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Spongebob Squarepants: Seascape Capers
Spongebob Squarepants is one of those rare animated shows that can be enjoyed equally as much by both adults and children. The utterly ludicrous concept of a talking sponge (who works at a fast food joint called The Krusty Krab) and his adventures with his starfish friend Patrick and his crotchety neighbor Squidward are easily dismissed as simply another kids cartoon but if you take the time to pay attention to the dialogue and situations used throughout the series, you'll definitely understand why the show has garnered a sizeable cult following made up of people from all ages.
Paramount's latest compilation of episodes is entitled Spongebob Squarepants – The Seascape Capers and is comprised of ten episodes that run the gamut from some of the best to some of the worst, but even the low points of the series are worth a look. The ten episodes on this release, which can be viewed individually or using the 'play all' feature, are as follows:
1. The Fry Cook Games - Once a year, the town hosts the annual Fry Cook Games in which the best Fry Cooks from across the area get together to compete in what are essentially fast food Olympic events with an undersea twist! Patrick and Spongebob end up showing down with each other despite their 'best friends' status.
2. Bubblestand - When Spongebob opens up a bubblestand hoping to sell bubbles for $0.25 each, Squidworth gets upset with all the noise. When he sees what Patrick and Spongebob are able to do with the bubbles though, Squidworth decides to prove that he can do a better job than either of them with the wand. Unfortunately for him, he's quite wrong.
3. Squid's Day Off - When Mr. Krab gets taken to the hospital he puts Squidward in charge of the Krusty Krab until he can return. Squidward takes advantage of the situation by leaving and putting Spongebob in charge for the day. Obviously, this wasn't a good idea.
4. Spongebob Meets The Strangler - Spongebob comes across a suspicious creature littering in the parking lot of the Krusty Krab and so he turns him in to the local authorities to be dealt with accordingly. Unfortunately for Spongebob, the culprit is the Tattletale Strangler and he busts out of prison. Spongebob gets nervous and hires himself a bodyguard but what he doesn't realize is that the one he's hired is actually the Strangler in disguise.
5. Pranks A Lot - Spongebob and Patrick purchase a spray can that supposedly makes things invisible to use as a joke. When they take it home and try it out, they find out the hard way that the spray can actually works.
6. Artist Unknown - Feeling creative one day, Spongebob makes a sculpture which Squidworth, punk that he is, tries to pass off as his own work to a big time art dealer passing through town.
7. Grandma's Kisses - Trying to act more mature about things, Spongebob starts to become a little embarrassed when his Grandmother bombards him with kisses every time he sees her. The next time they visit though, Patrick gets all the love and Spongebob starts to rethink his decision to be more mature about things.
8. Krusty Love - Spongebob's boss, Mr. Krab, spots the lovely Mrs. Puff in the restaurant one day and falls head over heels in love! They go on a date and Krab can't control himself as he spends way, way too much money trying to impress her. To keep himself from getting into too much financial woe, he enlists the trusty sponge to help him control his spending next time.
9. Krab Borg - Spongebob proves that horror movies really are badyou're your brain when he watches a schlocky horror/sci-fi film and believes that Bikini Bottom is going to be taken over by evil robots known as Krab Borgs!
10. The Smoking Peanut - Patrick and Spongebob take a friendly trip to the zoo one afternoon to see a famous oyster appearing there named Clamu. But when the two friends show up, Clamu is sleeping, so Spongebob throws a peanut at her to wake her up, inadvertently sending her on a rampage and causing much dismay.The DVD
Every episode is presented in its original fullframe aspect ratio. Colors are nice and bright and there aren't any pixelation or compression problems present on the disc. There are a few times though when some shimmering and edge enhancement is quite noticeable. Other than this issue the transfer looks very nice with a great, colorful palette and deep blacks making the episodes look as good if not better than they do on broadcast cable TV. The rather flat aspect of the animation does lend itself to making the flaws in the transfer easier to spot, but if you keep that in mind and you're used to seeing cartoons on DVD, you'll be more than happy with how this disc looks.Sound:
The Dolby Digital Surround track sounds quite good. Bass is deep and there aren't any distortion problems present. There could have been better use made of the separate channels in the mix, but what we are left with sounds good. It's clean, coherent, and it gets the job done just fine.Extras:
Other than the storyboards for the Grandma's Kisses episode (which are interesting and nice to see), there are no other extra features on this release.Final Thoughts:
Spongebob Squarepants – The Seascape Capers is a solid collection of episodes of one of the best cartoons currently airing on television. Paramount has done a nice job on the audio and the video, but the extra features are rather lacking. Fans of the cartoon will want to pick it up regardless!
Ian lives in NYC with his wife where he writes for DVD Talk, runs Rock! Shock! Pop!. He likes NYC a lot, even if it is expensive and loud.