Spider-Man TV (1967) - Season 3, Episode 5 (Story 2)

Background

Spoiler alert! John Moschitta, Jr does not appear anywhere in this episode.

Wait, he's the Micro Machines Man and the voice of the Autobot Blurr.

Hmm... with a name like "Micro Man" I'll assume this has something to do with a shrink ray.

Story 'The Birth of Microman'

The evil scientist Professor Pretoris escapes from Clogstume Prison. The warden is quite concerned that he has a plan of revenge that he will carry out soon if he's not recaptured. [You know he's evil because his skin is green. Combines with his physical appearance, he looks like a dead ringer for Frankenstein's monster.] The police embark on a massive manhunt.

Just outside their search area, Pretoris vows they'll never catch him. [He's said a variation on this phrase twice already. Let's see how many times he says this during the episode, shall we?] He flags down a passing motorist and asks for a lift. The motorist agrees to help him. That motorist's name is Peter Parker.

The police learn of his "accomplice" and pass this information along to the news media. The warden receives a frantic phone call from the governor. He reminds him that Pretoris may unleash his kingdom-come machine on an unsuspecting city. [So we get realistically rendered by Alex Ross? No. Oh, the blow-you-to variety]

An unsuspecting Peter drives Pretoris to his lab. As he leaves, he utters his catchphrase. [The count is 3] Peter turns on the radio and learns the identity of his passenger. Angered and a little embarrassed at his unintentional assist to a wanted felon, he changes to Spider-Man to set things right.

At Pretoris' lab, the evil genius is aware he is being hunted by the police. No matter, "They'll never catch [him]". [Count is 4]. He finds the special blue light bulb [No doubt to help spread the word on all the great specials available at your local K-Mart] He grabs a cat that he keeps in his lab [Uhm, who's been feeding it? Just curious.] and goes into a specially prepared room. He replaces a standard blue bulb in the overhead light with his special blue bulb. He then turns on the light and closes the door.

Spider-Man arrives in Pretoris' lab [That was quick] as the blue light is flashing and suddenly snaps off. When he enters the room, Pretoris is gone, but only the cat remains. The police arrive moments after and leave to resume their search outside. The commissioner informs Spider-Man of the kingdom-come machine and leaves to coordinate the manhunt.

Spider-Man decides to examine the room and turns on the overhead light. The resulting exposure shrinks him to a few inches in height. He darts for the nearest mouse hole to avoid the cat. He soon stumble into the super secret lab of Professor Pretoris. His kingdom-come machine is charging.

Pretoris sends his miniaturized purple monkey friend - wearing a red fez and green vest - to attack Spider-Man. Spider-Man webs the monkey by the tail and traps him on a strategically high pipe.

Pretoris then warns Spider-Man that the atomic reaction has begun and there is nothing he can do to stop it. Spider-Man corrects him by opening the water valve and allowing the water to short circuit the machines and stop the atomic reaction. Pretoris begins to while about "destroying his work" [Nnnnnnn. Water bad!!]

After Pretoris is safely locked in the squad car and/or off to jail, Spider-Man shows the commissioner the kingdom-come machine. They share a laugh over a very unfunny joke.

General Comments

Unfortunately the "They'll never catch me" counter only made it to four (4). I was thinking it was a lot more than that. Oh, well. Win some, lose a lot more than you realize.

This is the second time purple primates have been used. Normally I like monkeys and don't need an excuse to laugh at them, but in this case it seemed too random.

Overall Rating

1.5 webs. Noticeably more coherent than the last several episodes, this one was a head and shoulders higher than the last three segments. Not particularly interesting, but it was mercifully quick and to the point.