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The second season of "The Spectacular Spider-Man" continues as the Master Planner story arc continues to unfold.
I liked the prologue, with Spidey casing out Blackie Glaxton, and yes, I remember him from the comics. I just love how this show mines the comics for even the most obscure characters. Oh, and there's Patch. I remember him too, and he's someone else who it's nice to see. I think I'll keep my lips sealed on him for the benefit of those who don't know the old comics as well.
Right now, allow me a little tangent on Steve Blum. I've been a fan of his since I first watched "Cowboy Bebop" on DVD back in 2002. I knew this guy was going to become a star voice actor. His performance as Spike was nothing short of terrific. He's also a terrific Wolverine. But, he has often been criticized of using just one voice, since that Spike voice is quite popular. So, I am glad that this show has allowed him to show off his range. His Green Goblin is terrific. I liked his Chameleon. He's done other incidental voices here and there, but I didn't recognize him as Blackie until the end credits. He's terrific.
I do like how there wasn't another elaborate escape scene this time. It was fun last time we saw the Six, but we didn't need a repeat. Although I am curious as to how Toomes, Rhino and Sandman managed to escape without anyone being the wiser.
While this was mostly one long fight sequence, what a fight sequence. It was all over the place, and fun. The villains aren't feeling like they're old hat yet, but I do hope the Six find a better strategy than two at a time the next time we see them.
And now we have Peter and his girl troubles. He wouldn't be Peter Parker without them. Here's hoping he makes some more progress with one of them next week.
Okay, the soundtrack this time was terrific. Yeah, it was Christmas music, but it added to the atmosphere.
Ock, you brilliant bastard. I am pretty sure he's the Master Planner, and he was operating from inside Ravencroft. I look forward to seeing what his master plan is. Looking forward to seeing him lead the Sinister Six next week.
As a long time fan, I would have preferred to see Rhino get arrested, and not Mysterio, so we could have the original Sinister Six next week. But no big. It's the end of the Master Planner arc, I know it's going to be good.
Not as much to say this week. But it was a very enjoyable episode.
Oh, I almost forgot. Cletus Kasady? For the love of all that is holy, why? I am hoping that easter egg remains an easter egg.
Just to make something clear -- not that you were asking for Spoilers, Greg -- but I have NO intention of spoiling my very tentative plans for Season Three beyond what I've already stated, which is that they include Hobgoblin and Scorpion. I'm of course still hoping there will be a Season Three, so I'm gonna say "No comment" to any questions that ask for spoilers.
Any plans to use Morbius The Living Vampire? I've always found him to be a wonderfully pulpy character, especially in his groovy 70's costume.
First I just wanted to say that I loved the format or device or whatever you might call it that was common among the episodes in the newer Venom arc-- really worked for me. Loved the videos, the Shakespeare, really great placement there. The second Goblin arc had a similar format as well, I'm hoping future arcs can be so closely linked in that way, rather than just by villains and storylines.
Also, one of the few flaws I've noticed with the show is the lack of continuity with regard to destruction-- certain locations (Bugle, Midtown) seem devastated by a fight in one episode and look fine about a month later.
1. So you said in a previous entry that the first arc this season is "Engineering 101." What names did the writers give to the others? "Criminology" and "Theater" seem obvious, but the second arc is hard to pin down.
2. No original named characters, right? I don't think anyone online has ID'ed the Michael kid from "Gangland." Could you shed some light on this?
3. Goblin raises an interesting point-- duration or frustration? Which did the staff think was the cause of Mark's heating issues? Also, did Goblin turn the armor off after the prison fight?
4. How is Rand taking his "brother's" downfall? I was hoping to see a reaction, I assume it was cut for time or pacing reasons. I know there's already a ton to pack in to the episodes.
5. Is Curt still working on a cure for Max? It seems like that should be priority one (understandably, he seems often characterized by his guilt), but there isn't any sign that he's even trying.
