Four Classics, One Newer Story
George Buttner | Dayton, Ohio United States | 08/06/2006
(4 out of 5 stars)
""Let's Be Brave" is "Dragon Tales" release themed on the idea of stories that help the viewers to overcome fears. This release goes mostly with the classics, featuring four stories from the first season of the program and one selection from the recent third season.
"Calling Dr. Zak"
This is a great one. While Zak and Wheezie are practicing a song, Zak accidentally steps on a "spinypine" and gets a thorn stuck in his foot. Max, Emmy and the dragons all help him to not feel so afraid of going to the doctor.
"The Big Sleep Over"
Zak and Wheezie are holding a sleepover, but Cassie is afraid to spend the night away from home. Emmy first helps her to come to the sleepover and then everyone comes with a unique way to help her enjoy it.
Ord and his family are holding a big party for spring. While everything is being prepared, Max, Emmy and the dragons go to play at a playground in the sky. Then a storm comes and they take refuge in a cage --- but Ord is afraid of the thunder.
"Sounds Like Trouble"
When Max loses a toy he created called a goo ball, Max, Emmy and the dragons once again find themselves in a cave. But Ord is afraid of the darkness and the loud noises within.
This is the story from the third season. Enrique arrives at Max and Emmys' wearing a colorful hat and won't take it off for anyone. In Dragon Land, Zak and Wheezie are ready to cancel a planned performance because they're embarrassed to appear in public --- their scales are shedding. Max, Emmy, Enrique and the dragons try all sorts of ways to cover up the shedding.
Overall, the stories fit the theme nicely. I can't fault any of the choices except maybe "Sounds Like Trouble," which felt like a bit of a retread to me as far as the whole issue of Ord's fear of the darkness.
Like other "Dragon Tales" releases, this DVD doesn't contain anything in the way of special features, other than some promos and a few Dragon Tunes segments. The promos are for other Sony children's DVD releases, the Pink Panther Classic Cartoon Collection, "Stuart Little 3" and the upcoming film "Open Season." There's also a look at "It's a Big Big World" on PBS --- Sony is a show sponsor.
The three Dragon Tunes are "Hum," "Betcha Can" and "Speak Up." I can't fault the choices, but I can fault the inconsistent presentation. One of these features the big follow-along words with exploding fireworks as seen on the "Let's Start a Band" DVD, whereas the other two only feature close-captioning. Also, it might be my imagination, but it sounds to me like they got somebody different to perform "Hum.""