NOVA: Big Bang Machine Is A Blast For Anyone With Experience And Interest In Physics

Courtesy:  PBS Distribution/PBS

Courtesy: PBS Distribution/PBS

Early last month, researchers at CERN restarted the Large Hadron Collider, or LHC, for the first time in two years.  The world’s largest supercollider, it was designed to answer some of science’s most pressing questions.  Fittingly, PBS released a new episode of its hit science-based series NOVA this past March in anticipation of the LHC’s restart.  NOVA: Big Bang Machine takes audiences behind the scenes of the LHC’s creation and the importance of the experiments that take place within its seventeen mile circumference.  Regardless of whether audiences are themselves are deeply involved in the world of physics (theoretical or otherwise) or are just interested in the operations of the LHC, the concepts discussed throughout the episode are made easily accessible for audiences of every background.  The pacing of the presented discussions adds to the program’s enjoyment.  Just as the topics discussed are set at a level that is relatively accessible for all audiences, the pacing of the discussions in question will keep audiences engaged and in turn help them better understand the noted discussions.    If the pacing of the program and the information provided throughout isn’t enough, the interviews and footage inside the structure that houses the LHC add even more interest to this episode in whole.  The interviews included in the program offer their own share of additional information to the presentation in whole.  That final element ties in to the program’s accessibility and its pacing to make NOVA: Big Bang Machine a piece that any viewer with any interest in physics—theoretical or otherwise—will appreciate.

NOVA: Big Bang Machine is another interesting addition PBS’ hit science-based series.  It is a piece that even those with no formal training in the world of physics will appreciate.  The main reason is its accessibility.  Those behind this episode have made the concepts discussed throughout the program easy enough for average audiences to understand.  Those audiences will never feel like the program and those featured are talking down to them at any point, either.  So not only will said viewers feel like they can actually get at least a basic grasp of the noted topics in this episode, but they also never feel like they are being lectured.  To that extent, those responsible for bringing this episode to life are to be commended for such efforts.  At the same time, those with formal training in physics won’t feel like the discussed topics are below them, either.  The very fact that those in charge of assembling such in-depth material and balance it in a manner that it can reach so many audiences says plenty of those individuals and their efforts.  It is just the beginning of what makes NOVA: Big Bang Machine yet another example of why NOVA has remained one of the best science-based series on television for so many years if not the best science-based series on television

The ability of NOVA: Big Bang Machine to reach audiences of all types with its overall content is the most important of the elements that makes this episode of NOVA another great installment of the science-based series.  As important as the information’s balance proves to be to the episode in whole, the pacing of the information’s delivery is just as important to consider.  Audiences will be happy to know that while the amount of information provided by this episode makes it feel like an introductory physics course of sorts, the pacing doesn’t leave audiences at any level feel like they are being left in the dust, struggling to follow along and catch everything.  Rather its pacing remains rock solid despite the amount of information discussed throughout the program’s near hour-long run time.  Because audiences won’t feel left behind and confused, they will also have increased odds of not only catching the featured topics but more clearly understanding them, too.  It is yet more reason for anyone with any interest in the LHC or anyone with any interest or experience in physics to watch NOVA: Big Bang Machine.

Both the topics covered in NOVA: Big Bang Machine and the pacing of the material covered are important in their own right to the overall enjoyment and success of the episode.  Both elements already noted, there is still one element that should be noted here that makes this episode work.  That element is the collective interviews featured throughout the episode.  Some of the scientists working on the LHC are interviewed for their own insight on the machine’s importance in both the scientific community and the world.  There are also interviews with a variety of academics throughout the program.  Their insight coupled with that of the people that work on the LHC paints quite a vivid picture of the machine’s importance and its capabilities.  Their thoughts show even more clearly the importance of the LHC being recently being restarted and the implications for what it could potentially reveal to the world in being restarted.  Those insights round out the reasons that NOVA: Big Bang Machine proves itself worth the watch whether audiences are experienced members of the physics community or whether they just have a general interest in the subject.  Together with the program’s pacing and its depth of information, all three elements show not only why audiences should definitely see this episode of NOVA but why NOVA remains overall one of the best science-based series on television today if not the best.

NOVA has remained one of the best science-based series on television for a number of years thanks to the variety of episodes that it tackles and its accessibility to such a wide range of audiences in every episode.  That standard is exactly why it maintains its place in the pantheon of educational television in NOVA: Big Bang Machine.  The solid packing of the topics taken on throughout the program is another reason that it maintains that reputation and why the episode itself is such an interesting watch.  And as with so many other episodes of NOVA, the interviews included across the episode add even more insight and enjoyment. Each of the elements plays an important part in the whole of the program. Together, they show clearly why NOVA: Big Bang Machine will make a big bang of its own among anyone with any interest or experience in the world of physics. It is available now on DVD and can be ordered online at http://www.shoppbs.org/search/index.jsp?kwCatId=&kw=nova%20big%20bang%20machine&origkw=NOVA+Big+Bang+Machine&sr=1. It can also be ordered in a combo pack that also includes a wristwatch for $49.99. The combo pack will retail in stores for $68.94. Audiences can check out a clip from this episode of NOVA online now via YouTube at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SfJBUJMywPs. More information on NOVA: Big Bang Machine and other episodes of NOVA is available online now along with all of the latest NOVA news at:

Website: https://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/NOVAonline

To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to https://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it. Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.

