FREQUENLY ASKED QUESTIONS
 
 

Did you ever wonder why we never got to see Spider-Man throw a punch at an enemy on a regular basis?  Or why the Sandman never got to appear on this show at all?  Or maybe you just want to know why the villains said they wanted to "destroy" Spider-Man rather than actually say "kill".
 
These questions, as well as several others, are about to be answered in this F.A.Q. section.  Read on...
 
 
Q: FOR A SUPER HERO SHOW, THERE SURE WASN'T A LOT OF FIGHTING IN TERMS OF HAND-TO-HAND COMBAT.  WHY?
A: Well, in this case, your psychiatrist was right - it was all the fault of parents.  You see, some of the shows on the Fox Kids Network had a lot of violent content, such as two of the most beloved children's shows of the 1990s, "Mighty Morphin Power Rangers" and "Batman: The Animated Series".  In fact, countries like Canada were even banning some of Fox's shows, like "Power Rangers", because of the violence included on the show and the network was very nervous about having "Spider-Man: The Animated Series" being too violent because they didn't want to lose viewers by having their show banned.  Story Editor and Producer John Semper said in interviews that the show could not have any punches to the jaw and/or face, that the characters' guns could not fire real bullets, no fire could be shown on-screen, no characters crashing through glass, and no scenes of children in peril.
 
 
 
Q: WHY DID THE TV SHOW FEATURE THE ORIGIN OF SPIDER-MAN ONLY IN FLASHBACKS?
A: In 1994, Carolco Pictures was going to make a live-action "Spider-Man" motion picture, with writer/director James Cameron (of "Terminator", "Titanic" and "Avatar" fame) at the helm.  In Cameron's script, he featured the origin of Spider-Man, and so the show's creators couldn't use Spider-Man's origin on the show from the beginning.  However, there were flashbacks to Spider-Man's origin, as seen in season one's "The Menace of Mysterio", season two's "Neogenic Nightmare, Part I: The Insidious Six" and season three's "The Sins of the Fathers, Part II: Make a Wish".
 

Q: WHY WERE THE SINISTER SIX CALLED THE INSIDIOUS SIX ON THE SHOW?
A:
Aside from the fact that the Fox Kids network's own "X-Men" animated series had the character Mr. Sinister, the network thought that the name "Sinister Six" sounded too menacing for a children's Saturday morning program.  As a result, the name was changed to the Insidious Six.  Ugh.
 

Q: WHY DID THE HOBGOBLIN APPEAR BEFORE THE GREEN GOBLIN ON THIS SHOW?  THE GREEN GOBLIN CAME FIRST IN THE COMICS.
A:
Yes, he did.  In 1964, the Green Goblin made his debut in the comics in "The Amazing Spider-Man", vol. 1, #14.  But he wasn't actually unmasked as Norman
Osborn until "Amazing" #39 in 1966, though, and the original Green Goblin met his demise in "Amazing" #122 in the classic "The Death of Gwen Stacy" two-part storyline.  Cut to 1983, when a crook finds a secret hideout of the Green Goblin's and gives its location to his in-the-shadows associate, who promptly blows him up afterwards as his reward.  The unseen man improves on the Goblin's technology, changes the costume, and becomes the Hobgoblin.  Now that the history recap is done, why did the Hobgoblin appear before his predecessor on this show?  Well, that's what the crew were stuck with.  You see, before story editor/producer John Semper came on board, someone else was working on this "Spider-Man" animated series and planned to use the Hobgoblin.  When the unknown person was fired from the show, John Semper tried to talk executive producer Avi Arad out of using Hobgoblin first, because Semper felt that the Hobgoblin was a useless character and not as good as the Green Goblin.  Although Arad agreed with him, the crew ended up having to use the Hobgoblin before the Green Goblin because of the show's toyline by Toy Biz.  A Hobgoblin toy had been planned to be made and it was too late to stop Toy Biz from making Hobgoblin toys for the Spider-Man toy line, so Semper reluctantly agreed to introduce the Hobgoblin in the show's first season.  At one point, it was even suggested that Norman Osborn become the Hobgoblin to make up for not introducing the Green Goblin in the first season.  This idea was quickly rejected by executive producer Stan Lee, who disliked the idea of making Norman the Hobgoblin.  In the end, though, we ultimately DID get Norman as the Green Goblin in the show's third season.  And believe me, it was well worth the wait.
 
 

Q: WHY DIDN'T SPENCER SMYTHE EVER AWAKEN FROM HIS CRYOGENIC SUSPENSION SLEEP, AS SEEN IN SEASON THREE?
A:
Actually, there are rumors insisting that he was supposed to.  The problem
was, the voice actor who played Spencer Smythe, Edward Mulhare, had passed away.  That's why you never got to see Alistair Smythe reunite with his father.
 
