To celebrate the Blu-ray release of The Spectacular Spider-Man - The Complete Series, hitting shelves Tuesday, April 22nd, 2014, Marvel Animation Age caught up with series executive producer Greg Weisman to discuss the enduring legacy of the popular animated series. In the interview, Weisman touches upon a few of his favorite moments, reveals the goals he set for the series, and tell us why he thinks The Spectacular Spider-Man continues to bring in new fans. Continue below for much, much more!

Marvel Animation Age: The Spectacular Spider-Man is finally coming to Blu-ray – the complete series no less – six years after the debut of the first episode. Did you expect the show to have such strong lasting power, so much that it continues to do well in both televised re-airings and subsequent home video releases to this very day (and has even influenced the comics and live-action movies to an extent)?

Greg Weisman:Well... we wrote and produced it to have staying power, but there was no way to know in advance if what we did would stick. (If it's had an influence on the comics that's news to me, but it's very gratifying. And I see elements in the live-action movies that feel like we might have had an influence, but I don't have confirmation of that either.) Still, I love that the episodes themselves are airing again on MyVortexx. It's been a joy rewatching them. And this Blu-Ray release is fantastic. I might actually have to buy a Blu-Ray player now!

MAA: Even if they have the complete series already on DVD, why do you think fans should scoop up the The Spectacular Spider-Man: The Complete Series Blu-ray?

GW: Wow. You know, I'm not a technical guy. I've never been too clear on the advantages of Blu-Ray over DVD. But I do think it's great to get all 26 episodes together in one collection. And if you love and want to support the series, there's no better way to do it than with your wallet.

MAA: Looking back for a moment, when you first started working on The Spectacular Spider-Man, what were your goals for the series, both in terms of what the show would deliver and how long it would go on for?

GW: Well, we had what we called the Five Cs: we wanted the series to be Contemporary but still Classic and iConic, and we wanted to create a (Spidey) corner of the Marvel Universe that was Cohesive and Coherent. [And, yes, I'm aware that Iconic starts with an I, but there's a nice hard C in there too.] As for how long it would go on, our hope was to do about five seasons (interspersed with a few DVD movies) to cover Peter's Junior and Senior years of High School. Then as our audience aged with us, we'd do Direct-to-DVD movies to cover his college years. And so on, and so on... I could have literally done that character and the supporting cast forever...

MAA: Even though the show only lasted 26 episodes, it still tells a full adventure with a tight story and provides a serviceable conclusion. Did you make sure that each 13-episode season provided a sense of closure, but also provided a bit of room to serve up the next season?

GW: That was definitely the plan: open-ended closure. Though of course it would have been a bummer if we'd only gotten to do 13. Then the audience would have thought that we really were making Harry the Goblin, and we would have looked more revisionist than sneaky.

MAA: To follow-up on a previous question, this show has endured long after the final airing. Why do you think The Spectacular Spider-Man really hit home with the fans? What makes this cartoon easily the most superior of them all (in my opinion)?

GW: Well, I don't know if it is superior, but what Vic Cook and Sean Galloway and Jamie Thomason and Josh Keaton and many, many, many other talented folks and myself were trying to do was capture the energy that Stan Lee, Steve Ditko and John Romita Sr. put into the original comics. That magic that made all of us fall in love with Spidey in the first place. So we just flat out used a lot of their stuff.

MAA: As somewhat of a follow-up to the previous question, what has made Spider-Man such an endurable character? Even through all the clone sagas and civil wars, he still manages to come on top as Marvel’s best character, and one of the most prolific in comics. What is the web-slinger’s secret?

GW: He's the Everyman as a super-hero. He has money problems, girl problems, family problems, and major time-management problems. He's about as identifiable as a hero can be. He's smart, and after he gets his powers, he's strong. But there are many who are stronger. A few who are smarter. But he carries on. He's got guilt bigtime about some of his choices, but with great power...

MAA: From Spider-Man’s great cast of supporting characters, what were your favorites to pull from the pages and into the cartoons? Were there any that you wish you had a chance to explore on The Spectacular Spider-Man if the series continued?

GW: I really loved our entire cast of characters. Particularly when you pair them up with our stellar cast of voice actors. Just to touch on a few, how do you not love Lacey Chabert's Gwen Stacy? How do you not want Vanessa Marshall's Mary Jane Watson? Plus there's Daran Norris' brilliant J. Jonah Jameson, Joshua LeBar's Flash Thompson, Grey Delisle's Sally Avril and all our phenomenal villains.

And, sure, we weren't done. We would have continued to introduce villains, supporting cast and even heroes over time. Some I've mentioned in the past, include Hobgoblin and Scorpion...

MAA: Is there any chance you can hint as to where the series would’ve gone had you been able to execute all the plans you had for . Just how ambitious were things going to get?

GW: No spoilers. But we were never short on ambition. Big Hobgoblin plans. BIG.

MAA: As we slowly wrap up this Q & A, are there any favorite moments from The Spectacular Spider-Man you’d like to urge fans to revisit when they pick up this new Blu-ray collection? Are there any moments that particularly stand out to you above the rest?

GW: Too many, really. The opera. Daran's tour-de-force as Jonah and John Jameson. Josh Keaton at any given moment of the series. Tombstone owning Spidey during their first encounter. Black Cat's double entendres. All the Shakespeare. Clancy Brown as Rhino, saying to Spidey, "I hate you. So much."

MAA: Can give us a rundown of your current projects and what you have coming down the pipes? Where can fans expect to see you next?

GW: I'm very excited to be one of three executive producers on Star Wars Rebels, which premieres in the fall of 2014. But the biggest thing for me right now is the publication of my first novel: Rain of the Ghosts, which came out last December. It's the story of Rain Cacique, a thirteen year old girl living on the Ghost Keys, who discovers that she can see and talk to dead people. The second book in the series, Spirits of Ash and Foam, comes out July 8, 2014. And I've started work on the third book, Masque of Bones. If folks like my previous work - including The Spectacular Spider-Man, I'm confident that they'll enjoy Rain.

MAA: Any last words to share with the fans to convince them to raid the shelves come April 22nd, 2014 for The Spectacular Spider-Man – The Complete Series on Blu-ray?

GW: In the immortal words of Peter Parker, the Spectacular Spider-Man: "Tell me there's something better. Go ahead. Try."

Marvel Animation Age would like to thank Greg Weisman for his participation in this interview. You can find Greg Weisman online at Ask Greg or on Twitter.

Discuss this interview at The Marvel Animation Forum!

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