Audiences Of All Ages Will Enjoy PBS Kids’ Latest Trip To Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood

Courtesy:  PBS/PBS Kids/PBS Distribution

Courtesy: PBS/PBS Kids/PBS Distribution

PBS Kids will release the latest collection of episodes from its hit series Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood later this month.  It’s A Beautiful Day in The Neighborhood is an aptly titled release as it is such a great new collection.  The central reason that it is such a joy is the collection of lessons incorporated into each of its eight episodes.   From its opening lesson on getting outside and getting active to its lesson on healthy eating to a lesson about responsibility and making things right when one makes mistakes and more, the lessons incorporated into these episodes make them a wonderful watch for audiences of all ages.  Another reason that it shines so brightly is the fact that the episodes are run in chronological order once again as with previous collections and with the series itself.    Last but not least worth noting is the material added onto the collection as bonus material.  The printable coloring pages and activities that have been included with previous collections are present here.  There are also a couple of bonus music videos performed by the trio Voodoo Highway Music & Post.  One of the videos and its song drives home the lesson centered on self-confidence.  The other sees the trio performing the show’s theme song.  All three elements together show fully why Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood: It’s A Beautiful Day In The Neighborhood is yet another welcome addition to any family’s personal DVD library.

Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood: It’s A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood offers plenty of reason for any family to add it to their personal home DVD library.  The central reason that it is so worth the purchase is the collection of lessons incorporated into each of its episodes.  Being that summer is now right around the corner, many of the lessons the lead off lessons centered on getting outside and exploring nature is a fitting way to lead off the collection.  These lessons are taught as Daniel and his friend O The Owl go outside with O’s uncle X The Owl for a walk in “Daniel Explores Nature” and “Daniel’s Nature Walk.”  X teaches the boys about appreciating all that nature has to offer in these episodes and that even if there’s a little sprinkle it doesn’t necessarily mean that one has to go indoors.  The boys (and in turn audiences) learn about all the different plants and animals in nature in the collection’s lead off episodes.  This will hopefully get young audiences encouraged to go outside themselves and learn about all the joys that nature has to offer.  By connection, going outside also promotes getting active which is just as important for young viewers to learn if not more so.  On a similar note, the pairing of “Fruit Picking Day” and “A Trip To The Enchanted Garden” teach young viewers about healthy eating by showing just some of the great tasting healthy foods there are out there.  If that isn’t enough for audiences (especially parents and teachers), there is also a lesson about being responsible for one’s actions and making things right when one has made a mistake.  The lesson includes a sub-lesson of sorts that teaches young viewers about taking things that aren’t theirs without asking.  Yet again, here is another reason that this collection should be in every family’s home and maybe even every pre-school and kindergarten classroom.  It’s not the last reason that it should be included in both settings, either.  There is also a lesson that teaches young viewers about the importance of cleaning up and another centered on safety at the beach (again just in time for summer).  Regardless of which lesson(s) one chooses, every viewer will agree that every one of the lessons featured in this collection make it well worth the purchase and the watch.

The lessons that are presented throughout the course of PBS Kids’ new Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood collection are central to its success.  That should be crystal clear by now.  They make up just one reason that every home and every pre-k and kindergarten classroom should have this collection.  Another reason that it proves itself well worth the purchase and the watch is the fact that the lessons are presented in a clear and concise fashion.  More simply put the episodes that teach each of the lessons are presented together once again just as with previous collections from the series.  It also mirrors the way that the lessons are presented in the series, too.  This is a direct throwback to the way the lessons were taught in Mr. Rodgers’ Neighborhood so many years ago.  Keeping the episodes in question in chronological order as it were means keeping young viewers’ fully engaged.  Had the episodes jumped around then the lessons incorporated into said episodes wouldn’t have been driven home as well if at all.  But in keeping each episode paired, it ensures the lessons are driven home.  It is one more way in which the people at PBS and PBS Kids have succeeded once again with this latest collection and even more reason for parents and teachers alike to add this set to their home and classroom collections respectively.