 
 
Q: WHY DID THE SANDMAN NEVER APPEAR ON THIS ANIMATED SERIES?
A: This has been said already in the Villains and Best and Worst pages, but I'll repeat it anyway.  Back in 1994, Carolco Pictures and writer/director James Cameron were trying to make a live-action "Spider-Man" movie.  In Cameron's script, the villains were Electro and the Sandman.  Curiously, neither villain had the same names of their comic book counterparts.  Electro's alter-ego was a billionaire named Carlton Strand and the Sandman was really a thug named Boyd.  Anyway, the show's staff was unable to use both Sandman and Electro as a result of the planned feature film, so the Sandman was replaced with Hydro-Man on the show.  Later, the film rights to the "Spider-Man" movie got stuck in limbo when Carolco went bankrupt, and the ban was lifted.  But by the time the ban was lifted, only Electro was able to appear in the "Six Forgotten Warriors" five-part storyline, as you'll read below.  In "Six Forgotten Warriors", the Wild Pack was featured as guest-heroes, but Sandman, who was a member in the 1980's and 1990's when he became a hero for a time, wasn't included as either a villain or a Wild Pack member.
 
 
 
Q: WHY DID ELECTRO ONLY APPEAR IN SEASON FIVE?  AND WHY WASN'T HIS ALTER-EGO MAXWELL DILLON LIKE IN THE COMIC BOOKS?
A: The same reason as the Sandman: he was supposed to appear in Jim Cameron's planned "Spider-Man" film and was off-limits for the show's writers to use on the show.  Later, when the "Spider-Man" film rights went into development limbo, the ban was lifted and John Semper decided to use Electro, but as a newly-created character named Kragov, the son of the Red Skull.  It was most likely done for story purposes, but I still don't get why Sandman couldn't have been introduced in the storyline too.
 
 
 
Q: WHY DIDN'T THE INCREDIBLE HULK APPEAR ON SPIDER-MAN'S ANIMATED SERIES, AND VICE-VERSA?
A: Simple: the characters were off-limits on each other's shows because their series were on rival networks.  You see, "Spider-Man" aired on the Fox Kids network's Saturday morning line-up, while the U.P.N. network aired "The Incredible Hulk".  In fact, John Semper, the producer/story editor of "Spider-Man", was able to write a few episodes for the second season of U.P.N.'s "The Incredible Hulk" series.  One of which was called "Mind Over Anti-Matter", which featured a brief glimpse of an in-the-shadows Spider-Man when Doctor Strange goes inside the mind of Bruce Banner to keep an evil entity from taking Banner over.  However, it remains unknown if they ever tried to have Spider-Man and the Hulk meet before the Hulk got his own show.
 
 

Q: OKAY, WELL THEN WHY DIDN'T WE GET TO SEE THE FANTASTIC FOUR UNTIL SEASON FIVE?  FANTASTIC FOUR AND SPIDER-MAN BOTH HAD THEIR CARTOONS ON THE FOX KIDS NETWORK.
A:
I'm not sure.  You see, there was an hour-long show called "The Marvel Action Hour" that featured the "Fantastic Four" and "Iron Man" animated series.  But after two seasons, the shows got cancelled.  Iron Man was able to appear in season three of the show, with Robert Hays returning as the voice of Tony Stark/Iron Man after voicing the character on his solo series.  However, I have no idea why the Fantastic Four didn't appear until the three-part "Secret Wars" story in season five.  Maybe it's because Spider-Man wasn't allowed to appear on both the "Fantastic Four" and "Iron Man" TV series.  Maybe it's because it would have been too costly to reunite the "Fantastic Four" voice cast to reprise their roles, since only Quinton Flynn was able to reprise his role as the voice of the Human Torch in "Secret Wars" while the other members of the F.F. got recast with new voice actors.  Also, it didn't help that "Spider-Man" producer John Semper hated the "Fantastic Four" animated series and disliked most of the voices on the series, which led to three of the Fantastic Four members being re-cast.  Whatever the reason, it's a shame that we never got to see more Spider-Man/Fantastic Four episodes on this show.  It would've been cool to see the Human Torch and Spider-Man team-up, as well as face off, in a couple of episodes.
 
