Courtesy: Nickelodeon/Shout! Factory
Nickelodeon’s programming today is comprised largely of live action sitcoms aimed at teen viewers. However, from the early 1990s up until the mid-2000s, the network was known more for its vast array of cartoons. It’s “Nicktoons” were its heart and soul. While Nickelodeon does have some cartoons today, the network’s sole remaining real Nicktoon is Butch Hartman’s hugely successful series Fairly Oddparents. Fairly Oddparents is a standout series, too. Interestingly enough, it isn’t his first series to have the honor of being added to Nickelodeon’s list of beloved Nicktoons. His first notable “Nicktoon” was the short-lived supernatural series Danny Phantom. Now thanks to Shout! Factory and Nickelodeon, fans of Danny Phantom will be able to own the complete series in one box later this month. Danny Phantom only ran for three seasons. In its defense, it could be argued that this was because it was ahead of its time. That aside, series creator Butch Hartman and his writers crafted a number of enjoyable episodes throughout the show’s short run. Just as worth noting about this new upcoming box set is that is alleviates some minor problems raised in the box sets containing the series’ second season. Lastly, those that know their Nicktoons history will appreciate the voice talent that made up the series’ cast. That who’s who of voice actors combined with the enjoyable stories, and the fact that they are all available together for the first time collectively make this upcoming set well worth picking up for any Danny Phantom fan.
Fans of Danny Phantom: The Complete Series will appreciate this new complete series set first and foremost because it presents the series’ entire three-season run in one complete box set. Nickelodeon and Shout! Factory have already released three complete series sets from Aaahh!!! Real Monsters, Rocko’s Modern Life, and The Angry Beavers. Those sets proved to actually take up far less space on DVD racks than the stand-alone season sets that had originally been released. This set is no different. All nine discs that make up all three seasons are included in this box. Shout! Factory and Nickelodeon have sweetened the deal even more for fans in that they have maintained the established wise packaging that was used in the aforementioned complete series sets. The discs are placed inside the box on either side of their own “insert” with the ninth and final disc being placed in its own spot inside the back of the case. As with the previously noted box sets, this protects the discs and allows the episodes contained within each one to be enjoyed much longer. It is the starting point of what audiences will appreciate about Danny Phantom: The Complete Series.
The packaging for Danny Phantom: The Complete Series is a good starting point in discussing everything that makes this box set well worth its price. The episodes contained across the set’s nine total discs make the presentation as a whole even more enjoyable. It would be easy to say that because its main characters were high school students, Danny Phantom was just another program aimed at audiences of the same age. To a point, it could be seen how teen audiences would take an interest in the series. Case in point, one of the series’ story arcs involved a potential inter-racial romance between Danny and black classmate named Valerie Gray (voiced by Cree Summer—The Cosby Show, Clifford The Big Red Dog, Codename: Kids Next Door, etc.). It really is a sign of the times that the show’s writers would include this without making a big fuss over it, either. It is a subtle, but nice addition to the series. There are also the constant struggles to balance trying to be a regular teen with being a superhero. But the jokes that are tossed in each episode aren’t above some younger viewers, either. So while teens might have been the primary audience, younger viewers would have obviously enjoyed the show, too. The same applies to today’s teens and pre-teens, too.
The packaging and writing that make up Danny Phantom’s episodes are collectively a big part of what makes the series so enjoyable even for today’s younger audiences. There is at least one more aspect of the series’ new set that audiences will appreciate in examining the presentation as a whole. That aspect is the series’ voice cast. The series’ primary cast reads like a who’s who of voice acting. It has already been noted that veteran voice actress Cree Summer is part of the primary cast (even though she doesn’t come into play until the second season). Along with Ms. Summer, Grey DeLisle (The Grim Adventures of Billy & Mandy, Clifford The Big Red Dog, Clifford: The Puppy Years, Fosters Home For Imaginary Friends, etc.) Kath Soucie (Futurama, Captain Planet and the Planeteers, Beauty and the Beast, etc.), Rob Paulsen (Animaniacs, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, The Adventures of Jimmy Neutron: Boy Genius, etc.) and a whole slate of others each play roles in the series. Fans will also recognize the voices of Ron Perlman (Sons of Anarchy, Pacific Rim, Hellboy & Hellboy II), Martin Mull (Roseanne), and the man who is perhaps the busiest male voice actor in the business, one Frank Welker (Curious George, The Real Ghostbusters, Scooby-Doo Where Are You, etc.) Jon Cryer (Two and a Half Men), Taylor Lautner (the Twilight saga), and the late David Carradine even make appearances throughout the series among so many other big names. If the massive list of A-listers that play roles in Danny Phantom isn’t reason enough to check out the new Danny Phantom: The Complete Series box set, then one need only set that alongside the enjoyable writing and the equally wise packaging to see just how worthwhile this set is for kids and kids at heart. It will be available in stores and online Tuesday, January 28th. It can be pre-ordered online now from the Shout! Factory store at http://www.shoutfactory.com/product/danny-phantom-complete-series. More information on this and other releases from Shout! Factory is available online at http://www.shoutfactory.com and http://www.facebook.com/shoutfactoryofficial. To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment reviews and news, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it. Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment reviews and news in the Phil’s Picks blog at http://philspicks.wordpress.com.