Comic Reviews, Comics, Reviews

FCBD 2016 Civil War II Review

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It’s time to jump ahead a little with the FCBD reviews to the big Marvel one. Civil War II is getting a lot of buzz from Marvel as Bendis is trying to help the event become one of the biggest of all time. It’s going to be tough, but I don’t mind the concept. Seeing the heroes be forced to choose sides once more should be entertaining even if the whole thing is a little forced. We’ve definitely had characters who could see the future in the past, but the moral debate should still be pretty interesting.

In the main story, a heavily nerfed Thanos arrives and fights the Avengers. War Machine and Captain Marvel put up a fight, but they’re a little outgunned here and War Machine is critically injured…as always. The dialogue is fairly bad, but it tries to be epic. The Avengers thank the Inhumans since it is due to one of their members that the team knew about the upcoming threat. (Thanos) The issue essentially ends with Captain Marvel in hysterics over what happened to War Machine.

The art was very good and I was glad to see a good fight involved, but Thanos is severely downgraded here. Most of the attacks that were being fired at him should not have done any damage and he didn’t seem to have any strategy in the fight as he just tried to throw a lot of punches or blasts. I dunno, he felt off here. The other thing that felt very off was Captain Marvel’s reaction. She’s a seasoned veteran, but you’d think that she was a cadet straight out of training by how she reacted to War Machine’s injury. If you get that hysterical over an injury, then you’d best keep the romance off the team. The whole scene with her telling Black Panther to turn around so he could ignore them being together was very bad as well. The team was on a mission before War Machine had to show up so let’s keep it professional! Captain Marvel and War Machine looked terrible in that scene. Not the greatest way to start hyping up Civil War II.

In the backup story, we got a glimpse of the new Wasp. She learns that Henry Pym is dead so that means she can now pilfer through his life’s work without permission. She steals the Wasp/Ant-Man suit designs and alters it a bit to make hers. Then she steals the rest of Pym’s stuff so that she can start her crime fighting career. She plans to start it off with a bang by taking down the Avengers so that she can prove her stuff. Vision’s her first victim and that’s the cliffhanger. The art is pretty good like with the main story, but Wasp doesn’t come across as a very likable character. Quite the opposite in fact, she is certainly no hero since she is acting like a thief and taking down the Avengers is a fairly nonsensical plan. I don’t mind having a new Wasp though, but she is going to have to work hard to end up being a likable character.

Still, Civil War II should be fairly good in theory. Hopefully it is a fairly long event though because with so many heroes in the universe now, I want to see as many of them as possible take part in the debate. The series has to introduce the debate a little more as well though so there is plenty of time. I doubt this event will end up defeating Civil War to be honest, but I like to think that it will still be great and that the comparison can be made without being a blowout. The writing will have to improve a little bit though or else the characters are all just going to come off as amateurs who don’t comprehend the situation.

Overall 7/10

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Book Reviews, Books, Reviews

Ant Man Natural Enemy Review

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It’s time to look at another Marvel novel. It’s been quite a while since I read one and naturally this one came out to help hype the movie and vice versa. Ant Man is typically a fun character who can certainly hold his own book, but with Ant Man comes his army of ants and that’s where things typically start to get a little dicey. This book was fun, but the animal violence does do a number on it and this would have probably been even worse if it was in film format.

Scott is just trying to have a good time as he goes on various dates, trying to find a step mom for his daughter. He’s had no luck so far and then the cops let him know that a dangerous criminal has escaped a maximum security jail and may be coming over to destroy him and his family. As such, Scott, his daughter, and his ex wife have been given police protection and this threatens to destroy all of the harmony that Scott has built into his life. He may have to don the costume to fix this mess, but will his daughter be able to forgive him for embarrassing her in front of her friends by having to be with an escort? Only time will tell!

The book is more about the comic continuity than the movies, which is neat since it means that we can have more references like Spider Man being around. Iron Man also has a guest star appearance although he looks pretty bad. He is given one job, to protect Cassie. (Scott’s daughter) Then he allows her to leave and get held at gunpoint by the main villain. That’s definitely not the greatest way to prove that he’s a good hero deep down. Scott trusted him and this is how he was repaid. I definitely thought that it was a bit much as there’s no way Cassie could have escaped. Tony got in a lot of good burns along the way though, but his quick banter was not enough this time.

We may as well launch into what went wrong with the book now. Towards the end of the book, a lot of ants start to commit suicide by the thousands. Across the entire East Coast they start to go extinct thanks to a virus that hit them. This was a plot point that we really did not need. The book could have just made the ants go crazy or something, but dying off like that definitely wasn’t cool.

I also had a bit of an issue with how the book ended as Scott just walks away from the main villain, leaving her to get swarmed by ants and flies. She somehow lived through the experience, but that was a very cruel/downright evil thing to do and I thought that it really wrecked any chance that Scott had of being a likable lead. He was essentially going for the “eye for an eye” mentality, which is something that villains usually do. It just felt really drastic and it made me lose respect for the main character.

Another issue with the ending involves how Scott’s secret identity is out. This isn’t a negative, but I’m just going to call plot hax on the whole deal. No matter how unpopular Ant Man is next to heavyweights like Iron Man and Thor, the whole point of the secret identity was to protect Cassie and his ex wife. That’s because there will always be villains who want revenge and when people know who Scott’s allies are, they will be targeted. Cassie is now in danger from just about every villain. The book plays it off as if nobody cares about the reveal, but it’s actually a rather dicey ending for Scott. This will completely change the status quo assuming he ever gets another book again.

Beyond that, it was a fairly enjoyable read. I blasted through just about the whole book in one sitting. The print was nice and large so the read was very manageable. I’ll take 300 large print pages over 80-100 regular sized ones any day. Large print is just soooo much better than the normal size. I wouldn’t say that this novel was quite as good as the Civil War one or the Fantastic Four adventure, but it was still another good addition to the book format.

Scott was mostly a good main character despite his mean streak at the end. I could do without the constant flirting though as he comes across as very shallow and two dimensional. You are left wondering why and if you should even root for him as he doesn’t seem like a guy who will stay with a commitment for very long. It’s good that he can take a joke though even if the rest of the characters typically can’t. Unfortunately, Cassie was not quite as good as Scott or even close. She started out as a decent character who didn’t care for Scott’s strict rules, but still abided by them. That changed midway through the book as she constantly complained about Scott’s secret identity and gave him a hard time about everything. She went off the handle several times and you cannot sympathize with her revenge plot or her crush on a random guy in school. She comes across as a rather shallow character as well, but a much more annoying one and blaming everything on Scott just isn’t cool.

The villains are ultra generic so there’s no real need to talk about them. I think that the cops looked decently good and they gave it their all the whole time. They even saw through Scott’s fake story in the nick of time! They may not have it all together since they are outsmarted by random prisoners, but they came through when it counted. Although, getting shot and evaded in one scene made one agent look pretty bad and woefully unprepared.

