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Warner Home Video presents
Atomic Betty: Volume 1 (2005)

"The Spindly Tam Kanushu has urgent need of your presence on the planet Bain Ofragnog."
- Betty (Tajja Isen)

Review By: Chuck Aliaga   
Published: October 19, 2005

Stars: Tajja Isen, Rick Miller, Bruce Hunter, Colin Fox, Len Carlson
Other Stars: Kristina Nicoll, Catherine Disher, Patrick McKenna
Director: various

MPAA Rating: Not Rated for (nothing objectionable)
Run Time: 01h:34m:57s
Release Date: October 18, 2005
UPC: 012569715080
Genre: animation


Style
Grade
Substance
Grade
Image Transfer
Grade
Audio Transfer
Grade
Extras
Grade
B+ BA-B+ D+

DVD Review

My 10-year-old daughter gave me the scoop on Atomic Betty. Just over a year old, the show currently airs on the Cartoon Network, and is generating some solid word-of-mouth among the most discriminating of target audiences: preteen girls.

Betty is seen by her friends and family as the nice, super smart girl nextdoor, but she is keeping a rather huge secret. Whenever a problem arises somewhere in the galaxy, she is called to action as "Atomic Betty, Galactic Guardian and Defender of the Cosmos." Fortunately for her, she has her own team of helpers, including Sparky, who takes "hyper" to the next level. Her other pal is X-5, a robot who knows everything there is to know about the universe. Sparky and X-5 don't always get along, but deep down they care for each other as much as they do for Betty.

Of course, Betty and her crew have an arch-villain that they constantly have to protect the universe from. This villain is the Supreme Overlord, Maximus I.Q., who, along with his assistant, Minimus P.U. (which stands for Portable Underling), is still trying to find out where Betty calls home, so he can destroy it. Amazingly, Betty has managed to hide the location of this "home base" and keep her family and the rest of Earth's inhabitants safe from Maximus.

At first glance, Atomic Betty reminded me of The Powerpuff Girls, as it is drawn very similar and has the same amount of energy in its action sequences. However, this new show lacks the wit and razor-sharp writing that enabled the Girls to appeal to adults just as much (if not more) than it did to kids. Still, Atomic Betty is a young, developing show that kids just love, and in this case, it seems that they're the only audience that Cartoon Network is concerned about.

The show works, thanks to its multiple layers. In a given episode, we're bouncing between Betty's life at home and her battles against Maximus, with this nice balance keeping things fresh from episode to episode. This also means that the show should go on for quite some time, and I'm sure kids are more than pleased about that.

Atomic Betty: Volume 1 gives us eight episodes of the show that serve as a great introduction to the series' charms. These shows aren't in any particular order on this disc, but the best of the bunch are Toxic Talent, Atomic Roger, But the Cat Came Back, and The Doppelganger. The rest of these (Spindly Tam Kanushu, Furball for the Sneeze, Really Big Game, and The Incredible Shrinking Betty) are also very good, but just aren't quite as fun as the others.

Rating for Style: B+
Rating for Substance: B

 

Image Transfer

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


Image Transfer Review: All eight episodes show up in their original full-frame format, and the bright, vivid color scheme has carried over nicely onto disc. Each hand-drawn, animated detail is clear and distinct, and there isn't even a hint of grain, dirt, or other blemish to hurt these transfers.

Image Transfer Grade: A-

 

Audio Transfer

 LanguageRemote Access
DS 2.0English, French, Spanishyes


Audio Transfer Review: The Dolby Digital 2.0 audio is nice also, putting the surrounds to work during the action sequences. There's even nice bass presence, adding a bit more punch to these sequences. The dialogue is clear and never overshadowed by the music or other sound effects.

Audio Transfer Grade: B+

 

Disc Extras

Animated menu with music
Scene Access with 8 cues and remote access
Subtitles/Captions in English, French, Spanish with remote access
3 Other Trailer(s) featuring Trollz, Hi Hi Puffy Ami Yumi, American Girl: Felicity
Packaging: Keep Case
Picture Disc
1 Disc
1-Sided disc(s)
Layers: single

Extra Extras:
  1. Atomic Betty - Toughest Chick in the Alien World - Music Video
Extras Review: The only extras are Atomic Betty: Toughest Chick in the Alien World, which is a music video for the show's theme song (by Betty, herself, Tajja Isen), and three previews for other Warner Home Video releases.

Extras Grade: D+

 

Final Comments

Atomic Betty is one of the Cartoon Network's newest series, and, now that its second season is underway, those who are just getting into the show can get caught up with Warner Home Video's first volume DVD. These shows look and sound just as good as they do on TV, and there is a music video that kids will want to check out.

 


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