Friday, November 28, 2008

Nick at Nite December 2008 Highlights; Blog DVD Review: Futurama - Bender's Game

We have one news item and a special edition of the blog DVD review today for you on this Black Friday. We have finally for you the Nick at Nite December 2008 highlights. And once again Nick at Nite is not making any changes to its strong regular schedule. And why not? Shows such as George Lopez and Family Matters continue to be strong for them in the ratings. Nick at Nite will celebrate Christmas with a night-long holiday party and 10-days of various Christmas episodes!
The night-long holiday party will be called "Nick at Nite Holiday House Party" on Sunday, December 14 from 9pm-12am ET/PT. Deck the halls, the kitchen, the living room and everything in-between! Nick at Nite is throwing a holiday house party with a holiday themed marathon of Christmas episodes of Home Improvement, George Lopez and Family Matters!
Then from December 15 to December 25 (Christmas night itself), Nick at Nite is keeping the spirit alive with nightly holiday-themed episodes of its sitcoms such as Home Improvement, George Lopez, Family Matters and Fresh Prince...you'll see all the Christmas episodes of each!
To view the holiday schedule, view our Nick at Nite December 2008 highlights.

Welcome to a special edition of the blog DVD reviews! Today we take a look at 20th Century Fox's Futurama - Bender's Game. Futurama - Bender's Game is the third movie featuring the hit animated series...and we have reviewed them all. See skees53's blog DVD review of Futurama - Bender's Game:

Futurama - Beast With a Billion Backs (20th Century Fox, $29.98) is the third installment (of four) in the Futurama movie franchise, the direct-to-DVD franchise that revives the former Fox animated sitcom. The movie is a largely a spoof of the role-playing game Dungeons & Dragons. In fact, the events of the movie are essentially played out by a game of Dungeons & Dragons, played by the characters in the movie.
The plot of this installment begins with a major fuel shortage crisis--or what at least seems to be one. Dark matter is a form of fuel that was discovered by Farnsworth, and was stolen by Mom, who has a monopoly over the entire dark matter industry. When it is discovered that there actually isn't a shortage of dark matter (it is actually fecal matter from the Nibblonians) and that Mom is actually "creating" the shortage, it is up to Farnsworth and the crew to bring down the industry. The whole industry can be brought down by using an "anti-crystal" that is being used as a 12-sided die in the game Dungeons & Dragons. Will Mom go down? And if so, how will fuel needs be met?
The movie runs at 87 minutes and has excellent video and audio quality. After all, there is nothing to really compare this to--this is the first place that this has been presented. The video is presented in widescreen with vibrant colors (although I had some pixilation, probably due to the screener disc that I received) and a loud and clear Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround Sound audio track. English, Spanish, and French subtitles can also be found on the disc.
The disc is loaded with special features, beginning with an audio commentary track. We have input from Matt Groening, David X. Cohen, Billy West, John DiMaggio, Tress MacNeille, Michael Rowe, Claudia Katz, and Dwayne Carey Hill. For those that love animatics, we have an entire storyboard animatic for the first part of the movie (that is the first 22 minutes, as it will be presented when aired on Comedy Central as a four part episode). The next feature that we have is actually a pretty cool feature, called "Futurama Genetics Lab." Here, we can crossbreed our characters and create hybrids--in case you ever wanted to know what a Bender crossed with a Fry would look like! "Dungeons & Dragons & Futurama" (7:02) is a behind-the-scenes look where the whole concept of the movie is discussed, including connections with Dungeons & Dragons. "How to Draw Futurama in 83 Easy Steps" (7:52) is not quite as complicated as it sounds, but gives a behind-the-scenes look at what it is like to draw the characters with the rough draft crew. "3D Models With Animation" (5:02) shows us some of the 3D models from the series, along with commentary from the animators. Apparently, there is only one deleted scene on the movie, and it can also be found in the special features. It runs at a little over one minute. "Blooperama 2" (1:50) shows us some of the audio outtakes from the movie. "Bender's Anti-Piracy Warning" (1:11) is a warning from Bender that warns us all against piracy of the DVD. Finally, "Futurama: Into the Wild Green Yonder" (1:12) is a sneak peak into the fourth (and final?) installment in the Futurama movie series.
The critics take on this installment is that it is much better than the previous installments, and is more true to the original series than the other ones have been. However, I have to slightly disagree with that. I feel like the movie has a plot that is far too complicated for an animated series and tends to just drag on. I feel as though these feature films that they've been making have been disappointing, and that they probably should have just stuck with making additional episodes of standard episode length. This series doesn't exactly make for great movies, and it is even worse for those that can't get in to the whole Dungeons & Dragons theme that this movie presents. Still, I think a lot of the biggest fans of Futurama are certain to appreciate this movie, as it gives life to their favorite series once again (and there are certain to be many fans of Futurama that can appreciate Dungeons & Dragons).
-- Reviewed by skees53
(4.5/5 stars)