The lessons incorporated into the new collection of episodes from Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood and the clear connection of the episodes to drive home the lessons are both key in their own way in making the collection enjoyable.  Having noted the most important of the disc’s elements there is still one more element to note that makes it so enjoyable.  That last element is the material included as bonus material.  Included with this collection are all of the bonus printable coloring pages that were included with the series’ previous DVD collections.  The bonus activity “All Aboard” is included once again, too.  The coloring pages feature Daniel and his friends by themselves and together on board Trolley.  Speaking of Trolley, the bonus activity “All Aboard” gives young viewers the chance once again to “buy” their own imaginary tickets and ride their own make believe trolley.  Along the way, the activity teaches those same viewers about taking turns.  Those families and teachers that might not have the series’ previous DVDs will most appreciate that these same bonuses have been included once again.  That is because it keeps them on the same page as viewers that do have the noted collections.  The music videos included with this collection are the new additions.  The videos present the series’ theme song and another piece that teaches young viewers about self-confidence.  The songs in both pieces are performed by Voodoo Music & Post.  The second of the songs is especially important as it can be used as part of an invaluable discussion on self-worth especially in an age when it seems like bullying is still at near epidemic levels in this country.  It is one more important way in which Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood: It’s a Beautiful Day In The Neighborhood shines, proving itself a must have whether in the classroom or the living room.

PBS Kids’ new collection of episodes from Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood is yet another must have whether in the classroom or the living room.  Its lessons and their organization are both important in their own way to the enjoyment and success of this latest collection.  The bonus material included with the disc is just as important to the presentation in whole.  All three elements considered together, they prove once again the collection’s value regardless of the setting in which it is used. It will be available Tuesday, May 26th on DVD and can be ordered online direct from PBS’ online store at http://www.shoppbs.org/product/index.jsp?productId=60958536&cp=&sr=1&kw=daniel+tigers+neighborhood&origkw=daniel+tiger%27s+neighborhood&parentPage=search. More information on Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood is available online along with more episodes and games at:

Website: http://pbskids.org/daniel

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/danieltigertv

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 https://philspicks.wordpress.com.

Not Some B-Movie Ripoff, Nature: Attack Of The Killer Whales Is One Of 2015’s Best New Documentaries

Courtesy:  PBS

Courtesy: PBS

PBS’ hit wildlife series Nature has proven time and again throughout its thirty-plus years on television to be the best series of its kind. This is even in comparison to the wildlife series that have and still do run on the Big Four networks. Over the course of its almost thirty-three years on television Nature has taken audiences around the world multiple times, presenting to audiences some of the world’s most exotic lands and equally exotic animals to audiences of all ages. For all of the exotic animals and lands that have been presented over the years on Nature sometimes the series uses those animals and lands to tackle some tough topics, too. That is exactly what is done in its 2014 episode Invasion of the Killer Whales. Invasion of the Killer Whales was released on DVD early this year. And while the episode’s title makes it sound like some classic Roger Corman B-movie, it is anything but. Yes, that bad joke was fully intended. Invasion of the Killer Whales is a serious look at the impact of climate change and global warming on the Arctic ecosystem. It does so without being preachy, too, which is just one reason that it makes for such an interesting watch. The footage is just as important to the whole of the presentation. Audiences actually see first hand how climate change and global warming are affecting specifically the Arctic ecosystem. They are not forced to rely on hearsay. It makes even more hard-hitting and even slightly shocking what is really happening as a result of climate change and global warming. That footage expertly complements the story presented in this episode of Nature, showing even more why climate change is such an important issue and yet again why this is yet another interesting episode of Nature. Both the story presented in this episode of Nature and its footage share equal importance in its success. As important as both are to the whole of the program, its pacing is just as important as those aforementioned elements. Those behind the cameras manage to keep a solid pace, even throwing in interviews on both sides of the presented issue to keep the pacing at a rate that is just enough to not lose audiences along the way. Thanks to the attention of the program’s pacing, audiences are even more apt to remain engaged from start to finish. And in turn, they are that much more apt to fully grasp and appreciate the magnitude of the covered topic. In understanding the magnitude of the topic presented here and appreciating it, audiences will agree that once more PBS’ Nature has proven exactly why it remains today the top wildlife-based program on television today.

Invasion of the Killer Whales sounds like a title ripped from one of Roger Corman’s classic sci-fi flicks from the 1950s, right? All jokes aside, this episode of PBS’ hit wildlife series Nature is a very serious episode. The topic tackled in this episode is the effect of climate change and global warming on the Arctic ecosystem. The program explains that because of climate change and global warming, polar bears, the region’s once top predators, are now being pushed out as their hunting grounds are disappearing more and more each year. By direct connection, killer whales are becoming increasingly dominant in the area. that is because the ice that once protected other marine life in the Arctic from the killer whales is no longer there to protect them. This means that certain animals such as narwhals are drastically decreasing because of these overall changes. It is just one example of the impact of climate change and global change globally. The information provided about these impacts is presented in a fashion that avoids being preachy, which is especially good for audiences. While it makes a clear argument about the effects of climate change even on a micro scale, it doesn’t do so in a preachy fashion. Rather it does so in a fashion typical of Nature. It just presents the animals that are common to the region. And it explains their interactions. In this case it shows the effect of an outside factor on their interactions. It’s nice to see that it took on the subject in this fashion instead of just being a full-on argumentative piece unlike so many other programs out there. It’s just one reason that audiences will appreciate this episode of Nature, too. The footage that accompanies the program adds to its interest.

