Friday, July 4, 2014

Recap: Ultimate Spider-Man "Not a Toy"

Yes, I'm skipping a few episodes ahead for this one. If you're reading this at a later date, then don't worry about it. If you're reading this the day it's posted...


'MURICA! ...sorry.
Yes, even those of you in other countries. You may not be having fireworks, or celebrating independence today like us Yanks, but I still hope you have a nice day. Because I care about you. Yes, even you, my one and only Brazilian reader. You know who you are. I know you use Google Translate, so I'm sorry for any errors that may super karate monkey death car.

Anyway, today, America is filled with mirth, as we cook our meat in the backyard, drink our fermented malted grain byproduct, and look at explosions in the sky. So please join me as I recap an episode featuring the greatest American icon since Uncle Sam himself.

No, not Chuck Norris. Shame on you for even thinking that.
Our episode opens up on Spider-Man in a dark area. Alone, afraid, and calling for backup.
Iron Fist: "Your worst enemy cannot harm you as much as your own unguarded thoughts."

True, but he can throw your girlfriend off of a bridge.

Spidey's Spider Sense gives a tingle, and he narrowly avoids being hit by some kind of disc-shaped object traveling at high velocity. Iron Fist has disappeared, Nova yells "Game Over," and Power Man and White Tiger are chained up to a column.

Spider-Man: "Why does this feel like they're bait and I'm running into a trap?" 
???: "Because that's exactly what you did."

Spidey gets attacked from behind by a sweeping leg, and we see his attacker in the dim light. Surprisingly, it's not Ralph Macchio, but Captain America. We we return from the titles, Cap leaps at Spider-Man, slams down his shield an inch from Spidey's face... and taps him with his finger.

Captain America: "Tag. I win."

Spidey tells the audience who Captain America is (C'mon, really? People in North Korea aren't allowed to use the internet, and I bet even they know who Captain America is) and Cap formally introduces himself to the team. While they discuss sparring against the good captain again, Agent Coulson takes up his concerns with Nick Fury. Namely, Coulson's a huge Captain America fanboy, and he wants to make sure that his visit goes off without a hitch. So naturally, Coulson... just... read this.

Coulson: "I gave them the rules before he got here. 'Under no circumstances are any of you to speak to Captain America, look him in the eye, say his name, or breathe loudly in his presence."

Fury, who knows when to give in to the crazy, lets Coulson try to drag Cap away from the young heroes. But Cap insists on one more session.

Spider-Man: "Our lives just got a thousand percent cooler, Captain America! ...sir!"

Suck it, Rainbow Dash.
Seriously, though, why do these ponies keep working their way onto my blog?
White Tiger: "Uh... you use your right hand to salute."

Okay, that was funny. Anyway, Agent Fussbudget Coulson arrives in person to get Cap to leave, but again, Cap insists again on just one more round. What's the worst that could happen?

Power Man: "This time, I'm gonna show him why they call me Power Man." 
Spider-Man: "Dude, you call you Power Man. It's Captain America. The guy once punched a tank unconscious!" 
Captain America: "Actually, that's myth." 
Spider-Man: "No, I'm pretty sure that's true."

To be fair, he punches a lot of things.
To make things interesting, Cap says that the first one to take him out gets the shield. The shield. The one that, when thrown, forces all those who chose to oppose his shield to yield.
Nova: "Do you know what I could sell that for on the internet!?"

Stay classy, Nova. We get a quick little fantasy about Spidey using the shield to assemble and disassemble the Avengers as easy as flipping a light switch, and we continue. Cap gives a little pep talk about how the heroes shouldn't just depend on their unique powers, but also hone their other skills. He demonstrates this by effortlessly taking out Nova, White Tiger, and Power Man. Spidey steps up to the plate to web him down, but accidentally webs up and rips of Coulson's suit, revealing Captain America cosplay underneath.

Coulson: "This is not mine."

Then that just raises further questions.
The fight continues, and Cap is barely breaking a sweat. Heck, he manages to steal Spidey's gloves right off his hands and use the web-shooters himself. Finally, Cap knocks them all down. As he and Coulson go off to do boring S.H.I.E.L.D. stuff, Cap leaves his shield with the young heroes, but tells them not to throw it.

Captain America: "It's a weapon, not a toy."

We have a title. After he leaves, one thing leads to another...

Spider-Man: "Luke! Catch!"

Needless to say, the shield ends up crashing through the window of the helicarrier and falling to the ground. Needless to say... again, Cap comes back and wonders where his shield is. Said shield is off on a little journey. Spider-Man follows it on his hastily-made underarm web-wings as it bounces off Iron Man, takes out the Trapster, almost hits Aunt May...

Spider-Man: "Please take care when crossing the street. And don't forget fruit snacks!"

Mmm, Hostess Fruit Pies... sorry, where was I? Oh, yes. Finally, the shield crashes inside a building and stops its journey. The bad news is that said building is the Latverian embassy. And yes, Doctor Doom picks it up. Whoops.

