If anybody needs an enormous suit of ridiculously restrictive and clunky armor, it’s gotta be Hulk-Goblin. In this SEASON FINALE, the Goblin has transformed the Spider-Friends into a pack of green monsters, and the city’s next! It’s up to Spider-Man to save his team and all of New York! But this is the Ultimate Spider-Man cartoon version of Peter Parker, so… Good luck, New York.
ULTIMATE SPIDER-MAN Season Two, Episode Twenty-Six
“Ultimate” SEASON FINALE
Written By: Man of Action & Jacob Semahn
PLOT: Spider-Man attempts to chase down the Goblin on his Spider-Cycle, who emerges from the ocean in the previously destroyed Helicarrier (which he has now dubbed the Hell-Carrier). The Spider-Friends come out to play, and they have all been transformed into mini-goblins. They beat the crap out of Spidey, but Agent Coulson helps Spider-Man escape in a S.H.I.E.L.D. jet. Coulson gives Peter Curt Connors’ anti-Goblin device which has just enough juice to take down Norman. Spidey shows back up on the Hell-Carrier, and the Goblin reveals his plan to turn all of New York into his own Goblin army. The Spider-Friends (mini-goblins) continue to fight Spider-Man, but he tells them stories of the past they’ve shared together while zapping each of them with the anti-Goblin device. The big Goblin finally puts his plan into action, firing his goblin-serum missles at the city. S.H.I.E.L.D. then fires their own missles, effectively blowing up the Goblin’s missles. The Goblin says “Oh, crap” and blows a hole in the Hell-Carrier to escape. Spider-Man and his team tell Nick Fury to shoot the carrier down with them inside, thus ending the Goblin threat, but Fury doesn’t pull the trigger and tells the team to abandon ship. The Goblin escapes on his glider, which Spider-Man blows up. The two fight in the air for a few seconds, and the Goblin lands in the water, which somehow knocks him unconscious. Later, the Goblin is once again a prisoner of the Helicarrier, and the Avengers offer Spider-Man a place on their team.
THOUGHTS: I don’t want to be that negative guy. I don’t want to be that guy hates everything new. I’m always trying to look for some substance in this show, and sometimes I find it. But quite frankly, this season finale summed up nearly everything that is wrong with this show in my opinion. I had so many problems that I couldn’t write them down in my notes fast enough. And most importantly, the biggest strike against this episode: the lack of fun. I found the previous installment to be mildly entertaining, but I really did not find much enjoyment at all in this one. The plot was drab, the characters were flat and uninteresting, the action was surprisingly disappointing, and the Goblin gets taken out in the span of about three minutes. In ridiculous fashion. I want to save some talk about the Goblin for my later reviews of previous episodes, but I need to give a bit of my opinion on him now. If you read my very first review of this show, you know that I’m a HUGE fan of the original Bendis/Bagley run of Ultimate Spider-Man comics. If you’ve read those stories, you’ll also know that the Green Goblin is pretty much THE villain of that series. From the the first issue to the end. So how do I feel about this completely immasculated and downright boring version of the character? I hesitate to use this phrase because it’s not very objective, but… It sucks. It sucks bad. Allow me to reference other media again. In the Amazing Spider-Man film, which I loved overall, I felt that the worst plot point was the Lizard attempting to transform all of New York City into Lizards. Imagine the Green Goblin, but take every last drop of his personality away. Now imagine that Dull Goblin in a huge suit of armor that he does not need for any reason. Now imagine him enacting a plan to turn all of New York into Goblins. That. Does. Not. Work.
Yet, as they are often to do, the Spider-Friends carry out an even dumber subplot that is quite honestly hard to watch. All four of the teammates have been transformed into mini-goblins as of last episode, and all four of them are trying their darndest to sound scary and intimidating. I don’t know how the Goblin serum is supposed to work in this show, because the Spider-Friend-Goblins can’t seem to decide if they are new personalities or the same four kids just acting like tools. One of the worst moments of the episode was Luke Cage making a jab at Peter for not saving Uncle Ben. Not only did this seem unnecessary (and annoying), but Peter simply responds, “Dude! Don’t go there!” as if Luke just mentioned an ex-girlfriend or something. You’ve heard me say this before and it’s still happenin’ this time: Spider-Man does not get serious for any reason. Due to this show being a comedy before anything else, Peter never shows any sort of a sense of urgency, and maybe I’m the only one but this bugs the living crap out of me. The Goblin’s story is mainly handled in the last few minutes, the main plot seems to be Spider-Man trying to save his “best friends” from being evil little green trolls. This falls very flat. Spidey barely seems concerned for his friends, he continues to joke and joke and joke relentlessly. He recounts previous adventures with the team in an attempt to help them regain control of their minds. It’s fairly corny (yet with no emotional impact) and that would be fine if that plot didn’t take up three-fourths of the episode. Seeing the team act like goblins is cringe-worthy at best, and the “anti-goblin” device is ridiculously convenient.
“The Hell-Carrier”? You can say that on a Disney channel? I don’t understand how the Goblin had this whole contingency plan in case he ever got his hands on the Goblin formula again. He had the old Helicarrier under the ocean waiting for him to fly, which begs three questions to me.
1. Didn’t this thing blow up completely last season? Even if the Goblin could somehow repair it, I mean… It blew up.
2. Doesn’t the Helicarrier require several pilots or at least a crew? The Goblin seems to handle it pretty well by himself.
3. And when would he have had the time or resources to fix it? He’s been the do-gooder Iron Patriot for a while now.
Bonus Question: S.H.I.E.L.D. just left their entire base of operations sitting under the ocean? I doubt they wouldn’t have towed that thing out of the ocean, whether it was totalled or not. We wouldn’t want a supervillain to get his green hands on it or something.
I wish they would have made this episode double-length, because they tried to go for some heroic, emotional moments that don’t have time to register due to the episode being twenty-two minutes long. Near the end, Spider-Man and his team tell Nick Fury to shoot down the Hell-Carrier with them inside. They believe it’s the only way to get rid of the Goblin. Then Fury just kind of says “No”. That could have been a cool moment of the team actually being superheroes, but it’s so fast and so rushed that you don’t even get time to think about it. The same goes for the final battle with the Goblin… Times ten. It literally took within three minutes for the aerial fight to be over, and I wish someone could explain to me how the Goblin lost. They were fighting above the ocean, the Goblin isn’t exactly losing, and then he lands in the water. Landing in the water seems to knock the Goblin completely unconscious. That was a cop-out.
The ending also felt rushed and not as interesting as it could have been. The Avengers offer Spider-Man a place on their team, but it’s very clear where that story is going to go. I’ll make my prediction right now: Spider-Man is going to turn down the Avengers out of loyalty to his Spider-Friends team. That’s going to be a shocker. Also, seeing the Goblin locked up in the Helicarrier was just frustrating because as I said in my last review, there was so much more story potential in the “Norman Osborn tries to be a hero” route. The episode states that he is “more Goblin than human now”. This version of the Green Goblin is such a dead-end character that I honestly don’t care if I see him again.
PROS: Some good action, consistent animation.
CONS: The Goblin’s lack of character, the entire Spider-Friends turned into goblins plot, lack of urgency, rushed heroic moments, lame ending to the Goblin.
GRADE: 1 out of 5 Hell-Carriers. This was a very disappointing end to the season. What did you guys think? DROP ME A COMMENT and let me know! Thanks, Web-Heads.