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I would have sworn this cartoon dated back to the 1980's but according to Wikipedia The Super Mario Show aired from 1991 - 1992 in the USA. The copyright on this disc is 1991, but whenever it was produced, the animation is very 1980's. Having grown used to the newer cgi cartoons this really is not in the same class, and I don't feel this DVD was really meant to be shown on a 42" screen. Neither the sound nor the animation quality are really up to today's standards.
The selling point for this DVD is clearly the inclusion of very familiar characters. My sons both love Mario brothers, but my youngest especially loves Yoshi, and Yoshi is the star of this DVD. What this film lacks in animation and sound, it makes up for with a genuinely lovable character and some pretty decent story lines. The over all running time of this DVD is 70 minutes - and as far as I know it is only available in region 1. This means unless you have a multi region DVD player, this little gem is out of the question, but the wide variety of region 1 films available through Amazon at very fair prices really does make the purchase of a region 1 player worthwhile. Or if you are a bit more technologically inclined - there are codes you can enter to many DVD players to unlock them and make them region free. This currently sells for £3.78 on Amazon including postage.
This DVD has 6 episodes but the most popular by far is Mama Luigi. This shows how Luigi first found Yoshi - or more accurately an egg from which Yoshi hatched in a volcanic land populated by aggressive dinosaurs. Yoshi immediately imprinted on Luigi, calling him Mama throughout the show, much to Luigi's embarrassment and Mario's amusement. But this hungry little dinosaur soon proves a valuable ally as the two plumbers attempt to rescue Princess Toadstool from the evil King Koopa. We have watched this episode so many times my son can repeat the dialogue by from memory. In all honesty this episode alone would be worth the purchase price of this DVD. It is so well loved that when the DVD was lost, I bought another, so I now have 2.
Other episodes include:
Fire Sale - Yoshi must conquer his fear of water when Koopa Pie kidnaps Mama Fireplant leaving the cave people to freeze.
Born To Ride - Poor Yoshi ends up in trouble when eats pipe as fast as Mario and Luigi can lay it. After being told off he is befriended by a motorcycle gang - but do they really want to be friends - or do they just want to use Yoshi to get to Mario and Luigi. I think this is an especially good episode for children, because all children feel upset when they get into trouble at home. But it shows that just because they are told off doesn't mean they aren't loved and we can all learn from our mistakes. My son really felt sorry for poor Yoshi being in trouble, but he quite liked the end to this one.
The Yoshi Shuffle - Plenty of laughs when Luigi is turned into an egg and ends up used as a football.
A Little Learning - The weakest offering on this DVD, this stars Princess Toadstool as the school teacher and features feud between Yoshi and Oogtar and the Koopa children in a case of school room fighting that goes too far. I think this one goes a little to far in trying to show how important education is - with the result that it isn't quite as funny as some of the episodes, it's just a bit too politically correct. It also really tries to show Princess Toadstool in a role other than kidnap victim, but it just doesn't quite pull it off.
The Night Before Christmas - Mario and Luigi decide to bring to Christmas to the cave people - but Koopa plays the role of the grinch stealing all of the presents and cave boy Oogtar learns the true meaning of the holiday.
This DVD is a bit cheesy times and its all very predictable, but the simple fact is - the children love it. I think this would be a sure hit with any young Mario or Yoshi fan, and it really is a favourite in out house. We have owned this for over two years now and it has remained a favourite for the whole time, my son has watched it twice this week alone.
I know I really should give this a 3 or 4 star rating. It certainly does not compare with the likes of Finding Nemo or Toystory. But my son loves it more than any of the more famous DVD's and considering the amount of happiness this has brought him, I really can not give this anything less than 5 stars,