We get an explanation of who this evil dictator is, and Doctor Doom starts questioning this strange young man in tights who claims to have just accidentally thrown a replica shield into the Latverian embassy.

Doctor Doom: "Wait right there."

Spider-Man dodges the subsequent Spidey-seeking missile, with assistance from Captain America, borrowing Spidey's Spider-Cycle. Spidey fills Cap in on the situation, and they begin their infiltration of the embassy. Spider-Man rightly points out that this is illegal, but Cap rightly points out that so is firing a missile into New York. Touché.

Captain America: "My shield is made from a one-of-a-kind adamantium/vibranium alloy."

Nope, sorry. Adamantium was developed by Dr. Myron McLain in an attempt to recreate the indestructible iron/vibranium alloy used in Cap's shield.  ...sorry, that was pedantically nerdy, even for me.

Anyway, Cap wants to make sure that Doctor Doom can't reverse-engineer the alloy in the shield, and they dodge the defenses and bust in the front door. Before they can go any further, though, the two come face to face with Doom's Doomdogs. A little bit of teamwork makes quick work of them, but then the Doombots show up.

Meanwhile, Doctor Doom is scanning the shield with glowing green SCIENCE. Meanwhile, again, the two heroes make their way though the embassy, running from Doombots the whole way. They burst into the SCIENCE room, where both Doom and shield are missing. A quick bit of computer know-how, and Cap discovers that Doom was planning an invasion of America.

Nice job breaking it, hero.
Cap deactivates the Doombots with a nearby control panel, and they head to the roof, where Doctor Doom is escaping in his aircraft. Naturally, there are missiles and Doomdogs, which Cap and Spidey manage to dodge. They break into Doom's ship to arrest him, but Doom protests that he can't be arrested at his own embassy. Cap points out the obvious, that they're in American airspace now, and a fight ensues.

Spidey manages to successfully crash the craft (which seems like an oxymoron, "success" and
crash", and the two heroes enter a standoff with the shield-wielding Doctor Doom, who points out that Spider-Man's responsible for giving him the key to taking over the country. Thinking quickly, Spider-Man offers Doctor Doom a deal. If he surrenders the shield, he can go back to his embassy and not get his butt kicked, letting him keep his pride. Doom refuses with his finger lasers, because he says "no" in the most hardcore ways.

A fight ensues, and Spider-Man uses what he learned from Cap this episode to signal S.H.I.E.L.D. to swoop in. They do, and Doom hands the shield back, claiming that he didn't want it anyway. He's gonna make his own shield. With blackjack. And hookers! In fact, forget the shield!

Doom is taken away for conspiring to destroy America, and Cap and Spidey part on good terms. Back on the helicarrier, Spidey regales the team with the story of his bravery and the lessons he learned from cap about not being an idiot, Coulson gets after him for losing Cap's shield in the first place, and Cap pacifies him by...

Oh, Phil. This show has neutered you.
Phil tosses the shield back to Cap and... you guessed it. It flies out of the helicarrier.

Spider-Man: "Here we go again!"

Let's just hope that it doesn't end up in Absorbing Man's hands this time. And so, the episode ends. Review time!



    Er... maybe. I have read in various comics that the mighty shield is, in fact, a Vibranium/adamantium alloy. I have also read, in equally canon comics, that it is iron/Vibranium. I have also also read that it's just Vibranium. I guess that's just one of those details that the writers can't decide on, like whether Richard and Mary Parker worked for the CIA or SHIELD.

    - That One Anon

    1. From Wikipedia:

      "...The vibranium-iron alloy mix is then poured into a mold for a tank's upper hatch to create the disc shape and painted to become Captain America's symbol. MacLain would later attempt to recreate the shield's metal to no avail, his experiments instead eventually yielding the super-metal adamantium."

      "Rogers' indestructible shield was long referred to, even in continuity, as being composed of an adamantium-vibranium alloy. In actuality, the experimental iron alloy is now referred to as "proto-adamantium", which is slightly stronger than true adamantium. Dr. MacLain's experiments with proto-adamantium lead to the creation of true adamantium."

      The additional research I did confirmed that writers get the iron/vibranium detail wrong all the time.

      Now you know. And knowing is half the battle.

    2. Wow, talk about the most appropriate possible day to make a GI Joe reference. IN AMERICA!

      - That One Anon

  2. Why do they keep calling him Power Man? Who has ever heard of Power Man? People have heard of Luke Cage, but not Power Man

    1. Well, Power Man IS his original codename. And Luke IS a teenager and would probably want a dumb name like "Power Man."

    2. That's a good point, but he hasn't gone by Power Man in years (in the comics I mean9

    3. And the credits refer to him as "Luke Cage, a.k.a. Power Man" when everyone else is just credited normally.

      But it makes sense that Luke wouldn't want his secret identity out in the open.