Also, I thought you guys did a fantastic job with Liz. Honestly, I greatly prefer her to Gwen (though I seem to be in the minority). Surprising, since she was mostly a nuisance in her first couple appearances. Flash has become one of my favorites as well.
Fingers crossed for a third season!
Actually, relative to most cartoon shows, we think we've been pretty attentive to damage. The Bugle was demolished by Rhino in episode 6. In episode 7, it was still demolished. Yes, by the next time we saw it, it was repaired, but at least we aren't ignoring the damage.
1. Engineering 101, Human Development 101, Criminology 101, Drama 101.
2. Michael was the Kids WB contest winner. Of course, that episode will never air on the now non-existent KidsWB , but we felt we had to honor our commitment. Anyway, Michael knows who he is.
3. No comment on the first half of your question. As for the second half, I'd think that he did turn it off. He wouldn't want Mark to have access to the power on his own terms.
4. It wasn't "cut" in the sense that it was scripted or boarded or animated and then cut for time. But I'm assuming that our audience is intelligent enough to read certain things between the lines, so to speak. Things happen off screen. We can't show everything. I assume you can fill in the blank for yourself based on what we've already shown you as to how Rand is reacting to John's situation.
5. Yes. Again, just because we don't show him working on it in every episode doesn't mean he's given up. It just means he hasn't found it yet... or made any real progress worth mentioning.
Hello again, Mr. Weisman.
I have a few more questions, if you don't mind me asking...
1.) You mentioned that you intended to use characters like the Kingpin and the Human Torch on your show, and on an interview with IGN you said that you had a Hulk story from the Stan Lee/Steve Ditko era in mind that you wanted to tell at some point. I've read that you could not use any of these characters at the moment due to legal rights and I'm merely guessing you still can't for now. When there is a season three, and hopefully not "if" there's another season, how do you guys go about making sure you can get the rights to use a currently-unavailable character on your show? Who do you guys have to talk to in order to get permission to use those characters in the episode(s) you'd like to have him/her appear in? If not for season three, then maybe we'll get lucky enough to see guest characters on a fourth season, but I know I'm getting too far ahead of you on this topic. I guess it's just hard not to get carried away wondering what comes next on a show you love watching like "The Spectacular Spider-Man". Anyway, I'm just asking because I'd like to see Spider-Man to meet at least one or two other heroes in the future to show that Spidey's not the only one saving the city. As unlikely as it is for now and even if it doesn't happen on "The Spectacular Spider-Man", I'd really, really like to see another Spider-Man/Hulk episode made one day since the two heroes haven't been seen on the same show together since "Spider-Man and his Amazing Friends".
2.) Since Kraven appears in season two, is it possible that there will be any of the Chameleon and Kraven ties explored on this show? They have a lot of history together in the comics, being half-brothers and all.
3.) When there's a season three, do you have any plans in mind for which Spider-Man foes that you'd like to introduce on the next season whether or not they become villains on this show? For example, like introducing Dr. Carolyn Trainer before she becomes Lady Octopus or introducing Michael Morbius before he becomes Morbius the living vampire. Even if you can't comment on the two examples that I mentioned above, do you have any ideas in mind even if you can't say who?
4.) How likely do you think it'll be we can see more of the Black Cat when the show is picked up for a new season?
Thank you for your time and keep up the excellent work, sir. I really hope you and the rest of the crew return for another season.
1. This is a non-issue until or unless we get a pick-up.
2. No comment.
First off Iâd like to thank you and your team for making Spectacular Spider-Man a great experience to watch. Personally Iâd like to comment on all the highlights of the show, but in an effort to keep this short here goes.
Season 2 has already aired outside the U.S. and Iâd like to ask a question with the assumption that Iâve already viewed both seasons. If you donât wish to answer this question for any reason I understand.
