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Fox Home Entertainment presents
Strawberry Shortcake: Adventures on Ice Cream Island (2004)

"That girl's so sweet, just like her name
Strawberry Shortcake!"

- theme song

Review By: Rich Rosell   
Published: September 22, 2004

Stars: Sarah Heinke, Rachel Ware, Anna Jordan, Samantha Triba, James Street, Dejare Barfield, Nils Haaland
Director: Judy Reilly

MPAA Rating: Not Rated for (nothing objectionable)
Run Time: 44m:22s
Release Date: August 31, 2004
UPC: 024543120117
Genre: animation

Image Transfer
Audio Transfer

DVD Review

I should consider myself lucky that I somehow missed out the whole Strawberry Shortcake experience, though when she was small my daughter did go through a big Care Bears and My Little Pony period, and in comparison I suppose that's not much better. It's the same kind of gratuitous and nefarious kid-oriented marketing that disguises a shameless marketing juggernaut as children's entertainment. I know the target crowd of young girls probably go gaga for this stuff, but the calculated approach of "shows" like this just stirs up all sorts of stingy bile in my throat.

But I digress, because if as a parent you sit through poorly animated sugary drivel like this, you're a better soul than I. In the first of two episodes on this bland exercise of product-oriented indoctrination, massive-headed Strawberry Shortcake (voiced by Sarah Heinke) has to somehow convince her faithful steed Honey Pie Pony to not move to Ice Cream Island to live with all the other horses (kind of self-centered, if you ask me). The second one features the obligatory villain, in this case a nasty horse owner who has his poorly animated eyeballs on Honey Pie and all the other ponies!

A gaggle of characters show up, covering the entire spectrum of plush toy possibilities. We get cats, dogs, ponies, bees, and the usual smattering of squeaky voiced human pals, all of whom seem incapable of functioning without the blessing of good ol' Strawberry. I'm not sure what the actual lessons to learned here are, but I'm guessing it has something to do with being yourself, working together—and buying Strawberry Shortcake merchandise.

The animation is painfully stiff, the voices are annoyingly perky, but I get it that little girls will get all aflutter with Strawberry and her pals cavorting about in their fanciful little one-dimensional world. I just can't stomach it, really.

Rating for Style: C-
Rating for Substance: D


Image Transfer

Aspect Ratio1.33:1 - Full Frame
Original Aspect Ratioyes

Image Transfer Review: Presented in 1.33:1, the two eps collected here look just fine, considering this isn't exactly Pixar. Colors reproduction is adequate, and the print is free of any obvious defects.

Image Transfer Grade: B


Audio Transfer

 LanguageRemote Access
DS 2.0Englishno

Audio Transfer Review: Audio is available in English stereo, and like the image transfer, is exceedingly plain and more than suitable for the material.

Audio Transfer Grade: B


Disc Extras

Static menu with music
Scene Access with 8 cues and remote access
Subtitles/Captions in English with remote access
1 Featurette(s)
Packaging: Amaray
Picture Disc
1 Disc
1-Sided disc(s)
Layers: single

Extras Review: Extras include a music video for Tell Me a Story (02m:18s), and something entitled Berry Special Friends that purports to give background info on Honey Pie Pony, Honey Doodle, Angel Cake, and Vanilla Icing, though on my player not all of the character icons worked properly. Berry Special Places: Ice Cream Island is one of those "click on a location" extras that require some remote control dexterity, so I'm guessing YOU'LL be watching this one, too.

The disc is cut into eight chapters, and features optional English subtitles.

Extras Grade: C+


Final Comments

This flatly animated marketing tool might keep your young girls quiet for 40 minutes, it's like feeding them a big bag of sugar.


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