Surprisingly, there is not a whole lot of action here. It’s more of a comedy/slice of life book. Ant Man has a quick bout with some gunmen and against some other insects in the cliamx, but that’s about it. Mostly, it’s about the Scott Lang drama as he tries to be very polite even when everyone takes turns insulting him. He tries to be the bigger man and now he can also be known as the smaller one. (There are a few jokes about that, which he handles well)

Overall, Natural Enemy was a fun book to read. It’s one of those titles that you will breeze through and enjoy while going through it, but on a technical level, it still made enough mistakes to keep it from a high score. The animal violence was just unacceptable and the ending wasn’t that good either. I do like the potential of his identity being public though and it certainly gives him a lot more freedom in day to day life. The only problem is that Cassie and his ex wife will be in permanent danger now. It’s why it was so easy for Iron Man as he didn’t really have any friends except for Pepper. She would be in danger, but nobody else. Ant Man has a lot more to lose at this point. I recommend checking out this book if you happen to see it on the shelf. You’ll have read through the volume before you know it!

Overall 5/10

Live Action Movie Reviews, Live Action Movies, Reviews

Ant Man Review

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The Marvel Cinematic Universe has followed a strong formula for each of its films, which has resulted in none of them actually being bad. They’ve all been consistently good up til now and I had some decently high hopes for Ant Man. Unfortunately, I forgot that the concept of Ant Man may have doomed it from the start and every film series has to jump the shark eventually. This one proved to be Marvel’s first big miss! (For this continuity)

Scott is a man who has made some wrong choices. He chose to become a cat burgler and spent a lot of time in jail. He finally gets out, but realizes that nobody will hire him so he cracks and decides to become a criminal again. An old man who is called Mr. Pym gives Scott an offer. Scott can steal something for him or go back to jail. Scott uses the get out of jail free card and undergoes a training regime. Now that he is able to shrink and talk to Ants, nobody can stop him right? The ultimate battle against evil has now begun!

Ignoring the crippling negative that I will dive into soon, the film handled itself fairly well. As I mentioned, the MCU has a certain tone/atmosphere that is used for all of the films (Not counting The Incredible Hulk…another reason why that one is only barely in the MCU for me) and it works quite well for Ant-Man. We’ll get a serious spy scene, then a comedy moment, then a serious scene, comedy moment. It’s essentially a constant stream of back and forth and you typically will not go 2-3 minutes without an epic one liner or a burn from one of the characters. It’s one of the reasons why the MCU films have typically been crushing the competition.

It doesn’t take itself too seriously while still giving us good battles. I’d say that phase 2 has actually ramped up the comedy angle as the one liners seem more frequent, but it could be a coincidence. The action has also been ramped up so it could just be the “bigger is better” effect like what Slayers did with Next. Compare Avengers to Avengers 2, Cap to Cap 2, and Iron Man 3 to Iron Man 1. The sequels all had more action (The first is debatable I suppose) and more comedy moments. As long as the writing is good, this formula should always work quite well. Even if some of the jokes don’t work, there are enough of them that the good ones should overshadow the bad ones. Likewise, if you have a lot of fight scenes in a film, there should be at least one or two that you will like.

The MCU’s fights are also a step ahead of the other Marvel companies with the exception of ASM2. Ant Man’s battle against Yellow Jacket is pretty fun. Antman is certainly outmatched and probably should have lost, but it’s cool to see him dodging lasers and keeping up the intensity. Both fighters are always on the move and trying to keep the other off balance. The special effects seen here will definitely age well and the music while in the brief case was pretty epic.

Ant Man also likes to show us just how tiny the fighters are by showing off the outside world during the fights. During these moments, the music will stop and the real world will only have slight movement. This does rage a possible plot hole of Ant Man’s strength though. It’s shown that he still has his human sized strength while he’s tiny and he uses it quite often to take on the villains. So, why does Thomas barely move when the characters hit him at full strength in one scene? In the human world, we just see Thomas get lifted slightly as he bumps into the window. If Ant Man had his full human sized strength, it should have easily shattered the glass.

That’s only a mild thing though. Ant Man’s soundtrack is naturally good. The very first scene has a classic theme that you will remember from most of the other MCU titles with SHIELD and Ant Man introduces some other themes to the franchise. I’d say that just about all of them are good and especially the main “Ant Man” theme. You’ll know it when you see it. Having a good soundtrack is the first step to being a good movie. The next is having good writing.

Ant Man’s writing is solid for the most part. I say “for the most part” because it’s still not quite as good as the average MCU title. For one thing, I found Ant Man’s friends to be a little sad. They’re essentially all stereotypes. It’s used for comedy though and they each have their moments I suppose, but they felt like the characters that you would see in a mainstream comedy title like Pitch Perfect or Tower Heist and those are the characters that I can never like. The main friend is always making crude comments when talking about how he heard his stories and they are pretty off putting. The other two friends are really just there to use slang and try to be funny, which doesn’t work quite as well as the natural jokes that flow from Scott and the villains. An example of a scene that was funny was the Baskin Robbins moment. Those scenes I could get behind and I liked the manager a lot as he knew when to talk off the record as well as on it. Ant Man also felt like it had more language than I would have expected. The characters just can’t keep themselves in line so they constantly panic and let out some colorful words. So, I feel like that’s a bit of a writing issue.

Let’s go into the characters. Scott Lang is the main guy of course and he’s not bad. He’s essentially your average film protagonist who wants to do the right thing, but isn’t sure how to do that. I do think that he gave up and went back to a life of crime rather quickly, but we are led to believe that he looked for jobs for quite a while. A quick montage of that would have been good though. Still, in the end, he learns the values of teamwork and how to be a responsible hero. He really wants to keep his bond with his daughter and gets her a pretty nice gift. He’s certainly a good parent and I do like the character overall.

One plot element at the end of the film does hurt him a little though. There is a very forced romance between him and Hope. As with the average film, they meet and basically fall in love in the span of a few days. It’s just sad that the heroes have to be so predictable like this. At least it’s just one scene, but it’s still something that was not needed at all and was just added because it’s essentially expected at this point.

Otherwise, Hope makes for a good heroine. She can fight, which is always a good thing and she whips Scott into shape right away. She’s better at controlling the ants and is also a better hand to hand fighter, but she had quite a lot of prep time when compared to Scott. You’d think that Scott would have learned some more hand to hand in jail, but I guess he became buddies with the others too quickly. Hope easily outclasses Pepper, Jane, Betty, and Peggy as far as the MCU heroines go. Mr. Pym is another supporting character and he was fairly likable. It was good to see him take a nice shot at the government agent who stepped out of line and he is definitely very active for an old guy. This is not someone who plans to quietly retire from the front lines and I’m sure that he will have a decent role in the sequel. Hopefully he goes back to the mini world himself!

As for the main villain, he’s decently good. He seemed to flirt with Hope a little, which is generic villain 101 for how to not be taken seriously, but Yellowjacket was all right aside from that. You really can’t expect much from him in terms of character development as he’s meant to be a really generic villain, but he fits the bill and I definitely didn’t mind him as the antagonist. The Yellow Jacket suit is definitely really cool and seeing it again someday would be fun.