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Related links:
SitcomsOnline.com Full DVD Reviews Page
Futurama TV.com Page


New on DVD/Blu-ray (March/April)

The Jamie Foxx Show - The Complete Second Season What I Like About You - The Complete Second Season Newhart - The Final (Eighth) Season Diff'rent Strokes - The Complete Fifth Season Father Knows Best - Season Five

03/03 - The Dick Van Dyke Show - Now... In Living Color! (Blu-ray)
03/07 - The Jamie Foxx Show - The Complete Second Season
03/07 - Mama's Family - Mama's Favorites
03/07 - That '70s Show - The Complete Series - Flashback Edition (Blu-ray)
03/07 - What I Like About You - The Complete Second Season
03/07 - You Me Her - Season One
03/14 - Newhart - The Final (Eighth) Season
03/14 - Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt - Season Two
03/21 - Master of None - Season One
04/04 - Diff'rent Strokes - The Complete Fifth Season
04/11 - Father Knows Best - Season Five
04/11 - Schitt's Creek - The Complete Third Season
04/11 - Silicon Valley - The Complete Third Season (Blu-ray)
04/11 - Veep - The Complete Fifth Season
More TV DVD Releases / DVD Reviews Archive / SitcomsOnline Digest


Sitcoms Airing Tonight

Saturday, April 29

Henry Danger - "Stuck in Two Holes" (Nickelodeon, 8:00PM ET/PT)
Whaaaat?!? Captain Man and Kid Danger are each stuck in a hole?!? Charlotte and Jasper better go help, 'cuz Schwoz is takin' a bean bath!

Nicky, Ricky, Dicky & Dawn - "I Want My Mae B. Back" (Nickelodeon, 8:30PM ET/PT)
After Mae starts to spend more time with her new boyfriend, Dawn begins to get jealous so enlists Nicky, Ricky, and Dicky to help separate them so that she can have her friend back.

Complete TV Listings


Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows (Week of May 1)

Sunday, April 30

  • NeNe Leakes (The New Normal) - Catch NeNe on Watch What Happens: Live at 11pm on Bravo.
Monday, May 1
  • Chris Pratt (Parks and Recreation) - Watch Chris on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert at 11:35pm on CBS. He will also be on ABC's Good Morning America sometime between 7-9am and LIVE! with Kelly, so check your listings.
  • America Ferrera (Superstore) - America drops by Late Night with Seth Meyers at 12:36am on NBC.
  • Ike Barinholtz (The Mindy Project) - Ike appears on Late Night with Seth Meyers at 12:36am on NBC.
  • Joel McHale (The Great Indoors/Community) - Joel is a guest on The Late Late Show with James Corden at 12:37am on CBS.
  • Jake Johnson (New Girl) - Jake visits The Late Late Show with James Corden at 12:37am on CBS.
  • Hank Azaria (Brockmire/The Simpsons/Free Agents) - Hank stops by Last Call with Carson Daly at 1:35am on NBC.
  • Al Madrigal (About a Boy/Welcome to the Captain/Gary Unmarried) - Al appears on Last Call with Carson Daly at 1:35am on NBC.
  • Kevin Nealon (Man with a Plan/Weeds/Hiller and Diller/Champs) - Kevin is a guest on Conan at 11pm on TBS.
  • Ashton Kutcher (The Ranch/Two and a Half Men/That '70s Show) - Ashton appears on The Ellen DeGeneres Show, so check your local listings.
  • Allison Janney (Mom/Mr. Sunshine) - Allison teams up with Mario Batali to make a cheesy, decadent Gnocchi Al Telefono and dishes about her new Broadway show on ABC's The Chew at 1pm ET/12pm PT/CT.
  • Charlie Hunnam (Undeclared) - Charlie will be on ABC's Good Morning America sometime between 7-9am. He will also be on the AOL Build Show at 11:15am.
  • Nick Robinson (Melissa & Joey) - Nick talks about his new film Everything, Everything on the AOL Build Show at 1pm.