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Category:    Home > Reviews > Fantasy > Comedy > Animation > Role Playing Games > TV > Horror > Spoof > Satire > Food > Children > Music > Lit > Adventure Time: The Complete Seventh Season (2016/Cartoon Network/Warner DVD Set)/Bunnicula: Night Of The Vegetable (2016/Season One, Part One/Warner DVD Set)/Tom and Jerry: Willy Wonka & The Chocolat

Adventure Time: The Complete Seventh Season (2016/Cartoon Network/Warner DVD Set)/Bunnicula: Night Of The Vegetable (2016/Season One, Part One/Warner DVD Set)/Tom and Jerry: Willy Wonka & The Chocolate Factory (2017/Warner DVD)

Picture: C+ Sound: C+ Extras: C/D/C Main Programs: B-/C+/C+

Here are three new releases from the Warner Bros. family of animated entertainment...

Adventure Time: The Complete Seventh Season (2016) continues the (mis?-)adventures of Finn and Jake against the background of Candy Kingdom and all kinds of the usual oddball and otherworld happenings the big hit Cartoon Network TV series that may be coming to an end soon. The makers are still on top as these shows have the same fun, tone, feel and energy of the previous season we've covered over the years, but unless you are a diehard gan, you mighty get lost. Still, it is consistent and true to the series, so fans should still be happy, but it might start to get thin soon.

Bunnicula: Night Of The Vegetable (2016, aka Season One, Part One) is a newly launched series spoofing horror monsters a bit (Quackbustrers, Duckorcist or Night Of The Living Duck anyone?) with a new title character who giggles and hardly talks, loves carats and Warner hopes with be the next big hit character. The show is good and can be amusing, but there is nothing special to separate it from past attempts to do such things, nor does the show try to be as witty or clever as The Groovie Goolies, so it is aimed at an even younger audience and might work. However, they've got to come up with more than this. Still, it is just child-friendly enough, but concerned parents should review it before letting theirs see it.

Finally we have Tom and Jerry: Willy Wonka & The Chocolate Factory (2017), a new and short at 79 minutes attempt to put the fun cat & mouse duo into the world of the classic 1970 Warner fantasy musical originally with the great Gene Wilder. As the studio owns the film and its rights, they squeeze (sometimes too awkwardly) as man of the songs from the film they can (including ''Candy Man'' which was a surprise #1 hit for Sammy Davis Jr. after he sang over the song from the film!) so it can look and sound like the film, but this needed more time and even more new ideas to integrate the two worlds more effectively.

Yet, with the Disney remake a hit, you can see why Warner wants to re-promote the original and put it into their child line of film and video. They've already done a decent Blu-ray release (though a 4K 2160p Ultra HD blu-ray is needed to capture the color and detail better) and this is not a disaster, but it just feels too rushed and uninspired.

The anamorphically enhanced 1.78 X 1 image on all three DVD releases look fine for the format, but the Time Blu-rays are among those that have shown us again and again never to underestimate seemingly simple animation. They'll do, but they are HD productions and we hope to see them all that way soon. Wonka is the only release here with a lossy Dolby Digital 5.1 mix, but it is not as full as it should be as the old codec has compromised the new soundmaster, especially the music. Thus, the lossy Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo with Pro Logic surrounds on the other releases can more than hold their own.

Bunnicula has no extras, Wonka has assorted episodes of newer Tom & Jerry TV shows, leaving Time with minsodes, animatics, art galleries, song demos and two Behind The Scenes/Making Of featurettes.

- Nicholas Sheffo


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