The film ends with some loose ends to be continued in the sequel or other MCU films. I’m not sure if I’m crazy about the villain who may be around for the sequel since we’ve done this dance so many times already, but we’ll see how it goes. There are two after credit scenes so you’ll want to check them out first. The first one is more of a traditional after credits scene in the sense that it would work for just about any film and doesn’t rely on the large continuity. It’s a good scene. The second one is some build up for the MCU. Time to start speculating about what this will all mean. It was cool to see the “Ant Man will return” sign at the end for sure.

One thing that I enjoyed about the film was that it didn’t act like everyone was gone. In a lot of comics, heroes will conveniently be out of town or asleep so that they don’t have to appear. This film doesn’t go that far and we actually get our first big meta human fight between heroes. It’s definitely neat and I agree with the outcome. There’s really no way that the hero should have lost this battle and as far as the victory went, I felt like it could have been even easier. Not saying that his opponent was a pushover….but he wouldn’t be much of a challenge either.

Sounds like a fun film so far right? I enjoyed the action and the comedy. Ant Man’s characters were pretty good for the most part, the effects were a lot of fun, and the film’s pacing was good. The movie always moved very quickly and I certainly wasn’t bored. The friends may have been a little sad at times and the writing wasn’t great, but the film could hold its own. Unfortunately, that’s where the negative comes in. See, this is a film called Ant Man so you can expect a lot of ants right? That’s the problem.

There is a lot of animal violence here and it’s really sad. The scenes are unnecessary and just there for poor shock value. Again, this is just a result of terrible writing and someone needs to get some new staff for the sequel. Goats already have a reputation of dying in big films like Jurassic Park, we didn’t need another one to die here. As soon as the goat appeared, I knew that it was game over. The way that he died was also very gross. A human died this way as well and it wasn’t sad like the Goat’s death, but it was still gross. This was a line that the film didn’t need to cross.

The Ants also die throughout the film. Scott clearly has no regard for their lives except for a select few. One of the ants gets a very emotional death while the others are typically taken down in the background. I knew that the ants should have all been mechanical. That would have solved the film’s biggest problem right from the start. As it is, this negative really destroyed the film just like with Jurassic World. (A film very similar to this one in many respects) Hopefully the sequel will use robots although I doubt that we’ll see a sequel for a very long time.

Ant Man also takes itself a little too seriously during one moment where Pym tells Hope about what happened to her mother. Scott quickly whips out another joke to stop the tension, but I felt like it almost could have broken them out of their slump sooner or they could have had Hope take the news a little better. That’s really the only scene where this happens though as the rest of the film is typically moving too fast for this to be an issue.

Hmmm, any more things to touch on here? The dialogue effect for the friend’s stories were good as every character had the same voice. If not for some of the terrible lines here, these were definitely some of the best jokes in the film. The guy will remind you of Sam from the Transformers Trilogy as they both have a similar style of speaking and maybe even similar personalities, but different enough that you would never mix them up. I think I’ve hit on most of the big points for the film here.

Overall, Get ready for some name drops, cameos, and world building as the film goes on. Now that the MCU is such a big franchise, it has to keep on growing to keep the audience in the loop and ready for some action. The film is still a lot of fun and has a lot of replay value due to its nature. On a critical level though, I still can’t recommend the title because of the very excessive animal violence. The writing and side characters can also be a bit dicey, but without the animal violence, we’d still be looking at a 7 star film here. If you are prepared for animal violence then you should see this film. If not, you really won’t be missing anything so you can still just skip to Avengers 3 and prepare yourself for the powers of the planet busters. Now, will Marvel be able to bounce back from this? I’m confident that they can as Civil War should be epic. From here on out, the only MCU film that you should be worried for is probably Inhumans and that one should still be good. The real question is, can Ant Man defeat the upcoming blockbusters like Pixels, Mission Impossible and Spectre? It’s going to be tough, but the Ant Man is used to being the underdog so he’s ready for action.

Overall 4/10

Comic Reviews, Comics, Reviews

Marvel Masterworks The Avengers Volume 4 Review

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The Avengers are known as Earth’s Mightiest Heroes and considering that the Justice League don’t exist in Marvel, I must agree. The Avengers have always been a team of powerhouses who could tackle any threat. That being said, this volume occurs when the team is actually not looking too powerful so they must use their quips and wit to outsmart the foes who stand in their way. It is an interesting concept, but the volume isn’t quite up to taking on the average Avenger collection thanks to its high standards. Still makes for a fun read of course.

There were around 10 issues in this collection, which is a reasonable amount. The first few issues deal with the Sons of Serpent organization. While they may appear to be extremely weak on the surface, they are powerful when in great numbers. They manage to capture Captain America so the rest of the Avengers are pressured into supporting the political views of the enemies. It’s always intriguing to see politics addressed in comics, but they made sure to not get too involved with those issues. I’m sure that the Avengers won’t underestimate the group again after this!

The next two issues featured The Living Laser! This guy was typically an Iron Man villain, but this time he decided to take on the Avengers because of his feelings for the Wasp. Little did he know that Heart, not feelings, wins battles. He was outmatched from the start even though he nearly finished off the Avengers for good. After that was a two part adventure featuring the Ultroids. They weren’t exactly Ultron, but these androids were still decently powerful and they could copy the abilities of the foes that they defeated through their technology. They managed to cream the Avengers for a while, but they overestimated themselves, which doomed the villains.

Finally, a three part epic involving the famous Hercules arrived. He was tricked by the Enchantress into attacking the Avengers and then he helped them out against Namor. That was a decently fun trilogy although it is always sad to see the heroes mind controlled so easily. Their strength of will should suffice to keep them safe from danger and harm. Ah well, at least Hercules realized what was up with some help and then stuck around to help the team when they were in a jam. I still consider him to be a watered down Thor who is not quite as impressive physically or mentally, but Hercules is still stronger than the rest of the cast at the moment so that’s always a plus.

We start to see why Hank Pym isn’t one of the greatest heroes in this collection. While he has some good moments like talking back to Hawkeye and taking charge, he’s definitely not very nice to the Wasp. When she’s in danger he gets riled up of course, but he basically tells her to leave when she was trying to help him with an experiment. He certainly doesn’t have a whole lot of tact and I can see why they drifted apart. The Wasp is a decent character here, but she’s still not close to how she was in later years as she can still be a bit of a flirt.

The Scarlet Witch and Quicksilver are good heroes here and they are finally confident in the fact that they are Avengers. They had some iffy moments down the line, but they now know their place on the team. With two of the stronger team members back with the Avengers, they helped to give the heroes some much needed muscle. Hawkeye does a lot of trash talking for the team and he’s always got an arrow at the ready. It’s scary to think that he’s actually one of the tougher members on board, but that’s simply what the Avengers had been reduced too in this era. He’s always a fun character to have around.

Captain America is the best Avenger so I was sad to see him go. I know that he eventually comes back, but it must have been tough for fans of the team to see the final member of the big three leave. With only the B list heroes on board, The Avengers really needed him to stick around. As far as the villains go, The Living Laser was one of the only ones that I recognized. He looked pretty bad here as he was just attacking people to get the Wasp to like him. He had some good dialogue, but such a petty reason for being a villain definitely ensures that I wouldn’t care for him as a villain. That’s just very shallow.

