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HoopDogz "God Good, Idols Bad"


Cartoon Pizza - An Animation Company
www.cartoonpizza.com


This is a new video series by Jim Jinkins and David Campbell, well known cartoonists in today's most popular children's programming with Doug, JoJo's Circus, Stanley, and P.B.& J. Otter. They have formed a new company to enter the Christian children's market, Cartoon Pizza, and this, the first video, was slated to be released in October 2004.

This series about the 10 Commandments features a family of animated dogs who live in an inner-city neighborhood. "VJ Bumbus and his friends shoot hoops on the court behind the Hoop-Dogz diner, learning valuable lessons along the way. These lessons just happen to be, more often than not, unintentionally taught by Chad Dimple and Rebecca Ruth St. Esther Eve, the hapless hosts of a local TV show."

I watched the video with my son, who is 10, and then shared the video with a pastor and his family to get their reactions. Their youngest child is also 10. The animation is well done. The story line is very obvious, in that we are not to worship idols and obvious idols in the story. There was one very obvious mistake, however. The video stated that Moses was up on the mountain 80 days getting the 10 commandments. The video made it quite apparent they were talking about the FIRST time Moses went up the mountain, which was only 40 days. This mistake was picked up by one of the teenagers watching. I have some hesitations about the portrayal of the tele-evangelists, Chad Dimple and his long-named wife; in one way very obviously a parody with her giant hairdo and make-up and in general, simply bumbling idiots. There were adults in the story that were not idiots, however, and did provide some guidance to the "pups" in the story.

When viewer opinions were taken, the consensus was that although it had some good points and was liked and understood by the 10-year-olds, none of the viewers felt they would likely watch it again, comparing it to the popular Veggie Tales or Adventures in Odyssey. However, even those series had to have a "first" before they became well-known characters and had the chance to 'flesh out" the characters with subsequent releases. Overall I would give it a thumbs up for effort and content (except for the mistake, which may have been corrected before final release) and encouragement to continue.



--Product Review by: Nancy Wagner, The Old Schoolhouse Magazine


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