The topic tackled in this episode of Nature is a hot button issue, needless to say. Luckily, the program doesn’t approach the subject in an argumentative fashion in this case. Rather it does its best to maintain at leat a semi-objective vantage point in tackling the subject matter. The program’s use of its footage helps to maintain that vantage point. It shows the killer whales entering territory that they once couldn’t enter due to the existence of that Arctic sheet ice. Audiences see their wolfpack mentality as they surround groups of narwhals and take them down almost systematically. It is shocking to a point. It is shocking because of the level of intelligence that the orcas display in this mentality. Just as interesting to note is the footage of the polar bears in question hunting unsteadily among the melting ice. It clearly shows that the polar bears’ hunting grounds are indeed disappearing. The interviews that are interspersed with all of this footage makes for even more interest as they show just how far the impacts of the changes reach. Both pros and cons are discussed in regards to the changing conditions. Those interviews coupled with the footage of the changes happening in the Arctic add another level to the program in whole. They partner with the episode’s subject matter to make this episode even harder-hitting, proving once again why Nature remains the top wildlife-based program on television today.

Both the topic covered in Nature: Attack of the Killer Whales and the footage that accompanies the topic are key elements of this episode. As important as they are to the whole of the episode, the episode’s pacing is just as pivotal to its success. Those behind the cameras keep a pace that is solid enough to keep audiences engaged from beginning to end of the roughly hour-long program. At no one point does it waste any time on one part of the topic or another. The result is that audiences will be more apt to more fully appreciate the magnitude of the subject presented here. In better appreciating and understanding the material in question, audiences will agree that Nature has once again proven why it remains over thirty years after its debut, the front-runner in the realm of televised wildlife programs. This applies regardless of whether audiences have been watching Nature throughout its run or are relatively new viewers. Audiences will also agree in considering this element in conjunction with this episode’s footage and the manner in which it approached its subject matter, that Attack of the Killer Whales is one of this year’s best new documentaries.

Nature: Attack of the Killer Whales proves itself to be one of this year’s best new documentaries. Whether for its subject matter and its approach of said material, the footage compiled for the program, or for the its pacing, there is obviously plenty to like about this episode. It is available now on DVD and can be ordered direct from PBS’ online store at http://www.shoppbs.org/product/index.jsp?productId=51197006&cp=1378003.2831221&sr=1&origkw=nature&parentPage=family. More information on this and other episodes of Nature is available online at:

Website: http://www.pbs.org/wnet/nature

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/PBSNature

To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it. Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.

WordWorld Birthday Party! Is Its Own Gift Throughout The Year

Courtesy:  PBS Distribution/PBS/PBS Kids

Courtesy: PBS Distribution/PBS/PBS Kids

PBS Kids’ released the latest installment of its family friendly series WordWorld on DVD last month.  The DVD–Word World: Birthday Party!–is a great fit for any family with young readers and readers to be.  The DVD features five more episodes from the vocabulary-building-based series that the whole family is sure to enjoy.  Families will enjoy the presented episodes for more reasons than they might think. Audiences will note in watching all give episodes that they teach more than just vocabulary-building skills. The show’s writers have also incorporated some important life lessons, too.  And they aren’t done in an overly preachy manner, either.  That is just one part of what makes this collection of episodes so enjoyable. The collective run time and pacing of the episodes presented here makes the overall viewing even more enjoyable for audiences of all ages. Also worth noting of this DVD is the material included as bonus material. Included in the DVD are four printable activities for parents to enjoy with their children as well as six separate printable coloring pages featuring each of WordWorld’s inhabitants. Each element on its own plays its own part in making WordWorld: Birthday Party! enjoyable. All three elements taken into consideration together show it to be yet another enjoyable piece for audiences of all ages and one more welcome compilation for families regardless of how many or few of the series’ DVDs said families may or may not already own.

WordWorld: Birthday Party! is not the first collections of the series’ episodes released by PBS Kids and PBS Distribution. That aside, it is no less enjoyable for audiences either. This is regardless of whether or not said audiences already own any of the series’ previously released compilations, too. One reason that it is just as enjoyable as its predecessors is the work of the series’ writers. The writers continue the series’ long-running tradition of incorporating both basic word-building skills and important life lessons into each episode. The word-building skills are taught in much the same manner as in The Electric Company and even certain episodes of Sesame Street. The DVD’s opening episode “Happy Birthday Dog” teaches young viewers about some of the words associated with birthday parties including the all-important word “Cake.” At the same time, the writers include an important social lesson as both Pig and Dog are reminded about sharing the cake rather than hogging it (no pun intended) for themselves). “The Rainbow Birthday Cake” presents a subtle yet important lesson about recycling and caring for the Earth as Duck tries to get Frog’s cake to his birthday. And in the DVD’s closer “Bugs to the Rescue,” young viewers are taught a variety of words as the bugs try to save Dog. At the same time, those same viewers are also taught all too necessary problem solving skills along the way. Those looking mainly for those word-building skills will appreciate the lesson presented in “Bit By Bit.” It teaches viewers that big words aren’t so scary when learning them. It teaches young viewers that in order to handle big words, they need to just break them down and handle them “bit by bit.” And it uses the word “banana” as an example of how to do that. Simply put, it teaches young readers to work out big words by taking them one syllable at a time. It is another great tool to teach children whether they are already in school or getting ready to start for the first time. Together with the already noted other vocabulary lessons (and their companion life lessons), all of the lessons crafted by WordWorld’s writers show clearly once again why their work is central to the success and enjoyment of this latest collection of episodes.