Namor was a neat guest star and he looked fairly impressive as he held his own against Hercules. Hercules is certainly stronger of course, but Namor found the Cosmic Cube and that helped him out a lot. I didn’t expect to see such a powerful cosmic item come into play either so the final issue really raised the stakes on the adventure. Namor’s still antagonistic here, but you can’t blame him for being fed up with the humans since they constantly attack his home. So long as Atlantis is under the sea, humans will never leave it alone so it is an endless fight.

The Black Widow has a subplot where she tries to join the Avengers once more, but Giant Man doesn’t trust her and she doesn’t give the heroes much reason too. She ultimately takes on a mission from S.H.I.E.L.D. which puts a damper on her plans and I guess that her plot will likely continue more in future issues. I don’t remember her really appearing in volume 5, but she may have been around briefly. This old version of her was certainly very different from her modern incarnation.

If I had one critique for the collection, it would just be that the stakes are typically very low. It’s hard to get very excited about some of the issues and some more well known characters would have been nice to have. The plot in X-Men was more interesting for me and the characters may have actually been slightly better although the writing here beats that of the X-Men’s. It’s still a fun comic that you will be able to coast through, but you won’t be as invested as you typically would be in one of these classic Marvel issues.

As always, the art is quite good for the Avengers collection. The classic designs for the characters are always fun to look at and the fight scenes are engaging. Quicksilver’s speed here looks more impressive than it did in other instants and we are finally starting to get to the point where his speed is at in the modern days. He’ll never be quite as fast as someone like the Flash, but this is still a nice start. The writing is also quite good as the heroes trade good one liners with the villains. We really don’t see dialogue like this anymore, which is too bad. It’s one of the reasons why comics were so awesome in the first place after all. The burns were certainly real.

Overall, This was a good collection of the Avengers, but it just wasn’t as exciting as it could have been with Captain America missing some issues and Iron Man/Thor not being around. I always miss the big three when they’re not together as they are The Avengers for me. I recently reviewed volume 5 so I’m already okay on that front. I’ve still got another Marvel Masterworks coming up, but after that one, it could be gone for a while. The series has been a fun way to read up on the old series though so I won’t be forgetting about it anytime soon. If you’re a fan of the classic Marvel stories, this is definitely the comic for you. It’s still a solid action title that makes for a good read.

Overall 7/10

9 Star TV Shows, Reviews, TV Show Reviews, TV Shows

The Avengers Earth’s Mightiest Heroes Review


The Avengers are one of the most well known superhero teams in comics. They had a film that broke the box office a few years back and they have now had 3 shows to date. Earth’s Mightiest Heroes was the best of the three and it is one that ranks very high up in the comic ranks. I definitely say that it is Marvel’s top show and it isn’t likely going to be surpassed anytime soon.

Season 1’s main plot is about the Avengers forming so that they can bring back a large group of super villains who escaped from Shield prisons all across the planet. It’s technically the plot of the show, but it’s mostly used as a backdrop. The season is pretty episodic, but it does begin a lot of plotlines that are explored in those episodes so it’s definitely better than the average pre arc. Ultron, Kang, and Loki all get multiparters as well as the Leader. There may not be much of an overreaching story arc, but most of the episodes have a cliffhanger scene at the very end so the transition from episode to episode is actually pretty great. Season 1 is a lot of fun and you can count on many excellent battles.

Season 2 decided to go for a big plot and one that featured the Skrulls deciding to invade the planet. They have taken many people in powerful positions so they are all set for their bid to conquer the human race. The Avengers have to get past several obstacles and the lack of trust in their teammates to even have a shot at taking down the Skrulls. Other highlights of the series includes the return of Ultron and Kang. It should be noted that the Kree also get a multi parter as they finally make their big move. This season can get a little dicey since we have to miss out on Hulk, Captain America, and Thor for various parts of the season, which makes for a limited roster. The Guardians of the Galaxy do get to appear though, which is pretty intense.

I will admit that I was one of the many Marvel fans who was not a huge fan of the designs for the show when they first popped up. The characters just looked a little off. Thor was actually one of the biggest offenders for me. His build just didn’t seem right and his arms were huge. The hammer looked so small when Thor was holding it and the handle should have been longer. That being said, you get used to it as you watch the show. I wasn’t a huge fan of Captain America’s design compared to United They Stand, but it is still a very good design in its own right. The Abomination was one of the characters who drew the short straw in terms of design.

I don’t know whether this is a result of the character designs or whether it was the overall animation, but the fight scenes were pretty over the top in a great way. Some of the energy blasts looked like they came out of an anime. The action scenes definitely shine in this series and they put most of the other Marvel shows to shame. The first few episodes tried some unique things with the animation, particularly Iron Man’s view from inside the suit. I think that the animation took a bit if a dip after the beginning, but it still looked pretty good overall. Season 2 certainly looks sharp and it was definitely an improvement. I wasn’t sure about this at first, but I definitely am now.

How does it stack up against the Justice League? I am afraid that it is not even remotely close. Justice League wins in all areas, but it should be noted that the show’s roster was comprised of heroes who were far cooler than the Avengers. The Avengers are cool of course, but they are no Justice League. Considering that the Justice League show also happens to be my favorite non anime tv show of all time, this isn’t bad for Avengers. It’s safe to say that no western Marvel show will ever be able to top Earth’s Mightiest Heroes. Now, let’s look at the show’s portrayal of the characters.

Iron Man is one of the main characters and he is a pretty good hero. He acts just like what you would expect from him. He is always ready with a witty comeback and his armors are fairly powerful. The show essentially takes all of Stark’s good qualities without bringing in his bad ones. He does a pretty good job of being team leader until he decides to give up the role. His fans should be pretty pleased with this incarnation of him. His battles against Kang and Dr Doom are matches that we have longed for and we finally get to see them play out here.

Captain America is our courageous leader once more. The writers really seem to like him so Cap gets quite a few wins under his belt. Even the mighty Terrax and the Super Skrull are powerless against him. Unfortunately, he misses the first few episodes of the series and a big chunk of them in the second half. This is sad for his fans of course, but he still gets a lot of screen time and he tends to look very good. It is basically a spot on incarnation of the legendary hero.

Thor looks better than he has ever looked in this series. He is portrayed as an intelligent warrior while still keeping his incredible strength and skill. He isn’t crazy about technology, but he is never obnoxious about it. His banter with Tony Stark on the subject can be pretty fun to watch. As with Superman in various DC shows, Thor does lose to an opponent who is weaker than him at times. Luckily this only happens a reasonably few times and he typically looks as strong as he should. He looks like the Thor of the 60’s and that’s a good thing.
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Bruce Banner is pretty much a non factor here because the Hulk is in control for the whole series. Bruce only gets a cameo once in a while. As for the Hulk, his portrayal is pretty good here. He is decently smart and a very loyal friend to have. He gets a raw deal in season 2 since he is tricked by the Skrulls and forced to miss a lot of it. He looks pretty strong and he is portrayed as the strongest Avenger in physical strength. He is definitely a likable character.

The Wasp is a lot more cheerful than usual and it works for her character. She isn’t the strongest Avenger, but she can fight when necessary. This is easily the best portrayal of her that I have seen and it will be tough to too this version. Wasp never backs down from a fight and she even takes on the Vision. Even if her chances of victory are slim. Wasp will jump into battle anyway and it is why she is one of the better Avengers.

