Judge Paul Pritchard loves Chipmunks, especially when sautéed and served with a nice Chardonnay.
Watch out, 'cause here they come!
Facts of the Case
Fourteen episodes, apparently selected at random, make up Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Alvinnn!!! Edition.
Anyone of a certain age is sure to know and, with little prompting, be able to perform the theme tune to Alvin and the Chipmunks. While surfing this wave of nostalgia, said people will likely recount how great the show was and how, as youngsters, they would race home from school to watch the adventures of Alvin, Simon, and Theodore.
I myself remember the Chipmunks fondly, having watched it religiously as a child. But the strange thing is, apart from the Chipmunks singing a few tunes and Dave yelling, "Alvinnn!!!," I honestly couldn't tell you what happened on the show. Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Alvinnn!!! Edition reveals why my memory is so fuzzy, and, as hard as it is to admit, there's no escaping one simple, yet painful truth: the Chipmunks suck. The high-pitched singing (at least an octave higher than I recall), the crappy animation, and the rudimentary plots all add up to a totally underwhelming walk down memory lane.
It's strange how, freed of my childish innocence, Alvin and the Chipmunks just totally failed to register with me. I soon found myself preoccupied by how large these anthropomorphic Chimpunks actually are. Closer to a midget than a dwarf in size, these rodents are huge. One can only feel pity for their mother.
The 14 episodes that make up this two-disc "Collector's Set" show a real lack of creativity. After nearly three hours I'd seen the Chipmunks go skiing, get a crush on their teacher, and even be on the receiving end of some government-funded experiments. But honestly, even at ten minutes a pop, the episodes are torture. Throw in cheesy renditions of "Footloose," "Holding out for a Hero," and "Bad to the Bone," and I was ready to call in the exterminators.
The disc's 1.33:1 transfer is pretty woeful. Colors are dull, while the image frequently suffers from scratches and dirt. The mono soundtrack is an improvement on the picture quality, but still hardly noteworthy. It is at least clear, with no serious flaws.
The Rebuttal Witnesses
Though my reunion with the Chipmunks didn't go quite the way I'd planned, I've got to give them some credit. To still be going, some fifty-plus years after their creation, is an impressive feat.
There's also a chance that, just as they entertained me as a child, Alvin and the Chipmunks may still play well to the younger members of the family.
They may only be fifty, but I'd recommend the Chipmunks consider early retirement.
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