introductions from Stan Lee
Scene: From 1967: The Green Goblin parks his Goblin
Glider outside a jewelry store, and puts a coin in the meter.
He does later rob the same meter, but still…
Specs: English and Spanish Dolby Digital sound, English
it may seem odd for Disney to have control over Spider-Man,
or at least some of his adventures, it's turning out to
be a pretty good thing. Timed for release just before the
Sam Raimi adaptation hit DVD, their second outing, The
Return of the Green Goblin, serves as a pretty good
four episodes from the mid-nineties series, The Return
of the Green Goblin focuses on a plotline that begins
with Spider-Man taking on The Spot but ends with him rescuing
Robbie Robertson from his own past. Like a lot of this particular
animated series, it borrows from what was then current and
hot in the wallcrawler's own book. If you can get past the
strangely mangled continuity, it's pretty enjoyable.
example, I still don't understand how The Hobgoblin appeared
before The Green Goblin in this series, but it does
allow for a great confrontation between the two. In the
comics (at the time), that wasn't possible. Rethinking for
television also makes The Spot a little less lame than he
has always seemed to be in print, and now also makes clear
why ToyBiz had a 10-inch figure of him.
only rethinking that looks dated now is the strangely stuck
in the 80's Punisher. Come to think of it, though, you've
never seen Frank Castle and Jennifer Beals in the same place
at the same time.
this release only takes a few episodes out of a larger seasonal
plotline, they're still fun and reach enough of a closure
not to leave you hanging. As a bonus in the special features
section, Disney has also included (waaay out of sequence)
the episode in which Harry Osborn takes on the mantle of
The Green Goblin. Consider it a possible preview of the
third Spider-Man film.
again, Disney includes extras that make this disc a must-have
for fans. Continuing from the previous DVD (Ultimate
Villain Showdown), the disc features several short interviews
with Stan Lee. From an historical perspective alone they're
important, and this time he goes a little more in-depth
to the writing process. Whatever you think of his recent
work, the theories he offers here remain sound advice.
also offers help on the de rigeur Disney DVD trivia
game. Unlike their major releases, the trivia here actually
comes straight out of the comics. Though all Spider-Man
related, some of it is pretty obscure, and you might need
Stan's help. Activating the question mark onscreen brings
up The Man, who drops an oblique clue either eliminating
one of three possibilities or pointing you dead on the mark.
combining my true fanboy knowledge with Stan's cleverness,
I happily report that Mary Jane survived my efforts.
real gem on this disc, however, comes in the form of a classic
1967 episode. A couple of weeks ago, Buena Vista (Disney's
distribution arm) announced that they would begin re-mastering
the original series, and the episode here proves why that
effort is sorely needed.
Spidey against Doctor Octopus and The Green Goblin (of course),
what's here comes off of a very washed out and scratched
up print. Sadly, there's also no doubt that this was the
best available source. The original series varied wildly
in quality of art direction, which gets proven between the
two segments here. If you've ever watched Rob Smigel's Ambiguously
Gay Duo cartoons, you can now know from where he takes
most of his inspiration. No, there are no overtly phallic
symbols, but the voice-work and occasionally static character
poses will look familiar to fans of SNL.
enough, in the first segment Dr. Octopus steals a missile
defense system, here called "The Nullifier." It only took
the United States Government thirty-five years to make it
work in actuality. Once again, life imitates comic books
Green Goblin in this episode gets treated more like the
1950's Joker than the evil genius we know him to be. Jealous
of a famed stage magician, the villain breaks into his magical
mansion and steals some of his tricks in order to "magically"
commit crimes. It's silly, but every now and then, it's
good to wallow in a time when we could be that naïve.
Spider-Man - The Return of the Green Goblin