Spider-Man: The New Animated Series

Spidey grows up in 'toon best for older kids+.

What parents need to know

Positive messages

Peter Parker is a good guy with good values. As Spider-Man, he always fights on the side of good. Meanwhile, villains are mean, violent, insulting, and criminal -- clearly "bad" guys.


Lots of tense violence and big, exaggerated weapons, bombs, and explosions. But there's no blood, and no one ever seems significantly hurt.


Exaggerated female figures, exposed flesh, sexy flirtation, guys checking out women, mild sexual innuendo, occasional kissing, an apparent co-ed sleepover.


Peter Parker says "holy crap!" in at least one episode.


There's lots of Spidey merchandise out there for young fans.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking

College-age characters sometimes go out for cocktails.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that Peter Parker (aka Spider-Man) is college-aged in this animated series spun off of the hit big-screen movie. He dates, kisses, and even allows a woman to sleep over at his apartment (speaking of which, most of the female characters have exaggerated figures, often with exposed flesh or generous bosoms). Spidey's battle against evil results in lots of cartoon violence, including villains wielding gigantic guns and regular near-death experiences, though all of the scenes are bloodless. Some scenes show Peter and his friends drinking cocktails.

What's the story?

Peter Parker (voiced by Neil Patrick Harris) moves into the digital age in SPIDER-MAN: THE NEW ANIMATED SERIES. Instead of taking photos for a newspaper, he shoots video for a TV station. And instead of being carefully drawn in pen and ink, he and his friends are brightly (if flatly) rendered in CGI. But Peter hasn't changed too much. He still pines for Mary Jane (Lisa Loeb), and, though he's a bit hipper than in the old days, he still has his shy, self-deprecating appeal. Here, Peter is both attending college and fighting for those in need as his superhero alter ego. He manages to get into all sorts of dangerous predicaments, but he uses his Spidey-sense to stay ahead of his enemies. Whether investigating an apparent attack on the city's mayor by sexy villain Silver Sable or a kidnapping by a group of high-tech terrorists, Spider-Man always manages to win his battles.

Is it any good?


The show's half-hour episodes don't delve too deeply into Peter's darker side, and most references to his family and his past are left out. What's left is a flashy superhero cartoon interested mostly in terrific battles and unrequited love.

Fighting evil makes for some tense situations, and Spider-Man is packed with last-minute saves and death-defying leaps. These, mixed with sexy villains with big guns, make the show a better pick for older tweens. Plus, Peter isn't in high school anymore, so kissing and even co-ed sleepovers happen every once in a while. His best friend Harry (Ian Ziering) tosses out the occasional sexual innuendo, and Mary Jane has developed into a quite a flirt.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about violence. What kind of violence is featured in this show? What would the effects of that kind of violence be if it weren't a cartoon? Kids: Does watching fighting in a cartoon ever make you feel more energetic or hyper? What do you think that means? Families can also compare the show to the Tobey Maguire movies. Which do you like better? Why?

TV details

Cast:Ian Ziering, Lisa Loeb, Neil Patrick Harris
Genre:Kids' Animation
TV rating:TV-PG
Available on:DVD, Streaming

This review of Spider-Man: The New Animated Series was written by

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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What parents and kids say

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Parent of a 7 and 9 year old Written byPapa_Reviews February 12, 2010
age 15+

Teenagers yes, youngsters no

This is a show for older kids. I wouldn't let younger ones watch it. Some mild language and implied sexual activity.
What other families should know
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
Teen, 14 years old Written byzackaback August 14, 2009
age 8+
Good Show
What other families should know
Too much violence
Adult Written byMBII August 4, 2014
age 12+

Why must parents insist on being idiots?

How many times do people have to be told, not every animated series is for children? Still, they don't get it through their thick skulls and get pissed off when they come across animation for older people. Also, just because you watched something with your kid that wasn't kid-friendly DOES NOT MEAN you give the series a 1-star review. Do any of you geniuses know how this site works?


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