Spider-Man and His Amazing Friends is the cartoon that made me the geek I am today. It's true. It was my first exposure to the world of superheroes that I love so much. I don't even remember how old I was when I first saw it and Spider-Man became my favorite character.
It's also the origin of my love for Cyclops and Doctor Doom. It just goes to show you how little I have actually changed since I was a toddler. The fact that this Holy Grail of my geekdom is now streaming on Netflix Instant has provided me with two wonderful opportunities. The first is to share it with my two-year-old nephew, who now insists on watching it with me every time I see him. The second is to make fun of it, hopefully, for the enjoyment of you, dear reader. In that spirit, I have recapped the first episode, "Triumph of the Green Goblin."
The episode opens on a rainy night. While Spider-Man and Iceman stop some jewel thieves before running off to their comic book costume party, Norman Osborn is flying home from the asylum, where he was cured of being the Green Goblin. Then he and the pilot have to bail from the plane and the explosion from the crash causes him to become the Green Goblin. At home, Peter (Spidey) and Bobby (Iceman), whose costumes are Spider-Man (Peter wears his normal costume with a cheap mask) and Captain America respectively, meet up with their dates, Angelica (aka Firestar) and Mona, who happens to be Norman Osborn's niece. At the party, Spider-Man senses a problem, and gets himself captured when he goes to investigate. At this point, the Green Goblin shows Spider-Man, via a "Future Finder," that he plans to turn all of NYC into hideous goblins like himself.
Later, Angelica realizes that Peter didn't just ditch her for some trampy chick, turns into Firestar, and rescues him. Unfortunately, this leaves Bobby alone with Mona, who he lets get kidnapped by the Green Goblin. The Spider-Friends separate to try and find Mona, and Spider-Man eventually rescues her. Green Goblin gets away, and Spider-Man goes after him to stop him from dumping the goblin formula in the reservoir. Eventually, Firestar and Iceman catch up with him. While Spider-Man tangles with the Green Goblin, Iceman freezes the reservoir and Firestar carefully melts around the blob of formula to extract it, thereby halting the evil plot. After another explosion, the Green Goblin reverts back to Norman Osborn, who resolves to stay in the asylum until he s cured for real this time. Then everyone goes back to Aunt May's house to hang out with Miss Lion.
The Spider-Friends have a strange relationship
Angelica/Firestorm is Peter/Spider-Man's date. She's into him enough that she gets jealous of other girls (when she thinks Peter is going off with some girl dressed as Shanna the She-Devil, she uses her powers to create steam that ruins the girl's hair and makeup), and wears a Spider-Woman costume, presumably to match him. For Peter's part, he was pretty excited about their date. None of this kept Bobby/Iceman from hitting on Angelica while his date was just off to the side of them dancing with a Green Goblin (not THE Green Goblin).
They do have a rallying cry though
The Avengers have "Avengers Assemble!" The Spider-Friends have "Spider-Friends, Go For It!" One of these groups needs a collective smack upside the head.
Iceman is an idiot
After Firestar goes off to rescue Spider-Man, Bobby takes Mona on a leisurely stroll. While he makes conversation by trying to fish for information about how she feels about all things icey, THE Green Goblin flies up beside them and asks her for the next dance. Mona immediately catches on, but Bobby just politely says she can if she wants to. Mona has been grabbed and flown well out of range, all the time struggling and yelling for help, before he realizes that the Goblin couldn't have been flying on wires from the ceiling since they are outside and Mona must have been kidnapped by the real Goblin.
Spider-Man might be kind of stupid too
I really don't understand why Peter wouldn't have extricated himself from Shanna and then quietly informed Angelica he was headed off to the lab because his spider-sense warned him of danger, thereby informing his partners of a potential problem, not to mention saving his date. Instead he just blurts out that he's going to the lab, runs off, and Shanna follows him. Boys are dumb.
Comics purists will die
Green Goblin is taking a page straight out of the Joker's playbook here, and Harry Osborn is replaced with a niece name Mona. Personally, I'm cool with all that. Also, I know there is a segment of the population that objects to Miss Lion. Those people are just flat out wrong.