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Western Animation: Spider-Man and His Amazing Friends
"Spider-Friends, go for it!"note 

"Tonight, I, Electro, master of electricity itself, will let loose upon the world my greatest creation: Video Man, the creature from the game."
Electro, preparing to create the most memorable villain from the series, which ran during the '80s videogame craze

This animated series, which ran from 1981-1983, was the second Spider-Man Saturday Morning Kids Show, and in the post-70s, the Marvel creative team decided to add new characters and send Spidey up against more than his own, regular Rogues Gallery.

It aired originally on NBC, and now shows occasionally on Disney XD. (It has also turned up on the Netflix Instant service, despite the lack of a region 1 DVD release.)

Robert "Bobby" Drake (Iceman) and Angelica Jones (Firestar) were college students who lived with their friend Peter Parker (Spider-Man) in his Aunt May's home, which she was using as a boarding house. Thanks to a contribution from Tony Stark (Iron Man), their living space contained a Super Multi-Purpose Room complete with crime lab. They also had a pet dog named Ms. Lion.

Humorously redubbed footage of the show has been used in the Marvel Mash Up shorts that air on Disney XD's Marvel Universe block.

This show provides examples of:

  • Abridged Series: SPIDER-MAAAAAAAAAAAAAN!!!
    • And his Amazing Friends!
    • Disney XD also abridges some episodes as part of their Marvel Mash Up series of interstitials.
  • All Girls Want Bad Boys: Angelica developed a crush on Kraven the Hunter, much to Peter and Bobby's displeasure, though she quickly realized he's a creep and defeats him.
    Firestar: He just exudes macho!
  • All Love Is Unrequited - Bobby and Peter both have romantic interest in Angelica. Whether she returns it for either of them is not really explored.
    • Bobby and Peter did discuss this in one episode: Bobby said fire and ice don't mix while Peter was worried that if he made a pass at her and got rebuffed, it would mean the end of the Spider-Friends.
      • Near the end of the series, Peter and Angelica had gone on a few dates. She was also visibly heartbroken in an episode where Peter falls hard for, and elects to go home with, a woman from the future whom he'd basically just met.
  • Alpha Bitch - Bonnie, the girl who gave Angelica her "Miss Angelica Jinx" nickname in "A Fire-Star is Born".
  • Animation Bump - The three-episode second season was animated by Toei, and the animation and character models became more detailed and fuller, with a greater use of underlighting special effects. Incidentally, all three episodes deal with Iceman's, Firestar's, and Spidey' origins
  • Arbitrary Skepticism - The Spider-Friends are okay with believing in mutants. Mind control. Evil potions. Bees from outer space. Shapeshifting. Dracula. But that Thor is actually the Norse god of thunder? No way...
  • Arson, Murder, and Jaywalking: In "Spider-Man Unmasked!", Peter has a nightmare over what the fallout of his identity being revealed would be. He sees Sandman gloating, Aunt May crying and finally Jonah.
    "You're finished, Spider-Man! Finished! And, Parker, you're fired!"
  • Back Story - The origin for each member of the Power Trio got an episode.
    • And an episode of how they became a team.
  • Battle Cry: "Spider-Friends, go for it!"
  • Bee Bee Gun - "Swarm"
  • Butt Monkey: Most of the time he appeared, Flash wound up ticking off one of the Power Trio and subsequently became the victim of a super-powered prank.
  • Canon Foreigner:
    • Norman Osborn's niece Mona in the first episode.
    • Iceman's half-sister Lightwave (Aurora Dante).
  • Canon Immigrant
    • Firestar was created for the series but migrated into the comics.
    • As was Ms. Lion, Aunt May's dog, who became a member of the Pet Avengers.
  • Clear My Name - The "Arachnoid" episode featured Spidey being framed for crimes.
  • Covered in Mud: In the Whole Episode Flashback detailing Firestar's origin, Firestar takes the Alpha Bitch and drops her in a mud puddle, whereupon she throws a splashy tantrum.
  • Distaff Counterpart - The series creators originally wanted to use the Human Torch (who is, after all, Spidey's main superhero friend in the comics) but rights issues led them to create Firestar as a Captain Ersatz.
    • Firestar, especially in her everyday identity, was also a Captain Ersatz, or even Composite Character, of Mary-Jane Watson, Spidey's main love interest from the comics.
  • Distracted by the Sexy - When Peter Parker first meets Angelica Jones (whilst walking Ms. Lion).
    Angelica (referring to Ms. Lion): Well, somebody's found a friend.
    Peter: You can say that again!
    Angelica: Her name is Ms. Lion. I'm Angelica.
