Friday, June 20, 2008

The One-Eyed Idol

Season: 1
Episode Number: 9a
Season Episode Number: 9a
Production Number: 115
Airdate: November 4, 1967

Writer: Bill Danch, Al Bertino, Dick Robbins, Dick Cassarino, Phil Babet.
Director: Grant Simmons, Clyde Geronimi, Sid Marcus.

Voices: Paul Soles (Spider-Man), Paul Kligman (J. Jonah Jameson), Peg Dixson (Betty Brant), Chris Wiggins (Harley Clivendon).

Plot: A strange one-eyed idol appears on J. Jonah Jameson's desk. Jameson accepts it as a gift, not realizing that it was put there by a jungle savage. Later that night, Spider-Man, investigating a light left on at the Daily Bugle, sees Jameson being hypnotized, being told to put money in the idols head.

On a stake out the next night, Spider-Man, insistent on capturing the crook, is ambushed by the aborigine and take back to his master's house. The villain and the man behind the idol scheme is a Australian game hunter named Harley Clivendon who used the idol as a way to lure Spider-Man, the greatest game of all, into a trap!

Review (Warning! Spoilers!): My first question about this episode of Spider-Man is where's Kraven? This Harley Clivendon character is basically the Australian version of Kraven the Hunter so why wasn't this classic Spidey villain used? Kraven first appeared in Amazing Spider-Man #15 in 1964 so he was already in the comics. In fact, he had already appeared in animation a year earlier in an Iron Man segment of The Marvel Superheroes Show.

The second question I have is why does Spider-Man's spider sense only sometimes work? He was taken out by TWO BOOMERANGS in this episode! Boomerangs?! If Spidey's spider sense could detect that the light on in the Daily Bugle meant danger then surely he can dodge two boomerangs!

This is all part of the campyness and charm of this old series and I wouldn't want it any other way.

In broadcast airings of this series these days, you will not be able to see The One-Eyed Idol or its partner episode Fifth Avenue Phantom because it has been cut from the list due to its unflattering stereotype of aboriginals. But it is available on DVD for the collector.

DVD Releases:
Spiderman - The '67 Collection
The Incredible Hulk - When Monsters Meet

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