Episode #44 Emperor Stark
Original Airdate - September 16th, 2012
Vision awakens after a month of repairs only to find that Iron Man and the Avengers have taken over the Earth. With the whole planet against him, Vision must get to the bottom of Tony Stark's 'utopia' and come face to face with the power of the Purple Man.

Written by Christopher Yost
Directed by Boyd Kirkland
Review by RoyalRubble
Media by Marvel Animation, Marvel Animation Age

This episode was pretty awesome. Even though this will probably be the last episode to have Vision play such a large and important role, considering how good all the episodes featuring him so far have been I can't really complain. Not counting his brief appearance in the previous episode, "Yellowjacket" which I guess was an animation error as this episode showed him still being badly damaged and Iron Man trying to repair him. Speaking of Yellowjacket, he has apparently joined the team, as the opening credits show. He wasn't seen in this episode, but neither were a couple of other Avengers (although they were briefly mentioned by Jarvis) and the story worked out pretty well, though it felt a little rushed in some parts. Cap and Iron Man get a fair share of screen-time this episode too. There is plenty of action in this episode; once again the Avengers fight among themselves, this time due to mind control. Cap versus Vision, then versus Hawkeye and finally versus Iron Man; good stuff. I really liked how Cap made Hawkeye snap out from under Purple Man's control, by reminding him he's never followed an order his entire life. That was a great scene. It was also pretty funny how Vision learned that you should never say how easy a fight is.

The villain of the episode is Zebediah Killgrave, a.k.a. the Purple Man, who is capable of controlling the will of people. He was one of the villains that escaped in the series premiere episodes "Breakout"; he was being held in the Raft if I remember correctly, so it's nice to see him again on the show. His only other appearance in animation was on an episode of the 90s X-Men animated series (where his super-villain name was even mentioned). In the comics he's apparently one of Daredevil's enemies, which kind of makes me wish we'll get a Daredevil series someday, seeing how cool some of his villains have been portrayed on other heroes' shows (most notably the Kingpin). Here he manages to control Iron Man and all the other Avengers (at least for a while) except the Vision who was offline for a month into building a satellite to broadcast his mind-control powers to everyone on Earth. Usually I don't really like comparing cartoons but sometimes such comparisons are unavoidable. For example here: I thought Brent Spiner did a better job voicing Purple Man than he did as the Joker on Young Justice. Not trying to say he was a terrible Joker, but I thought his voice fit the Purple Man more. He made for a creepy enough villain and I loved the flashback showing how Iron Man stopped him at first in that restaurant, as well as how he's defeated again by Iron Man at the end of the episode - by wiggling his finger. I also liked how every character that was under his control had his pupils turn purple. I thought that was a nice touch.

Even though everything was pretty much solved by the end, I wonder what long-term effects this adventure will have - if any. I don't think Cap has entirely cleared his name after the Skrull Invasion, and now Iron Man's actions over the last month (as depicted in this episode) should have some consequences as well. And Cap's speech towards the end was a great way to finish the episode. Not much else to say except that while it's not the most amazing story this series has to offer, I got to agree with the Purple Man, "This is entertainment".

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