Antman had a big role in the original Avengers show, but then he began to fade into obscurity. The new Marvel film aims to change that..more for the superhero than for Pym. Pym actually doesn’t end up looking quite as good in EMH. It is to be expected since he isn’t the fearless leader anymore, but he is still an Avenger. He wants to rehabilitate the villains and he puts a lot of effort into this goal. Unfortunately, most of the villains don’t plan on changing sides anytime soon. He starts to think that the Avengers have lost sight of this and coupled with the Ultron incident causes him to leave the team. This causes his character to undergo a radical change as he becomes more of a hot head who tends to act overconfident. While I typically like this kind of character a lot, it comes off as a little forced and it is also hard to take him seriously. Antman was a good character in the show, but he was definitely outshined by the others.

Hawkeye had a tough road since it would be nearly impossible to pass his original animated version. That being said, he’s typically a likable character. It can be sad to see him get tricked and one upped by Black Widow for most of season 1, but he does manage to capture her on occasion. His skill with a bow is as excellent as ever and Hawkeye is always brimming with confidence. He couldn’t pass the original version, but this is still the Hawkeye that I remember. Black Widow is also pretty true to form as no side can really tell if she is working for them or if she has an ulterior motive. Her accent is at its strongest here and she rarely gets to operate with the Avengers since she’s a solo act from start to finish. She’s a pretty good agent, but Hawkeye is actually able to best her when they fight. Black Widow’s never been my favorite character, but she still looked decent here.

Black Panther joins the team pretty early on in the series, but he was never my favorite character. He’s a little too confident and he has no problem hacking into the Avengers mansion when he feels like it. He’s the definition of a “hype” character who constantly insults everyone and belittles them. He may only be human, but he always gets his hits in and he puts his kingdom before the Avengers. A noble gesture I’m sure, but he’s really just a copy of Captain America, but without the leader’s character development.

Ms. Marvel arrives in season 2 and she cannot be trusted as much as the other members since she also works for the government. She was quick to turn on the heroes when the government duties created a conflict. She is just trying to help her country of course, but the whole scene didn’t look very good. Ms. Marvel is a capable heroine who can still fight at the Hulk’s level so that’s pretty good and she is a solid character despite having her flaws. She does get a lot more screen time than the Vision, who is basically thrown in at the last minute. The Vision looks pretty good and very tough when he first appears. He gradually gets weaker, but it never goes too far as he still helps out a lot in the final battles. I didn’t really care for Vision’s big moment where he betrayed the Avengers, but he’s a good hero to have. I just wish that he had turned good in a different scene.

Graviton is the first major villain in the show and it’s why the series started out on a high note. His abilities are very impressive and it’s no stretch to say that he is the strongest villain in the entire series. There are many other powerful opponents who do make this very debatable. He’s a very likable villain and this show made me a fan of him. Seeing him take on the combined might of Thor, Hulk, and the other Avengers is incredible and it’s not something that I shall forget anytime soon. It’s too bad that he never got to appear again, but maybe next time.

Ultron is the villain that everyone was hyped for and he did not disappoint. He got a pretty great two parter when he first appeared and then his return was also pretty great. Naturally, his demise in both appearances is loaded with plot hax, but that’s just because the show did a good job of adapting his character. He looked about as strong as he should and he was thoroughly annihilating the Avengers. He has definitely been a great villain in all incarnations and I believe that Age of Ultron should be able to keep up this tradition.

Kang The Conqueror is probably my third favorite villain in the show so I definitely wanted to put him next to Ultron and Graviton. He may seem like a much weaker villain on the surface, but his tech definitely brings him up to their level. His array of barriers and energy attacks make him a very tough opponent to deal with and you can even say that it is impossible to beat him. He only loses when he lets his guard down and forgets to block or fight back. It’s the fate of being an overwhelmingly powerful villain in the midst of heroes who are strong, but not strong enough to legitimately defeat him.

Red Skull is certainly not as impressive as the first few villains and it’s surprising that it took so many episodes for him to finally appear in the present. He’s fairly generic and he’s definitely not a threat no matter how many inventions he gets a hold of. He does give us one of the better episodes in the series when he assembles his own crew, but it still doesn’t make him a good villain. He wants revenge on Captain America and that sums up his character arc.
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Skull’s team consists of quite a few members. Dr. Sampson is one of them and he was not my favorite supporting character anyway. I did appreciate the fact that he didn’t blame the Hulk for what went down at the Cube and he actually dealt with his new powers pretty well. That being said, he’s just not a interesting character. The Falcon’s one shot role is probably disappointing for his fans. He actually had potential to be a good character and he was much better than the Falcon in Avengers Assemble. His appearance was just too short to really get a good grasp of how he was.

One of the final two members was the Winter Soldier. After Bucky vanished when Captain America fell into the ice, he was forced to work for Skull for decades. It’s easily the saddest sub plot in the series and he really didn’t have a choice since he was on his own and they effectively brainwashed him. He tries to atone for this once he gains his freedom back and this is probably the best incarnation of Bucky that we’ve seen so far. He’s pretty noble and you can tell that he is trying to be a better person.

Finally, we have Red Hulk. He gets a few appearances although his role is still not very large. He does get to fight Thor and the Hulk, which shows how powerful he is. I like him as an enemy although he’s not very interesting. Watching him sucker the Avengers into allowing him to join is pretty wince worthy, but a plot twist at the end definitely helps to negate those scenes.

The New Avengers are introduced to the scene in Kang’s big return. The villain managed to destroy the Avengers so an automated protocol quickly gathered up the new heroes. One of them was Luke Cage. He seems to know what he’s doing and his street manner of dealing with his obstacles is a nice change of pace from the politically correct superheroes who help him against the villains. He doesn’t get much of a role and he doubts himself pretty quickly, but Cage still has what it takes to be an Avenger. He’s a step up over Iron Fist, who is still cool, but really has no character development. He appears for a very short period of time and he’s pretty ineffective against Kang. His hand to hand skills are great and they would do well against most opponents, but it was simply a bad mach up against someone like Kang. We also got to see War Machine and I was not impressed. His weapons still look terrible compared to Iron Man’s and he was way too serious when the other heroes were just trying to have a good time. He arguably has more experience in the art of being a super hero than the first two fighters so he needs to lead by example.

Spider Man was also selected for the team and he also got an episode to himself before that so he’s all set on the character development area. He was adapted pretty faithfully as he tells a lot of jokes, but never manages to get hit. He’s the only member of the team who was able to dodge every single one of Kang’s attacks. His spider sense is his weapon and he just uses his jokes to keep the enemy off guard. This is the Spiderman that fans will remember from the good ole days and it’s good to see him getting the respect that he deserves. I was more than satisfied with his portrayal here.

Wolverine also gets to join the team and he’s definitely in character. Unfortunately, this means that he gets animal violence in his scene as he destroys a few dinosaurs. It’s the worst scene in the entire show and you can bet that it hurts his character. It’s hard to root for him after such a scene and he also doesn’t really help a lot when the team is fighting Kang. That just makes it worse since he wasn’t needed in the episode and the heroes still would have gotten the job done.

