Spider-Man Unlimited is a superhero animated series starring Spider-Man. (No prizes for guessing that one.)
The series ran from 1999 to 2001 for a total of 13 episodes. Apparently, there was a rating problem, what with the popularity of Pokémon and Digimon. (Admittedly, these are hard to compete against.) The last episode ended on a cliffhanger, and it has remained like that ever since.
This was the third Spider-Man series I watched in my childhood, the 1994 and spectacular being the first and second respectively. If it weren’t for the Disney XD, (nowadays known as Marvel HQ, even though they mostly show Pokémon.) I probably wouldn’t have watched this series at all.
I took the audio recording of the episode of this show to my boarding school, to pass the time. My friend and I used to go through them during the Sundays.
While covering the launch of John Jameson’s one-man mission to Counter-Earth (another Earth located on the far side of the Sun), Spider-Man attempts to stop his two symbiote adversaries Venom and Carnage from boarding the shuttlecraft. Blamed for losing contact with Jameson by J. Jonah Jameson of the Daily Bugle, Spider-Man becomes a target of persecution by the media and the public at large, with a bounty placed on his head. After John Jameson had made contact with Earth through a distress signal, Spider-Man borrows nanotechnology from Reed Richards to design a new suit that incorporates built-in web shooters, stealth technology, and anti-symbiote sonic weaponry. Making his way to Counter-Earth after persuading an attacking Nick Fury to let him rescue Jameson, Spider-Man learns that Jameson has fallen in with a band of freedom fighters opposed to the High Evolutionary whose Beastials, hybrids of animal and humanoid attributes, are the dominant species while humans are the second-class minority.
With Jameson reluctant to return until all of the Beastials are defeated, Spider-Man elects to remain on Counter-Earth, blending in as best as he can as Peter Parker, taking up residence in the apartment of a doctor, Naoko-Yamada Jones and her son Shane and fighting the High Evolutionary, his Knights of Wundagore, and his Machine Men alongside the rebels as Spider-Man. It is soon discovered that Venom and Carnage are also on Counter-Earth, and are following orders from the Synoptic, a hive-minded legion of Counter-Earth symbiotes.
My watching experiences:
So, the opening of this show is purely musical, with scenes of the show running with the high paced music, which wouldn’t be out of place in a shooting game, where things come fast and hard to you. I certainly like it.
First and foremost, I would like to point out the concept of the hero with bad publicity in this show. Really, you think that all those Harry Potter fanfics do it way over the top? Well, you get to see an animated version of it on this show.
At least Peter won’t turn into a sex god with a harem of female followers. The world has some sense yet.
There is one character who I remember purely for his name, called Sir Ram. (No, he has nothing to do with RAM on your computer) He was translated in Hindi as sir Goat Beard, which I found hilarious. To me, aside from the unique plot, this character is the second most memorable thing about this show.
Also, this was the first time I saw High Evolutionary. Though instead of a recluse mad scientist obsessed with genetics, he is an evil overlord mad scientist obsessed with genetics.
As much as I enjoyed this series in my childhood, I hesitate to give it a glowing recommendation. Even though I don’t have much of a problem with Spider-Man being taken out of his usual setting of the city of New York, there are just a few things which don’t just click.
The voice acting also is a hit or miss a lot of the time. The actors seem to struggle to convey the emotions properly.
Another turn-off is that it is an unfinished work. The final episode was supposed to be a two-part episode, but only the first part was ever created and aired. And thus, the series has been in limbo ever since the airing of the thirteenth episode.
But then again, it is the brutal truth of the television world. If your show doesn’t capture ratings, then it will be shelved sooner or later; whether it is finished or not will be irrelevant.
Despite that, I’ll say that if you do want something unique, then you should give this series a try. Because even though, as I have stated above, that the plot does not click, it certainly had some great ideas.
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