Spider-Man TV (1967) - Season 2, Episode 7

Background

This episode features a repeat performance from the Water Buffalo people introduced in "Menace From The Bottom Of The World". Can you say recycled animation?

Story 'Spider-Man Battles the Molemen'

  Spider-Man TV (1967) - Season 2, Episode 7
Summary: First Aired Oct 26th 1968 (13mins, half-length episode)

New York experiences another earthquake followed by the disappearance of the Winslow building. Spider-Man is the first to arrive on the scene. He admits this has a familiar feeling to it, but knows that Mugs Riley is in prison; this can't be his doing.

Deep within the kingdom of the Molemen, a new, vengeful leader has risen to power. This leader has convinced his easily manipulated populace that they have been denied "sun and wealth" by the surface dwellers. The time has come to take what is rightfully theirs and attack the surface world.

Spider-Man races across town to Dr. Orloff's lab - the only scientist in the world that has discovered the underground radio broadcasts of the Molemen - and confirms they are planning something. He catches a ride on a blimp to get back across town [This is previously used footage, I'm too lazy to figure out where/when]. When they reach his stop, he creates a web-parachute and descends [I still don't know how that works. There's not enough solid matter to .... forget it]. Unfortunately he miscalculates and gets tangled in the antennae of the building.

The Moleman Leader has been tracking Spider-Man's movements with their sizemaphone [A machine that proves size does matter]. Once they confirm that Spider-Man is incapacitated on building F-109-X [I would have preferred THX-1138, but it's not my show], they use their machinery to bring both him and the building into their underground kingdom.

Instead of being present to capture him, the Molemen allow Spider-Man to find them. He walks through a labyrinth fighting giant bugs, elves, and a giant rock monster. He finds his way to "Mole City" but is captured by a very alert guard. He is brought before The Mole Leader, who *has* captured a group of people that were inside the Winslow building. [Very consistent guys. You could have mentioned that beforehand.] He states to everyone that this was done for revenge against Spider-Man; everyone else will become slaves of the Molemen.

Spider-Man escapes and captures the Mole Leader, forcing him to return everyone to the surface. After doing so, the Mole Leader pulls out a standard-issue laser pistol and fires at Spider-Man. Spidey dodges the blast which destroys the main generator. This somehow causes a massive earthquake that presumably destroys their equipment and cuts them off from the surface world. Spider-Man manages to escape and return to the surface.

General Comments

Footage of "Menace From The Bottom Of The World" was heavily used in this episode. The elves were the best part simply because their expressions and behaviors were so ridiculous, you had to laugh. That laughter didn't last too long.

Overall Rating

1/2 web. They used the same plot and animation as in their previous appearance with just enough new stuff thrown in to technically be a separate episode. I'm not even sure where they got the animated elves and giant, but I'm sure that it was used elsewhere.

It's becoming clear that the producers' intention is to slap together episodes with the least effort possible. Where I can sympathize with budgetary and time constraints, this still doesn't excuse putting out the same episode with a new title.