The word-building lessons and the important everyday life lessons incorporated into each of this DVD’s episodes are central to its overall success and enjoyment. While they are the key point of focus, they compose only one part of the disc’s success. The collective run time and pacing of each episode is just as important to the whole as the lessons themselves. Each episode comes in at roughly twelve minutes. At five episodes, that comes to a total of one full hour of educational and entertaining content for young viewers. On the surface it might seem like that is pushing it a little with the viewers’ attention spans. But thankfully for the work of the writers, the pacing of each episode is just enough to keep said viewers’ attention from start to finish. Thanks to that expertly balanced pacing, not only do those roughly twelve minutes pass by with ease but young viewers will remain engaged right to each episode’s end. The resultant effect of that engagement is that those same viewers will be more apt to catch the concepts presented in each episode and more apt to retain said concepts, too. It is yet another way that WordWorld: Birthday Party! proves itself another enjoyable addition to any family’s home DVD library regardless of whether or not they already own any of the series’ previously released DVDs.

The lessons presented in each episode of WordWorld presented here are themselves key to the DVD’s success and enjoyment among audiences. In the same vein, the work of the writers to provide a solid pacing in each episode will keep the show’s target audiences engaged from start to end. In doing so, said viewers won’t even realize that a full twelve minutes have passed as they laugh and learn. All of this taken into consideration, WordWorld: Birthday Party presents audiences plenty of reason to pick up this DVD. If the already noted elements aren’t enough, then perhaps the proverbial icing on the cake (bad pun fully intended) that is the disc’s bonus material will be enough. The material included on the disc as bonus material includes four printable activity pages and six printable coloring pages. The activity pages act as extensions to the presented episodes as each one teaches word-building skills in its own way. There is a connect-the-dots activity that spells out one of Dog’s favorite treats. There is also a word search that encourages young readers to finish building the words presented on the sheet. And there is even a word search and riddle game that each teach word-building skills in their own way. The printable coloring pages each feature one of the inhabitants of WordWorld. To an extent, young viewers could even use the printable activity pages as coloring pages at the same time since they are presented largely in black and white save for the word-building riddle game. Again here is one more way in which WordWorld: Birthday Party! proves itself to be yet another enjoyable collection of episodes from the family favorite PBS Kids series. By itself it offers its own share of enjoyment. When partnered with the episodes’ writing, their run times, and pacing, all three elements show clearly why every family will enjoy this latest collection of episodes just as much as any previously released WordWorld compilation disc.

WordWorld: Birthday Party! boasts plenty for audiences of all ages to enjoy. The series’ writers have crafted five more episodes that combine word-building skills with important life lessons to make each one educational and entertaining. The collective run time and pacing of each episode guarantees that viewers will remain engaged and will even potentially retain some of the presented lessons if not all of them. The bonus material included on the disc adds even more enjoyment as they allow young viewers to build their vocabulary skills while they’re not watching the DVD. They can also color their favorite WordWorld character(s). Each element on its own proves its value to the DVD in whole. Collectively, all three elements noted here make WordWorld: Birthday Party a clearly welcome addition to any family’s home DVD collection. WordWorld: Birthday Party! is available now in stores and online and can be ordered direct from PBS’ online store at http://www.shoppbs.org/product/index.jsp?productId=57493336&cp=&kw=wordworld+birthday+party&origkw=WordWorld+Birthday+Party!&sr=1. More information on this DVD is available online along with all of the latest WordWorld news, games, and more at:

Website: http://www.wordworld.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/WordWorld

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 https://philspicks.wordpress.com.

PBS Kids’ New Wild Kratts DVD Is A Fin-Tastic Collection

Courtyesy:  PBS Kids/PBS Distribution/PBS

Courtyesy: PBS Kids/PBS Distribution/PBS

PBS Kids’ will release its latest collection of episodes from its hit kid-friendly wildlife series Wild Kratts next Tuesday, April 14th. The DVD, Shark-Tastic, is a nice addition to any family’s Wild Kratts DVD collection regardless of the number of DVDs that families may or may not already own. The DVD, the series’ eighth, features four episodes for the whole family. Two of those episodes—‘Speaking Dolphinese” and “Stuck on Sharks” are bonus episodes. But they have actually been previously released on two other Wild Kratts collections—Lost at Sea and Predator Power. That aside, all four episodes present a similar theme tying each episode together. Keeping that in mind, the episodes featured in this latest collection make for at least one reason that families will enjoy it. The run time of each episode adds to the DVD’s overall enjoyment. Each episode runs roughly twenty-five minutes. That is just long enough for the series’ intended audiences. What’s more, it is a standard held by the show since its inception two years ago. Last to note the makes Wild Kratts: Shark-Tastic worth the watch is its bonus material. PBS Distribution has included again as bonus material an extensive aquarium guide and matching game that encourages audiences to match the given animals with their correct habitats. Both bonuses have been included in previous Wild Kratts DVDs. This is of course more the case for those that are just starting their Wild Kratts DVD collection. Keeping that in consideration along with the DVD’s episode selection and the episodes’ run times, Wild Kratts: Shark-Tastic still proves to be an enjoyable watch for any family even if a family already owns any of the series’ other DVDs.

