on "Intervention".

The symbiote's tightening hold on Peter/Spidey was handled effectively in this episode. I was increasingly unsettled as he yelled at his friends when they tried to help him - and then decided to accept Tombstone's offer after all. (Tombstone's conditions that Spidey had to give up foiling ordinary criminals but was still allowed to face super-villains didn't make things any better. The man who murdered Uncle Ben was an ordinary criminal.) I'm looking forward to seeing what the consequences of that meeting with Tombstone will be.

I wasn't expecting a look back at Spidey's origin story, or an appearance (at last) from Uncle Ben, but I thought they worked well - and especially since they played an integral part in the struggle with the symbiote.

The ending is one of the most chilling moments yet: I can think of few things more dangerous for a super-hero than one of his adversaries finding out who his civilian identity is. That gives me one more reason to look forward to next week's episode.

Thanks for another great story, Greg.

Greg responds...

You're very welcome.

Response recorded on July 21, 2008

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Canus Shamus writes...

It's great watching how the episodes in "Spider-Man" build off one another and create one coherent storyline. I especially liked Peter's line in the Sinister Six ep about Lizard and Goblin being absent, as it lets us know that what we've seen so far has been the complete story; and I was positively geeking out when I heard the voice of "Gargoyles" alum Ed Asner as Uncle Ben. I can hardly wait for the Venom-based season finale. Now, a moment of your time for a few questions:

1. You said in an earlier post that the reason Kingpin wasn't used as the Big Man was because you "didn't have the rights to the character." What?! Marvel owns both characters, how could you not have the rights? (Don't get me wrong: I've always hated the Kingpin character, and I think Tombstone is a much better choice. I'm just curious about what prompted the change.)

2. As Electro left the asylum, he referred to his therapist as 'Dr. Kafka'. Now, even though I've been a Spider-Fan my whole life, I came to the comics themselves relatively late. As a result, I remember that Venom's therapist/love-interest from the 90s series was also Dr. Kafka, but I've never seen her show up in the comics. So: comic book reference that I missed, or sly nod to one of Spidey's earlier incarnations?

Thanks again for your time and for the great show!

Greg responds...

1. Each of Marvel's "Intellectual Properties" has a list of characters that "belong" to that property. Sony (and I work for Sony, not Marvel) has the rights to the Spider-Man property, but not the Daredevil property. Kingpin is part of the Daredevil license.

2. She's from the comics originally.

Response recorded on July 21, 2008

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Greg Bishansky writes...

Intervention
Okay, first off, if Pete is going to get that ruthless under the influence of the symbiote, I'm glad they built up to it slowly and subtly. Far better than the 90s series, which turned him into a monster within a single day, and the less said about symbiote Peter's depiction in "Spider-Man 3" the better. I especially like how my expectations were completely played. I expected Peter to punch out Flash, to do something nasty to Sally. To beat the snot out of Tombstone. But, nope, the people he's cruel to are his friends. Speaking of Tombstone, I am looking forward to the consequences of Spidey's deal with him. Spidey realizing he's saying "we" instead of "I" was well done, and it's nice to see the now, iconic cathedral scene. Hmm, Saint Damien's Cathedral, Greg? ;)

Flash Thompson was the voice of reason. Wow. I really liked that, it makes Flash a strong character and not just a stereotypical jock/bully. He dislikes Peter because he thinks Peter is an elitist jerk. Under the symbiote's influence, Peter proved him right. Now,

Flashback time. Okay, I'm sure some people won't like it, but I'm enjoying the black and white. But the most pleasant surprise is Ed Asner as Uncle Ben. That's perfect casting, and I'm glad that was kept under wraps. Really enjoyed it. This was also a great way to present the origin, a nice combination of the original comic book origin, and the movie's origin.

Uncle Ben as Peter's conscience, and the symbiote as the devil on his shoulder. I like it. Lots of flashbacks, almost like a clip show, and yet it wasn't. I know some people aren't into that sort of thing, but I loved this episode. It wasn't just an origin, it was a character study. A very solid character study.

Fanboy moment, I loved the homage to the cover of "Amazing Spider-Man #100"

Finally, Eddie Brock becomes Venom. Allow me, if you will, my own tangent here. I never liked Venom and mostly because of Eddie Brock. This is a character who has never been done well in any prior incarnation, even the original comic books. He was poorly conceived, poorly written, poorly characterized... and became a super star character. He's the Michael Bay of comic book villains. After he first appeared, everyone it seems, tried to create over the top muscle bound villains with no depth who could kick the hero's asses worse than any of their pre-established nemesis. For Batman it was Bane; for Superman it was Doomsday... when those stories would better be told with pre-established villains like the Joker, Ra's al Ghul, Lex Luthor or Darkseid. I could go further, but there are entire essays on this. Personally, I think Venom is the poster child for everything that was wrong with comic books in the 90s, from the lack of creativity to the internal politics.

