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Steel Cold Heart
Review and Media by Stu

Episode #5 - Steel Cold Heart
Original Airdate 3rd February, 2001.

When one of the Machine Men refuses to let an innocent child be hurt, Spider-Man befriends him.

Story By: Roger Slifer, Will Meugniot
Written By: Roger Slifer
Directed By: Patrick Archibald

Review: This episode introduces X51, one of the machine men who somehow managed to acquire feelings and thoughts, making it more than simply a robot. The episodes itself is pretty dull by most standards, once again Spidey and the humans battle The Beastials, and Shane somehow manages to get caught in the middle of it all. The series does seem to be relying on the same bland ideas more often than it should and this episode comes across as passť because of it.

The design for X51 and the robots suffered from a poor choice of colour. Much like Apocalypse in X-Men: The Animated Series, the choice of light blue and light purple simply donít mesh well, leaving a very awkward design. The fact these things are some of the most generic robots ever seen means that this episode wonít be too pleasing to the eye. Itís a shame too, for a cheap looking show like this, Spider-Man himself actually moves pretty well. Heís constantly flipping, swinging and crawling and the majority of the time, he moves a lot more gracefully than he did in Spider-Man: The Animated Series.

The webbing effects are also damn cool, and remind me of some of the cooler things The Scarlet Spider did with his webbing. Unfortunately, there appears to be some rather odd batarang rip offs here and it simply doesnít fit Spider-Man. Iíve said that a lot throughout this review, but more often that not, it feels like itís Spider-Man in name only, and heís too interesting a character to be messed around with too much. Even the current mainstream comics need to get to know the classic Spidey Ė heís appearing in stuff far too out of place in Spideyís world, far too often. Hell, heís a member of The Avengers now! For shame!

Whilst itís hard to tell, X51 appears to be voiced by none other than Robert Hayes, Iron Man himself! Itís always a treat to hear Hayes, because he is that damn good when it comes to voice acting. The voices in this show have been disappointing so far. Spidey sucks, to be frank. Venom and Carnage arenít much better and The Beastials all sound too smug. A lot of work needed doing, and it doesnít appear to have happened.

Not a brilliant episode, unfortunately. It all seems same old, same old.