Wild Kratts: Shark-Tastic is a fun watch for any family regardless of how many of the series’ previous DVDs a family may or may not already own. The central reason for this is the DVD’s episode selection. Included in this DVD are four episodes that take the brothers Kratt into the deep blue sea for four very different reasons. Two of the episodes in question—“Speaking Dolphinese” and “Stuck On Sharks”—have both already been included in previous Wild Kratts DVDs. On the surface this might not seem like much worth noting. But a deeper examination reveals much more. A deeper examination reveals that all four of the episodes featured here presents its own original story separate from any of the others. At the same time, all four episodes are tied together by one continuous theme of aquatic life. “Octopus Wildkratticus” (Season One) examines the adaptations of the octopus while the Kratt brothers try to reclaim their lost power suits. In “Tortuga Tune Up” (Season Two), Chris and Martin introduce the Hawksbill Sea Turtle and the Tiger Shark to audiences while they try to help Aviva develop the Tortuga’s ability to swim underwater. “Speaking Dolpinese” (Season One) sees Chris and Martin learning to speak the language of the dolphin when they encounter a pair of young dolphins that have been separated from its pod. And in “Stuck on Sharks” (Season Two), the Kratts present a lesson on one of the ocean’s deadliest yet most misunderstood predators, the Great White Shark. The stories themselves are well worth the watch if only for their educational and entertainment content. That all four also maintain a central theme will especially ensure audiences remain engaged through all four episodes. It’s just one way in which Wild Kratts: Shark-Tastic proves itself worth the addition to any family’s library even if said families already own the DVDs on which “Speaking Dolphinese” and “Stuck On Sharks” were previously released.

The episodes that make up the body of Wild Kratts: Shark-Tastic by themselves make for plenty of reason for audiences to check it out. Younger viewers will be able to catch the concepts delivered by the series’ writers just as easily as older adults. This applies both with the DVD’s primary pairing of episodes and its bonus episodes, too. What’s more, all four episodes stand as their own stories yet stay connected via one continuous theme of aquatic life. That all four episodes follow that one theme yet stand out as their own works will keep viewers engaged and in turn aid in helping viewers catch the concepts handled in each episode. The easily accessible writing displayed in each of the DVD’s episodes coupled with their solid continuity is important to the overall presentation of Wild Kratts: Shark-Tastic. But without a proper run time, the writing and continuity of the episodes would be moot. Each of the DVD’s episodes comes in at roughly twenty-five minutes. Being that the concepts presented in the episodes are typically aimed at older children (typically third grade and up), twenty-five minutes is just long enough. Were the episodes any longer, the show’s heads would risk losing the attention of its viewers. So keeping this in mind, it shows even more why the episodes’ run times are so important to the presentation in whole.

The combination of the writing and the run times in all four episodes combined with the episodes’ sensible run times makes the argument in favor of this DVD even stronger than if one were to use only one element or another. Together, they assure that the show’s key audiences will remain engaged and entertained from beginning to end with each episode. This is of the utmost importance to the enjoyment of this latest Wild Kratts compilation. As enjoyable as the episodes prove to be, they are just part of the reason that audiences will enjoy this DVD. The material included as bonus features makes the DVD even more enjoyable. This is especially the case for those that perhaps don’t already own the show’s previously released DVDs. The reason for this is that the bonus material included on this disc is the same material included in those noted releases. The material in question includes a printable activity that lets younger fans to match animals to their proper habitat and an extensive aquarium guide that kids can use. Now that summer is just around the corner, both the activity sheet and the aquarium guide will serve as their own positives to help keep kids learning while they’re out of school. So to that extent, both extras definitely deserve to be called bonuses at least in this case. It’s one more way that Wild Kratts: Shark-Tastic proves itself to be another welcome addition to any family’s Wild Kratts collection.

