It’s hard to believe, but there is officially a little more than a week left in the almost old year. For most of the country, it means winter break is here and kids are out of school, getting excited over Christmas and relaxing. That means lots of parents out there are struggling to find ways to entertain their kids and maybe also keep their brains growing at the same time. Phil’s Picks’ final “best of” list for this year will hopefully help with those efforts.
The last of this year’s “best of” lists focuses on the year’s top new single-disc family friendly DVDs and Blu-rays. It features new releases for families from PBS, Shout! Factory, and Nickelodeon, as well as Turner Broadcasting/Cartoon Network, and even 20th Century Studios. It runs the gamut from the educational to the entertaining, too.
Without any further ado, here is the last of Phil’s Picks’ “best of” lists for 2021, this year’s Top 10 New Family DVDs/BDs.
PHIL’S PICKS’ 2021 TOP 10 NEW FAMILY DVDs/BDs
Hero Elementary: Sparks’ Crew Animal Rescue
Wild Kratts: Cats and Dogs
Dinosaur Train: Adventure Island
Molly of Denali: Molly & The Great One
Are You Afraid of the Dark?: Curse of the Shadows
Victor & Valentino: Folk Art Foes
Ron’s Gone Wrong
Paw Patrol: The Movie
PBS Kids Christmas Collection
Thomas & Friends All Engines Go!: Time For Teamwork
Sesame Street: Things Elmo Likes
Sesame Street: Wonderful World of Friends
Baby Shark’s Big Show!
PBS Kids 15 Girl Power Adventures
That’s it for this year, folks. Again though, there are lots of new titles already announced and scheduled for 2022, so Phil’s Picks is already looking forward to next year for all the new family DVDs and BDs and so much other content. Stay tuned!
The unofficial start of the annual holiday season is only days away. For those who don’t know, that is a reference to Halloween. As Halloween nears, many are already turning their attention to colder weather and Christmas, including officials with PBS Kids and PBS Distribution. The companies are scheduled to release two new seasonal DVD collections Oct. 19 on DVD in the form of PBS Kids: 20 Snowy Stories and PBS Kids Christmas Collection. The collections, one a double-disc collection and the other a single-disc set, are successful new offerings. Their success comes in part through the episodes featured in the set. This will be examined shortly. While the featured episodes do plenty to keep viewers engaged and entertained, the sets are not perfect. Each collection suffers in the way of their packaging. This element will be examined a little later. The sets’ pricing rounds out their most important elements and will also be discussed later. Each item noted is important in its own way to the whole of the collections. All things considered, they make the collections wonderful ways for families to get into the seasonal and holiday spirit.
PBS Kids and PBS Distribution’s upcoming DVD collections, PBS Kids: 20 Snowy Stories and PBS Kids Christmas Collection are mostly successful offerings from the companies. Their success is due in large part to their featured episodes. The episodes are culled from a variety of PBS Kids’ most beloved series past and present, such as Arthur, Splash & Bubbles, and Word World just to name a few. Also featured are episodes from the likes of Let’s Go Luna!, Dinosaur Train, and World World just to name a few more. For the most part, the episodes feature stories that match the collections’ titles, too. The only episode that is out of place is the Dinosaur Train episode, “Cretacious Conifers.” Featured in the 20 Snowy Stories collection, it has no snow or even ice. Yes, there is a mention of the winter solstice at points throughout, but it also focuses heavily on more of a Christmas theme as the story progresses. To that end, it seems more of a fit on the Christmas Collection set. While the Ready Jet Go! episodes featured in the 20 Snowy Stories collection are a little bit of a stretch – they feature Jet and his friends bringing ice back from outer space to beat the summer heat in two separate ways and for two separate reasons – they do at least fit a little bit.
In the case of the Christmas Collection, its episodes are more uniformly in line with its title. One of the most notable of its episodes is “Luna’s Christmas Around the World.” After getting stuck in Antarctica thanks to the captain of the ship on which they are riding, Andy, Carmen and Leo lean from the members of the Circo Fabuloso how Christmas is celebrated in different regions of the world. By the episode’s end, the kids learn the most important lesson of all about Christmas as they finally get the boat working again and leave Antarctica.
WordWorld’s episode, “The Christmas Star” is another of the most notable of the Christmas Collection episodes. The title sounds like something that might present a religious theme, but that could not be farther from the truth. Rather, in this case, Duck is on a search for the Christmas star because it belongs on top of the Christmas tree that he and his friends have put up. Duck wants to use the star as his present to his friends. Of course it has a happy ending that also ties in a basic spelling lesson.
