Air Date: September 26, 1981
The Lizard Attacks the New York Zoo releasing all the reptiles, but when Spider-Man stops him, he creates a train wreck to raise an army of lizards underground. Spider-Man is trying to get to the bottom of this, but he also seems to have a nasty cold.
This was a decent episode with good action sequences, though some of it is a bit silly with the Lizard using other reptiles in the same way most villains would use goons. Though things like crocodiles can be pretty frightening, a few snakes coming at you are just alarming at best and you can get rid of them easily. Speaking of which, they decided the Lizard also needed to have one of his super-powers be that he can psychically communicate with lizards along with mentally control them. In other words, they made him the Aquaman of reptiles…
Okay, well, I’m going to consider the “just make stuff up” mentality of adaptation in the 80s as a form of Deus Ex Machina. You see, if you’re choosing to have a series that takes place in a world with clear-cut rules, then start giving people new powers or having them use their already established powers in a way that they can’t in any other media, then you’re breaking said rules because you think your plotline is more important than the pre-established confines from which you’re adapting. In other words, the characters should use the powers they already have to solve their problems, not have to Deus Ex Machina up some new powers….for no reason at all, actually.
+8: Pretty good, especially compared to the last one
-2: Deus Ex Machinas