Thursday, October 17, 2013

Monster Mania Day 13: Ultimate Spider-man: Meet Blade And The Howling Commandos

Written by Stu Cooper

It's time to discuss the first Halloween special of the season! This one came on Disney XD last week and should be repeated several times before Halloween. The special was called "Ultimate Spider-man: And The Howling Commandos". It was actually just a two-parter of the actual Ultimate Spider-man cartoon that is on it's third season. The show itself is actually really good and high quality. The stories are pretty intense and it has a lot of humor. The artwork and effects are also top notch. The guy who plays Agent Coulson even voices himself on the show. It's not quite as good as the Avengers show that ended a year ago, but it's easily the best superhero show on TV right now.

The two-parter starts off with Spider-man and his friends (Luke Cage, Iron Fist, etc) all goofing off late at night when they are suddenly attacked by vampire like monsters. The monsters keep coming and coming and are putting up a pretty good fight. The group investigates where these vampires are coming from and that leads them to the one and only...the man, the myth, the legend...DRACULA! Dracula doesn't exactly look like his Bela Lugosi self. He actually looks more like a form of Dracula from one of the Castlevania games. He is covered in armor and has long white hair. Pretty menacing looking and of course he thinks Spider-man and his friends are mere peons. Dracula's plan is to basically turn the entire world into his army of vampire minions, and he is also looking for some kind of device to help him. It's soon after we meet Dracula that things pick up even more when BLADE shows up! That's right, the Daywalker is in town. To be honest this Halloween Special was about 10x better than Blade Trinity.

What unfolds after this is absolute madness. Many of Spider-man's friends (Iron Fist, Luke Cage, etc) get put under Dracula's spell and start fighting on his side. This leaves Spider-man and Blade outnumbered but don't worry Nick Fury has a plan! He introduces Spider-man to another super hero group that most of us probably don't know about, The Howling Commandos! Yeah I haven't heard of these guys either, but apparently they are real and are all marvel characters. The team is made up of Man-Thing, Werewolf by Night, The Living Mummy, and of course Frankenstein's Monster! The group is almost identical to the Universal Monsters we all know and love, except they have amped up powers or in Frankenstein's case...MACHINE GUNS! At this point the story gets pretty goofy, but I don't want to spoil it. Let's just say the special is essentially Spiderman vs. The Monster Squad. If you like either one of those things, you will be very pleased. The special is set to air 2-3 times between now and Halloween, so I highly suggest DVRing it. It's nice to see shows still doing original Halloween Specials instead of just replaying old stuff. Upon doing a bit of research I actually found out Spider-man and Dracula have interacted a few times in the past, in the comics and in the old "Spider-man and His Amazing Friends" cartoon (which is GOLD). I believe the Dracula episode of the old cartoon is on Netflix, so you could always check that one out.
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