Marvel Animation In 2020

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2020 saw the end of the latest ongoing Marvel cartoon as well as the release of several all ages streaming animated Marvel content.

Marvel's Spider-Man: Maximum Venom



The final season of Marvel's Spider-Man sees Peter Parker (Robbie Daymond) in his last year at Horizon High as he ponders his future as a scientist and Superhero all the while combating the return of the evil Symbiote known as Venom (Ben Pronsky) as it attempts to call forth a Symbiote invasion of Earth, all the while an old enemy begins a sinister takeover of Horizon in the shadows. Peter will need the help of his allies Max Modell (Fred Tatasciore), Miles Morales (Nadji Jeter), Ghost Spider (Laura Bailey), Hobgoblin (Max Mittelman) and Spider-Girl (Melanie Minichino) to battle these threats while also juggling his developing relationship with Mary Jane Watson (Felicia Day).

Marvel Super Hero Adventures



New episodes of the kid-friendly Marvel web-series sees Spider-Man continue to teach life lessons through team-ups and adventures with other Marvel heroes, featuring the return of the Fantastic Four to animation alongside team-ups with Ironheart, Hulk, Captain America, Captain Marvel, and Black Panther.

Marvel Battleworld: Mystery of the Thanostones



A new animated web-series premiering on the Marvel HQ youtube channel features an assortment of heroes including Iron Man, Captain Marvel, Baby Groot, Throg, and Spider-Ham as they get transported to a Battleworld constructed by the villainous Thanos. This rag-tag team must journey across the myriad lands of Battleworld and face off against a variety of threats before they can discover and foil the Mad Titan's sinister plot.
 

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Lego Marvel's Avengers: Climate Conundrum


A new, four episode, animated Lego storyline using figures based on the Marvel's Avengers game from Crystal Dynamics, Climate Conundrum sees The Avengers battle AIM for control of Tony Stark's Weather Towers across New York and beyond in a world-spanning adventure. Along the way the team must also deal with a wild card in Justin Hammer, now piloting a Detroit Steel Mecha armor and bitter with his rivalry towards Tony Stark.

Marvel's Future Avengers



Premiering on Disney+ for the first time in America, Marvel's Future Avengers is the latest Avengers anime from Japan, starring Earth's Mightiest Heroes as they mentor three new young heroes as Future Avengers while battling the forces of Hydra and the Masters of Evil alongside several other heroes including Spider-Man, Captain Marvel, Black Panther, Ms. Marvel, Iron Fist, Falcon, and Dr. Strange.
 

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So, what are your feelings towards Marvel Animation in 2020?

What were your highlights/favorites of the year?

What disappointed you?

What do you hope for from Marvel Animation in the future in terms of their products or the quality of their productions?

What are you looking forward to from Marvel Animation going into 2021?
 

M.O.D.O.K.

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What were your highlights/favorites of the year?

Parts of Marvel's Spider-Man were enjoyable, particularly stuff in the second season. I also thought the season 2 finale of Big Hero 6 was a strong end to an otherwise uneven season.

Also, I don't like Ultimate Spider-Man much, but I thought it was cool that their version of Miles Morales is an unlockable skin in the new game. It was unexpected and I hope that we get more skins based on their animated counterparts in future games.

What disappointed you?

Biggest disappointment was probably the direction that the third season of Big Hero 6 took. I was hoping it would be something more similar to season 1, but instead it took some of the weaker aspects of the second season and doubled down on them.

Also, some parts of Maximum Venom were pretty weak. They barely did anything with the season's theme and there was some questionable storytelling decisions. Also, I still don't get why Disney XD insisted on dragging the schedule out as long as they did.

What do you hope for from Marvel Animation in the future in terms of their products or the quality of their productions?

I hope they start pursuing more action-oriented series again. I guess there's What If?, but I think they would benefit with a couple more.

What are you looking forward to from Marvel Animation going into 2021?

I hope What If? is enjoyable. Also, I'm looking forward to Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur. I guess I'll try MODOK, but it's not a high priority (ironic, right?), and I hope we learn more about Hit-Monkey, which I'm surprised is still in production. I suppose New-Gen is loosely related to Marvel, but it sounded interesting.
 
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I thought Maximum Venom had some pretty solid stuff in it, especially its second half. MJ's debut was a welcome addition and while I thought they kind of rushed through some of her and Peter's relationship I am pretty happy with how they left things off in regards to them. The Venom parts of the show were decent but the Goblin arc probably left more of an impact. I also liked how they kind of gave the show an open ending or whatever you want to call it, I mean I doubt the show will ever receive a proper continuation but they didn't try and hide the fact there are still some loose ends in there.

Marvel Super Hero Adventures is still a bit too childish, and Spidey's narrations are slightly even more annoying than on Ultimate Spider-Man, but I am going to pick these as one of the highlights for Marvel Animation in 2020 (which isn't saying much, admittedly), if only for bringing back the Fantastic Four into animation, and giving us a long-awaited Spidey & Torch team-up.

Funko Marvel Battleworld and LEGO Marvel Avenegers were surprising projects for this year. I don't really have a lot to comment on either one, but it was pretty nice seeing a new art-style for the former, instead of the usual Funko style they tried out before.

Marvel's Future Avengers was pretty decent, I liked the art-style and animation for the most part but found the stories a bit weak. Likewise I don't have much else to say about this, but it was a decent enough addition to this year's pretty lackluster output of Marvel Animation (despite the fact it's already being a few years old already).

Big Hero 6: The Series had a pretty good ending to its second season, and the 3rd was off to a decent start but as mentioned before, the change in format and focus on even more comedy than previously kind of hurts it. There were still a couple of pretty great episodes even with all of this, so I am interested in seeing how the show will continue (and ultimately end), probably within the next couple of months.

2020 was a pretty rough year all around, and Marvel Animation was no exception. I still try and see the good in everything whenever possible but for the most part, the shows this year were more disappointing than anything. I wouldn't say they were really bad, like I mentioned I did enjoy some of the stuff they set out to do, but here's hoping things will improve some more with all of the changes going on behind the scenes.

For 2021 I am looking forward to most of the stuff Marvel has announced so far - What If?... looks like it will be fun. With it being the first Marvel/Disney+ series and adjacent to the MCU, it does sound like it has the potential to be successful enough, so hopefully it will also be fun. Moon Girl & Devil Dinosaur could also end up as a fine replacement of sorts to Big Hero 6 considering it's more of a Disney production but hopefully they will embrace more of the actual Marvel Universe this time. The Hulu shows (well, the ones that are still coming out anyway) might be nice and I will give them a chance but judging by the preview clips of MODOK I am not really expecting much.

I kind of feel the same way about Spidey & his Amazing Friends, although haven't seen any clips from that one, and it seems it will be the opposite of MODOK in regards to its content. As was the case for the last few years, Marvel's live-action slate seems a lot more consistent than its Animation one, but who knows what else might get announced in due time.
 
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