|Iron Man: The Complete 1994 Animated Television Series|
Written by Jason Flick
May 5, 2010
The 90’s gave us some of the finest animated TV shows that the world has ever seen. Sadly that can not be said by much of today’s shows, which for the most part have fallen a great deal, in my opinion. Growing up I watched shows like X-Men and Batman which did quite well. Another show was the short lived Iron Man animated series. This week the 2 season show hits stores in its entirety in the Iron Man: The Complete 1994 Animated Television Series (3-Disc) set just in time for the premiere of Iron Man 2.
Now I’m a huge Iron Man fan, always have been. Who wouldn’t want to fly around in that iconic suit of armor? I would give the chance, though I’m sure that technology isn’t leaving Stark Enterprise any time soon. This 26 episode set is filled with plenty of armor platted action, story and classic Stark charm. Among my favorite episodes include "The Grim Reaper Wears a Teflon Coat", "The Wedding of Iron Man", "The Beast Within", "The Armor Wars” and "Hands of the Mandarin.” Several of the episodes were actually taken from the actual comics similar to what they did in X-Men.
In "The Grim Reaper Wears a Teflon Coat", Tony Starks builds an indestructible and undetectable super fighter bomber jet, the Grim Reaper, to be delivered to the American Government. Only when he is about to deliver, the Grim Reaper vanishes at the hands of the Mandarin. Iron Man and Force Works must find the jet before the Mandarin uses it to wreak havoc and Tony’s company loses its industrial credibility.
"The Wedding of Iron Man" features the joining of Tony Stark and Julia Carpenter, while MODOK and Mandarin review footage of their past battles to find Iron Man’s ultimate weakness. They think that they find out Iron Man’s true identity but their assumptions turn out to be wrong as both Tony Stark and Iron Man appear together. This episode marks the end of the first season of the show. This is also where the art styles and story styles take a total turn.
In “The Beast Within” several attempts are made our Tony’s life and he learns of a plot to lure him in so that Mandarin can get a hold of his armor technology. After he fakes his death and returns in a new set of armor he must stop the Mandarin and his evil dragon Fin Fang Foom from executing their latest plot. Only this time the tables turn as Fin Fang Foom betrays Mandarin and it is up to both him and Iron Man to join up to stop Fin’s plans. In the process Mandarin disappears and his rings are scattered across the globe. After the fight, Force Works calls it quits since Tony cannot tell them the truth.
Though the "Hands of the Mandarin” is one of the best parts of the entire show, my absolute favorite is “The Armor Wars.” In this episode Tony Starks finds out that after a fight with the Crimson Dynamo that his own designs are being used to harm people. As a result he shuts out his friends and goes out on a personal vendetta to render all of his designs useless. Unfortunately this makes him appear to have completely shorted out his circuits.
On the reverse side I really like the suit designs in the second season which was actually the suit design in the comics at the time. The only part that I was never a fan of was the very early CGI segments used in the first season. These stock animations would show up once an episode and often times contradict Tony’s current clothing or location. The one thing that I do like is the consistency of the explosion animations and all the various armors that Iron Man uses in the show.