Now, all that being said, I liked this. It was definitely the best origin for Venom I have ever seen, and while that may not be saying much, I really did enjoy it. The symbiote itself was very well depicted. While I had misgivings about Eddie's behavior last week, he made a lot more sense today. He lost his job, his education, his future. Not to say he's absolved of responsibility. If he didn't let his hatred for Peter get in the way, he could have made the best of it, found another job and really worked for it. There are people out there who scrub toilets to pay for their educations. But then, when everything seemed okay, and the symbiote wasn't dead, Eddie released it and bonded with it. So, in the end, Eddie really screwed himself over. But it was done well, certainly better than the Sin Eater retcon in the original comic books. I have never been a fan of Venom, but I have accepted a while back that he's here to stay. The Green Goblin; Dr. Octopus and Venom... the unholy trinity.

Brilliant script, Greg. Brilliant episode. I am looking forward to next week's. Make me a fan of Venom.

Greg responds...

Glad you liked it!

Response recorded on July 21, 2008

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avalon1178 writes...

Greg Weisman you are a GENIUS!!!! The Intervention episode, the one where SpiderMan had a flashback moment while he was under the influence of the alien is probably the best rendition of this storyline I have ever seen!!!! Great work! The storyline, animation....all I can say is superb! That episode is not going away from my DVR list that's for sure!

Greg responds...

Wow, thanks!

Response recorded on July 21, 2008

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Aldrius writes...

Review of Spectacular Spider-man Episode 12 :"Intervention"

I loved this episode. Hated Eddie. Loved this episode. And what made me love this episode instead of just liking it? Ed Asner, Jim Cummings, and Robert Constanza. Three of my favourite voice talents of all time. Even if Jim just had a bit part.

I love the fact that Spidey took up Tombstone's offer. It took the influence of an evil black suit, but he still went through with it, and I'm eagerly awaiting the consequences. I love the fact that Eddie so obviously went to see Aunt May in the hospital JUST to piss Peter off, rather than out of any genuine care for Aunt May. I loved Mary Jane in this episode, despite not being a big fan of Mary Jane in general, she's assertive, she's the queen bee of sorts. Same goes for Gwen, the two characters are really coming into their own rather than just being the 'girlfriend' and the 'wet blanket who worries a lot'.

I loved Flash in this episode, he's certainly come a long way from the stereotypical jock he was in episode 1. He's actually *gasp* put some thought into why he harasses Peter. It's not JUST because he's 'smart' or a 'nerd' or because he doesn't value the same things but because he thinks he's got a weak character. Maybe Flash believes in Nietzsche's teaching of 'whatever doesn't kill him makes him stronger'? And if Sally feels sorry for you, you know you've got problems.

Again, loved Ed Asner, loved Costanza and Cummings. Loved the whole flashback really, blatant ripping off of the movie aside. The symbiote seems to be a villain in itself here.

Nothing much more to say, but the flashback of Spider-man saving all those people was really touching. Such a simple thing, pointing out how many times Peter's pulled someone out of the fire, was really effective, and showing all the people in Peter's life that he's touched and enjoyed the company of. (Of course, Black Cat and Norman aren't quite the buddies he thinks they are, but everyone knows that.) And it really shows how strong Peter's supporting cast is. (Even shows him saving Eddie)

Which brings me to my points on Eddie. He's being a numbskull. I can't get behind his motivation to want to destroy Spider-man and Peter at all. Now obviously he's allowed to be a jerk, he's a character, but that doesn't mean I have to enjoy or understand it. If he took 3 seconds to THINK instead of feel, then he'd realize that all of his reasons for hating Peter are completely ridiculous. Now HE'S the one who's stolen the symbiote. Now he's costing himself his OWN job.

To interject something for a second, I love Mrs. Connors in this show too. That's just dawning on me. She's the businessmind behind the scientific brilliance. She owes Peter nothing, she owes Gwen nothing (speaking of which, is Gwen still working there? I guess not.), she owes Eddie nothing, she's just their employer.

Spider-man's saved Eddie and others a bunch of times (of course the symbiote didn't show him that), and because he destroyed an obviously dangerous symbiote, Eddie hates him for it. Of course, it's kinda Spider-man's fault for not EXPLAINING why he was going to ruin Eddie's chances at an education and a job (did he even LOOK for another job, though?) But still, none of the flashbacks of Peter being a 'bad guy' did it for me either. Oh well, everything else was fantastic, so I can hardly fault it for that, despite being a critical moment.

There's still time for all of this to make sense to me, though. Maybe Eddie will have an epiphany in the next episode and actually come to his senses. I'll just have to wait and see.

Greg responds...

