You kids with your fancy CGI and flat
televisions and non-interlaced High Definition nonsense!
I tell you, when I was a kid I had to carry the 300 pound
twenty inch console TV on my back, through the snow, with an
eighty foot extension cord up three flights of stairs just so
I could watch what WE called Spider-Man back in the day.
We're not even going to talk about having to put tin foil on
wire clothes hangers just so we could receive a less fuzzy
signal. You kids today don't know how good you have
it. But if you want a sense at what we had to deal with
back in my day, for your perusal, I offer you 1978's
'Spider-Man Strikes Back'. A TV Movie created from a
couple of episodes of the TV show we used to watch, and were
happy to watch back in the late 70's. Because we had
three channels and didn't have much choice. You kids and
your dang Cable Sattelitic TV. I tell you.
The YouTube did offer me the chance to watch the pilot, but we
skipped that and went for the meat of the matter after Peter
Parker (Nicholas Hammond) had already become the web
slinger. Our film starts off with some girl on the edge
of a roof threatening to jump. Erstwhile police
detective Captain Barbera (the late Michael Pataki) was
looking like he was trying to talk her down, but actually it
looked to us like he was trying to make her go ahead and jump,
considering his issue resolution techniques.
Fortunately, Spider-Man is on his way. He's
coming. Soon. But first he has to creep across the
roof and peek over walls and stuff. Don't know why he's
doing this. Kinda wish he'd stop. There he goes
creeping again with his arms bent at this weird 90 degree
angle. Still don't know why he's doing this. Good
thing this chick didn't really want to jump or we'd be less
one hot 70's chick.
That nonsense aside, lets' visit
Florida reporter Gale Hoffman, as played by Isis herself, the
ridiculously beautiful JoAnna Cameron. Man, is that
woman pretty. Anyway, she's been sent to New York to
secure an interview with Spider-Man, but to do that, she first
needs to interface with Peter Parker who is the gate keeper to
Spider-Man. Because he is Spider-Man. Nothing
could be more obvious, but the people in this reality are
bamboozled by this. Spidey is busy though, as a
couple of his fellow science students have
broken into the chem lab and stolen some atomic bomb grade
plutonium. You would think plutonium would be a guarded
just a little more closely, but I guess the seventies didn't
have any cold war issues or anything like that to worry
about. These crazy kids just wanted to make a play
atomic bomb to prove a point how easy it is. Point well
taken kids! Too bad a legitimate bad dude, Mr. White the
evil record producer (Robert Alda), has stolen this play bomb,
made it a real bomb, and is blackmailing the U.S. or he will
set off his bomb. Jerk. And if you heard that song
he was producing, you would think even less of him.
Well, not if Spider-Man… and the hot reporter… have anything
to say about this. But it won't be easy because Mr.
White is protected by the nefarious… well… regular
dudes. Seriously, these are just regular dudes
completely kicking Spider-Man's ass, throwing him off roof
tops, hitting him with lame roundhouse kicks and all kinds of
things that shouldn't bother Spider-Man. This cat is
nowhere near ready for Kraven, The Lizard or Dock Ock.
This dude is barely ready for me and you to be quite honest
about it. Go get 'em Spidey! And the hot reporter
in the tiny white bikini!
You kids may laugh at this movie today, but this is what he
had back then. Heck if I know why Spider-Man was wearing
a utility belt, heck if I know why his sparsely used web
shooters looked like ropes… because that's what they were…
heck if I know why he crept along rooftops like a catburgler
when nobody was around, but that doesn't mean I didn't love
the show. One thing I do know is that Spider-Man crawled
up and down skyscrapers, and this was not a camera trick and
CGI hadn't been invented yet. At least the CGI that you
kids are used to. I guess Spider-Man's spideysense can
be considered old school CGI. No kids, that Spider-Man
crawling up and down that building? That's some nut with
a thin rope attached to his waist while another nut is holding
this rope, either pulling him up or letting him down to
simulate the effect of wall crawling. I don't know what
my man's name was that was in that suit, but if I asked him, I
bet that was the scariest moment in his entire life. And
how evil was Mr. White the record producer? He kidnapped
the hot reporter then made her wear a skimpy white
bikini. Why? Because he likes chicks in skimpy
bikini's. Now that's evil.
But is this movie any good? Oh hell no. That's crazy
talk. This Spider-Man doesn't do much that LeBron James
can't do, mainly he jumps real high and wears a red
costume. And like LeBron, I imagine he too would get
beat up by common thugs. And his Spideysense was more
future sense. He could see things that would happen like
two rooms over… in the future. That's awesome! But
it ain't Spider Sense.
But that's niticpicking! This one here is pure, rawdog,
nostalgia. A movie that anybody close to forty will shed
a tear after watching… remembering how terrible our childhoods
were. You kids have no idea how good you have it.