Thursday, November 19, 2009

Spectacular Spider-Man

I can't believe we have to petition to save a show that has Spider-Man in it.

There's a new Spider-Man series every five years or so. Some have been good, some have been garbage. So in 2007, when "Spectacular Spider-Man" was announced, I was unfazed. I watched a few episodes and liked it enough.

Then I bought the season 1 set and fell in love. seeing all the episodes together made me appreciate how well written the show was. It gets EVERYTHING right. Even Sam Raimi's movies miss some of Spidey's charm, but not this. The humor, the soap opera, the crazy rogues gallery, the science, it's all here. Greg Weisman has done the job at a level only Bruce Timm has attained.

You'd think being a Spider-Man show would give it gratis in the ratings. Yet "Spectacular" has a troubled history. It premiered right when Kids WB gave up. Then it moved way up the dial to basic cable on Disney XD. Disney decided not to run the second season until they had rerun 13 weeks of the first. So the U.S. was the last country to show these episodes. They also took numerous breaks to stagger the episodes for sweeps. The final ones aired last night, 18 months after they should have.

But it's still doing well. Merchandise is selling, kids are waiting. So when's the third season airing? Well now there's the problem of that Disney/ Marvel merger bogging things down. Sure "Spectacular" airs on a Disney channel but one animated series is the last thing on their agenda. And with Sony dropping the Spider-Man tv license, there's a bunch of people no longer involved. So two years after production on season two, none of the staff knows if they'll be called back.

So what do we do? Honestly, I have no idea. There a the typical petitions. I joined the Facebook group. People are writing letters. But this thing is so mired in inter company machinations I think all we can do is raise awareness that there is an audience for the show. Because when the dust settles, Disney and Marvel will want a Spider-man cartoon on the air. And after almost fifty years, they finally have one.

But let's not get too sad. Let's watch some. here's my favorite season one episode that has Spidey in the black costume fighting the Sinister Six. And how awesome is that theme song?

Part 1:

Part 2:

Part 3:

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