    Peter: You sure are... I'm Peter Piper... Uh, P-Parker... Uh, Parker Peter-
  • Dramatic Unmask - The episode featuring an explanation of how the Spider-Friends formed has Spidey taking off his mask to reveal his true identity to Angelica and Bobby since Peter figured out they were Firestar and Iceman, respectively.
  • Easy Amnesia - In "Video-Man", Flash Thompson figured out Angelica Jones is Firestar. A bump on the head made him forget it.
  • Edited for Syndication - The first episode had a slight edit due to greater awareness of Unfortunate Implications.
    Original Line - Angelica: Hey! There's that jungle bunny who was chasing after Peter!
    Edited Line - Angelica: Hey! There's that jungle rabbit who was chasing after Peter!
  • Episode Title Card
  • Evil Former Friend: Firestar's old friend Nathan Price became Cyberiad due to an accident caused by A.I.M. terrorists. He blames Firestar for what happened and wants revenge. But a part of him still cares for Firestar, while Cyberiad just wants to destroy her.
  • Fiery Redhead: Taken almost as literally as one possibly can with Firestar.
    • She has brown hair in her human form.
  • For Halloween, I Am Going as Myself: Peter attends a superhero-themed costume party dressed as Spider-Man.
  • Formally Named Pet: Ms Lion.
  • Freeze Ray
  • Gag Dub: The original (late 80's) Mexican dub inserted tons of jokes (inside ones such as substituting Stan Lee with his 'granddaddy' when that voice actor was unavailable), hamming villain with silly phrases (Magneto has never been funnier) and tons of adlibbed extra lines.
    • Just the translations of the names of some characters could crack you open, you have Dinamyc needle and Draco Dragoon instead of Wolverine and Daredevil...but somehow you still have Juggernaut untranslated.
  • Getting Crap Past the Radar: Bobby calls Peter a "buttface" after Peter, in a rush to get his Spider-Man costume out of the washing machine, wakes Bobby up from dreaming about Angelica.
  • Gotta Get Your Head Together - "The Fantastic Frump" and "The X-Men Adventure"
  • Harmless Freezing
  • Heel-Face Turn: Monica in "Attack of the Arachnoid".
  • Heroes Want Redheads: Both Peter and Bobby admitted to being attracted to Angelica.
  • Hey, It's That Voice! - Spidey is voiced by the same actor, Dan Gilvezan, who voiced G1 Bumblebee. Frank Welker voiced Bobby Drake and Flash Thompson. Peter Cullen also provided Bruce Banner/The Hulk's voice.
  • Identity Impersonator - Chameleon—for "Seven Little Superheroes," no less.
    • Spider-Man also pulls it off with an unwitting Flash Thompson, in the episode where the Sandman tumbles upon Spidey's Secret Identity.
    • Similarly, Dr. Zoltan Amadeus uses science to replicate Spider-Man's powers, then dresses up as him to commit crimes that Spider-Man is then blamed for. Unfortunately for Zoltan, the formula he used to gain those powers is unstable and winds up mutating him into something more spider than man. Eventually he doesn't even care since he's become very powerful.
  • Idiosyncratic Wipes - scene changes were heralded by multicolored webs traveling across the screen, and the Leitmotif to accompany them.
  • Implacable Man - The Juggernaut during his appearance in 'A Firestar is Born'.
  • Jekyll & Hyde - In the comics, the Green Goblin is just a costumed identity that Norman Osborn assumes; in the series opener, Osborn physically transforms into a green-skinned creature. (No, not that one.)
  • Jerk Ass: J. Jonah Jameson. No surprise, here.
  • Jerk Jock: Flash Thompson, as usual.
  • Jumped at the Call
    • Angelica
    • Bobby
    • Francis (aka Video Man, who did not become a Canon Immigrant, thankfully)
  • Keep Circulating the Tapes: It has yet to be released onto DVD in America.
  • Leitmotif - The music for this show was almost entirely thematic based on what was happening.
    • Bobby had a tune for when he turned into Iceman.
    • Ms. Lion had her own tune.
    • Aunt May had a tune.
    • There was a 'heroic' tune for anytime a guest star from the Marvel Universe at large showed up.
    • Angelica had one for when she turned into Fire-Star.
    • There was a tune for when the villain was starting to do menacing things.
    • There was a variation of the show's Theme Tune for when something sad happened.
    • There was another variation of the show's Theme Tune for when romance was onscreen.
    • There's a tune for when the heroes are struggling against the bad guy.
    • There's a tune for when something silly happens (often used for slapstick, or when Flash Thompson was being upstaged).
    • There is a bit of music specifically for the Idiosyncratic Wipes for scene changes.
    • Don't forget the variation on "Gaudeamus Igitur" whenever the college's Establishing Shot is shown.
