Saturday, February 14, 2009

Blog DVD Review: Alvin and the Chipmunks - The Mystery of the Easter Chipmunk

It is Saturday, so that must mean it is time for the weekly Blog DVD Reviews. This week we take a look at Paramount Home Entertainment's Alvin & the Chipmunks: The Mystery of the Easter Chipmunk. Yes we know today is Valentine's Day but we here at SitcomsOnline like to look ahead, as you all know, and we are focusing today on Easter! This set features the special "The Easter Chipmunk" along with four other episodes from the series! See my Blog DVD Reviews of Alvin & the Chipmunks: The Mystery of the Easter Chipmunk:

Alvin & the Chipmunks: The Mystery of the Easter Chipmunk (Paramount, $16.99) brings the 1995 TV special "The Easter Chipmunk" on DVD along with four episodes from the TV series! In "The Easter Chipmunk," Alvin finds out that his Grandpa was the original Easter Chipmunk, and tries to sue Mr. Hoppity, the Easter Bunny for the rights. What will happen? You'll have to watch!
We have had many Chipmunk sets, some even re-released. Basically, we have had Chipmunks Go To The Movies sets (which featured episodes like "Daytona Jones and the Pearl of Wisdom," "Robomunk," "Star Wreck," "Batmunk," and "Funny...We Shrunk the Adults"). We have also had holiday themed sets such as Valentine's, Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas specials releases. Paramount has also released the Chipmunk Adventure feature film from 1987. We also had episodes featuring The Chipettes from the original series 1983-87 series. And my personal favorite was the Alvinnn! Edition, which was the first set to have episodes from the original 1983-87 series. 14 of them!
This set has the 1995 Easter special along with episodes from the series. The original 1983-87 series and the 1988-89 Chipmunks series had two 11-minute episodes or so in a half-hour. So as with the other DVDs, we don't get the actual "full episodes," but one 11-12 minute episode from a full episode. The Easter special runs 21:35 with four chapter stops. The other four episodes are from the original series or the 1988 Chipmunks series. In "Snow Wrong," the Chipmunks and Chipettes audition to be in a Snow White play. The episode is from the original 1983-87 series and runs around 12:24 and we also get the opening and closing credits, but no episode title card. The next three episodes are from The Chipmunks years. In "Special Kind of Champion," Alvin is upset that he can't seem to keep up with the rest of his track race team. Being that so, the coach decides to let him become a trainer for one of the athletes of the Special Olympics. This episode runs 11:59 and has the opening and closing credits. The next episode is "Thinking Cap Trap," Simon is frustrated being the smartest member of the family. He invents a cap that helps Dave and his brothers become smarter. Simon is so confident with his family's new smarts that he signs them up to be on a genius game show. But before he can give his family another boost of the thinking cap, he loses it. This episode runs 13:02 and has the opening and closing credits. The final episode on this set is "Luck O' the Chipmunks," Micky, a new Irish boy at school, claims that he has his very own leprechaun. The Chipmunks are keen to investigate. This one runs 13:08 and also has the opening and closing credits. Weird that only one episode (the Easter special) has to deal with Easter. The rest seem random, though nice to have. The St. Patrick's Irish themed episode fits, I guess since that holiday is on the horizon.
Packaging is simple and in the same line as the previous sets--a nice simple case with the discs inside, and as with last time, there is NO insert for Chipmunks.com once again. Cover art features the Alvin, Simon, & Theodore with the Easter Chipmunk looking. Back of the case we have info on the set and the episodes, with Alvin with rabbit ears and lots of Easter eggs below him. We get a little yellow box listing the episode titles for the set. Disc art has the same artwork as the cover art, but just Alvin and the Easter Chipmunk this time. All the artwork seems to be from the post-1987 version, and not the original series artwork for some reason. This is been the case for all the sets it seems. Oh well.
The menu screen has the same artwork has cover art. Options are Play All, Episode Selection and Previews. An auto-trailer for Alvin sets come before the main menu starts and also the same trailer can be found in the Previews option on the main menu. At least we don't get any other trailers. The Episode Selection list the episode titles. Simple yet effective.
The video and audio are OK at best, some episodes look good (not great though), some don't. If you have any of the other sets, you'll know what I mean. They are certainly not remastered or anything, like I have mentioned before. They are watchable, though. So it is worth the buy, especially since this series is not on television anymore. The copies are a bit better than VHS that you may have recorded from the original run or 90s syndication. The Easter special is newer, so that looks better.
I highly do recommend any fan to pick up this set. We are now getting episodes of the classic series from 1983-87, as this is the third set to feature them...though we only get one episode from that here. Those are the best and most memorable episodes. And once again I reiterate, I just wish they start giving us season sets. It isn't that hard, is it? They obviously have the rights to the original episodes now since they were not releasing them at first. Though I hope if and when they make season sets, they remaster and clean up the episodes a bit for the fans. I really want a complete first season or at least break them up into half seasons and release them. I want to see "The C Team" episode on DVD! Mr. T in animation! Anyway, I know today is Valentine's Day but this episode features the upcoming holidays of St. Patrick's Day and Easter...so we like to look ahead! So grab your bunny ears and buy this set while eating your Easter eggs or your Valentine's chocolate...whatever! Let's get to the bottom of this scrambled caper!
-- Reviewed by Pavan
(4/5 stars)