Wild Kratts: Shark-Tastic presents plenty of reasons for the whole family to enjoy this latest collection of episodes from PBS Kids’ hit wildlife series. All four episodes featured in this collection follow the same aquatic theme. Two of the episodes are even pulled from previous Wild Kratts DVDs to complete the episode list. The run time of each episode comes in just under the half hour mark. That in itself is a long-held tradition by the people behind Wild Kratts. And coupled with the easily accessible marine biology lessons presented in each episode, the DVD becomes all the more entertaining for audiences of all ages. The addition of the DVD’s bonus material makes the overall presentation all the more enjoyable and successful especially with summer right around the corner. All three elements taken into consideration, Wild Kratts: Shark-Tastic proves exactly why it is yet another welcome release from what is one of PBS Kids’ best series. Wild Kratts: Shark-Tastic will be available next Tuesday, April 14th. It can be ordered online via PBS’ online store at http://www.shoppbs.org/product/index.jsp?productId=58235516&cp=&kw=wild+kratts+shark-tastic&origkw=Wild+Kratts+Shark-Tastic&sr=1. More information on Wild Kratts: Shark-Tastic is available online along with all of the latest Wild Kratts news and games online at:

Website: http://www.krattbrothers.com
http://pbskids.org/wildkratts

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/wildkrattsofficial

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 https://philspicks.wordpress.com.

PBS Kids’ New Dinosaur Train Is A Fun-Filled “Ride” For The Whole Family

Courtesy:  PBS Distribution/PBS/PBS Kids

Courtesy: PBS Distribution/PBS/PBS Kids

PBS Distribution just announced Wednesday that it will release another brand new collection of episodes from the hit PBS Kids series Dinosaur Train later this month in the form of Dinosaur Train: Explore Outdoors.  Its release on April 21st will come almost two months after the release of the series’ most recent DVD Dinosaur Train: I Love TrainsDinosaur Train: I Love Trains is in its own right another enjoyable addition to the series’ already long list of previously released DVDs and just as welcome in any family’s home DVD library.  The main reason for this is, as with any TV show or movie, its writing.  The series’ writers have crafted eight more stories that not only educate young viewers about more dinosaurs but also about some important life lessons, too.  The run time of each episode remains the same as with the episodes included in the series’ previous DVD releases.  Considering that the combination of those run times and the equally well-written episodes prove clearly why Dinosaur Train: I Love Trains another welcome addition to any family’s home DVD library.

The latest addition to PBS Kids’ already long list of Dinosaur Train DVDs, Dinosaur Train: I Love Trains, is one more welcome addition to any family’s home library.  This is regardless of how often one family or another gets to see Dinosaur Train.  The central reason for its enjoyment is the strong writing exhibited in each previously released compilation from the hit series.  This is exhibited in all eight episodes that make up the DVD’s body beginning with “Junior Conductor Jamboree.”  Usually the Pteranodon kids goes to one specific time period or another and learn about one kind of dinosaur or another.  In the case of this episode, the kids ride the train from one end to the other, picking up friends along the way for one big prehistoric celebration.  The kids learn about conducting the dinosaur train and about the different time periods along the way.  This includes learning about a variety of dinosaurs that lived in each time period instead of just one.  On the surface one might think that this means presenting a rather broad swath of information for young viewers that they might not fully catch.  But credit where credit is due.  The writers actually handled this issue quite well by offering just enough information to be considered a small introduction to the given dinosaurs and their time zones.  Their handling of the information in question will in turn lead young viewers to want to learn even more about everything discussed.  The show’s writers really should be applauded for that effect.  It is their painstaking efforts to balance everything that will lead to that love of knowledge among its younger viewers (and maybe even some older viewers, too).

On another note, “Rocket Train” is another important example of why the work of the show’s writers remains so important in this compilation of episodes.  “Rocket Train” is an especially important episode for younger viewers because of the important life lesson that it presents.  The lesson that it presents is that just because something is new, shiny, and “high performance” does not necessarily mean that it is better than what’s already out there (I.E. something older).  We live today in an age when young people (children, teens, and even adults) want the next cool, shiny, “high performance” gadgets.  The thing is that just like the Rocket Train, the next new cool gadget is anything but perfect.  Smart Phones may seem cool.  But it has been pointed out that they have their own security flaws versus the simplicity and security of say a flip phone.  In the same vein, the Rocket Train ended up needing help by the older but more reliable Dinosaur Train.  Again, the connection is clear.  It is an episode that every family should see.  With any luck, maybe older audiences and younger alike will catch that lesson and take it to heart.  It would prove the writers’ efforts weren’t in vain.  Regardless it proves once again why the writing is so important to the whole of this DVD’s episode.

One more example of the importance of the writing in these episodes lies in “Troodon Train.”  This episode is a little more basic than the others that have been noted already.  It serves more as a review of sorts per se as it re-introduces the Elvis’ prehistoric dino counterpart in the form of King Cryolophosaurus.  The *ahem* king is re-introduced in this episode as the Pteranodon Family takes a trip to Troodon Town to celebrate Troodon Train Day.  The festivities are capped off by a performance by The King himself.  King Cryolophosaurus was already introduced in previous Dinosaur Train DVDs.  So having him play a part in this episode is really a way to get him fresh in young audiences’ minds.  That the writers would maintain King Cryolophosaurus as an ongoing character and include him yet again so as to basically review in a manner of speaking  is pretty smart to say the least.  So credit goes out to not only Dinosaur Train’s writers but also to those charged with assembling the episodes included in this set for including this episode if only for that purpose.