I'm not sure I like the "ripping off" characterization. We have legitimate access to all this Spidey material. I'm no more "ripping off" the movie than I am "Amazing Fantasy #15" though I unashamedly borrowed quite a bit from both.

Gwen does still work at the lab.

Response recorded on July 18, 2008

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Donald writes...

can you give me the lyrics to the new spiderman cartoon? i was skeptical if i was gonna like it but i love the theme song, it's perfect!!

Greg responds...

I don't seem to have a lyric sheet. Sorry.

Response recorded on July 18, 2008

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Antiyonder writes...

My third review round:

Episode 7- Catalysts
- Everyone's reaction to Peter's date, priceless. Especially since we get a mention of his bet with Flash.
- Though I feel bad for Gwen, good to see that she got a smile after seeing MJ with Flash in Peter's absence.
- Like everyone else, I'm certainly not a fan of Sally.
- Leaving Mary Jane to help Tombstone. I'd say this is my favorite example of The Parker Luck. Good thing that MJ takes Peter's departure well, and that he gets the last dance.
- Too bad that Harry was dumped, but at least Flash and the gang got a bit of karma. Don't dump the guy with the limo indeed.

Episode 8- Reaction
- I'm always a sucker for romantic moments, and that scene with Spidey saving the guy and gal satisfied that feeling.
- Given that the early comics are the basis for the series, I wasn't really surprised that Pete and MJ weren't in a serious relationship. Though a good number of viewers thought otherwise. Makes sense considering that we all relate to Spidey in our own way.
- Though Ock's personality change did seem fast, it still feels natural.
- Was waiting for Liz to warm up to Peter since her expression around the end of episode 2. Their date didn't disappoint.
- Can't really see the Goblin being anyone else, especially with Norman's smirk at the end.

Episode 9- The Uncertainty Principle
- I thought that the 90s Series did well in humanizing Jameson, but this as well as episode 7 and 11 do a better job. Plus, it helps to have a definitive reason for him to be labeling Spider-Man as a menace.
- I can't see how anyone believes Gwen to be a copy of Debra Whitman, considering that her stare can be intimidating to Peter.
- Peter's Halloween costume choice, gave me yet another Amazing Friends flashback.
- Favorite Line #1 (Liz): You can web me up anytime, Petey.
- Flash Thompson as a cheerleader. Much more frightening than any Halloween creature could ever be.
- Favorite Line #2 (Spider-Man): Trap. (Tombstone): Trap.
- So, Harry is the Goblin. Or is he?

Greg responds...

Glad you liked the stuff.

Response recorded on July 18, 2008

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Arthur Jr. writes...

Hey Greg, to follow up on someone's Montana/Shocker comment, Montana's real name is Jackson W. Brice. What is your reason for Montana becoming Shocker rather than using Herman Schultz.

Greg responds...

Asked and answered. Check the archives.

Response recorded on July 17, 2008

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Aldrius writes...

I was gonna post my ramble on the last three episodes of Spectacular Spider-man, but I get the feeling that the irreverent style in which I do them is mis-interpreted and not appreciated (not to sound like I'm 'bitching', mind you). So I might as well just write up ye olde fashioned review.

The Uncertainty Principle was a fantastic episode. Right from the opening scene with Green Goblin smashing into Hammerhead's car. I liked that completely incidental driver and her silenced gun. She was awesome. Which Spider-man character from the comics is she and (due to this being a non-wasteful Weissman series) when will be seeing more of her? Just kidding.

Though given the way the series is going, I wouldn't be surprised if the answer to both questions is 'yes'. But to move on, I really liked the dynamic between Tombstone and Spider-man in this episode. It's like Spider-man's got his own 6 foot tall walking slab of concrete of an amoral businessman for a side-kick. Tombstone has his own agenda, and Spider-man is part of that, but then Spider-man has his own agenda as well, and Tombstone can be part of that too, even though Spider-man is too naive to realize it. But maybe manipulating the Big Man's criminal empire is too much power and too much responsibility for the webhead.

But not too much for the goblin, of course. And what a goblin we have here. He didn't strike me as anything too special in Catalysts or Reaction (not to say he was bad). But here he was a beast. I loved the fight scenes in this episode, just to compliment you for one second, I think these are a vast improvement over any of the fight scenes in Gargoyles, and what little I've seen of Witch. There was some real energy to them, and the words meshed perfectly with the action.

Anyway, as I said, I loved the Goblin in this episode. He was both hilarious and dangerous, reminiscent of Batman: The Animated Series' Joker or Reboot's Hexadecimal. Even some very simple straightforward dialogue is brought to life by Steve Blum. (I love the part where he just expositioned who

And I of course, like everyone else, have my own theories and thoughts about the Green Goblin's identity. I think it's Norman who set Harry up to take the fall back at the mansion, but I would not be entirely surprised if it actually is Harry. Gotta keep an open mind when it comes to these things.

