Join Date: Oct 2006
Re: LAME: the new iron-man cartoons are about a teen iron-man!
"The Makluan Invasion" review:
Spoiler!!! Click to Read!:
After the Mandarin has obtained all ten rings and it doesn't take long before he goes on a power-mad rampage, declaring himself ruler of mankind and going after S.H.I.E.L.D.....and it's on Tony's 18th birthday, too! However, Gene's rule is short-lived when the activation of the rings serves it's true purpose: acting as a homing beacon for the Makluan Empire to arrive and take its rings back, and prepare for an invasion of Earth. And so begins Tony and co,'s final battle as they team-up with previous allies, and even one foe, go through a gladiator ring and a rematch against Ultimo, and a final showdown against the ring-powered Makluan Overlord.
So, this is the grand finale, and it's just alright. Nothing to really nitpick and complain about this two-parter. The Makluans were fun, even if they didn't look as cool as in the comics, and I'm glad they finally resolved Gene's plot, even if his redemption felt very sudden and rushed. I enjoyed seeing all the heroes from throughout the season team-up, and was especially nice to see more of Gray Hulk. Pepper and Tony's pay-off, though, was kinda weak, but as shown through Tony's romance with Whitney, love stories are REALLY not this show's strong suit.
Of course, there are still some unresolved stories. Technovore, Mad Thinker, and Madame Masque are still on the loose. Despite Tony and friends' identities being revealed, it's still odd that Ghost wouldn't do anything about it. Even the Mandarin's sudden realization that he shouldn't "rule" doesn't necessarily translate to him being less of a threat. But overall, most of the major plots are resolved.
All in all, this was a solid, but predictable, finale. No major hooks, and concludes the show successfully.
Overall series overview:
Spoiler!!! Click to Read!:
Iron Man: Armored Adventures is an adequate show, and probably better than its premise made it seem to be. Thanks to Christopher Yost and Brandon Auman, it does a good job making the controversial premise of a teenage Tony work. Not to mention there are some ideas and villains that work, such as the Mandarin's design, a more compelling and dangerous foe in Madame Masque, and the overall coolness of Ghost. Some of the more serious moments worked, and had the right tone. Tony himself is a flawed character who retains some key elements from his comic book self, such as his inability to fully understand people and his obsessive drive to end the misuse of his creations. Rhodey is the voice of reason that does loosen up, and Pepper is.....Pepper, the only static character in the show. This trio, however, is still likable enough, and I did care for them as friends, which is FAR more than what I can say for Ultimate Spider-Man.
However, the CGI animation would manage to make the show's strong designs very bland, and when it comes to humor and romance, this show did fall flat. Not to mention it also had some downright stupid moments, like Living Laser's pointless revival and Hammer's whole deal with the zombie gas. Not to mention some episodes did manage to be boring filler, even with the strong continuity, and Stane's characterization was all over the place.
Overall, this show is fine, and probably the best animated show Iron Man has. Despite it's premise, it manages to be mature at times, and is loyal to the spirit of the Iron Man comics than it seems. But it does have it's share of bad ideas and bland moments. The current Marvel Animation regime is coming up with a new Iron Man show, and while it will most likely feature an older Tony Stark, Loeb and Man of Action's current work and philosophies makes me worry it will be the most immature take on the Shellhead yet.