Dr. Octopus In Animation - A Retrospective

Part One - Part Two - Part Three - Part Four - Part Five - Part Six

Octavius would once again return in Make A Wish, the extended origin episode of Spider-Man that took place in season three. Unfortunately, everything that made him great in his first two appearances was sadly absent. Gone was the disgruntled scientist, he was replaced by a generic lackey who worked for The Kingpin. The episodes themselves are nothing to write home about to begin with but Ock’s appearance is especially embarrassing especially when an eight-year-old girl defeats him. How the mighty have fallen! Two episodes and nothing of any significance happens to the good Doctor.

His next appearance was only more of the same. Season four is generally regarded as a rather weak season and one of the main reasons for this, in my opinion, is because it lacked any great villains. The Cat starts well enough, with Octavius blackmailing Felicia’s mother to once again to fund his experiments but the episode quickly falls after that for our dear Doctor as once again, he is turned into a lackey for Kingpin. He spent the rest of the episodes as a pawn in the fight scenes, all of which were pretty bad, especially when compared to the brilliance of Ock’s original episode. If you’re wondering why this chapter isn’t as in depth as the previous ones it’s because Ock was pretty much an extended cameo – he did naff all except fight Spider-Man, and lose. A rather lacklustre season of Spider-Man that isn’t at all helped by Ock’s presence.

The final season would feature more of Dr. Octopus but again, there’s very little worth speaking of. He was just another lackey for Kingpin as part of The Insidious Six in the majority of The Six Forgotten Warriors arc and he appeared in Secret Wars and again, made absoloutly no significant contributions other than making himself a lackey of The Red Skull (who had previously tried to kill him in the last episode, but we’ll forget that happened because pretty much everything else in Secret Wars was pretty effing cool.)

Having appeared in nearly every episode of the season, Ock wasn’t presented in the series finale. I doubt his presence would’ve done much to change it and at this point, there really wasn’t any point in including him, the damage had been done. A character that began as a fascinating mad scientist disappointingly became just another supervillain. Bar a quick cameo in Spider-Man: Unlimited, Doc Ock hasn’t been animated since. What a waste.

Doc Ock’s story away from the comics’ doesn’t end here however. In the summer of 2004 he became one of the best big screen supervillains of all time, but that’s for the next part!