All three episodes noted here are each prime examples in their own right as to why the writing in each episode makes this compilation so enjoyable.  Of course there are five other episodes that present their own value to audiences.  Regardless of which episode(s) audiences find as their favorite(s), every viewer will agree that all eight episodes together clearly show why the writing behind these episodes makes them so enjoyable and in turn Dinosaur Train: I Love Trains in whole so enjoyable, too.  Now having noted this, the writing is not all that is worth noting in the enjoyment of Dinosaur Train: I Love Trains.  The run time of each episode is just as important to the whole.  Just as with the episodes included in the series’ previous DVD releases, the episodes presented here run no more than roughly than about eight to ten minutes each.  Considering the series’ key audience, this is just long enough to keep younger viewers’ attention from beginning to end of each episode.  And because the topics and subjects handled in each episode are done so in a relatively simplistic manner, it guarantees even more that said audiences will not only enjoy each episode and remain fully engaged, but that those viewers might even actually retain at least some of the information shared in each episode, too.  So to that extent, the run time of each of the DVD’s episodes does in fact prove once again to be just as important as any other element that makes the show so enjoyable for audiences of all ages.

The work of the writers behind Dinosaur Train goes hand in hand with the run time of each episode included in this DVD in examining what makes it another enjoyable presentation. The relatively short run time of each episode will keep young viewers’ attention just long enough for them go grasp the equally simplistic delivery of the topics covered in each episode. While both elements are of equal importance to the whole of Dinosaur Train: I Love Trains, there is still one element remaining that should be noted in regards to the DVD’s overall enjoyment. The element in question is the material included with the DVD as bonus material. For the most part, the bonus material is a handful of printable coloring pages. That includes even the printable activities. The activities in question are the starting point for activities that could be done away from the TV. And at the same time, they also double as coloring pages for some younger audiences, too. The real gem of this DVD’s bonus material is its interactive CD-Rom game that allows users to play as one or two of the Pteranodon kids, paddling down a river and collecting bugs. Children can compete to see who can catch the most bugs first as they make their way down the river. It teaches both counting skills and entertains at the same time. So even in this case, the bonus material definitely lives up to its name. And together with the work of the writers, and the overall run time of each episode, all three elements come together to prove exactly why Dinosaur Train: I Love Trains is another wonderful “ride” for any young paleontologist in training and for any family in general.

Dinosaur Train: I Love Trains is available now on DVD in stores and online. It can be ordered online direct from PBS’ online store at http://www.shoppbs.org/product/index.jsp?productId=49575196&cp=&sr=1&kw=dinosaur+train&origkw=Dinosaur+Train&parentPage=search. More information on this and other Dinosaur Train DVDs and episodes is available online along with Dinosaur Train games and activities at:

Website: http://pbskids.org/dinosaurtrain

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/DinosaurTrain

To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it. Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.

PBS Announces Release Date, Specs For Grantchester Home Release

Courtesy:  PBS

Courtesy: PBS

PBS’ hit series Masterpiece brings to audiences another gripping murder mystery this spring when it releases Grantchester on DVD and Blu-ray.

Grantchester will be released on DVD and Blu-ray on Tuesday, April 7th. The story is based on author James Runcie’s novel Sidney Chambers and the Shadow of Death. It picks up just after the end of World War II. Elizabeth II had just become queen. And Grantchester’s local priest was one of the town’s most respected figures. A lawyer in nearby Cambridge is found dead. A suicide note, a gun, and alcohol point directly to an open and shut case. But confessions to local priest Sidney Chambers reveals much more than Inspector Geordie Keating had thought. The confessions lead the pair to team up solve what turns out to be a murder. Audiences can check out a trailer for Grantchester online now via YouTube at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s3tzFp5CeAU.

Grantchester stars James Norton (Rush, Death Comes to Pemberly, Mr. Turner) as Sidney Chambers. He is joined by Robson Green (Being Human, Mount Pleasant, Strike Back) as Inspector Geordie Keating. Also on board for this mystery are: Morven Christie (The Young Victoria, Death in Paradise, Sirens) as Amanda Kendall, Tessa Peake-Jones (Only Fools and Horses, Casualty, Doctors) as Mrs. Maguire, Al Weaver (Sherlock, Me and Orson Welles, Doom) as Leonard Finch, and Pheline Roggan (Soul Kitchen, Chiko, Kebab Connection) as the widow of lawyer Stephen Staunton, the series’ first victim.

Grantchester will be available Tuesday, April 7th on DVD and Blu-ray. The series is spread across six episodes for a total run time of 360 minutes. It is spread across two discs on both its DVD and Blu-ray release. The DVD set will retail for MSRP of $34.99 and the Blu-ray set for $39.99. Both can be ordered online along with a DVD/Book combo and Blu-ray book combo via PBS’ online store at http://www.shoppbs.org/search/index.jsp?kwCatId=&kw=grantchester&origkw=grantchester&sr=1.

More information on this and other titles from PBS is available online at:

Website: http://www.pbs.org

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/pbs

To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it. Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.