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Related links:
SitcomsOnline.com Full DVD Reviews Page
Alvin & the Chipmunks TV.com Page
Chipmunks.com


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

227 - The Complete First Season (Mill Creek) Fuller House - The Complete First Season The Jamie Foxx Show - The Complete Second Season What I Like About You - The Complete Second Season Newhart - The Final (Eighth) Season

02/07 - Sabrina, the Teenage Witch - Sabrina Down Under
02/07 - So Little Time - Volume 1 - School's Cool - Boy Crazy
02/07 - So Little Time - Volume 2 - About a Family - Hangin' Out
02/07 - 227 - The Complete First Season (Mill Creek)
02/07 - Vice Principals - The Complete First Season (Blu-ray)
02/14 - Beavis and Butt-Head - The Complete Collection
02/14 - Grace and Frankie - Season Two
02/28 - Fuller House - The Complete First Season
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 - Unbrekable Kimmy Schmidt - Season Two
03/21 - Master of None - Season One
More TV DVD Releases / DVD Reviews Archive / SitcomsOnline Digest


Sitcoms Airing Tonight

Wednesday, March 29

The Goldbergs - "A Night to Remember" (ABC, 8:00PM ET/PT)
It’s prom night, and all three Goldberg kids have big plans, which go awry.  Barry plans big romantic gestures for Lainey while Erica and Geoff try to go to prom together, but it doesn’t go as planned. Meanwhile, Adam is thrilled when a nerdy but cute junior asks him out, but he is horrified when Beverly gets involved.

Imaginary Mary - "Pilot" (ABC, 8:30PM ET/PT)
A fiercely independent career woman, Alice has her life turned upside-down when she meets Ben, a divorced father with three children, and soon falls head-over-heals for him. This triggers more upheaval when the imaginary friend she created as a child, Mary, suddenly reappears as she is nervous to meet Ben’s kids for the first time.

Modern Family - "Five Minutes" (ABC, 9:00PM ET/PT)
So much can happen to the Pritchett-Dunphy-Tucker clan in five minutes! Mitch and Cam have five minutes to catch a new flight while fighting the effects of sleeping pills they took prematurely. Then at Rainer’s birthday dinner, Haley and Rainer are forced to reevaluate their entire relationship in the five minutes before the birthday cake arrives. Meanwhile, Phil and Claire pay a surprise visit to Alex and are given a five-minute surprise introduction to her new boyfriend. Finally, with only five minutes to catch a movie, Manny has to find the perfect parking space and endure Jay and Gloria’s backseat argument.

black-ish - "Richard Youngsta" (ABC, 9:30PM ET/PT)
Dre is excited about doing a campaign with a popular rap star but becomes conflicted when Bow and Ruby provide feedback suggesting it plays on stereotypes. Meanwhile, Bow is determined to get the family to stop eating so much take-out food, but realizes the family may be too accustomed to eating whatever they want.

Nobodies - "Mr. First Lady" (TV Land, 10:00PM ET/PT)
After years toiling away writing on a kids cartoon, “The Fartlemans”, Groundlings Alums Larry, Rachel and Hugh finally get their big break: A chance to pitch their film script “Mr. First Lady” at Paramount.

Lopez - "Leaving Las Vegas" (TV Land, 10:30PM ET/PT)
George quits his Las Vegas residency, causing big problems. Manolo gets out of jail and introduces his roommate, Hector, to everyone.

Schitt's Creek - "Friends & Family" (Pop, 8:00PM ET/PT)
Johnny and Moira look for a location for the family portrait; David hosts a soft launch for the new store.

Complete TV Listings


Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows (Week of March 27)

Wednesday, March 29

  • Andrew Rannells (Girls/The New Normal) - Watch Andrew on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon at 11:34pm on NBC.
  • Emma Roberts (Scream Queens/Unfabulous) - Emma is a guest on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert at 11:35pm on CBS.
  • Ken Jeong (Dr. Ken/Community) - Ken appears on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert at 11:35pm on CBS. He will also be on NBC's Today in the 9am hour.
  • Lisa Kudrow (Friends/The Comeback) - Lisa visits The Late Late Show with James Corden at 12:37am on CBS.
  • Paul F. Tompkins (DAG) - Paul is a guest on @midnight on Comedy Central at midnight.
  • Milana Vayntrub (Other Space) - Milana appears on @midnight on Comedy Central at midnight.
  • Terry Crews (Brooklyn Nine-Nine/Are We There Yet?/Everybody Hates Chris) - Terry stops by Conan at 11pm on TBS.
  • Andy Daly (Review/Eastbound & Down) - Andy appears on Conan at 11pm on TBS.
  • Christian Slater (Breaking In) - Christian guest co-hosts LIVE! with Kelly, so check your listings.
  • Brooklyn Decker (Grace and Frankie/Friends with Better Lives) - Brooklyn is a guest on Harry, so check your local listings.
  • NeNe Leakes (The New Normal) - NeNe guest co-hosts a repeat of The Real, so check your local listings.
  • Jenna Elfman (Imaginary Mary/1600 Penn/Accidentally on Purpose/Courting Alex/Dharma & Greg) - Jenna will be on ABC's Good Morning America sometime between 7-9am.
  • Craig Ferguson (The Drew Carey Show) - Craig is a guest on NBC's Today in the 10am hour.
  • George Lopez (Lopez/George Lopez) - George discusses the second season of Lopez on the AOL Build Show at 5:30pm.