On to my question, if [Iâd like to say WHEN] season 3 is picked up, will we see a continuation of Gwen and Peterâs love story? I apologize if it seems like a dumb question but I was fascinated by the build up between the two in the series. Add the fact that Gwen is a very likeable character in this series and how we as the audience always root for the main character Iâm just wondering if weâll have more moments between them. I would also like to know if it was a challenge figuring out a way to make their relationship interesting and enjoyable to watch. Iâm aware many TV shows try this and the end result seems forced, but here, it seems to be put together perfectly. Both the writers and the voice actors did a really good job on this aspect of the show.
Anyway I wish you and your team the best of luck. And Iâll be rooting for you guys for a season 3!
Yes, of course we'll continue the story of Gwen and Peter. Was it a challenge? Maybe a little, but it all came together pretty effortlessly, particularly with Josh and Lacey playing Pete and Gwen.
Big fan of your Spectacular Spider-Man cartoon. You've done us Spidey fans proud. Doctor Octopus is my all time favourite Spidey villain, and like everything else in the show, you've done a brilliant job bringing him to life from the comics. I particularly loved the adaption of the Master Planner storyline. And the wonderful Peter MacNicol does a tremendous job voicing the character.
My question to you is do you have any future Doc Ock stories in mind that you'd like to adapt? There's still so many more great ones to choose from. The Nullifier arc and the Death of Captain Stacy from the Stan Lee days, for example.
Keep up the great work. I hope you guys get a third season to continue your fantastic work on this cartoon.
All the best,
I have MANY stories in mind...
This is a comment rather than a question.
A few years ago, I mentioned here that the medieval flashback scenes in "Awakening Part One" had reminded me, the first time that I saw them, of a PBS animated adaptation of David Macaulay's "Castle". Recently, I was rereading the book that the PBS program had been based on, and discovered that the castle in it (a fictional castle, portrayed as part of Edward I's castle-building program in northern Wales) was called Aberwyvern, and stood by the Wyvern River. I'm certain that it must have been a coincidence (I assume that when you came up with the name "Wyvern" for the castle in "Gargoyles", you were thinking of the two-legged dragon-like creature), but it still astonished me, and I wanted to share it with you. (And Edward I *does* have a link to the Gargoyles Universe as the man responsible for the Stone of Destiny's removal from Scotland to Westminster Abbey.)
I think Michael Reaves came up with the name Castle Wyvern. So you'd have to ask him what his influences were.
Does Talon have a second-in-command down in the Labyrinth? I know that the Labyrinth members are not part of a true gargoyle Clan but Talon realized he needed to take a stand and be the leader. Is there someone he has chosen (or will chose down the line) to be his second and take over for him when he can no longer lead?
Have you ever considered writing for video games? You're really good at creating unique worlds within the shows you've worked on... everything and everyone seems connected and intertwined in the new spiderman and gargoyles series. I think you could write a killer game franchise.
PS maybe pitch a gargoyles game or spectacular spiderman game... ;)
I'd love to, but nobody has hired me to write one.
Blueprints Review *Possible Spoilers*
Well, here we go at last. Season 2 is here. We waited almost a year and thanks to being Canadian (and having some very nice Australian friends) Iâve managed to get something of a sneak peak at the season. And by thatâ¦ I mean Iâve seen the whole thing. Just to put these reviews into perspective, these reviews were written after having seen the final episode of the season, Final Curtain. So if you (the person reading this who isnât Greg Weisman) donât want spoilers about anything that happened in this season, then please donât read this and blame me. Iâm going to avoid putting down direct spoilers, but Iâm only human.
Just to pre-face these reviews. Iâm going to be perfectly honest. I didnât particularly like season 2 overall. There were a few episodes that just blew me away but overall I was very disappointed with it. So my real hope with these is that I can remain constructive without crossing over into the realm of complaining. So anyway, here are my thoughts on the first episode of the Spectacular Spider-man season 2: Blueprints.