Wild Kratts: A Creature Christmas has already been released on a standalone Wild Kratts DVD. That aside, it is still welcome here. In this extended episode, it’s up to Chris, Martin and their friends to save a group of animal babies from Zach Varmitech after he kidnaps the cute, cuddly creatures for use as ornaments on his own metal Christmas tree. As with every other episode in which the guys face off against Zach, they come out on top and get the animals back to the wild and living free. How it happens will be left for audiences to discover for themselves if they have not yet seen this special episode. Between this episode, the others examined here and the rest of those in this set and in 20 Snowy Stories, the episodes in whole make for more than enough reason to add these collections to one’s home library. This is the case even though at least one episode is a bit out of place in its collection.
While the episodes featured in these collections form a strong foundation for the sets, the collections are not necessarily perfect. The lack of an episode guide anywhere in the packaging detracts from the presentations to a point. The episode guides are obviously there when audiences put the sets’ discs into their DVD and/or Blu-ray players, but they are not printed anywhere within the packaging. As a result, audiences are forced to figure out and essentially memorize which episodes are aligned with which discs. Yes, this is an aesthetic issue, but it would certainly help the presentation because it would save audiences time and effort in trying to decide which episode(s) they want to watch. Instead of the episodes, the packaging lists the episodes’ sponsors inside the case. That could have been done on the back of each set’s case. This is not enough to make the presentations failures, but certainly would have benefited the sets’ presentations.
Keeping in mind that the lack of episode guides in the set is not enough to completely ruin them, there is one more positive to address. It comes in the form of the collections’ pricing. The average price point for PBS Kids: 20 Snowy Stories is $7.95. Rounded up, it is a mere $8.00. That price is obtained by averaging prices listed through Amazon, Walmart, Target, Best Buy, Barnes & Noble Booksellers, Books-A-Million, and PBS’ store. Books-A-Million and PBS are the only retailers that exceed that price point, while the majority of the others list the double-disc collection at either $6.95 or $6.99. Best Buy lists the collection at $7.99, which while a few cents over the average, is still right in line with the average price point. Considering the amount of content featured across the set and the representation of the PBS Kids shows, that affordable price point definitely proves positive and money well-spent.
The average price point for PBS Kids: Christmas Collection is $11.33. That price was reached by averaging prices at the noted retailers. Amazon’s listing of $29.99 is either an anomaly or just outright incorrect, but for the most part, it is listed between $6.69 and $9.99, with a middle ground of $7.99, listed through Best Buy and Barnes & Noble Booksellers. Books-A-Million and PBS each list the single-disc set at $9.99. Walmart and Target each have the least expensive listing, at $6.69. Yet again, these prices are mostly such that they will not break anyone’s budget. Knowing how much content even this set features, that knowledge makes purchasing the set even more encouraging, too. Keeping in mind the affordability noted in each set along with the content featured in each collection, those elements make the sets well worth owning and successes in their own right. That is even with the issue of the lack of episode guides in mind. One becomes one more of this year’s top new family DVDs and BDs while the other more than earns its spot among the year’s top new family DVD and BD box sets.
PBS Kids and PBS Distribution’s forthcoming seasonal/holiday DVD sets, 20 Snowy Stories and Christmas Collection are successful new offerings from the companies. Their success comes in large part through their featured episodes. The episodes largely follow the theme of each set’s title. They also teach important lessons within the stories. That education and entertainment that they offer is sure to keep audiences engaged and entertained. While the episodes are the key point of the collections, the lack of any episode guide in either set detracts from the sets’ presentation to a point. It is not enough to make the sets failures, but still does hurt them to a point. Keeping in mind the breadth and depth of the content featured in each set, the sets’ pricing proves positive, too. That is because their pricing proves so affordable for the most part. Each item examined here is important in its own way to the whole of the collections. All things considered, they make each set successful by themselves and collectively.
PBS Kids: 20 Snowy Stories and PBS Kids: Christmas Collection are scheduled for release Oct. 19. More information on these and other titles from PBS Kids is available online at:
Fans of the hit PBS Kids series, Wild Kratts, got a special treat late last month. The surprise came in the form of the new DVD, Cats and Dogs. Released July 27, the single-disc compilation is another positive new offering for the series’ fans from PBS Distribution, PBS, and PBS Kids. The DVD’s success comes in no small part through its featured episodes’ stories, which will be discussed shortly. The lessons tied in to the stories add their own appeal to the DVD’s presentation and will be discussed a little later. All of this writing content makes for plenty of reason for audiences to take in this recently released DVD. Taking into account the engagement and entertainment ensured through all of that writing, it makes the DVD’s average price point its own positive worth noting. Each item noted is important in its own way to the whole of the DVD. All things considered, they make Wild Kratts: Cats and Dogs a presentation that will appeal just as much to every Wild Kratts fan as to cat and dog lovers.
