These days, Marvel is known for doing something completely unprecedented by creating an entertaining and profitable cinematic universe that is keeping audiences, from the diehard fanboy to the casual viewer, on the edge of their seats. But that wasn't always the case.
There was a time when Marvel eschewed from the the silver screen and opted to tell their iconic comic book stories through cartoons instead. As Dorkly writer Scott Baird points out, the already awesome comic book movies we know and love today look like the greatest films of all time when compared to these five Marvel cartoons that fell short:
1. The Avengers: United They Stand (1999)
These aren't your regular Avengers, these are the West Coast Avengers comprised of: Ant-Man, the Wasp, Wonder Man, Tigra, Hawkeye, Falcon, the Vision, and Scarlet Witch.
There are a few recognizable names attached to the show, but if Hawkeye and Ant-Man are your biggest draw, something's missing. By all accounts, this show was just...not good. After just 13 episodes, the television run of the WCA was put to a halt and attention was turned towards better, more fruitful efforts.
2. The New Fantastic Four (1978)
So, what happens when you take the Fantastic Four and replace the Human Torch - a fan favorite - with H.E.R.B.I.E. the robot? Hint: It doesn't go well. Fast forward to the 8:30 mark to fully understand.
For some reason, even the villains in this Fantastic Four world aren't as good as usual. In this instance, as Dorkly points out, the eerily powerful Magneto completely over-explains his powers and is then promptly disarmed by a wooden gun. Simple as that!
3. Marvel Disk Wars (2014)
This Japanese cartoon has Marvel superheroes who turned pocket-sized fighting disks after Loki casts a spell on them. Cue young hero boy Akira Akatsuki and friends who can awaken the superheroes from their small disk forms to fight one another.
How does Loki combat these youngsters? With his own team of supervillain-wielding partners who aid him in his mission, of course! If this premise sounds like a Digimon/Pokémon knockoff to you then you're spot on, because that's basically what it is. Even so, the idea of having Tony Stark trapped inside of a Pokéball-esque contraption does sound pretty entertaining.
4. The Marvel Super-Heroes (1966)
Much of what made Marvel Super-Heros bad can be chalked up to how long ago it was made. As the first Marvel "cartoon," the animation was well-intended but the idea was just a bit ahead of their ability to animate their characters properly, especially when compared to those from Disney and Hanna-Barbera.
This resulted in a pretty hokey looking moving version of their comic books. Still, it's far from a complete fail! It's just a stepping stone to bigger and better things.
Of course, Marvel has also had a history of great shows that made our childhoods all the better. So it's only natural that a few of their efforts wouldn't be up to par with the rest. No one can blame them for trying!
To read more about each of these shows and where they went wrong, check out Dorkly's article on the topic here.