X-Men (2000 - DVD)

I contend that, while not entirely bad, this is the weakest of the original X-Men movie trilogy. I feel like there's too strong of a dichotomy between the opening scenes and the general plot. The story begins with a young Magneto being taken to a concentration camp in WWII-era Germany, which is extremely rough and evocative considering the rest of the movie is this silly yarn about an inexplicable machine that can turn people into mutants, and has a character that jumps around and flicks out his tongue like a frog. It also tends to feel like there are too many characters in this movie and not enough time to develop them all.

That and the whole thing comes across to me as an elaborate explanation for the white streak in Rogue's hair.
Rating: 2.5/5

Galaxy High School: The Complete Series (1986 - DVD)

Galaxy High was a short-lived 80's cartoon that I only barely remembered from my youth, about a girl and boy from Earth who attend a high school in outer space, populated by many strange and diverse alien students and faculty. This is a 2-Disc, 13-episode set and most of the episodes on Disc 1 aren't that great. They follow a predictable pattern of a character running off somewhere, and the other characters having to go save him/her. These episodes often have "morals" and storylines that aren't easy for an adult to relate to, and nor do I feel the premise makes much sense - why was Doyle selected to attend Galaxy High when his grades were so poor?

But things pick up on Disc 2 and the show finally starts taking advantage of its crazy character designs and personalities for more visual humor and jokes, and all-around better plots (aside from one horribly misguided episode with an anti-drug message). My two favorite episodes were the "Supernova" one, and the one where the show's resident villain, a school bully named Beef Bonk, does something completely out of the ordinary to help a class of children while still remaining true to his character.

I tend to see a lot of hatred and vitriol spewed at 80's stuff these days, but one thing I can say about Galaxy High is that it's animated very well. When a six-armed character named Milo is making pizza, you get the feeling this scene exists to show off the animators' skill. Though you can tell what episodes the staff thought were written the best because generally the better the writing, the better the animation.

Overall, I would have liked for this show to have been as good as the best episodes of Disc 2, but I can't really recommend it to anyone who isn't a complete 80's cartoon nut, or just wants it for nostalgia.
Rating: 2.5/5



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