PBS Distribution’s latest Wild Kratts DVD release, Cats and Dogs will unite lovers of each furry, four-legged friend and fans of the series. That is proven in part through its featured episodes’ stories. The stories, four in all, each stay true to the theme of the DVD’s title. The DVD’s nearly hour-long title feature finds Chris and Martin presenting the many breeds of canines and felines that inhabit so many parts of the world while Aviva tries to make up her mind if she is on “team cat” or “team dog.” Audiences who have not yet seen this feature will be left to find out her decision for themselves. “Spots in the Desert,” the DVD’s second episode find Chris and Martin following a mother Ocelot and her cubs in the Sonoran Desert. Ocelots, for those who might not know, are part of the cat family, proving again how the stories follow the theme of the DVD’s title. Dog lovers get their turn here in “Adapto The Coyote” as the guys find out all of the places where coyotes call home while also dealing once again with the vile Zack Varmitech as he tries to shoo coyotes from near his mansion. “Little Howler,” the DVD’s closing episode, follows its titular character, a baby wolf (wolves are in the dog family), as it grows up. The episodes are lifted from the series’ first, sixth, and 18th seasons, making for a nice cross section of the series over the course of its run. Keeping all of this in mind, the episode featured in this set and their stories form a solid foundation for the DVD’s presentation. Building on that foundation are the lessons tied to the episodes.
For the most part, the lessons that the stories teach are basic biology lessons. As already noted, “Adapto The Coyote” finds Chris, Martin, and their friends learning about all of the places in which coyotes live around the world. This is a lesson about how coyotes have adapted to the changes in the world around them in order to survive. At the same time, audiences also learn here about how coyotes communicate with one another through their various calls. “Spots in the Desert” presents another very basic lesson that will connect easily with younger audiences. It is a lesson about ocelots’ habitats, much like the lesson presented in “Adapto The Coyote.” “Little Howler” also presents a basic lesson, this time about how wolves socialize. The big lesson here comes in the form of the DVD’s title presentation. In the case here, the guys have to stop Zack once again. This time, they have to stop him from taking a bunch of big dog and cat cubs and trying to sell them to people as pets. The illegality of selling wild and exotic animals is no joke, and this “movie” brooches that subject on a very basic level that, again, young audiences can understand. It does that while also introducing the very many breeds and wild cats and dogs that inhabit the world. This is not the first time that Zack has ever trapped animals for his own nefarious means. One of the series’ holiday episodes found him kidnapping various animals to use as decorations on a giant metal Christmas tree. He has also tried kidnapping animals to help one of his fellow villains, Donita Donata. In this case though, again, is that all important message about the illegality of capturing and selling exotic animals. This is a topic that is in the news countless times every year. To that end, it is a subject on which audiences need to be educated even at a young age so that as they get older, they will have that understanding instilled. Keeping all of this in mind, there is no doubt as to the importance of the stories’ lessons. Considering the importance of the stories and their lessons, there is a lot of positive content to like here. That content makes the DVD’s fully affordable average price point its own positive.
The average price point for Wild Kratts: Cats and Dogs is $5.60. that price was obtained by averaging prices listed through Amazon, Walmart, Target, Best Buy, Barnes & Noble Booksellers, PBS’ store, and VideoETA. For those who might be unfamiliar with VideoETA, it is a very reliable source. Its listing of $3.85 is in fact the least expensive of all of the listings. Books-A-Million does not have the DVD listed. PBS and Barnes & Noble Booksellers have the most expensive listings, at $6.99. Looking at this, the prices do not even come close to the $10 mark. Even buying online, shipping and handling likely will not push the DVD’s price to that point, either, regardless of retailer. So to that point, this DVD is an affordable offering regardless of the retailer. The price that consumers will pay regardless of retailers is also worth it considering the content featured within the DVD. All things considered, the DVD proves to be a work that will unite lovers of cats, dogs, and Wild Kratts alike.