The Fantastic Four are recurring characters in the background of the show. The Thing gets more of a role than the others since he does join the New Avengers, but he doesn’t look particularly impressive when it comes down to strength. He’s pretty likable and you’ll be satisfied with his portrayal even if he looks like a second rate fighter. Reed Richards looks pretty great as he belittles everyone and puts up a brave front when Galactus appears. Human Torch and Sue Storm don’t get to do a whole lot, but they look pretty decent when they get to appear.

Nick Fury changes a lot as the show goes on. He fights on the front lines more in season 1 and then he turns into the MCU version of Fury in season 2. He’s pretty corrupt as you would expect from a Shield agent, but he has his moments where he can actually be likable. He was a capable leader for Shield (Not going to bother using the periods everywhere) while he was around. Maria Hill steps in for him once the Skrull invasion occurs. She is notably less tolerant with heroes than Fury was and she can definitely be a thorn in the side of the heroes. Hill does mean well and she is definitely a likable Shield agent, but her policy towards the heroes can definitely hold her back.

The Guardians of the Galaxy get to appear and this was before their film so the roster is much different. It’s vastly superior to the normal crowd as we have someone with Green Lantern’s abilities. Groot, Star Lord, and Rocket Raccoon are still around. I’m still not the biggest Rocket fan, but it is always good to see him jump into the action. Groot is simply Groot and still the worst member on the team. Star Lord was pretty reasonable and it was a very fun episode as we saw them match up against the Avengers before fighting Korvac. The Guardians are lucky that Thor was not there since the episode had the potential to be a stomp for the Avengers. Their portrayals all seemed pretty good.

Baron Zemo is another big Cap villain and he gets to team up with the Masters of Evil for a while. He never gets any super powers, but the Norn Stone makes him more of a threat in his final appearance. He’s still not my kind of villain though and he mostly just lives on by backstabbing all of the other villains. The series could do without him.

The Enchantress looks much more formidable than you would expect and she goes toe to toe with the Hulk and Thor in the series. Her magical abilities seem to be very well suited for offense and her speed is impressive. As a character, I’m still not a fan of hers as she always lets romance cloud her better judgment. Getting defeated by Zemo at the end is pretty bad for her and her loss in round 1 was bad as well. She lets her guard down a little too easily considering how powerful she is. Just wiping out her enemies would save her a lot of grief.
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The Leader gets a multi part episode towards the beginning of the series, but then he vanishes. This is definitely one of his better portrayals, but he’s still not a great villain. His lack of attack power is just hard to get around. It’s actually why I am not a big fan of the Abomination in this show. He’s constantly portrayed as being much weaker than the Hulk and it undermines the notion that he could actually be a rival to the green Avenger. He never looks good, not even once as the series goes on and this very well could be the worst portrayal of him.

Wonder Man looks a lot different from his counterpart in the first Avenger show. He is always in his energy form and the villains basically have a hold of his life so it’s tough for him to go back to the Avengers. He has his hero moment and he ends on a high note, but he should have kept an open mind about Stark before. (Not that Tony was pretty polite when they met) He may have had a better fate.

Dr Doom gets a brief role in the Skrull arc, but it’s a critical one that really helps the heroes out. He is a political enemy so he still wants the Earth to be in one piece. His armor looks impressive as it can keep up with Tony’s and likewise with his intellect. It was definitely a good portrayal of the villain. He certainly looks better than Loki. Loki’s big two part episode to end season 1 wasn’t very interesting and I can’t say that I cared for any of his appearances. He is a difficult opponent to handle because of his trickery. His design is pretty unique and I’m not sure what the writers were going for, but I suppose that it works.

Galactus finally joins the fray in the final episode and it’s good to see him. He doesn’t actually have a mind this time, which does undermine him as a villain, but he is still pretty strong. It may be his worst portrayal to date, but he’s a decent villain. I just wish that he could have fought back against the heroes instead of just staying there and taking everything that they had to give. His heralds are also pretty souless and weak as small groups of Avengers are able to take them down with ease. It’s the price of filling an episode with so many villains and fights. Power levels have to go out of the window and there can be no form of character development.

Ronan appears for the Kree and he looks pretty good against the Avengers. Thor may not have been there, but he was still keeping the Hulk and Iron Man at bay for a while until Ms. Marvel finally took him down. He looked much better than he did in the FF cartoon. He’s certainly not one of my favorite villains, but he makes for a nice opponent for the heroes. The other notable Kree agent would be Captain Marvell and I really didn’t like that guy. He never knew when to pick a side and he only jumped in at the end once the battle with the Supreme Intelligence was over. His abilities seem pretty interesting, but he’s just not a good character.

Naturally, there are many more villains to be found in the show. We got a healthy amount of them and the only big one that the show missed was probably Count Nefaria. Some of the villains that I didn’t mention include: Purple Man, Whirlwind, The Absorbing Man, the FF villain who looks like an insect, but with a name that’s hard to spell, Bi Beast, and many more. The series is definitely a complete one and it’s one of the few shows with 50+ episodes that I’ve seen in its entirety more than once.

For some reason, the show really loves to throw in the Serpent Society for when they need a throwaway action scene. These guys are constantly breaking out of jail and I’m always sad to see them. They really don’t make for interesting action scenes and they’re extremely weak. It’s hard to picture them ever holding their own against the Avengers and they feel outclassed from start to finish. Their leader gets a bit of a role during the Captain America Escape episode, but I can’t say that I’m a fan of Viper either. She’s just a little too generic for me and she is interchangeable with just about any other villain.

Naturally, the show’s power levels are more than a little wonky. This is certainly a weakness that superhero shows tend to have. Anime spend more time on the power levels or at least manga based ones do. Here, you can go from having the Vision beating up on the Avengers without effort to being crushed by Thor. Iron Man’s durability also comes into question a whole lot as the scenes don’t always make a lot of sense. It’s not a huge deal, but it’s something that you’ll definitely think about as you watch the episodes. A little more speed would definitely come in handy for the Avengers and their enemies.

Unfortunately, the show does end with some loose ends. The main one is definitely the Surtur plot that the show had been hyping up in the background for quite a while. It got a whole episode devoted to the future arc with Beta Ray Bill and Odin. All of it was for naught unfortunately as the series ended. It definitely had a lot of potential so it’s too bad that the series ended when it did.

The show definitely deserves some props for having cliffhangers and new subplots in just about every episode. It’s one of the reasons why the show is able to separate itself from the average show. Including all of the classic plots and new characters, the show was definitely ambitious. It’s epic to think of how many things may have happened if it had reached 4-5 seasons. This really could have been a true rival for Justice League. It’s doubtful that it could have surpassed it, but more episodes would have cemented the show as the ultimate Marvel experience.

