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Fantastic Four: The Complete 94-95 Series
DVD disk
Jul 11, 2005 By: Scott Weinberg
Fantastic Four: The Complete 94-95 Series order
Director:
Various

Actors:
Beau Weaver
Lori Alan
Brian Austin Green

Rating:
Movie:
Extras:
Overall:

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WHAT'S IT ABOUT?
After ending up on the wrong end of some mutated cosmic rays, a scientist, his girlfriend, her brother, and a big lummox end up with twsited DNA ... and amazing new powers! Mr. Fantastic has the ability to stretch his body like Silly Putty; Sue Storm can turn invisible on a whim; Johnny Storm becomes the flying Human Torch; and Ben Grimm transforms into a rock-coated super-lummox. Together the Fantastic Four will fight evildoers, bicker a lot, and act quite noble and corny.
IS IT A GOOD MOVIE?
Just in time for Fox's big-budget live-action rendition of Fantastic Four comes this four-disc set full of cartoons from 1994 and '95. This particular incarnation of F4 ran only 26 episodes, and if you only focus on the first 13 episodes ... you probably have a good idea as to why the show failed.

Cheap-looking animation, sub-par voice acting, endlessly cornball dialogue, and an overall air of cheapness pervades all of the season one episodes. Oh sure you'll get a nice dosage of super-villainy and frequent guest spots by Marvelous folks like Silver Surfer and Sub-Mariner ... but you'll have to suffer through some pretty rank cartoon fodder to find 'em. Yes, these things were made for kids, I know, but kids are smarter than this.

To say that the second season is a vast improvement would be a Fantastic understatement. The animation style is more fluid and pleasurable to the eye; the "camera" actually moves around instead of staring drably at the action onscreen; and there's just a bit more "edge" to the second season. It's not exactly more violent or adult; it's just not so cuddly, fuzzy, and kiddified.

(Somewhat annoyingly, season 2 begins with the last episode of Disc 2: "And a Blind Man Shall Lead Them" (featuring an appearance from Daredevil!) Frankly I'd start right there. If you find yourself not digging the S2 episodes, then you should never bother with S1. Trust me on this.)

THE EXTRAS
It's not exactly clobberin' time in the special features department. You'll find a bunch of Stan Lee introductions that precede each and every episode, an 8-minute Stan Lee Soapbox ramble, and a collection of various Disney trailers.
FINAL DIAGNOSIS
If you're a hardcore Marvel fan, I suppose I couldn't blame you if you bought the set only for the season 2 episodes. They're not exactly the crown jewels of the Marvel Animated Library, but they're perfectly entertaining and full of colorful stuff. Feel free to watch the first season's episodes precisely once -- and then focus on the good stuff.
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