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Pinky and the Brain, Vol. 1
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From the Peabody Award-winning series Steven Spielberg Presents Animaniacs come two hilariously popular laboratory mice now starring in their own animated comedy spin-off--PINKY AND THE BRAIN--as they take on the modern world in an intelligently silly way with their plans for global domination.]]>
Better yet, these 22 episodes culled from P&TB's four-season run (1995-98) demonstrate how the show's basic concept--two talking lab mice ("one is a genius, the other's insane") and their nightly attempts at global domination--lent itself to a broad spectrum of hilariously ingenious plots, with no restrictions of timeframe. So you've got episodes in ancient Egypt, Napoleonic France, and 1940s Vienna, along with contemporary schemes and shorter, time-filler episodes (like "Cheese Roll Call") that qualify as mini-masterpieces of educational comedy. "A Pinky and the Brain Christmas" is a bona-fide sentimental classic (offering proof that the Brain's got a soft heart, after all), and the polar-opposite pairing of Pinky and the Brain is just about perfect, largely due to the voice talents of Maurice LaMarche (expertly channeling Orson Welles as the Brain) and Emmy-winner Rob Paulsen as Pinky (both seen, to splendid effect, in disc 2's behind-the-scenes featurette). Additional voice talents include Roddy MacDowall (as the Brain's nemesis, Snowball) and Ernest Borgnine, but the show's primary strength is its go-for-broke writing, brilliant animation (a flawless homage to Warner Bros. tradition, yet uniquely styled to match the material), and music scores (mostly by Richard Stone) that pay tribute to the late, great WB cartoon composer Carl Stalling while incorporating frequent passages from the classical repertoire. All in all, Pinky and the Brain is perfect entertainment for the young and young-at-heart, destined for cult-favorite status as one of the best overlooked TV series of the 1990s. As Pinky might say, "Poit! Narf! Oh, this is SO much fun!" --Jeff Shannon
Top Customer Reviews
The concept itself may not have worked if the characters weren't so well written and performed. To my memory there was only ever three continuous characters in the show - Pinky, Brain and occasionally Snowball, a genius hamster and rival to Brain voiced by the late, great Roddy McDowell. With such reliance on a small cast (the rest of the characters featured - the humans - were different every week), the creators worked hard to get them to be well-rounded and likable (although they are essentially villains - at least Brain is anyway). That they came fully formed from Animaniacs is an even higher praise. The use of catchphrases helped make this show highly accessable ("Poit" and "Narf" from Pinky and "Yes!" from Brain as well as the opening exchange.
Elsewhere on this page, the show is described as "mindless fun" - not so. Fun, yes. Mindless, never. This was a show that had Looney Tunes sensibilites but with a brain (literally). Although the writing was hit and miss at times, it was never short of brilliant and the animation was much more consistant than its parent show which sometimes veered into amateurish. The theme tune is one that gets in the head and refuses to budge, and watch out for the definition of a new word in the end credits of every show.
If there is anyone in Hollywood reading this, I suggest a live-action movie version of this - its rife with possibilities! In the meantime, buy this and make the most of a largely forgotten gem of '90s TV.
For those of you who have never seen the show, expect to be pleasently surprised. This is one of those rare animated shows that appeals to adults and children equally (well maybe not equally, I'm sure I enjoyed watching it on TV more than my kids). The Brain is a super intelligent, meglamaniacal lab mouse intent on taking over the world with schemes that would make Rube Goldberg proud. His sidekick Pinky is affable and kind hearted but somewhat dim wited. Think of them as the animated versions of Laurel & Hardy or Abbott & Costello.
Episodes contained on DVD
Of Mouse and Man
Tokyo Grows/That Smarts/Brainstem
Pinky and the Fog/Where No Mouse Has Gone Before/Cheese Roll Call
TV or Not TV
A Pinky and the Brain Christmas
Around the world in 80 Narfs
Amubulatory Aide/Mouse of La Mancha
The Third Mouse/The Visit
It's Only a Paper World
Collect 'Em All/ Pinkasso
Plan Brain from Outer Space
The Pink Candidate
Welcome to the Jungle
A little Off the Top/Megalomaniacs Anonymous
The Mummy/Robin Brain
Two Mice and a Baby / The Maze
Basically the plot in every episode features Brain a lab mouse with super intellect and his partner in crime Pinky a clueless but funny mouse with a brain that, well, doesn't do a whole lot more than run his body and make off the wall comments. Their plan--to take over the world. Every episode revolves around that simple plot and it's the ways that they plan to take over the world that make this so much fun.
A very different show from "Animainacs", "Pinky and the Brain" actually survived for a while as a prime time TV show (3 seasons)on the WB. This nicely packaged set includes all 22 episodes on four discs. If Animaniacs is like The Marx Brothers (chaos incarnate) or Robin Williams than Pinky & The Brain is Abbott and Costello, Hope & Crosby, Martin & Lewis and..Steve Martin. What I mean to say is that Animaniacs is chaotic comedy and Pink & the Brain uses its formula for its own brand of inspired lunacy.In conclusion--"Zot! Narf!" "Pinky are you pondering what I'm pondering?" "Yeah, I think so Brain...only why would people want to laugh at two lab mice when they could be laughing at themselves?" "They are Pinky, they are!"
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This cartoon spin-off show defined the later years of my childhood. I watched this so many times as a kid that even as an adult, I can remember my most favorite episodes. Read morePublished 16 days ago by Kenneth
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