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Category:    Home > Reviews > Animated > Children > Action > Fantasy > Stop Motion > Literature > British > Fantasy > TV > Best Of COPS + COPS – V.1 + Johnny Test – The Complete First & Second Seasons + He-Man & The Masters Of The Universe – V. 2 + Paddington Bear – The Complete Classic Series (1975) + Paddington Bear – M

Best Of COPS + COPS – V.1 + Johnny Test – The Complete First & Second Seasons + He-Man & The Masters Of The Universe – V. 2 + Paddington Bear – The Complete Classic Series (1975) + Paddington Bear – Marmalade Madness + Sabrina – The Animated Series (1998/Cookie Jar/Mill Creek Entertainment DVDs)


Picture: C/C/C+/C+/C/C/C     Sound: C+     Extras: D (Paddington: C+/Test: C)     Episodes: C/C/C/B/B-/C-



In the latest round of Cookie Jar animated DVD releases with Mill Creek, we get some more reissue material that is in print, out of print and should have been around a while ago.


Best Of COPS and COPS – V.1 repeat the DVDs already issued by Shout! Factory that we covered over the following two volumes:








That latter linked set is a website exclusive and the larger first set has some of the episodes from that set.  Having Hey Vern, It’s Ernest sample episodes as bonuses is odd and a lame extra.



Johnny Test – The Complete First & Second Seasons is another one of those loud smack, bam shows that are so silly that they backfire and trip all over themselves trying to be hip.  As seen on Cartoon Network and not to be confused with Johnny Quest by any means, the title character (here in 26 episodes over 3 DVDs) has a genetically engineered dog and gets carried away with science experiments to supposedly funny effect.  With a few bonus episodes of five other shows and DVD-ROM content, this has more extras than most sets here, but this is for fans only.



He-Man & The Masters Of The Universe – V. 2 has 20 more episodes over two DVDs reprinting the original 1983 show that was imprint from BCI Eclipse until they folded.  This set pretty much repeats the older content of the out of print sets including the cover of this Season One. Volume Two set:




The problem is that it is not quite as good looking in playback and much worse, the great extras across those sets by Andy Mangels is not here, so serious fans will want to tracks down copies of the older editions.


The best releases here and by Cookie Jar to date are Paddington Bear – The Complete Classic Series (1975) and a single-disc release called Paddington Bear – Marmalade Madness featuring the terrific British stop-motion animated series that was first featured in the U.S. during the original run of Romper Room.  The charming and often hilarious show had the title character in stop motion and everything else as paper stop-motion.  I liked the approach and they made it work.  These transfers might be a bit weak, but this filmed show would be a real gem if Mill Creek and the owners could create a Blu-ray set.  Two revival series followed, each with a different approach.  The 15 Bonus Episodes noted on the case are of the charming shows Huxley Pig and The Wombles, plus there is DVD-ROM activity content for children.  At this price, it is a good deal.



Finally we have the lame Sabrina – The Animated Series, an inferior 1998 animated show playing off of the shrill, horrid live action hit (which we have sadly suffered through elsewhere on this site) and no match for Filmation’s version of the character’s adventure.  You can read more about the 1971 original series with additional informative links at this link:




The dumb bonus is a single episode of the even lamer Sabrina’s Secret Life show you likely have not heard of for good reason.


It is the kind of smarmy series that inspired Johnny Test, but this is worse.  Test is in an anamorphically enhanced 1.78 X 1 presentation, but Bear (at 1.33 X 1 like the rest of the sets here) has the most character despite its softness and supposed digital restoration, which might be better with more of a bitrate or in HD based on how good the color can be.  Hope they kept the film prints.  All have Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono, with Test and Sabrina in Stereo.



-   Nicholas Sheffo


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