Earth’s Mightiest Heroes’ soundtrack is pretty amazing. It has the greatest theme song for any superhero show and that includes Justice League. It’s by far the greatest western theme song that I’ve heard and it can even match up against anime openings. That’s some great praise for the show and the themes in the episodes also sound good. A lot of western shows seem to believe that a soundtrack is not necessary, but it certainly augments any scene. Whether for better or worse, taking the plunge and adding a lot of good tunes is definitely the right move for a show and Avengers pulled it off.
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Overall, Avengers Earth’s Mightiest Heroes is a pretty incredible show. It surpassed all of my expectations and it has a lot of replay value. It’s the kind of show that you can easily find yourself re watching since the battles are so much fun. It’s really too bad that this show was cancelled in place of Assemble since it’s many times better. This show had heart, solid animation, a good soundtrack, and the writing was very well done. This is one of those shows that you can possibly consider once in a life time since I have my doubts on whether superhero shows will be able to reach the level of greatness that they once had. Well, we’ll keep our hopes high I suppose. I recommend this to all comic book fans and to anyone that wants to start a good action show. This is definitely the cartoon to watch!

Overall 9/10

5 Star TV Shows, Reviews, TV Show Reviews, TV Shows

Fantastic Four World’s Greatest Heroes Review


Looks like it’s time to review one of the Marvel cartoons that fell under the radar. The Fantastic Four have had several shows, but they’ve never had the same amount of success as the Avengers or the X Men. I’ve seen episodes from two of the other series, but this is the first one where I got to watch the whole series from start to finish. It’s a decent show, but it makes many mistakes, which keeps it from being known as one of the better cartoons. You can certainly see why it was cancelled, but it’s still a good title to check out.

There aren’t any large story arcs in the show. There are plots that continue like villains who go in and out of jail and Dr Doom’s never ending plans to destroy the Fantastic Four once and for all, but nothing to really talk about in the plot selection. A lot of episodes are stand alone fights with the various villains. We also have the Kree subplot as they start to get pretty fed up with the group of heroes. The Fantastic Four antagonize just about everyone that they meet so they have a lot of enemies. Naturally, Dr Doom is at the top of the list.

There are 26 episodes, which is a decent episode count for a series. It’s not a whole lot when you compare it to the other Fantastic Four shows, but cracking the 20 episode barrier is always something to be proud of. That being said, the show was just not as high quality as we have come to expect back in the time that it aired. One of the main problems is actually the animation.

It’s some of the worst animation that I have ever seen for a superhero cartoon. We can make the case that the CGI Spiderman series looked worse, but it was CGI so that’s to be expected. The character designs here are just pretty off putting and the colors can get very chaotic. The show loves to make everything look red or green or blue depending on how the animators are feeling that day. It’s not very pleasing to the eyes and they just seem to be having too much fun trying to make the show unique. Focusing on the fight scenes would have been a better way to have kept the series afloat. I could not get used to this animation no matter how many episodes I saw.

The soundtrack is certainly better, but it’s still not very good. There’s one classic theme that plays whenever they are about to fight and it’s a pretty decent theme for the Fantastic Four. The problem is that the soundtrack is very limited so you’ll be hearing the same theme in just about every episode and typically more than once. It’s a good theme, but (almost) any theme will get old after a number of times. We need variety!

Those two factors hurt the show, but what hurt it even more is the overall cast. The Fantastic Four are known to argue and fight a whole lot, but they take it to a whole new level here. They are constantly talking and there is never a quiet scene in the entire show. Human Torch is like a music box that you just can’t close and he’s always on screen. The others love to contribute as well and the villains play their part. It wouldn’t be a problem if the lines were good, but that’s rarely the case. I’d definitely compare it to Avengers Assemble since just about every line here is supposed to be witty and make you smile. The scary part is that Avengers Assemble actually does a better job with this, but it could just be that I like the characters a little more there. Let’s look at the characters in more detail.

Mr Fantastic is easily the best character in the show. It’s not even close and I also liked the voice that was chosen for him. He really sounds like he’s full of himself and that’s the Reed Richards that I know. He’s always got a plan at the ready and he doesn’t back down. I’ve never seen an incarnation of Mr Fantastic that I did not like and I’m glad to see that this hasn’t changed so far. His powers still aren’t great for combat, but he definitely has his moments.

The Invisible Woman is not bad, but she definitely gives Mr Fantastic a lot of grief during the series. She blames him for the Human Torch’s disappearance at one point, which was fairly unreasonable. One thing that helps to counter this is that she’s easily the strongest member of the team. When she uses her powers effectively, there are few fighters who can really stop her and almost none of those are main FF characters. She runs the business side of the Baxter Building so she tends to talk to the various inhabitants a little more than the others. This means that she has to keep up a pleasant facade from time to time, but the other members know that she is always ready to fight. Sue Storm is probably the only member who can talk back to one of their meaner neighbors.

I’m definitely not a huge Thing fan and he doesn’t do himself any favors here. He’s a pretty nice guy as he just wants to watch his ball games in peace. Unfortunately, the Human Torch will never let that happen so they get into constant arguments. His side plot with Alisha can also drag on a lot since it never goes anywhere. I think there’s no real excuse for the heroes not to cure her blindness and she should also move somewhere that’s a little safer from the Puppet Master. Alisha’s not a bad character, but she’s always been one of my least favorite heroines. She simply doesn’t have a whole lot of character and she naturally doesn’t get any fight scenes. The Thing is the power hitter of the Fantastic Four, but you’d be surprised at how often he still manages to lose fights. The Mole Men’s minions are able to take him down and that was during a rage moment. This certainly isn’t Ben Grimm’s best collection of moments, but the show did adapt his character pretty faithfully. I’ll give the writers some props there.

The Human Torch is unfortunately the most annoying character of the group. For every good line that he has, he’ll have 10 wince worthy ones. The reason for this is the fact that he never stops talking. He continue going on and on until he’s knocked out by a villain. It’s nice to see his confidence and he does pretty well during some of the events, but this version of Johnny Storm is just a little too exaggerated. Naturally, he is given a rather high pitched voice to make him look even worse when he is knocked out. His fire abilities are definitely useful and I would argue that he could defeat the Thing, but there are also a lot of ways around his fire that make him a risky ally to have. He’s typically fun to watch, but he goes overboard way too often to be a really likable character this time.

The Skrulls naturally get to appear and the writers must have really disliked them. They are shown to have little to no actual intelligence. They are very obvious in their attempts to gather intel on the Fantastic Four and they are brushed aside rather easily once the fighting begins. They have never been the toughest of enemies, but they are typically intelligence. They are masters of espionage after all so they wouldn’t make the rookie mistakes that they exhibit in their appearances. It was a pretty good episode though, but their portrayal should have been a little better.

Namor makes a quick appearance in the show and naturally he is rivals with Mr Fantastic. They are constantly getting into arguments and trying to one up the other. Namor is not as bad as you would expect since he is typically a very unlikable character for me. He still shows some of those traits, but the focus is more on him being a leader than on his other qualities. That helps him a lot and he makes for a good guest star. It’s unfortunate for him that he has to ask the surface dwellers for assistance, but the Fantastic Four are always happy to oblige. I was more than satisfied with his portrayal.
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Hulk looks pretty good here in his beast form and as Bruce Banner. It’s sad for Bruce since he’s always so close to getting a cure until things just don’t go his way. Considering how smart Reed is, you’d assume that he’d be able to cure him easily. The Hulk’s design isn’t very good, but he definitely looks tough. It’s safe to say that the Thing was completely outmatched in their skirmish and that’s how all of their fights should end up. Bruce Banner gets the short end of the stick as per usual, but his personality was pretty good and he was a likable guest star.

