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Tue, Mar. 11th, 2008, 11:32 am

With the premiere of the new animated series The Spectacular Spider-Man there were some high expectations. First of all we haven't seen a Spider-Man animated series in a while ever since MTV's ghastly Spider-Man: The New Animated Series when everyone was actually hoping for a reprise of the much better 90's Spider-Man series. Secondly Sean "Cheeks" Galloway had been teasing everyone with designs and sketches from the show. Be sure to check out his site to see some designs of other heroes he has done.

The Spectacular Spider-Man designTo get back to the web slinger now having seen the first episode I'm fairly impressed. We're treated to another reboot/retelling of the Spidey mythology obviously aimed at a younger age (or perhaps we were just easier impressed in the 90's...). The artwork feels slightly smoother than Sean's designs but the overall palette is quite nice. The character designs of the villains so far are also quite obvious, but let's blame that on the fact that we already know all of Spidey's classic villains. And sure we're not the intended audience either so keeping in mind the young viewer new to Peter Parker's universe I think that the designs are quite pleasing.

For the older Spidey-fans having the Enforcers appear in the first episode was a really nice nod. Sure they suddenly went from being mafia-cowboys to helicopter piloting ninjas, but props for the inclusion anyway.

Let's say I'm pleasantly surprised. Though so far it looks like the series won't get as deep as the 90's one but we're also not stuck with another totally off-the-walls MTV nightmare. And given that there are two seasons planned with actual story-arcs spanning several episodes this might be something to follow. If just for that Saturday-morning feeling again.

Plus I'm sure that when a second season rolls around they'll get the theme-song right. After all it took The Batman three seasons as well to come up with the in my opinion much better current opening.