The Marvel Action Hour is streaming on Netflix and it's fantastically terrible

Some of you may remember the Marvel Action Hour from back in the 90s -- a block of superhero cartoon programming featuring Iron Man and the Fantastic Four. Here's part of a terrible episode of the Iron Man show (fast-forward to 7:30 for Spider-Woman's ridiculous daughter and her awful voice acting):

See? Comedy gold. And if you live in the US, now you can stream these unbelievable cartoons on Netflix's Watch Instantly service by going to the page for Iron Man: The Complete Animated Series.

But here's the catch -- even though Netflix doesn't label the shows correctly, this so-called "Iron Man animated series" is ACTUALLY the entire Marvel Action Hour! That means hokey live-action introductions by Stan Lee for each episode, not to mention the "We'll Be Right Back" commercial intros and outros!!!

Why Netflix chose to just call it Iron Man and not the Marvel Action Hour is beyond me... but hey, the fact is that these episodes are there, so I recommend watching them while you can. As far as I know, this is the first time you've ever been able to watch the Marvel Action Hour in its entirety outside of broadcast syndication (or some sort of bootleg collection).

Recently, I started watching the Iron Man half of the show on DVD, and man did I get some good laughs. In fact, I talked about it on the AudioShocker Podcast #177. Give that podcast a listen if you want to find how just how bad the Iron Man cartoon really is (answer = really bad).

Also, this means that the infamous Johnny Storm rap song is now streaming on Netflix. I'm not sure which episode this is from, but I'm sure you can figure it out on your own pretty easily. If you're a fan of early 90s hip hop like A Tribe Called Quest, you're gonna love this:

It's hot, right? The beat's surprisingly good.

EDIT: The Human Torch rap is from the "The Mole Man" episode. It's bundled with Season 1 Episode 8 of Iron Man, "The Defection of Hawkeye," on American Netflix Watch Instantly.

6 Responses to “The Marvel Action Hour is streaming on Netflix and it's fantastically terrible”


  1. 1 kaylie

    "pleasure island" doesn't sound like an arcade. :(

    man, i really dig Johnny Storm's song...i actually really like that whole segment. i'm shocked that's the actual song used in the show; i saw this a while back and just shrugged it off as someone having fun and laying a modern song over some clips, but it's totally legit. i guess i didn't believe it because it actually sounds like a decent song rather than the usual really cheesy numbers that are done in cartoons, and partially because the lip sync is so off. XD but i really like the animation in that part, it's really expressive. but i'm confused about how Johnny's singing/rapping voice sounds nothing like his normal talking voice.

    and i like how when the building is collapsing and everyone's panicking, Reed's solution is to stretch out his arm and block the exit! hahaha what a jerk.

  2. 2 nick marino

    in general, there's something really strange going on with the music from the Marvel Action Hour. even though you'd never know it from the crappy sound of them, the theme songs from Iron Man and Fantastic Four were composed and recorded by really famous musicians. Keith Emerson (Emerson, Lake, and Palmer) did the Iron Man theme, and Giorgio Moroder (famous disco producer, songs like "I Feel Love" "Call Me" "Cat People") did the horrid Fantastic Four theme.

    plus, in the very first episode of the Fantastic Four series, the team appears on American Bandstand with Dick Clark (with Dick Clark doing his own voice). my assumption is that one of the producers on the Marvel Action Hour was really well connected in the music business.

    which makes me wonder who did that hip hop track from the Fantastic Four...

  3. 3 nick marino

    okay so i did a bit of research, and the voice of the Torch was being done by Brian Austin Green (90210) at the time, who later released a hip hop album produced by Slimkid3 of The Pharcyde, so there's a really good chance that the he also produced the Fantastic Four track.

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  5. 4 kaylie

    oh wow! good digging, Nick! i'll have to look up some of Brian Austin Green's hip hop stuff to see if it's anywhere near as cool as the Johnny Storm song.

  6. 5 nick marino

    Hahaha I listened to the 30 second snippets from the album on Amazon to see if the beat in the show is on the album. It's not.

    But if you dig this sound, definitely check out The Pharcyde! They're like the west coast equivalent of A Tribe Called Quest.

  7. 6 nick marino

    http://goodcomics.comicbookresources.com/2011/07/15/comic-book-legends-revealed-323/

    ^^ Brian at Comics Should Be Good got to the bottom of the mystery of who did the beat for this song... and Slimkid3 is pretty sure that BAG himself produced it.

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