Ronan appears a few times and he has actually defected from the Kree this time. In the comics, that is pretty rare although I don’t necessarily mind the change. It means that he is now free to do as he pleases and he naturally challenges the Fantastic Four. His skill with his hammer is formidable and he has a nice fight against the Human Torch. I’ve never found him to be an incredibly powerful fighter, but against the Fantastic Four I would definitely give him some decent odds in a fight. He’s around the Thing’s level in strength here, if not a little weaker. He gave us one of the better episodes here in the form of a sort of Olympics competition against the Fantastic Four, which was pretty cool. He was definitely one of the better villains in the series.

The Mole Man is probably my least favorite villain in the series. He can’t fight and his design is pretty hard to look at. None of his plans should have any reasonable chance to succeed considering how weak his forces are. Unfortunately, he is one of the more popular Fantastic Four villains so he gets to appear several times. You end up feeling bad for his minions since they’ll never get to see the sun. He has to rely on his wit and cunning to win his fights since his staff can only get him so far. It’s always wince worthy to see him defeat the Fantastic Four.

The Impossible Man is one of those characters that I never like. His reality warping abilities are something that I never want to see in a show so a character whose whole gimmick is related to that is naturally not my kind of character. He mostly just comes to troll the heroes until they trick him into leaving. His episodes are typically more annoying than entertaining. Ant Man made a surprise guest star appearance in this show considering that he typically doesn’t get to be a guest star anywhere. His portrayal was pretty good and he definitely seems to know what he’s doing. There’s not all that much to say about him, but it would be nice to see him fight someday. Fighting minions doesn’t really count, he needs to take on a super villain!

Ironman gets to appear, which is pretty cool. Tony Stark’s portrayal is pretty great since he acts pretty fearless even as the Fantastic Four begin to threaten him. As Iron Man, he definitely proves to be an impressive fighter as you would expect. His armor does get hacked once again, but it is by Dr Doom so it’s pretty excusable. I liked the armor design here, which is a plus and he was definitely one of (if not) the best guest stars on the show. It’s too bad that he didn’t get to return since that would have been pretty cool.

The Super Skrull naturally gets to appear, which is good since he’s a very iconic Fantastic Four villain. I always liked the idea of a guy who had all of their individual abilities and he does not disappoint. He puts up a pretty decent fight and what he makes up for in personality, he makes up for in attitude. He’s never been a very deep character anyway so I hadn’t been expecting all that much. Still, he was a pretty cool villain thanks to his battles and appearance.
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The Puppet Master is similar to the Mole Man in that he can’t really fight. He actually has a very overpowered ability, which enables him to control anyone that he has made a statue out of. Techncially, nobody can really counter such a technique so he cannot lose. Plot hax ensues and they get out of his plot, but it’s one of those cases where the writers just made him a little too good. That happens sometimes I suppose, but it’s why you’ve always got to be careful. Even with that ability, he’s just not likable. He’s a really old guy who’s out for vengeance…not a very original story.

She Hulk gets a guest star role and she shows why she is about as strong as the Thing. She is mainly here to remind us why the Thing is so important to the team, but she’s still pretty likable. She was always a pretty good replacement member on the team and she doesn’t rub it in. She’s a team player, but she’s naturally here for the money. It would have been cool for her to have had a real fight with the Thing, but maybe next time. I was just glad to have another guest star.

Terminus is the final villain in the series and it was an interesting decision to end with him. He’s incredibly powerful, but also incredibly slow, which helps to even it out. The heroes quickly despair when they see him until they remember that Reed will think of a plan. So, all of the pressure rests on Reed and it’s thanks to his quick thinking that the heroes survive. Terminus is pretty gullible and I can’t say that I like him, but I do like the idea of a giant mech running around New York. He makes for a good villain.

The Frightful Four appear as a foil to the Fantastic Four. They pretend to be heroes for a while, but we naturally don’t buy that for long. It’s one of the better episodes as they try to humiliate the Fantastic Four on TV until they eventually begin to fight. Mr Fantastic really lets loose and he gets a pretty epic line to end the episode. The members of the Frightful Four are decent. The Wizard is pretty smart after all, but they are rather simple villains. They’re around, but they aren’t on screen long enough to become likable. They make for good villains and that’s about all that you can say for them.

Diablo is a one shot character, but it’s cool to see him try to convince everyone that magic is real. He’s a villain who is hard to take seriously since his powers don’t have many offensive capabilities, but he really tries and that’s the important thing. He definitely isn’t a very interesting villain, but he only appeared once so it wasn’t a real problem. Annihilius is more interesting and I’m not even a fan of the guy. Annihilius also gets to appear in one of the episodes and things aren’t going well for him when his weapon is stolen. Let’s just say that a team up may be in order unless he can snatch the scepter back on his own. He’s not mindless per say, but he’s not one of the Fantastic Four’s more intelligent villains either. He’s a monster who will defend his territory and I guess that will have to be good enough for us. On the bright side, his design is pretty good.

Ultimately, the show definitely had some fun guest stars. It also had some pretty fun episodes like the olympic games and the one with the Frightful Four. From the 26 episodes, I’m sure that at least half of them are pretty good. There were just other episodes that were not so good and ones that were only decent. The problem is that some episodes can toe the line where they almost feel a little boring. It’s partially thanks to the intros as a lot of the episodes begin rather similarly with the Human Torch and Thing fighting. It can just be hard to really get into the feel of the episode, which hurts its chances. The series definitely has no real replay value since you will never care to watch it again. Other big shows like Earth’s Mightiest Heroes and Justice League don’t have that problem since you really want to watch them again. That’s probably due to the fact that this show has no good fights. It’s just the way that it was made, but you never feel the blows here. The lack of a plot only serves to amplify this and your first time around will likely be your last.

As far as Marvel cartoons go, this one still does beat Hulk Agents of Smash though so that’s a consolation win. It’s still not a bad show either since I would have given it a quick 4 in that case. It has its pros and cons and they basically cancel out in the long run. Watching an episode shouldn’t be considered as 20 minutes wasted, but it won’t leave you as fulfilled as other shows. Compared to most western shows at the moment, this would probably seem like an all star in comparison. Compared to most Marvel tunes, then it definitely seems to be under average.

Terminus_(Destroyer)_(Earth-135263)
Overall, The Fantastic Four were never the World’s Greatest Heroes so the title may have already started firing off some warning bells. The characters can be pretty annoying and it’s really hard to get invested into some of the episodes. They just aren’t very entertaining and the sub par animation does not help its case. That being said, we still do get a lot of fight scenes and we have a decent amount of guest stars. Some episodes are certainly better than others and at its best, the show can still be good. It’s just not very consistent and you are always playing with fire here. I recommend checking this show out if you’ve always wanted to see a new Fantastic Four cartoon, but otherwise I recommend watching the classic 90’s series instead. It’s a more accurate representation of the team and the comics that spawned them. On the bright side, you’ll get to see the Hulk duke it out with the Thing in this show!

Overall 5/10