Then there was Persona. Another GREAT episode. If the Goblin is my favourite villain (regardless of who's behind the mask), then Black Cat is my favourite 'love interest' for Spider-man. I thought the actress did a fantastic job being sultry and dangerous. But still tough and resourceful.

I liked the Chameleon too, and the dynamic between the Black Cat and the Chameleon even though they don't have a single scene together. They're both 'using' spider-man to get what they want. Chameleon is using his identity as a cover and for some reason he's trying to incriminate him. I'm not going to pretend I understood why they were smearing Spider-man's reputation. I guess maybe, like the big man, he wanted him distracted while he pulled off his master crimes.

The quinten beck and the other guy cameos were fun too, and fitted well with the Chameleon's 'stage-esque' personality. It's all just smoke and mirrors, and the old school use of that was really fun.

I'm not a big fan of the movie-type black suit. I think the older one is a lot sleeker and looks much better on spider-man, but I liked his design regardless. You can barely see the lines, and I didn't notice any change, but apparently there was some in the latest episode.

Which brings me to just that. Group Therapy. This one was like two episode in one for me. One I loved, and one I almost couldn't stand. I loved the dynamic of the sinister six. They all had their goals, and they were all clear. But Doctor Octapus (who I found rather unmotivated in his original episode) made for a commanding and powerful presence to unite them against the spider-man. Though I'm still not sure I know WHY he's after spider-man. Though I do think the dynamic of the man who desperately wants to be noticed and lavished with attention (octapus) vs. the man who just wanted to disappear (octavius)is very clear, and maybe he just snapped. Still a great character and I love Peter McNichol.

Having said that, all the other villains' motivations were very clear. Shocker feels a sense of responsibility to the Big Man, and wants to deal wih Spider-man for him, electro wants to be normal, and sees Doctor Octapus as a way to do that, plus he just doesn't like Spider-man. Rhino is an animal, and he wants revenge, wants to prove how tough he is. Sandman just wants money, doesn't really care about Spider-man. And Vulture wants to go after Osbourn. Like Octapus, he kinda just wants to be noticed and recognized I think.

Actually, in that regard Octapus and Vulture are very similar. They care a great deal about etiquette, about manners and recognition. They're like two scientists who wanted to get the noble peace prize (and deserved it) but were denied it.

Also want to comment on how fun it was seeing all six villains get equal screentime. The villains you chose allowed for a lot of 'doubling up' (with the shocker and electro both blasting Spider-man at the same time, stuff like that) and I'm glad Octapus got the final confrontation with him, being the lead bad guy and all that.

There were two lines I found rather strange in this episode. One was 'Lizard and Goblin have knick's tickets'. Considering the Lizard was his ex-boss (maybe Peter does capatalize off of the Conners' pain with jokes!), and the Goblin was his crazy best friend, that seemed in rather poor taste, but it was still funny so that made up for it for me anyway.

The other was 'peter is twice the man you are' by Mary Jane. If she knows he is spider-man then this line is perfectly understandable but as it stands it strikes me as a rather odd comment for a sixteen year old girl to make when she barely knows Eddie (not that he wasn't being a complete creep, but I'll get to that in a second) and she's gone on one date with Peter and run into him a couple of times afterwards, at least it seems that way to me. It works in regard to the story, but it seems weird for it to be coming from Mary Jane to me.

Whereas Mary Jane almost seemed to be a bit too insightful and too wise, Eddie just seemed to be a judgmental fool to me in this episode. Jumping to every conclusion without even letting Peter speak up for himself or explain himself. It's true to life, but for the narrative it struck me as rather sudden, and it was almost as if he went from 50 to 100 on the jerkometer in a single episode. While I feel that there could have been a 75.

At least that's how it seemed to me at first, but I've watched it a second time and it actually occurs to me that he wasn't really doing anything other than being a HORRIBLE conversationalist and a crazy driver. And if it wasn't for that 'funny little plane accident' comment complete with the 'I'm a psycho' look, I wouldn't say he was that out of line. I think it's more that comment earlier about making 'Peter suffer too' that made me think that he was going to kill Mary Jane or something. But in hindsight, looking at that scene again, he was just a frustrated guy trying to make what he saw as the cause of his frustration a little jealous who might have taken it a little too far in the moment.

In hindsight, I didn't dislike the Mary Jane and Brock scene as much as I did initially, but it was still probably the weakest subplot of the 10 episodes we have had thus far.

All in all, these are probably my three favourite episodes of the lot so far, barring Eddie in 10, but we're obviously getting some episodes on that over the next two weeks, so maybe it'll be put into perspective for me.

Greg responds...

I can't take much credit for the fight scenes: that credit should go to Vic Cook, episode director Dave Bullock and their storyboard artists... and of course the animators. (Plus our composers, who plus everything.)

Response recorded on July 17, 2008


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