Little kids embrace tales of a normal child who gains super powers or owns fantastic gadgets. They can easily dream that it will happen to them as they play in the backyard. They don’t have to be born with an amazing talent or a genius mind with mad scientist skills. This is an extraordinary jump in an ordinary life. The cartoon series Johnny Test does exactly that. Johnny Test is not Jonny Quest. Test is the skate punk kid that dreams of X-Games glory as he zips around his trashed universe. What he has gone for himself is two brilliant twin sisters that constantly create innovative gadgets. They use their little brother as the test pilot. Johnny Test: The Complete First and Second Seasons gives 26 episodes of dazzling devices, vile villains and excessive explosions.
The episodes are like animating the energy given off by a bowl of sugary cereal dripping in Red Bull. Johnny is a non-stop pre-teen machine. His family life is dominated by his super smart twin sisters (Susan and Mary). His workaholic mom and house-husband dad are no good at slowing the kid down. The only person that nearly has a handle on him is Dukey, a talking dog. Life isn’t always going his way. He does have an arch-enemy in Bling-Bling Boy. There battles have to end at dinner time since neither wants to get in that much trouble. The episodes bounce all over the place. “Johnny and the Ice Pigs” sends him back in time to meet Thomas Edison. What does he need from the Wizard of Menlo Park? Help for his hockey team. “Johnnyland” has him build his own theme park. Each episode has two cartoons.
Johnny Test originally ran on WB and CW for three seasons before it shifted over to its current home of Cartoon Network. Johnny Test is really aimed straight at tween boys that enjoy the extreme and slightly gross action. He proves you don’t have to be a brainiac or an accent like Dexter’s Laboratory to have fun with science. There is little adult nature to the stories involving a boy with flaming blond hair. It’s not quite hitting the same notes as SpongeBob SquarePants or Rocky and Bullwinkle. This is properly given to a ten year old boy to keep them occupied in the backseat of the mini-van. The only bad news is a boy might spend the next few months demanding his older sisters create cool stuff for him.
The video is 1.33:1 full frame. The transfers look good for the limited animation. The colors are bright. The audio is stereo. The levels emphasize the bam-boom nature of the action.
Bonus Episodes are from World of Quest, Super Duper Sumos, Gadget Boy, Potatoes and Dragons and The Adventures of Nanoboy.
Johnny Test is a cartoon for preteens, pure and simple. The good news is the boxset is priced perfectly as a birthday gift. If you know a young child with older twin sisters, it’s a perfect boxset to wrap up.
Mill Creek Entertainment presents Johnny Test (The Complete First and Second Seasons). Starring: James Arnold Taylor, Louis Chirillo, Brittney Wilson and Bill Monday. Boxset Contents: 26 episodes on 3 DVDs. Released on DVD: February 15, 2011.
Tags: Cartoon Network