Avengers: Earth’s Mightiest Heroes Review Episode 1-3

Just a quick note before I start this review. This is a review for the episode aired on Disney XD on October 27, 2010 called “Some Assembly Required”. Wiki and Itunes both list it as the eighth episode because of the minisode compilations. But for simplicity sake, I am just calling this episode 3, and will continue that numbering system in later reviews. Onward!

SPOILERS

“Some Assembly Required” picks up a week after the four prison breakout. 72 of the escaped villains are still on the loose (the entire team takes down Mandrill in the cold opening….best example of overkill ever!), and Stark brings the team to the newly christened Avengers Mansion.

Soon after, Enchantress uses her powers to turn the Hulk against the team. This leads to a hell of a showdown between the Avengers Vs. Enchantress and Executioner. Afterwards, Hulk quits the team, pissed that they were see him as a monster and not a friend or hero. Hulk flees to Antarctica, and in his rage, manages to uncover Captain America’s frozen body!

END SPOILERS

In the comics, Loki manipulated the Hulk into fighting the other Avengers, and this was a great adaptation of that story (replacing Loki with Enchantress makes a lot of sense). The episode starts with great characterization moments, moves on to a kick ass hero vs hero fight between Thor and Hulk, and finishes up with a great fight against the Enchantress and Executioner. Add in lots of hints of things to come (Black Panther cameos, Cap being found in the ice in the end), and this is a perfect Avengers story!

Wasp and Thor are quickly becoming standout characters. Thor is absolutely perfect, and I love his “fish out of water” moments (when he first sees the Hulk he comments, “I did not know there were ogres in Midgard” and calling Jarvis “Ethereal Voice”). Jan is almost Spider-Manesque with her quips and sense of adventure. I was expecting Pym to be much more lighthearted based on his minisodes, but Pym’s distrust of SHIELD and reluctance to move into the Avengers Mansion provide a great counterpoint to Wasp.

This is a much deeper version of Hulk than I’ve seen in most adaptations, and his story arc has a lot of potential. I love seeing how Banner and the Hulk interact, and Enchantress’s manipulations of that was very well done. In the original Avengers comics, Hulk actually left the team for good. Since Hulk is so heavily featured in the advertising for this show, I doubt he’ll be gone for long, but this show has constantly surprised me, so we’ll see.

Iron Man is probably my least favorite of the bunch. His voice reminds me of Jack Black doing a Robert Downey Jr impression. And as a life long comic fan, I am getting sick of Iron Man’s newly discovered popularity. He was always high B-List at best. The movies really changed that for him. Both EMH and Superhero Squad have him as the team leader, and I am really hoping Cap puts him in his place when he shows up…NEXT EPISODE!!

I also like seeing how all these personalities conflict. Watching the team take baby steps in coming together is not something I’ve ever really seen done well in an animated comic adaptation. But at the same time, the characters do work together as a team, and not just individual heroes who all happen to be in the same place at the same time. Thor recharging Iron Man was very cleverly done.

Just like the first episode, “Some Assembly Required” had a great attention to detail. We get another Fantastic Four reference (Doom was referenced in the pilot), when Stark mentions his friend Reed Richards is looking to build a replacement prison in the Negative Zone. And we get to see Pym tinkering with Ultron. You know that won’t end well.

Avengers: Earth’s Mightiest Heroes continues to impress me. Hopefully it will have a long successful run!!

Score: 9 out of 10

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