    • And the opening bars of "The Sidewalks of New York" used for establishing shots of the city.
  • Living Lie Detector: Ms. Lion, in "Seven Little Superheroes". Her sense of smell allowed her to distinguish the Chameleon from the others when under disguise.
  • Love Triangle - Flavored with I Want My Beloved to Be Happy on Spidey's part.
  • Never Say "Die" - Subverted. In The Eighties, it hadn't yet become unfashionable. Not only did the word "kill" get used, but a scene implied onscreen that Spider-Man had been killed in battle before pulling a "gotcha!" on the viewer.
  • No Swastikas - Averted with the episode of "Quest of the Red Skull", in which the heroes team up with Indiana Jones expy/American Indian shaman "Hiawatha" Smith to stop the Red Skull and a pair of German-accented minions from finding a horde of Nazi plunder and secret superweapons in the South American jungle. A shadow-casting stone swastika is even the key to finding the entrance to the stash. Smith gets pretty Anvilicious about the evils of the Third Reich. Of course, it is the Nazis he's talking about. A bone is throw to the pre-Nazi history of the swastika when one of the Skull's minions mistakes a Native American tapestry design for a swastika. He gives it a "Heil Hitler" upon seeing it, though is corrected by the other minion immediately.
  • On the Money: The episode "Spidey Goes Hollywood" has Spidey agreeing to act in a movie for the exact amount Aunt May needs to pay the mortgage this month (as opposed to say, enough to pay off the whole mortgage).
    • Then again, unless Peter is willing to tell Aunt May he's Spidey, he'd probably have to come up with some excuse to justify suddenly having that much money.
  • The Other Darrin: While 2 Spider-Man cartoons aired at the same time (This alongside the 1981 Spider-Man Animated series), Spider-Man and his Amazing Friends featured Dan Gilvezan as the voice of Spider-Man, as opposed to Ted Schwartz (Who voiced Spider-Man in the 1981 Spider-Man Animated Series)
    • Averted for the character of J. Jonah Jameson as William Woodson voices him in both Spider-Man cartoons.
  • Original Generation - Firestar.
  • Origins Episode: "The Origin of the Iceman," "Along Came Spidey", and "A Fire-Star Is Born" for each of our Power Trio. "The Origin of the Spider-Friends," meanwhile, unsurprisingly explains how they met and formed their team.
  • Pokémon Speak: "Swarm!"
  • Power Glows - Firestar
  • Power Trio (Spider-Man, Iceman, Firestar)
  • Protagonist and Friends: The title even lets us know his friends are amazing.
  • Reset Button: Pretty much every episode, but one is almost literally pushed at the end of "The Fantastic Mr. Frump."
  • Secret Identity Identity - All three of the Power Trio.
  • Secret Keeper: In "The X-Men Adventure", Professor X learns of Spider-Man's identity, but swears he won't reveal it. To Spider-Man's relief.
  • Sir Not Appearing On This Cover: The thumbnail on Netflix has a full-body shot of Spidey, but Firestar and Iceman got cropped out except for a few of their limbs.
  • Snow Means Cold - Spidey and Iceman first met during a Let's You and Him Fight situation. Iceman got Spider-Man's attention by causing a freak blizzard during the summer. Iceman wasn't seen actually throwing snow around to do it, but appeared to be just willing it to happen.
  • Stan Lee - narrated the series. "Excelsior!!" (Though many of his narrations were not on the masters used for the ABC Family showings and the masters were kept for the later Disney XD airings and Netflix release.)
  • Team Pet: Ms. Lion
  • Ten Little Murder Victims- "Seven Little Superheroes"
  • There Was a Door ("Swarm")
  • ˇThree Amigos!
  • Transformation Sequence - almost always involving Stock Footage.
    • Bobby would cover himself in a block of ice, then break free of it.
    • Angelica would turn on her powers, envelop herself in a glow, then turn it off, having somehow done an Instant Costume Change in the process.
    • Spidey, naturally, once had to comment on the fact that he had to suit up manually.
  • True Companions
  • Two Guys and a Girl
  • Viewers Are Morons - The comic book Iceman is brunet, but he was rendered blond for the show because it was believed viewers wouldn't be able to tell Bobby from Peter if both were brunet. They also gave Flash a different shade of blonde, since Bobby resembles Flash.
  • Villain of the Week - A different supervillain every week.
  • Water Source Tampering - The Green Goblin has a plot to put goblin formula in New York City's water supply, goblinizing the whole population.


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alternative title(s): Spider Man And His Amazing Friends; Spider-Man And His Amazing Friends
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