 

Q: WHY DID THE X-MEN NEVER APPEAR AFTER THEIR TWO-PART STORY IN SEASON TWO'S "NEOGENIC NIGHTMARE" SAGA?
A: It was all about the money.  The voice cast for "Spider-Man: The Animated Series" were based in Los Angeles, while the cast of "X-Men: The Animated Series" were based in Canada.  Fox spent a lot of money flying the "X-Men" cast to Los Angeles to voice their X-Men characters on the "Spider-Man" show, and they turned out to be the series' most expensive episodes.  This is why we never got to see the entire X-Men team back in the three-part "Secret Wars" story in the fifth season of "Spider-Man".  The only reason that we even got Storm to return for "Secret Wars" was because Iona Morris, the first voice actress to play Storm on the "X-Men" series, was based in Los Angeles and was able to return easily.  But an entire chapter from "Secret Wars" had to be omitted, in which Spider-Man and the entire X-Men team had to stop Magneto (who would later be replaced by Mr. Sinister in the final draft of the script).  In it, Spider-Man's costume is heavily damaged and, like the Secret Wars comic book mini-series, Spidey would have donned a black alien costume in its place.  However, Spider-Man would've rejected the symbiote suit and again don his repaired red-and-blue costume in the finale.
 
 
 
Q: WHO ELSE WAS SUPPOSED TO APPEAR ON "SPIDER-MAN"?
A:
The show's story editor John Semper had written a storyline that would have featured Spider-Man and Ghost Rider to stop two partnered villains, Dormammu and Mysterio, who would have turned up alive after his off-screen death in season four.  Unfortunately, Ghost Rider became off-limits when the show's executive producer, Avi Arad, was trying to get a "Ghost Rider" cartoon made on the U.P.N. network and included the hero in an episode of U.P.N.'s "The Incredible Hulk" cartoon.  Mr. Semper also had plans to use the Beetle as a guest-villain, but admited that he simply ran out of new episodes and never got around to using the character because of other stories.  Rumors insist that the Puma and Jack O'Lantern were supposed to appear too, but I've found no proof or interviews with anyone from the show confirming that.  John Semper also planned to introduce Richard Fisk as the Rose if the show got a sixth season, but it simply never happened.
 
 
 
Q: WAS THE BLACK CAT EVER SUPPOSED TO DISCOVER SPIDER-MAN'S SECRET IDENTITY, AND VICE-VERSA?
A: Nope.  Producer John Semper said that no plans were made for either character to discover each other's civilian identities.  Why they didn't decide to do that, though... I simply have no idea.
 
 
Q: IS IT TRUE THAT SPIDER-MAN'S MARRIAGE TO MARY JANE WAS SUPPOSED TO HAPPEN AT THE END OF THE SHOW?
A:
According to an online rumor, the wedding of Peter Parker and Mary Jane Watson was supposed to be the final episode of "Spider-Man".  It was later moved to the first episode of season five and the series ended with the two-part "Spider-Wars" storyline, where Spider-Man teams up with five more Spider-Men from alternate realities to stop Spider-Carnage from destroying all of reality.  Mr. Semper wanted to end the series with a big storyline, and admitted that he had Spider-Man marry Mary Jane's clone rather than the real M.J. because he felt that Spider-Man should never really get the girl on this animated series.  With all due respect, I disagree with Mr. Semper for obvious reasons.
 
 
 
Q: WAS IT EVER PLANNED TO REUNITE SPIDER-MAN WITH THE REAL MARY JANE?
A:
Yes.  I've said this in the What If section, but I'll repeat it here.  If you've read sites like the DRG4 Spider-Man site and IMDB, you'd know that there was a planned sixth season where Spider-Man and Madame Web would have travelled through time and space to find the real Mary Jane.  One stop would have been in Colonial England, where Spidey met Carnage, who had somehow not been banished to another reality with Venom and Dormammu and was under the guise fo Jack the Ripper.  One of Carnage's intended victims was an amnesiac Mary Jane Watson, who Spidey had to rescue.  After defeating Carnage, Madame Web would have taken Spider-Man and Mary Jane back to the present day, where M.J. regains her memory and admits to Spider-Man that she'd always known he was
really Peter Parker.  Though all sixty-five of their episodes had been made, the series finale was left open-ended on purpose, because the show's staff thought they would have gotten another season or two because of the show's popularity.  However, bad blood between the show's executive producer, Avi Arad, and the then-head of the Fox Kids network, Margaret Loesch, led to the show not being picked up, and it was too late to go back and change the ending of the show.  In an online interview, while John Semper said he'd always intended to bring the real Mary Jane back, he thought that the finale where Spider-Man was best as it was.  Spider-Man had saved all of reality, met his co-creator Stan Lee, says that he's grown beyond his creator and likes his life.  By admitting that, his heroic journey comes to an end and the show's saga is completed.  Mr. Semper then added "Who cares if he gets the girl or not?"  With all due respect, I sure do care.  And I also know a bunch of fans who'd say the same thing.
 
 
 
MORE WILL BE ADDED SOON
 
 
 
 
 
Last Updated 5/3/2010





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