All good things must come to an end…or must they? Thanks to the good people at Warner Brothers Home Video, fans of the modern classic cartoon, Animaniacs, the laughs never have to come to an end now that the show’s fourth and final volume has finally seen the light of day. This latest volume of episodes is just as entertaining as the show’s previous volumes. The writers take no prisoners, going after everyone in pop culture from Disney and Hanna Barbera to Universal and even Fox. They’re not the only victims of the show’s witty writing. Even the best movies in Hollywood’s modern history aren’t safe as the show goes after the likes of The Maltese Falcon, Mary Poppins, and even The Sound of music just to name a few. And that’s just on the set’s first disc. The second and third discs are just as top heavy with laughs. Audiences will love that the show’s writers make a farce of all the serious TV specials out there with its very own “Very, Very, Very, Very Special Show.” The set’s third disc even includes a little holiday flavor in “The Christmas Tree.” Everyone’s favorite sour squirrel Slappy, takes center stage here. Her constant delivery makes for so many laughs.
The jokes are nonstop throughout all three discs of this outrageously hilarious cartoon. They’re just part of the show’s continued enjoyment. Along with nonstop laughs provided by the razor sharp comedy, the show also continues to show heart throughout various episodes as well as some educational content believe it or not. “Multiplication Song” teaches math and pokes fun at how drawn out it can be in the same breath. It’s that same brand of comedy established with shorts such as “Chalkboard Bungle”, “Planets Song” and “The Senses” (all from Season One). Audiences will love this continued tradition just as much as the show’s other laughs provided throughout all three discs in this set.
Animaniacs Volume Four offers audiences laughs from beginning to end in every short. Those laughs wouldn’t have been possible without solid writing and equally solid performance by the show’s cast who return once again in this final set of twenty-four episodes. Mauriche LaMarche (The Simpsons, Futurama) is back yet again as the voice of The Brain. And fellow veteran voice actor Frank Welker (Scooby Doo, The Real Ghostbusters, Tiny Toon Adventures, etc.) returns yet again as the voice of the dopey security guard Ralph, the equally dopey dog Runt (whose spoof of Dustin Hoffman’s Rain Man character Raymond Babbitt is as hilarious as ever), and many others. And even Tress MacNeille (The Simpsons, Futurama) is back once more. Having the whole team back again is a huge win as the chemistry built between cast members is a big part of its ability to effectively interpret the scripts and make them entertaining both for kids and parents even years after the show’s end.
The voice acting, the jokes, and heart from the first three volumes of Animaniacs episodes all remain in Animaniacs Volume Four. There is one other factor that makes this show timeless. That last factor is its animation. Yet again reference must be made to the difference in today’s computer generated “animation” and that done by hand from actual human animators. The animation that was a trademark of Animaniacs in previous seasons is just as solid in this new release. Save perhaps for Steven Spielberg’s other hit cartoon, Tiny Toon Adventures no other shows looked like this one. It really served as one more factor in developing the show’s identity, unlike so much “animated” content out there today. Combined with the show’s comedy and its heart, its animation goes into making this a wonderful way for this wacky show to go out. It’s available now in stores and online. It can be ordered online direct from Warner Home Video’s online store at http://www.wbshop.com/product/steven+spielberg+presents+animaniacs+vol+4+1000023671.do?sortby=ourPicks&from=Search.
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