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The Rocket Racer
Review And Media by Amazing Spidey

Episode #32 - The Rocket Racer
Original Airdate 14th September 1996

While a gang of jet-pack wearing thieves run by Jackson Weele, an ex-pilot in a rampaging gyro-wheel plunder the city, Peter tries to deal with his alter-ego giving him competition with Felicia. Meanwhile, a good kid with a criminal record, Robert Farrell, tries to help his ailing mother by using his science-savvy and the gang's techno logy to arm himself as The Rocket Racer. Will the Rocket Racer return to his criminal past, or will he be an ally to Spidey?

Story By: John Semper
Written By: Doug Booth and Mark Hoffmeier
Music Composed By: Shuki Levy and Kussa Mahchi
Animation Services By: Toyko Movie Shinsha (TMS)
Guest Starring: Christopher Daniel Barnes as Spider-Man/Peter Parker, Jennifer Hale as Felicia Hardy. Billy Attmore as The Rocket Racer/Robert Farrell, Michael Des Barres as Jackson Weele and Mark Hamill as Jason Phillips

Review: This is it, easily the worst episode of the entire series, in the opinion of just about every Spider-Man fan alive. First of all, the Rocket Racer has got to be one of the stupidest villains ever. Here, for some reason, he later became a hero. The real villain of the piece was The Big Wheel. The Big Wheel was basically a man, rolling around in a huge wheel. What kind of stupid villain is that?

The Rocket Racer himself was a typical, and very annoying angry young black man who talked down to Spidey about what it takes to survive in his neighbourhood. He’s talking down to Spidey, who beats the like of Doc Ock, Venom and The Lizard. People who are actually dangerous.

If you’ve read any of the previous reviews from this site, or visited the message board attached to it, you’ll know I love this series, but even I can’t stand to watch this episode. We never saw Beetle or Sandman but we see both Rocket Racer and Big Wheel in the same episode. Why were we subjected to this? And to rub salt into the wound why is this one of the few episodes to be treated on DVD? Did we do something wrong in a previous life?

It started out ok, with Spider-Man and Felicia, and quickly took a complete nosedive. For a series that had so many strong episodes and characters, I found it hard to believe this one was allowed to be made. For some amusing reviews of the episode, check out the message board, which features some classics such as “(This) episode is surely one where I'd rather be repeatedly hit over the head with an anvil than be subjected to it” and “I'm afraid this is the one. The unforgivable episode that never should have been.” At least The Spot actually had reason to exist, they needed that dimensional transporter machine for The Goblin, but this? Ugh. I've already wasted enough time telling you how bad it is.