This week, we only got a new episode of Ultimate Spider-man, titled “Freaky.” Hell, there wasn’t even an Avengers re-run this week. Just Ultimate Spider-man reruns. With that this isn’t actually Marvel Universe. It is, however, an Ultimate Father’s Day Marathon. Now, you may be asking what Spider-man has to do with Father’s day, but clearly you’re not remembering the close relationship that Peter Parker has with his father. Wait, Spider-man is an orphan you say? Hmmm…guess he’s not the best thing to use for Father’s Day, but no one is really.
Spider-man comes across Mesmero, who is robbing a diamond store by controlling other people’s minds. Mesmero tells the people to attack Spider-man. Spider-man is able to get away from them when Wolverine shows up. He demands to know what Spider-man has done to these people. Wolverine gets attacked by people, becomes frustrated enough to attack them, but Spider-man stops him. Wolverine opens up a fire hydrant and hits people with water. This brings them back to their senses, during which they blame Spider-man. Wolverine recognizes Mesmero’s scent, and grabs him. Wolverine convinces Mesmero to release his hold. Afterwords, Wolverine and Spider-man nearly come to blows after insulting each other, but Nick Fury gets in their way. At school, the rest of the guys on the team try to let Peter show them his homework, but he lectures them. While Peter is sitting in class, Mesmero switches Spider-man’s and Wolverine’s minds. They both wake up and freak out. (For the purpose of simplicity, I’ll refer to the characters by whose mind is doing what. So, when I say Spider-man, know that it’s Spider-man in Wolverine’s body.) Spider-man calls Wolverine, and tells him that they switched bodies. Then Sabertooth attacks him. Wolverine tells Spider-man to just run. Spider-man tries to convince Sabertooth that he’s not really Wolverine but it doesn’t work. Wolverine says that he’s coming to him, but Spider-man tells him to stay in school because he can’t afford to miss. Eventually, Spider-man is able to escape. In school, Wolverine is not getting along with Spider-man’s teammates, hits on Mary Jane, and beats up Flash. Spider-man arrives at school, and Wolverine asks him what happened to Sabertooth. Spider-man says he lost him, but Wolverine says that you don’t lose Sabertooth because he’s a tracker. Sabertooth then shows up, finally realizing that they did in fact switch bodies.
Wolverine adapts to Spider-man’s powers a lot faster than he adapted to Wolverine’s powers. Spider-man threatens to shave him, if Wolverine doesn’t put on the Spider-man uniform. Eventually he does, though he can’t quite get the hang of swinging. Eventually, they are able to work together to defeat Sabertooth. They go back to the Helicarrier, where Mesmero laughs hysterically at them. But Spider-man is able to control the claws long enough to threaten Mesmero. Mesmero switches them back. Saying their good-byes, Wolverine tells Spider-man that life is good for him, and he should enjoy it. Wolverine then steals a jet, and flies off.
There’s also a segment running through this marathon with Joe Quesada showing his daughter, and us, how to draw a Chibi Spider-man. During this episode, they just showed the lines. I assume they finish the drawing throughout the rest of the marathon.
On the bright side, Spider-man didn’t have to learn how to get along with his teammates again. On the down side, he did have to learn how to get along with Wolverine. Maybe I’m just becoming very cynical, but there really wasn’t a reason for the body switch. These types of things are used so the two characters can learn some insight about what it’s like to be each other, so that they can have a better understanding. That’s missing from this episode. Sure, Wolverine sees some of Peter’s friends, but there’s never this realization about how some of his friends don’t know who he really is. There’s no discussion of what Peter goes through by lying to his friends, especially Mary Jane. I think that could have brought some emotional weight to the episode. But, this show is pretty much devoid of any real substance. It’s all flash.
Like, there was a moment when Wolverine isn’t concerned about maintaining Peter’s secret identity, saying he’s not concerned about his soap opera. The show then goes into an extended opening for a soap opera. What was the point of this? Surely, the kids their targeting wouldn’t find this funny, most likely having never seen a soap opera. It was just a needless gag. For the comic fans watching, they were certain to throw in Spider-man saying “I’m the best there is at what I do,” and then wondering why he said it, as if it were genetically hard wired into Wolverine’s body that that phrase must be said, regardless of the mind is in the body. That doesn’t make any sense.
I think there’s supposed to be a new episode of Avengers next week, so hopefully it will once again help offset this show.