Wild Kratts: Cats and Dogs is another positive collection of Wild Kratts episodes from PBS Distribution, PBS, and PBS Kids. Its success comes in part through the stories presented in its featured episodes. The stories each follow the DVD’s title theme. The lessons that are connected to the stories make for their own appeal. That is because they are easily accessible for younger audiences. Considering the content featured in this DVD and its depth, the whole makes the DVD’s average price point appealing in its own right. That price point will not break any consumer’s budget, even taking into account shipping and handling for those who prefer to buy the DVD online. Each item examined here is important in its own way to the whole of the DVD. All things considered, they make the DVD a presentation that will get two thumbs and four paws up. Wild Kratts: Cats and Dogs is available now.
More information on Wild Kratts: Cats and Dogs is available online along with all of the latest Wild Kratts news and games online at:
School is still out for the summer, and right now many school districts’ officials remain uncertain when and how the new school year will look. That is leaving many parents and students in limbo, too. For parents, they are left in the dark as to how they are going to have to handle schedules. For the students, their educational opportunities largely remain on hold until such time, especially since parents, in many cases, cannot be there to help their children learn. Thankfully PBS Distribution offered a new resource for parents and students alike last month with the release of the new Wild Kratts DVD box set, Around The World Adventures. The three-disc set is a presentation that the whole family will welcome. That is due in part to its episode listing, which will be discussed shortly. The set’s packaging also plays into its presentation, too. It will be discussed a little later. The set’s average price point rounds out its most important elements and will also be addressed later. Each item noted here is important in its own way to the whole of Wild Kratts: Adventures Around The World. All things considered, they make the set one of this year’s top new family DVD/BD box sets.
PBS Distribution’s new Wild Kratts box set Around The World Adventures is a presentation that the whole family will appreciate regardless of whether school is in session. It is a resource that will educate and entertain audiences of all ages. That is due in large part to its featured episodes. The set is composed of 21 episodes spread across three discs. That totals a run time of approximately 10 hours. Parents especially will appreciate (for cost reasons, which will be discussed later), that the majority of the episodes featured in this set are previously unreleased. In comparison to PBS Distribution’s only other Wild Kratts box set Wildest Animal Adventures, only two episodes from that set – ‘A Huge Orange Problem’ and ‘Mimic’ – are carried over from to this presentation. What’s more, in looking at the roughly 21 (yes, 21) total single disc Wild Kratts collections that are available, only six episodes from those collections – ‘The Food Chain Game,’ ‘Cheetah Racer,’ ‘Rainforest Stew,’ ‘Shadow: The Black Jaguar,’ ‘Mimic’ and ‘A Huge Orange Problem’ – are carried over to this collection. In other words, the majority of the episodes featured in this collection are previously unreleased, including the Wild Kratts “movies” ‘Amazin’ Amazon Adventure’ and ‘Back In Creature Time.’ Adding to the importance of the set’s episode list is that by comparison, Wildest Animal Adventures culls the episodes from four of the series’ standalone compilations, Creature Adventures, Jungle Animals, Lost At Sea and Predator Power. The total episode count there is 20. So in other words, odds are this collection likely would cull episodes from as many DVDs as no standalone DVDs featuring the majority of the noted episodes have been released. This leads into another of the set’s most important elements, its packaging.
Adventures Around The World takes up half the space of the Wildest Animal Adventures set on racks because of the packaging. The packaging in question places two of the new set’s three discs on either side of an insert inside the box. The set’s third disc sits on its own spot on the inside back of the set’s case. By comparison, the Wildest Animal Adventures places each of its four discs in its own standalone slipcase inside a larger box. This means more material is used for packaging with the “older” set, and in turn more space taken up on racks. So the saved space that results from the “newer” packaging model is to that extent, its own positive. Half the space of another set might not seem like much, but like pennies, it adds up.
On another note, the discussed saved space that results from the packaging and the previously unaired episodes featured in this set mean that families will not have to worry about buying potential future standalone DVDs, which will save space in its own right. It will also save families money.
Speaking of money saved, the average price point for this three disc set is another positive worth noting. The average price point for Around The World Adventures is $15.99. That’s for three discs of episodes that again, have largely been previously unreleased. It’s well under the $20 mark, and considering the amount of entertainment and education offered through that span, that is not a budget breaker. The price in question was obtained by averaging prices at Amazon, Walmart, Best Buy, Barne & Noble Booksellers, and PBS’ online store. It was not listed through Target and Books-A-Million at the time of this posting. PBS’ price of $19.99 and Barnes & Noble Booksellers’ price of $17.99 both exceeded that average while the other three listings each were noted at $13.99, well under the average.
