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STUDIO: Walt Disney Home Video
MSRP: $19.99 RATED: G
RUNNING TIME: 71 Minutes
• 2 Deleted Scenes
• “Could It Be” Music Video
• “Get Your Shine On” Music Video
• Bonus Episode “Gorilla Fist”
Kids anymore are spoiled. You get whole channels that give you cartoons daily. When I was a kid it was the recycled animation of He-Man or the cleaned up violence of G.I. Joe and I got it once a week. Anime was a treat only seen when one of my friends picked up a bootleg from the Philippines (I was a Navy Brat). I still try to keep up with the American cartoons released today. I scan the networks on Saturday mornings and keep abreast of what Cartoon Network, Nickelodeon and The Disney Channel provide by way of animation. Gotta keep in touch with my inner child and whatnot. Boy how I wish they had Asian contract animators and computer coloring when I was a kid. Kids nowadays have no idea how good they got it.
"Ugh. I’m so fat. You can hardly see my skeleton.
If only I could lose those couple extra ounces."
In amongst The Disney Channels many half hour cartoon shows based on recent feature film releases sits Kim Possible. Unlike the nearly unwatchable Hercules, Buzz Lightyear of Star Command, House of Mouse, The Legend of Tarzan and Aladdin, Kim Possible was an original property bringing with it opportunity for a fresh outlook. It was created by Mark McCorkle and Robert “Bob” Schooley a writing team with a lot of experience with Disney (and writing credit on the upcoming Sky High). After three seasons of Kim Possible, the next logical step was a direct-to-video feature film. Like Mask of the Phantasm before, So The Drama allowed for characters to expand beyond the limiting 22-minute timeframe and show off some.
Kim Possible is very much made with the Buffy the Vampire Slayer template in mind. And why not? It’s a smart way to go: girls will like it because the lead is a strong female role model and boys will like it because it’s action and we’re easy to please. Kim (voiced by Christy Carlson Romano) is a high school cheerleader who must keep up with her studies, social pressures while still saving the world. Her sidekick, Ron Stoppable (get it?), is the goofball accident-prone character that owes much to Nicholas Brendon’s Xander. Ron is voiced by Will Friedle whom most know as the older brother in Boy Meets World and some know as Terry McGinnis from Batman Beyond. Friedle is making a name for himself in the voice industry and may someday become as ubiquitous as Phil LaMarr. Because you cannot have a “kid’s show” without the cute animal pet that almost speaks English, we have Rufus the naked mole rat voiced by Bart Simpso-… I mean Nancy Cartwright. As Kim’s Q (Giles?) is Wade Load (Tahj Mowry) a boy perpetually in front of a computer screen ready to update Kim on any inside information via picture phone.
"For your information these are fabulous Sun Swords.
Star Wars is so last week."
The plot to So The Drama revolves around one of Kim’s nemeses Dr. Drakken (John Di Maggio who is Bender from Futurama). His evil plans this time around are convoluted on purpose. Drakken purchases controlling stock in Bueno Nacho, Ron Stoppable’s favorite fast food chain so that he can sell kids’ meals with an evil toy called L’il Diablos. After every home contains one of the Satan-reminiscent dolls he can activate them. Now he has an army that has been distributed by collector’s and children alike. Seems fitting. We all knew that marketing would be this country’s downfall eventually.
Bottom line on this movie is that it has action set pieces for the boys and the hinted at love story between Possible and Stoppable for the girls. The opening sequence has Possible hanging on to a grappling line behind a jet plane flying around downtown Tokyo (interesting that we’ve come so far since 2001 that we can have planes flying near buildings on kid’s shows now). The animation is pretty exciting and fluid. For the girls, they’ve included the prom and a romantic interest for Possible and therefore competition for Stoppable.
I usually use a certain meter when I watch cartoons. Eventually I plan on having kids and when I do I’m going to be pretty strict when it comes to what animated shows they watch. If Bruce Timm is still making shows they will be watching them. On the far side of the spectrum, if brainless pap like Atomic Betty is on then the TV goes off. Kim Possible falls somewhere in the middle. If the future Rob Jr. likes this sort of thing I’ll allow it. There are a few bits that made me laugh even if they were recycled Jerry Seinfeld humor. The animation is pleasant even if the character designs are stylistic yet body image-crushingly thin. Both the best and worst thing I can say about Kim Possible and by extension the So The Drama movie is that it’s harmless.
6.5 out of 10
I don’t really get these activist Christians who assert
that children’s television is subversive and evil.
Like much of animation today, there was hardly a step that wasn’t digital. Of course it’s clear and pristine. In fact, watching this on DVD cuts out that one extra step that airing it on television brings. If you’re worried about transfer, don’t be.
8.1 out of 10
As I said in the “The Look” section, everything about cartoons today is computerized. Sound effects and voice work included. This is CD quality audio from start to finish. They’ve spread the sound out to utilize your back speakers just nicely.
8.1 out of 10
Somewhere, someone is writing fan fiction and this is the first scene.
2 Deleted Scenes – These scenes are very short and were removed after the animation was in place but before sound effects were added. These must have been removed for time constraints as they both add to the story and one of them is mildly funny. I suppose that if they had to remove something, this was a good place to trim.
“Could It Be” Music Video – This song is sung by Christy Carlson Romano who if you recall is the voice of Kim Possible. Ten years ago I would have said this song sounded like corporate pop crap with no soul. I can still call it that today, but that doesn’t differentiate it from anything else on the radio.
“Get Your Shine On” Music Video – This song is sung by Jesse McCartney, the next in a long line of Aaron Carters. He’s blond, pretty like a girl and sings a song rejected by The Backstreet Boys. His dance moves also first saw the light on a boy band stage number. I could never understand how teenage girls could fall for this stuff that was obviously catered to their demographic using statistics. Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to go buy the latest Britney Spears album because she’s so hot.
What are you, twelve? Get your hands off your crotch!
Bonus Episode “Gorilla Fist” – This episode references heavily from a previously aired show with Ron Stoppable fighting a guy named “Monkey Fist”. I was really hoping that somewhere in this disk I’d find the characters of Señor Senior Sr. voiced by the good-to-the-last-drop Ricardo Montalban and his Eurotrash son Señor Senior Jr. Oh well. This one’s good too. I guess.
Trailers – Also on this disk is an extended trailer for Herbie: Fully Loaded, Cadet Kelly(apparently they couldn’t get the rights to the title Private Benjamin), The Even Stevens Movie and Barbie’s My Scene Goes Hollywood The Movie.
Not a lot, really. A commentary would have been nice. A Making Of doc would have been good. The bonus episode is just filler and anyone who was a real fan would get that one eventually through episode sets. If you like this property, I can see how you’d be disappointed.
5.0 out of 10
I like it. The faux-metal background with text above Kim in her underoos. I could do without the extraneous crap Disney threw in to let us know that there’s extras on the DVD and that Disney owns this property. Less is more, man.
6.1 out of 10
Chuck Norris Fodder.
Overall: 5.9 out of 10