The computer animation did get a bit clunky at times, but that was the only slight on an otherwise perfect season. From design, to plot, to script, the show was masterfully crafted. Iron Man, Armored Adventures is a reimagining of the Iron Man legend, with all of the comic's major players recast as high school classmates. And as far as execution goes, this show has some of the best voice acting I've ever heard in animation, and I've seen a LOT of animation. But above all, this show was flat-out, balls-to-the-wall FUN.
Yes. Balls-to-the-wall. That is what I typed.
I haven't heard a lot of other comic book people talk about this show, either on podcasts or on blogs, so scrolled down to the comments to see what people had to say, expecting a lot of HOORAY!s or EXCELSIOR!s. Instead, I saw this.
Posted by: Animatorz!! on March 2, 2010 at 12:10:30 Renewed.....uh, why? The show largely sucks(and this is coming from an Iron Man fan). I wanted Iron Man done more in the flavor of the 90's Batman or Superman TAS's(you know, a really good show that's pretty faithful). Not Peter Parker as Iron Man.
Posted by: Marvelfanwithgoodtaste on March 2, 2010 at 13:25:52 OMG why? The whole series is like Spiderman New TAS but without good script!!! We want Wolverine & The X-Men Season 2 NOW!!!!!! We don't give a damn about Armored Adventures and yes, they are as good as Spectacular Spidey is. Not-good! Extremely childish, even for a child!!!
That second comment goes so far as to insult Spectacular Spider-Man - which was, for its two seasons, possibly the best adaptation of the Spider-Man mythos into ANY non-comic medium, ever. Like IMAA, Specacular Spider-Man was bright, it was fast, it was colorful, and it was FUN.
And yet, it is rejected by comics fans.
In January, Amazing Spider-Man #617 - the fantastic Rhino story by Joe Kelly and Max Fiamura - sold 76,730 copies. (#618 sold 61,969, and #619 sold 56,837.) To contrast, Marvel Adventures: Spider-Man #59 sold 4,315 copies to comic shops, despite this awesome Skottie Young cover.
And it's not just the fact that it's not the "real" Spidey - Ultimate Comics Spider-Man sold 43,622 copies. The Marvel Adventures version of Spidey is absolutely the equal of the Ultimate Comics version, which is to say they're both fantastic. But it too is rejected by comics fans.
We at Awesomed By Comics have long been fascinated by the need for most comics fans to pointedly and usually blindly reject anything related to their beloved funnybooks that's ... you know, too funny.
Or fun. Or that could in any way be interpreted as being aimed at, or even appreciated BY, younger people.
Is it something that has seeped in from the 'cartoonists' scene, where great lengths are taken to shun whimsy (...unless you consider tragic melancholy to be whimsical.Read Douglas Wolk's chapter on Chris Ware in 'Reading Comics.')
Is it a cost/benefit analysis thing? Does a $3.99 crossover story with a ton of decompression that takes 15-20 minutes to read but only moves the story ahead by a few minutes feel intuitively like a better investment than a $2.99 Marvel Adventures book that takes 5-10 minutes to read, but is relatively self-contained? Does an hour spent watching two episodes of Iron Man Armored Adventures feel more wasted than an hour watching Smallville or Lost?
Or is it the pure stigma of comics having been traditionally viewed as FOR children that forces fanboys - and it is generally only the boys that have this problem - to PROVE (to themselves?) that comics are legitimate by rejecting anything a child could enjoy? Comix R Serius Bizness, etc.
Is it all this ... AND MORE?
Probably, yes. So I am going to say this, right here, in print, so that we are actually forced to follow through with it. (We've been talking about it for more than a year)
We're going to put together a panel discussion with some of our favorite critics and creators from the comics world to explore where this loathing of fun comes from - and whether it's killing off any chance of superhero comic books (not the characters, the books themselves) regaining a cultural foothold among young people.
There. I said it. Now let's see if we can actually do it.
Also I'm hiding this picture of Mr. Kotter here, because I'll probably need it for a joke next January.