By comparison, Wildest Animal Adventures is almost impossible to find through any major retailers. It is not even listed through PBS’ store or that of the official Wild Kratts website. An extensive search for the set did locate it at Walmart at a price of $25.85, but it was listed as being out of stock. Amazon also listed the set. Its least expensive price listing was $69.99 while it reached as high as $249.98. In other words, odds are that set is now out of print. This means that audiences who don’t already own said set will have to spend $10-$15 on each of the four DVDs culled for said collection if they do not own those DVDs either. Meanwhile the set’s initial average price listing was about the same as that for Around The World Adventures. So audiences would have spent about the same price for each box set. Keeping this in mind, the relatively affordable price point for PBS Distribution’s latest Wild Kratts DVD box set proves just as positive to Around The World Adventures’ presentation as its content and packaging. All things considered, they make this latest Wild Kratts box set one of this year’s top new family DVD/BD box sets.
Around The World Adventures is another welcome addition to PBS Distribution’s ongoing series of Wild Kratts presentations. That is due in no small part to its episode listing, which offers audiences a grouping of episodes largely unavailable on the series’ previous DVD episodes. Only six of the set’s episodes are available on the series’ other DVDs. That leans 15 episodes unavailable on said DVDs. The set’s packaging takes up half the space of its predecessor, the previously released box set Wildest Animal Adventures. The set’s average price point of less than $20 dollars is affordable especially considering the amount of content featured across its three discs. Each noted item is important in its own way to the whole of Adventures Around The World. All things considered, they make the set one of this year’s top new family DVD/BC box sets.
More information on Around The World Adventures is available online along with all of the latest Wild Kratts news and games online at:
Entertaining children and keeping them entertained is not an easy task. Every parent out there can attest to this statement, including this critic. Thankfully, new DVDs and Blu-rays are released annually that go a long way toward keeping children entertained while also bringing families together. This year saw its own share of strong new DVDs and Blu-rays for families, too. That was thanks to PBS Distribution, Shout! Factory and even — believe it or not — Warner Brothers Home Entertainment. From Sesame Street to Wild Kratts to even Scooby Doo and more, this year’s family-friendly DVD and BD releases offered hours of entertainment.
As with every list presented so far, this year’s list features the Top 10 titles of the year, plus five honorable mention titles for a total of 15 new releases. Without further ado, here for your consideration is Phil’s Picks 2019 Top 10 New Family DVDs and BDs.
PHIL’S PICKS 2019 TOP 10 NEW FAMILY DVDs/BDs
Arthur: Arthur Celebrates Community
Ready Jet Go!: One Small Step
Ready Jet Go!: Space Rocks
Nature Cat: Nature Cat & Mr. Hide
The Big Bad Fox & Other Tales
Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood: Mister Rogers & Making Mistakes
Early this spring, PBS Distribution released a new addition to its collection of Wild Kratts DVDs in the form of The Briny Blue Sea. Released April 9, the DVD features two more episodes of the hit animated series. The episodes in question follow the theme of the DVD’s title throughout. This will be addressed shortly. The secondary lessons about what makes the episodes’ featured creatures so great adds to the DVD’s appeal. That content and the DVD’s primary content coupled, they make the DVD’s pricing affordable. That affordability joins with the DVD’s primary and secondary content to make the DVD in whole another welcome addition to any family’s Wild Kratts collection.
PBS Distribution’s latest addition to its ongoing series of Wild Kratts DVDs is a welcome addition to that series and to any family’s Wild Kratts collection. That is due in part to the DVD’s four featured episodes. The episodes in question – “Osprey,” “Aye Aye,” “Puffin Rescue” and “Sea Otter Swim” – all follow the DVD’s central theme of the DVD’s title. Given, “Aye Aye” does not necessarily follow the them in the purest sense of the word, as the story finds the Wild Kratts gang learning about the aye aye – a land creature – as they pretend to be pirates while aboard the Tortuga. The other three episodes however, tend to follow the DVD’s central theme much more directly. “Osprey” finds Chris and Martin having to recover the keys to the Tortuga after Jimmy accidentally loses them in the ocean. It’s up to the brothers Kratt to recover them before Zach Varmitech gets his hands on them. “Puffin Rescue” finds the Wild Kratts “gang” being separated after a rogue wave hits the Tortuga, spreading the group across the ocean. Martin ends up washed up on a deserted island inhabited only by Puffins, which end up helping Aviva develop a Puffin creature suit for him. He uses the suit to rescue the rest of the group, leading Chris to use his squid creature suit to help pull the Tortuga from the water. “Sea Otter Swim” features Jimmy learning how to swim from a sea otter whom Chris and Martin have aptly named “Coach.” In the process, the group learns about the “powers” that make sea otters stand out. Again, all of thee episodes follow the DVD’s central theme of “The Briny Blue Sea.” It’s hardly the first time a Wild Kratts DVD has done so, either. To that end, it’s just one way in which the DVD impresses just as much as its predecessors. The secondary lessons featured throughout the stories adds even more appeal to the DVD.
