Spider-Man - Return Of The Green Goblin

Edition Details: Region 2 encoding (Europe, Japan, South Africa and the Middle East including Egypt)
PAL, Colour, Closed-captioned

DVD Features:
The Rogues' Challenge, Stan Lee's Soapbox



Can't wait for another big screen flick to be made one day, but don't feel like reading any of the comics? Oh well, I suppose you can always check out this DVD which collects several episodes from the 1994-1998 animated television series for your Spidey fix (groan).

This series shouldn?t however be confused with the new Spider-man computer-animated. Speaking of which, these Spider-man episodes have the occasional computer-generated object (especially cityscapes, bridges, etc.). Not only do they clash noticeably with the cell art employed, but also look clunky and unwieldy - really ugly in fact. The animation in general isn't too bad, but not of the hyper-stylised sort which made the Batman animated series so watchable.

In fact, while the Saturday morning cartoons go a long to replicate the tone of the original comics in that it keeps several subplots running at the same time and comes across a superhero soap opera (hey, what else was Spider-man then?) this show was ultimately aimed at kids and not adults really. At least it is never dull with all the going-ons, but I must confess that it felt like tuning into a TV of which I have missed several episodes.

Just some brief notes:

The supervillain The Spot has to be the most camp and effeminate character in quite a while. I doubt whether he can even intimidate Woody Allen! (Why give him a dog's name in any case?)

Why is the African American character, The Daily Bugle's Robbie Robertson a different colour from the other African Americans? In fact his face seems a bit mustard-y in some scenes, as if he's ill or something.

THE DISC: This region 2 disc has as extras a game called Rogue's Gallery which demands knowledge only someone regularly watched this show would have. Stan Lee's Soapbox is a ten-minute talking head of the legendary Marvel Comics creator in which he talks on several aspects of the comics business. One secret he gives away is how he managed to write so many comics back then ? he just gave his artists a brief outline of the plot and left them to draw it any way they wished to. When they're done, he would fill in the dialogue and thought balloons ? making it up as he goes along! No scripting beforehand! Yikes!

WORTH IT? Unremarkable Saturday morning cartoon stuff. Sure, it's a huge improvement over those awful 'Sixties Marvel cartoons, but this one is for older boys only . . .

RECOMMENDATION: Ideal for 12-year-old boys . . .



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