Cartoon fun so huge it’s Tiny! Rejoice, potatoes du couch, ’cause look what’s finally on 4 deliciously delirious DVDs: the first half of Season One – 35 furry, funny, Montana Max-has-money episodes stretching from inner Burbank to outer space and featuring Buster Bunny, Babs Bunny (no relation!), Plucky Duck, Hamton Pig, Elmyra Duff, Dizzy Devil and more denizens of Acme Acres. Here you;’ll find cultrual send-ups, sly in-jokes and lfat0out silliness. And here you’ll find Acme Looniversity, where the Toonsters are schooleed under the wise(guy) guidance of Warner Bros. ‘toon legends from Bugs Bunny to Yosemite Sam. Enroll today. (And if you don’t pay attent and stop playing with that Acme Atom Re-Arranger, you’ll get a week’s detention!)
Read my review of the Four-Disc DVD set after the jump.
Tiny Toon Adventures Season 1 Volume 1
Available To Own On (click to purchase): DVD
Official Site Link:www.kidswb.com/whv
Release Date: July 29, 2008
Tiny Toon Adventures Season 1 Volume 1 comes to DVD on four discs (one double-sided) and contains the first 35 episodes of the first season of the TV series (65 episodes aired during the first season, overall). The series ran on afternoon’s for three seasons from 1990-1994 and thankfully, it’s just as funny and enjoyable as I remember it all those years ago . For those unfamiliar with the series, it’s just your basic animated cartoon, filled with laughs and several pop culture references. The pop culture references may not be enjoyed so much by the kids (whom the cartoon is targeted towards) and watching it so many years later, some of it seems dated, but the great thing about it is that regardless of all that, even if you don’t necessarily understand the reference, what’s being spoofed is continually funny and because of that the show has a certain attractiveness to both kids and adults.
If there is one thing I’d dodge points off the series for it’s that while funny from episode 1 through episode 35, it seems to lose some of its luster after the first quarter of the episodes. Don’t get me wrong, they’re still very entertaining but they’re simply not as funny as the very early batch on disc one.
With 35 episodes (many multi-parted) there’s thankfully no instance where any episode seem too alike to another. So in that sense, they are all memorable in one way or another. Another highpoint is that because of the WB name and the pedigree of ‘toons from the past, the show effectively opens itself up to great characters. And in terms of pop culture references, it uses as many as possible, including obvious references to Mike Tyson, Batman, Clint Eastwood, the big three Trek gang (Kirk, Spock and Bones), Michael Jackson and Rocky just to name a few (though they aren’t using the name of those celebrities/characters).
Some criticisms are sure to include what can be assumed to be plagiarism of the the Looney Tunes brand, but I honestly didn’t see it that way. These writers did a fine job drawing on those characters for inspiration, even including them in some episodes (always a highlight) and the Tiny Toons all stand out on their own, with a very nice selection of varied characters.
Unfortunately, there is just one extra on this set. That’s a shame, and detracts from the package somewhat.
Looney Tunes, to Tiny Toons: A Wacky Evolution
A short (24-minute) look into the evolution of the Looney Tunes which was the inspiration for the Tiny Toons. If there’s one complaint, it’s that the feature mostly focuses on Looney Tunes, rather than looking deeper into Tiny Toons. I.e., the featurette may have been better served on a DVD for the Looney Tunes. Despite being the only feature on the set, you do get some talk of the development of the characters and the series, including the many aspects that Spielberg was involved in the show. You also get some little things that you don’t at first recognize, such as how Spielberg really wanted an orchestra for the episodes, and despite the higher cost, got his way (which of course makes the episodes that much better). You really get the sense that these writers and producers really appreciated the group of characters and lineage they were drawing upon. For being the DVD set’s only special feature, it’s a solid one.
Tiny Toon Adventures is filled with great comedy, grade A animation and soundtrack. You’ll laugh along and be throughougly entertained from beginning to end. This is a worthwhile pickup. Though I must say that the very minimal extras package was a bit of a disappointment (odd that Freakazoid! got several commentary tracks and more special features and this DVD, which is of a more beloved cartoon, got very little). Also, for those expecting good video quality, you’re going to be disappointed. The image looks quite dated, with the colors just seeming very dull and not at all brilliant as you’d like them to be. With those issues in mind, I rate this series and DVD a 4/5.
Tiny Toon Adventures Season 1 Volume 1 was released on Tuesday, July 29th. Purchase it today on DVD.
I’ve included some video clips from the series which you’ll find below.
“Win or Lose”