The secondary lessons featured in each of the DVD’s episodes are once again about various creatures and their interesting “creature powers.” Audiences learn, for instance, in “Aye Aye” that the Aye Aye, which is a member for the lemur family, uses one of its fingers very much in the same way that a woodpecker uses its beak – to find and catch their meals. It also notes the power of aye ayes’ ears. “Osprey” teaches viewers how Ospreys use their wings and their powerful eyesight to spot fish in the water and catch them so quickly and precisely. While “Sea Otter Swim” focuses mainly on sea otters and their powers, it also features other sea creatures, such as the starfish, bottlenose dolphin and the bald eagle, and how their interact with one another in and above the waves. “Puffin Rescue” focuses on puffins’ beaks and wings, as well as their quite impressive vision. Simply put, there is a lot of in-depth content that teaches young viewers what makes the featured creatures so interesting. Once again, that content is delivered in a way that makes it accessible for any viewer. Yet again, it’s a positive way to get young viewers interested in the biological and ecological sciences. When this is considered along with the DVD’s primary content and its value, the whole of that content gives audiences a lot to appreciate. On the same note, it makes the DVD’s average price point worth its low price point.
The average price point of Wild Kratts: The Briny Blue Sea is $11.98. Amazon, Walmart, Target and Best Buy offer the lowest prices at $9.90 (Amazon and Walmart) and $9.99 (Target and Best Buy) while PBS and Books-A-Million list the DVD at the most expensive price at $14.99. Barnes & Noble Booksellers’ price of $14.12 is just below that of PBS. Given, PBS presents one of the most expensive listings, but regardless of where audiences get the DVD, a portion of the money will still go to benefit PBS, so the money is well-spent no matter which retailer consumers choose. Add in the content featured in the DVD, the price is affordable and worth paying regardless of retailer. Keeping this in mind, the DVD proves, in the end clearly why it is a welcome addition to any family’s Wild Kratts collection.
Wild Kratts: The Briny Blue Sea is another enjoyable addition to PBS Distribution’s ongoing series of Wild Kratts DVD releases. That is proven in part through the four episodes that make up the body of the DVD. They all follow the DVD’s central theme of the ocean. The secondary content, which features more lessons about the featured creatures and their powers adds even more enjoyment and engagement to the DVD’s presentation. Collectively, they make the DVD’s average price point money well-spent, regardless of retailer. Each item noted here is important in its own way to the whole of the DVD. All things considered, they make the DVD one that will make plenty of waves in the best way possible. More information on the DVD is available online along with lots of Wild Kratts games, activities, printables and more at:
August is officially here, and while the nation is still in the dog days of summer, the last full month of summer means the countdown to fall’s return is on. With that countdown is also the official countdown to the unofficial opening of the annual holiday season, Halloween. As that countdown begins, PBS Distribution is getting an early start getting families into the holiday spirit with an early Halloween treat – Wild Kratts: Creepy Creatures. Set for release Aug. 13, the 65-minute DVD features two Halloween-themed episodes of the hit series that will give audiences of all ages plenty of creepy fun. The stories themselves are just one part of what families will appreciate about this new DVD. The lessons that are tied into the stories make for their own share of engagement and entertainment. They will be discussed a little later. Considering the DVD’s combined primary and secondary content, they make the DVD’s average retail price point money well spent. This will also be addressed later. Each item noted here is important in its own way to the whole of Wild Kratts: Creepy Creatures. All things considered, they make Wild Kratts: Creepy Creatures a wonderful new educational and entertaining treat for audiences of all ages.
