DVD Review: Angry Birds Toons - Season One Volume One

The video game franchise flies onto DVD in this surprisingly fun series.

By , Columnist

Images copyright SPHE.

The concept behind Angry Birds has proven to be a stroke of genius. The original video game has morphed into a string of hit spin-offs, including a spoof of the world's most popular space adventure movies, and has breathed new life into the game of Jenga.

It has also produced this surprisingly entertaining cartoon series, which debuted on DVD (and Blu-ray), courtesy of Sony Pictures Home Entertainment, just before the holidays.

AngryBirdsToons_DVD_250.jpgAngry Birds Toons - Season One Volume One
includes 26 episodes that were previously available through the Angry Birds apps and have aired on specialty channels around the world. Each episode is a little under three minutes long and features the familiar birds from the original game. For the uninitiated, these are introduced in a "Meet the characters" featurette that is included among the DVD's special features.

Inevitably the birds' arch enemies are the pigs led by a rotund and slovenly King Pig. The pig community is larger than that of the birds, which allows plenty of different porkers to get battered and bruised in their futile pursuit of the eggs. Their incompetent scheming is often the source of the series' humor.

The short running time of each episode means the scripts are basic. Despite this — and the absence of dialogue that goes much beyond squawks and grunts — the writers extract a creditable amount of variety out of the birds' limited personalities. Enough imagination has gone into creating the characters and the world they inhabit to make room for plenty of inoffensive wit. As a result, almost every cartoon is likely to induce at least a smile.

AngryBirdsToons_2.jpgWhat also makes the series work is the animation. The design is sharp and decorated with bright, cheery colours. Together with the clever use of shadow and soft edges, this creates a cartoon world that is easy on the eye and reminiscent of classic Bugs Bunny and Road Runner shorts.

In addition to the 26 cartoons, the DVD comes with a Windows PC version of the Angry Birds video game, three behind-the-scenes featurettes and a character art gallery. There isn't much here for students of animation but if you enjoy some old-school slapstick humor in cartoon form, this Angry Birds Toons collection should make you feel chirpy.

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Michael Simpson is a freelance writer, editor, presenter, researcher, instructor, gadget freak and sci-tech consultant based in British Columbia’s beautiful Okanagan Valley. Formerly from the UK, he’s converted from tea to coffee and written and presented on film, TV, science, nature, technology,…

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