Ultimate Spider-Man Season Two, Episode One PREMIERE Review


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Peter Parker, team leader, is on the right track to becoming the Ultimate Spider-Man. He’s working with his team, he’s taken down dangerous super-villains, and his best buddy Dr. Connors hasn’t turned himself into a giant lizard. Although, everything can’t be too great for Peter for very long. So, in this episode, Doc Connors grows a big, green, scaly arm. Oh, and Doctor Octopus is there, too.

ULTIMATE SPIDER-MAN Season Two, Episode One

“The Lizard”

Written By: Man of Action & Jacob Semahn

THE STORY: Spider-Man and his team of Spider-Friends are finally working together, and as a team, they are able to stop Doctor Octopus. Once S.H.I.E.L.D. arrives, Spidey and his super-powered buddies have to get back home before Aunt May walks through the door. When Peter needs a little quiet time, he goes to see Doc Connors. Connors fixes Peter’s web shooters, and tells Peter that Otto wanted to use animal DNA to create a super-powered army. When he tries to take a look at Doc Ock’s tech, Octavius’ entire lab begins to self destruct. Spidey saves Connors, but in turn, gets stuck under a big metal thing. Hate it when that happens. Connors, the genius scientist, injects himself with the lizard DNA to help Spider-Man free himself. It works, but believe it or not, Connors turns into a giant lizard. The Lizard runs off to find Doctor Octopus. Eventually, Spider-Man has to team up with Doc Ock and the Spider-Friends to stop the Lizard.

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THOUGHTS: Keep in mind that I went into this with very low expectations. Very low. This episode was okay. There are several specific problems I have, yet it wasn’t totally annoying. I enjoyed most of it. I don’t keep up with the behind-the-scenes stuff, but the animation looks much different than the past episodes. It still looks great, though. Spider-Man didn’t come off like a total idiot here, (Connors did, but I’ll get to that in a second) and Nova didn’t talk much. Two of my main problems with this show, gone this episode. That deserves some credit. The story wasn’t the best, but it really wasn’t awful like the Doctor Doom episode. I’m not loving the Lizard here, but the episode as a whole was not too shabby.

 

     Doctor Connors is a well-respected scientist working for S.H.I.E.L.D. Now, I’m no doctor, yet I’m sure that to have the position he has, Connors would have to be a genius. A ridiculously-smart scientist who has gone through years and years of endless education and training. Connors must be the very best of the best, and yet, at the drop of a hat, he injects himself with unexamined Lizard DNA that has been tampered with by a super-villain. This man was hired for S.H.I.E.L.D.! As a scientist, how could he put this dangerous chemical in his body without even taking a look at it first? The usual story for Curt is that he had been working on his serum for years, trying his best to perfect it. Once he got desperate enough, he tried it on himself. This episode is an odd and unnecessary change in the origin of the Lizard. This takes me back to my point of the reintroduction of characters.

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     We have seen the origins of Spidey’s foes many times. Whether it was the comics, the nineties animated series, Amazing Friends, the movies, Spectacular, or even Spider-Man Unlimited. Yet with each new series, we have to sit through the origins again. Ultimate Spider-Man tries to be different and changes things that don’t need to be changed. When Curt has been working for years on his serum so he can regain his missing piece, there is an emotional side to his origin. In this series, Doc Ock has, for some weird and mostly unexplained reason, created these animal serums (or plot devices). Bam, one emotional link gone. Doctor Connors doesn’t even seem concerned about regrowing his arm, he takes the serum to lift that darned metal thing off of Spider-Man. Boom, other emotional link gone. Where is the emotional connection here? Peter tries to tell us that Connors is a huge mentor to him, and that they are practically best friends. We haven’t seen that, though! Connors is usually just there to move the plot along. It’s just odd that the story tries to force the connection down your throat at the last second. If the two characters had slowly bonded more over the course of the last season, and then this episode had occured, perhaps that would solve the problem. I’m not sure, everything in this show feels very rushed.

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     Like most of the past episodes, the story wraps up very quickly. Peter easily whips up an antidote, because he’s a crazy genius science student. Doc Ock did not need to be here. Honestly, he felt like a very excessive presence. I usually don’t like it when the show cuts away to a silly skit or whatever, but one of my favorite parts of the episode was the little video-game scene with a voice cameo by Stan Lee. That was funny.

PROS: Action, opening scene, some funny jokes.

CONS: Reintroduction of the Lizard, senseless origin changing.
GRADE: 4 out of 5 Scaly Arms. Not a bad way to start the new season. Fairly good episode. Thanks for reading! Please leave a comment! I love those.

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(12) Comments

  1. tops116

    One thing that bothered me about this episode was how they played up Spidey's relationship with Connors. Maybe I wasn't paying attention, but I don't recall much of any real interaction between them in Season 1. I mean, I think it makes sense for Peter to look up to Connors and view him as a mentor figure, but it seems more like an informed attribute on this show instead of actually earned. I also had hoped they'd be less reliant on cutaways, though Stan's cameo was great. I would love to see an episode centered around his janitor character.

  2. Enigma_2099

    @#8 Even the worst offender with the cutaway jokes(Teen Titans) had it's moments... which included NO CUTAWAY JOKES. The show had bots of decencywhen it actually took itself seriously. So guess what... Yeah, yeah. I know. For kids. But aren't there even kids who aren't exactly fond of the lame jokes? And it pains me that this show is still going, but Young Justice is being canceled.

  3. Warren

    @#6 - You mean worst in terms of animation or worst in terms of writing? The animation is actually pretty good (character models style is at least are better / more realistic looking than Spectacular) and the animation is alright. I wouldn't say it's the best overall animated series ever and certainly not the greatest overall Spider-Man animated series, but I don't know if I'd quite go as far as to say that it's the worst either. I'd say Season 2 so far is better than Season 1, with less cut-away jokes and the ones that are there don't seem overly distracting.

  4. Tash

    Such a boring episode, wasn't bad enough to hate, wasn't good enough to like, at least they toned it down a bit, even if the jokes still suck.

  5. karpinskijd

    i've been watching this show since it's release, and i do have to agree that this episode is a sort of diamond in the rough. great review, ethan.

  6. Aziz

    Time skip, you skipped everything after episode 3. Is it that bad? I find it a mediocre show, and this episode is the most annoying I saw from this show

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