PBS Distribution’s new Wild Kratts DVD, Creepy Creatures is an enjoyable new early Halloween treat for audiences of all ages both in the classroom and the living room. That is proven in part through the stories featured within each of the DVD’s two episodes. The story in the DVD’s title episode finds Chris, Martin and their friends preparing for a Halloween party. The preparations feature a search by Chris and Martin for costumes that are based on some creatures that most people might find otherwise creepy. The brothers Kratt are not the only ones looking for some creepy creatures, though. Zack Varmitech is spying on the brothers as they make their plans, and decides to kidnap a bunch of animals to create his own haunted house, all in an effort to make money off of his villainous ways. The catch is that Zack can’t do it alone, so he gets his fellow villains to help him. Of course things don’t go exactly as planned for the bad guys, as the Wild Kratts gang coming out on top.
The DVD’s second episode finds Chris, Martin and company dealing with a group of intruders to the Tortuga. Before Chris and Martin discover who the intruders are, the Jimmy Z is led to believe the Tortuga is haunted by an eight-eyed creature, leading to the Halloween theme. The intruders in question turn out to be a mother raccoon and her babies. The discovery leads to some more new creatures powers for the brothers, as well as a lesson about what makes raccoons so unique. Along the way, there is also plenty of entertainment for audiences of all ages. The entertainment offered through this episode’s story, and that in the DVD’s main episode leaves audiences agreeing the stories themselves that are featured in the DVD give viewers plenty of reason to add this DVD to their Halloween viewing. While the stories present their own entertainment value to the DVD, the lessons tied in with the stories adds its own share of interest and entertainment, too.
The lessons that are presented within each of the DVD’s episodes are key in that they serve to dispel the beliefs that people have about the featured “creepy” creatures. Case in point is a brief but concise lesson about the reality of vampire bats. The brothers, in their search for the perfect Halloween costume, find a vampire bat. They explain vampire bats are not at all what Hollywood has made them out to be. They explain how little blood vampire bats take from other animals in order to survive and how little damage they do to other animals in getting that blood. It makes fully clear that humans have nothing at all to fear from vampire bats. Chris and Martin also find a certain species of tarantula, another creepy creature. They dispel the beliefs about those arachnids, too. There is even a dispelling of sorts about raccoons in the DVD’s second episode. Many people have the belief that raccoons are disease ridden and just ramble through people’s garbage, causing all kinds of problems for people. Chris and Martin show, through this lesson that they are in fact, not the rabble rousing scavengers that they have been made out to be. Rather, they are just out there surviving, and generally try to stay away from humans. It’s just one more key lesson featured in the DVD. There are plenty of others for viewers to discover when they purchase this DVD themselves. When the collective lessons are considered along with the entertaining and engaging stories in the two featured episodes, the whole of that primary and secondary content makes the DVD’s fully affordable average price point money well-spent.
The average price point of Wild Kratts: Creepy Creatures does not break the $10 mark. In fact, it barely breaks the $5 mark, coming in at approximately $5.70. The price is obtained by averaging prices at Amazon, Target, Best Buy, Books-A-Million, Barnes & Noble Booksellers and PBS’ store. The DVD was not listed at Walmart at the time of this review. The most expensive of the listed prices is $6.99 – at the sites of PBS and Books-A-Million – and the least expensive is $4.65 – at Barnes & Noble Booksellers. Regardless of which retailer one uses, PBS still benefits from those sales. The money spent, again regardless of retailer, is again money well-spent. It will obviously not break any family’s budget. What’s more, buying the DVD means audiences can watch the DVD any time, not just on Halloween or the days leading up to Halloween. There are no worries about trying to find the episodes online if viewers have it in physical form. There again is even more proof of the value of the DVD. When this is considered along with the content itself and its value, all things considered make Wild Kratts: Creepy Creatures clearly an early Halloween treat the audiences of all ages will enjoy.
PBS Distribution’s new Wild Kratts DVD Creepy Creatures is another enjoyable offering from the series. That is despite the fact that the DVD features only two more episodes, which is a standard for the company’s Wild Kratts DVDs. It is so enjoyable in part because of the presentation’s primary content, its featured stories. The lessons featured along with the stories adds even more appeal to the DVD’s presentation. The combined content makes the DVD’s average price of less than $6 money well spent, especially considering that audiences who purchase the DVD will be able to enjoy all of the noted content whenever they want. Each item noted in this review is important in its own way to the whole of the DVD. All things considered, they make Wild Kratts: Creepy Creatures anything but creepy, but rather an entertaining, enjoyable early Halloween treat for audiences of all ages. It will be available Aug. 13. More information on the DVD is available along with lots of Wild Kratts activities, games, printables and more at:
Chris and Martin Kratt return to DVD next month with a new Halloween-themed collection of stories.
