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Dexter's Laboratory - Season 1 Review




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Rating
Video:   7/10
Audio:   7/10
Extras:   0/10

Good, but not great
by Gord Lacey (All reviews)
10/29/2010

    Deep in the depths of his secret laboratory, boy genius Dexter computes, experiments, invents and builds incredible creations like mom robots, interdimensional portals, talking animals, brain replacements and stealth dodgeball devices, until his ditzy sister Dee Dee ruins his overly-executed plans...if only he could fit her into a test tube!

    These awesome first episodes from the award-winning hit series also include the heroic stories of The Justice Friends and Dial M for Monkey - super heroes who snuff out evil like it was the flame on a Bunsen burner! From the acclaimed director of Star Wars: Clone Wars, Samurai Jack and The Powerpuff Girls, this 13-Episode 2-Disc DVD Collection proves Dexter is hilarious!
Continuing with their "Cartoon Network Hall of Fame" line is Warner's release of Dexter's Laboratory, an extremely popular show from the mid-to-late-90s. This 2-disc set includes all 13 episodes from the first season.

Disc 1 (2:57:08)
DeeDeemensional/Magmanamus/Maternal Combat (22:06)
Dexter Dodgeball/Rasslor/Dexter's Assistant (22:02)
Dexter's Rival/Simion/Old Man Dexter (22:08)
Double Trouble/Dexter's Lab: A Story/Changes (22:29)
Jurassic Pooch/Orgon Grindor/Dimwit Dexter (21:58)
Dee Dee's Room/Huntor/The Big Sister (21:53)
Star Spangled Sidekicks/TV Super Pals/ Game Over (22:17)
Babysitter Blues/Valhallen's Room/Dream Machine (22:15)

Disc 2 (1:44:14)
Dollhouse Drama/Krunk's Date/The Big Cheese (22:05)
Way of the Dee Dee/Say Uncle Sam/Tribe Called Girl (22:13)
Spacecase/Ratman/Dexter's Debt (22:16)
Bee Where?/Mandarker (15:20)
Inflata Dee Dee/Can't Nap/Monstory (22:20)

Video

The Full Frame (1.33:1) picture on this set looks fairly decent, but not great. There's some noise in the picture, as well as some dust and debris, and while it looks good, it certainly doesn't stand up to the quality of animated titles that are only a few years old. Fans of the show will probably recall "Dial M for Monkey: Barbequor" was banned shortly after the initial airing, and the segment isn't included on this set. Instead you'll find "Dexter's Lab: A Story" (from season 2) and "Changes" (from the pilot) in its place, which is how the episode aired in reruns. You'll probably also notice that episode 12 is shorter than the others; Warner has removed "Dexter's Rival" which aired in the first segment, probably because it was also on the third episode (credits for the segment remain at the end of the episode). There's a chapter placed after the opening of the show, and both discs have a "play all" option.

Audio

As with the video, the audio is decent, but not great. It's a fairly standard stereo track (in English, of course), with some directional effects. Nothing outstanding, but also nothing poor to note about it. There are English subtitles.

Extras - How we rate extras

There aren't any extras on the set.

Summary

I hadn't seen Dexter's Laboratory before sitting down to watch this set, but I knew of it because it's one of Genndy Tartakovsky's earlier shows. I found the show to be "okay," not great. I'm not sure where Dexter's accent comes from, and if he has an accent, why doesn't his sister? Ah well, just something that came up while I was watching the show. I thought the "Dial M For Monkey" segments were fun, but I really didn't enjoy "The Justice Friends" (and I'll admit to skipping over many of the segments on the DVD).

It's a shame they couldn't have included any bonus material on the set, as there were some notable people that worked on the show early in their careers, including Craig McCracken (The Powerpuff Girls), Seth MacFarlane (Family Guy) and Butch Hartman (The Fairy OddParents).

It's an okay release from Warner Bros, but certainly not one of their best. It'll leave fans happy (it's on DVD), yet wanting more (such as bonus material, and original episodes).


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