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Featured DVD Review: Strawberry Shortcake: Bright Lights, Big Dreams

October 31st, 2011

Strawberry Shortcake: Bright Lights, Big Dreams - Buy from Amazon

Bright Lights, Big Dreams is the latest DVD release and the most recent incarnation of the Strawberry Shortcake franchise. This franchise has lasted nearly 30 years in various forms from its greeting card origins, to the toy line, to hand animated TV series, to this digitally animated show. While I was never a member of the target demographic, I've reviewed several similar shows aimed at the same audience, and indeed several DVDs from this franchise and this specific show, so it shouldn't be hard to judge if young girls will enjoy this show.

The Movie

The "movie" is actually three episodes from the TV series with the barest connection to each other. In the first story, Jadybug comes into Strawberry Shortcake cafe and is really panicked. Her cousins, Sadiebug and Katiebug, are coming to town. Sadiebug and Katiebug are, well, not the best house guests and Jadybug is worried about what they will get up to while they are there. Strawberry Shortcake offers to take them in instead. It turns out Jadybug's concerns are well placed.

In the second story, Berrykin Bloom, the senior most Berrykin, was planning on going on vacation for the first time in a long time. However, Bloom instead spends his vacation money on special berry seeds for the Berryworks. Orange Blossom decides they should get him the vacation he deserves and she knows just how to do it. They will enter a contest to win his dream vacation, but what record can they break? Meanwhile, because the six friends are all trying to break records and are acting very secretive about it, Berrykin Bloom thinks they've gone loopy.

The final story is about the big annual Dance-Off. This year Plum Pudding is determined to win, after being humiliated by the Big Bitty City Dance Team last year. In order to win, she's choreographed a very complicated dance routine and is convinced that this will be the key to victory, as long as they are perfect. And you know what they say about practice makes perfect. But her drive for perfection takes all the fun out of dancing.

The Extras

The extras include some printable coloring pages and a music video.

The Verdict

Strawberry Shortcake: Bright Lights, Big Dreams is exactly what you've come to expect from the franchise. It's a bright and colorful show, both in terms of the animation and the stories. The episodes teach lessons about helping each other, being good guests and that having fun is more important than winning. The DVD doesn't have a lot of extras, but the price-per-minute is on par with other shows aimed at the same target audience and if you bought the earlier releases, this one is worth picking up as well.

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