Sunday, April 19, 2015

Marvel’s Avengers Assemble: Blood Feud – review

Director: Jeff Allen

First aired: 2013

Contains spoilers

Of course, the Avengers (2012) was a must see super-hero movie and so it is little surprise that it spawned a cartoon spin-off. (Confusingly the movie was released in the UK as Avengers Assemble making the cartoon series carry the same name.) Being set in the Marvel universe also means, of course, that Dracula (Corey Burton, the Amazing Screw-On Head, Hotel Transylvania & Vampire Secrets) could appear.

Visually Dracula is designed to look like the modern Marvel take – touched on when I reviewed the Death of Dracula rather than the classic Dracula look from the Tomb of Dracula. My understanding is that he is a recurring character – appearing in six episodes of season 1. This episode, his opening appearance, was pointed out to me by Alex and it happened to have been uploaded onto YouTube – so I decided to look at this on its own. As always, I am grateful when directed towards things that haven’t been on the blog yet.

vampire Black Widow
The episode begins with an assault on Stark Towers. Shadowy red eyed figures search the building for Captain America (Roger Craig Smith) led by Black Widow (Laura Bailey, Tsukuyomi: Moon Phase). They sneak past all the Avengers until spotted by Hawkeye (Troy Baker, also Tsukuyomi: Moon Phase). Alerted by his warning, Captain America knows immediately what is going on – vampires. He has Iron Man (Adrian Pasdar, Near Dark & House of Frankenstein (1997)) put on UV lights that kill all the vampires – bar Black Widow.

Iron Man
After telling Captain America, in Dracula’s voice, that he must trade himself to save her, Black Widow makes a run for it but knocks herself out as she runs into a mirror (as she has no reflection). Whilst this sounds hokey in a superhero cartoon I actually rather enjoyed it as it happened. Stark can’t believe in vampires and looks for a scientific solution, whereas Captain America knows all about them… why? Because, apparently, during the Second World War America and Dracula became uneasy allies against the Nazis.

vampire hulk
What is going on? Red Skull (Liam O'Brien) has informed Dracula that the super-soldier serum in Captain America’s blood can let him walk in daylight – a talent he will need as he wages war on humanity, due to him seeing humans as a relentlessly growing plague upon the planet. Highlight of the episode was Dracula biting Hulk (Fred Tatasciore) and hulking himself through the gamma rich blood and turning Hulk into a vampire Hulk. This was short lived due to the gamma radiation that acted like sunlight on the vampire blood. Stark discovers that vampirism is a bio-tech that carries command codes through blood cells. We also get Hawkeye using stake arrows and Thor (Travis Willingham) immolating vampires with lightning.

This was a nice piece of superhero cartoon – probably better as part of a whole, I enjoyed watching it in isolation too. 6 out of 10.

The episode’s imdb page is here.


Alex. G said...

I wish they had used Gene Colan's design for Dracula, but otherwise it was a fun episode.

Taliesin_ttlg said...

I can't disagree :) I believe the same design is used when Blade and Dracula appear in Ultimate Spider-Man also