Unfortunately, this is probably my second least favourite episode of the entire series (not that thatâs saying a whole lot mind you), so my first review might be a little on the negative side. Mysterio really didnât do it for me, and the high school drama nor Peterâs home life didnât seem to go much of anywhere, except for showing how much heâs got on his plate. There were a couple of really funny jokes through out, though and some pretty nice action scenes.
So to start off with what I liked. Stan Leeâs cameo is a lot of fun, heâs got a great voice, I think thatâs why he lends himself so well to all these cameos, heâs very iconic sounding and looking. Another fun aspect was Mysterioâs incantations. Iâve heard theyâre actually MC Hammer lyrics, very awesome. I really liked how he accompanied all his âmagicâ with those spells. But a lot of what he does seems to be a little TOO impressive for simple misdirection (where the heck did he get that sword from?). Itâs kind of distracting but not such a big deal.
I really like Normanâs role in this episode, the way heâs beginning to sink his teeth into every aspect of the city. Taking control of the Connorsâ lab, taking control of Peterâs life, taking control of his breakfast. The whole dinner scene in general is pretty awesome (though for a fancy dinner party, the group sure seems to be drinking a lot of waterâ¦). I really like the way Miles Warren carries himself too, unlike the slightly more insecure Connors, he really seems aware of himself and what heâs doing. Heâs eager, like a young man, rather than the experienced scientist his reputation suggests. Meanwhile, Emily Osborn is attempting to use her dinner knife to cut her way through her dinner plate.
I really like the pressure thatâs present in the dinner scene as well. Norman is looking out for Peter, perhaps looking to nourish his potential, in the effort of finding a more suitable heir since his first one has turned out to be such a disappointment? Warren is just interested in efficiency. He doesnât care about personal feelings he just wants to get all the work they can possibly do, done as quickly as possible. Martha is pragmatic too, but she also wants control of her little corner of the world, and she canât have that if she canât trust the people who are working for her.
Watching it now, my only real problem with the episode is the villain, and itâs not even that I dislike him. I love his design, I kind of love, kind of donât love the fact that heâs a very over the top actor. I love the voice that Xander Berkeley has given him, and he gets some great lines in.
I think my only real problem with Mysterio is the abundance of robots. My limited exposure to the character has always implied, to me, that the guy was more of a trickster and an illusionist than someone who could pose an actual threat to Spider-man. But I suppose that doesnât make for a compelling fight scenes. And it kind of goes against the âthemeâ of this arc being engineering. Last season for example, I thought the way Beck and Mason recreated Spider-manâs powers was really clever. And the only thing I can think of that even comes close to it here is the nerve gas that Mysterio was using.
This isnât so much a complaint as an observation/inquiry and it could be intentional but Mysterioâs dialogue often seems at odds with itself, sometimes Mysterio seems kind of surly and sarcastic (âBut itâs such a clever trick.â Great line, by the way) and other times heâs really over the top and hammy. Is that intentional? Is it supposed to be that heâs such a bad actor that heâs perpetually breaking character? Am I just imagining things and picking nits or was that intentional in the writing? Also, I enjoyed the ham, but sometimes (and this is a complaint) it went on just a little too long for my liking, and crossed the line from amusing to annoying. (The conversation at the end for example. Funny at first, but became uncomfortable towards the end.)
Anyway, overall a fairly strong start with a few issues in this season 2 premier. I enjoyed re-watching it a lot more than I enjoyed reflecting upon it I think. Iâm not really sure why that is, but there you go. Sorry, I tended to ramble here a bit, but there was quite a bit to talk about, and I both really enjoyed and was disappointed by the episode, so thereâs always that. Keep up the good work anyway, Greg. Thanks for letting me submit these reviews even when theyâre not glowing.
Mysterio's incantations are not MC Hammer lyrics (at least not that I know of - I'm not familiar with his work). You can find the translations in the ASK GREG archives.
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