Wild Kratts: CreepyCreatures is scheduled for release Aug. 13. The DVD features two family friendly Halloween-themed episodes; the first being the DVD’s title episode. In this episode, Chris and Martin decide to find some “creepy cool” creatures in order to celebrate Halloween. In the process, Chris and Martin learn that Zach and his fellow villains have some naughty tricks up their sleeves, so it is up to Chris and Martin to save Halloween.
The DVD’s second episode, “Masked Bandits,” finds some spooky things going on around the Tortuga. Jimmy thinks the Wild Kratts’ gang’s airship is haunted because of everything going on, but that might not necessarily be the case.
Wild Kratts: Creepy Creatures‘ run time is 74 minutes on one disc. The DVD will retail for MSRP of $6.99. It can be pre-ordered online at PBS’ online store.
More information on Wild Kratts‘ new DVD is available online along with lots of games, printables and activities at:
The Kratt Brothers are hitting the high seas again in another new Wild Kratts DVD.
Wild Kratts: The Briny Blue Sea is scheduled for release on April 9 on DVD and digital. The DVD features four more episodes from the hit animated series that find Chris, Martin and their friends going on a variety of aquatic adventures.
In the episode “Osprey,” Jimmy accidentally loses the keys to the Tortuga, leaving Chris and Martin to use Osprey powers to find the keys before things get real bad for the group. Jimmy is the center of attention in another of the DVD’s episodes, “Sea Otter Swim.” He learns how to swim from none other than a sea otter.
Aye Aye, yet another of the DVD’s episodes, finds the Kratt brothers having to save an aye aye who was washed away from its home by a strong storm. “Puffin Rescue” finds the Kratt brothers and their friends strewn across the sea by a rogue wave. It is up to Chris and Martin to use Puffin powers to reunite everyone and get everyone back to the Tortuga.
Wild Kratts: The Briny Blue Sea‘s run time is 105 minutes. It will retail for MSRP of $14.99. It can be pre-ordered now via PBS’ online store.
More Wild Kratts episodes are available now along with activities, games and printables at:
This critic, for those who might not know, is a parent and is married. It makes finding time to go through everything needed difficult at times. It also means trying to find ways to keep a child entertained quite often. Keeping a child entertained includes finding DVDs and Blu-rays that will entertain and educate at the same time.
Thankfully, that part of doing this job is not too difficult, as companies, such as Public Media Distribution, Film Movement and Shout! Factory Kids have offered again this year, plenty of options. Those options include, and are not limited to two new (and seemingly the last) Transformers Rescue Bots DVDs, two more fun-filled collections of episodes from Nature Cat and more new material from Wild Kratts and Dinosaur Train.
Of course that new material is just some of the fun new fare offered for families this year. Film Movement’s release of The Railway Children live is a welcome new take on a stage presentation that also honors its literary source material, and Nickelodeon’s long-awaited Hey Arnold: The Jungle Movie is a bit of a disappointment, but still worth at least one watch thanks to some major writing problems.
The top spot in this year’s Top 10 new Family DVDs/BDs list goes to the noted stage adaptation of The Railway Children. This adaptation honors its source material while also presenting a one-of-its kind stage presentation that is unlike almost anything that American audiences have ever seen from stage plays.
The number two and three spots on this year’s list go to Public Media Distribution’s two new Nature Cat DVDs, Onward & Pondward and Winter Dance Party. Each DVD’s episodes follow a specific theme while also teaching lessons that are directly linked with the themes.
Also included in this year’s list, as noted already are the new Wild Kratts DVDs and those from Transformers Rescue Bots along with the new Hey Arnold! movie, just to name a handful of titles. As always, the top 10 pics are the best while the five that follow are honorable mention titles. Without any further ado, here is Phil’s Picks 2018 Top 10 New Family DVDs & BDs list.
PHIL’S PICKS 2018 TOP 10 NEW FAMILY DVDs & BLU-RAYs
The Railway Children
Nature Cat: Onward & Pondward
Nature Cat: Winter Dance Party
Transformers Rescue Bots: Outdoor Adventures
Transformers Rescue Bots; Team Rescue Bots
Dinosaur Train: Making New Friends
Wild Kratts: Adventures on the African Savannah
Wild Kratts: Mdagascar Madness
Littlest Pet Shop: Best Pet Friends
Ready Jet Go!: Jet’s First Halloween
Super Why: The Adventures of Little Bo Peep & Her Sheep