|Posted by Moviefan12 on May 21, 2012 at 8:10 AM|
It's finally happened, I've come across a Pooh Bear show that just bored me. The Book of Pooh was the third Pooh Bear show and the second after Welcome To Pooh Corner to not have traditionally animated characters but rather use puppets. We would not get another animated Pooh show, until the CGI Mt Friends, Tigger & Pooh would come along. Apparently, this show uses a style of puppetry known as Bunraku . For a better description just follow the link. Now don't get me wrong about the show, it's cute and it's not extremely bad but it was so boring.
Over The Hill
Now maybe it's just me but when I see this I don't think of adventure as this is what this episode was about but rather I tend to think of old age. Now I'll admit that this is not a fault of the episode but it is just what my mind instantly goes to when hearing that phrase.
Now this is where my problem with the show comes in. It's not extremely bad but it just feels like I've seen it before. The jist of the plot is that Pooh Bear show wants to go on an adventure after hearing about Owl's Uncle Waldo. So Pooh decides to leave and go on an adventure over the hill but gets distracted by a butterfly and gets dizzy. Pooh Bear thinks that he has gone over the hill but he is still in The Hundred Acre Wood but he thinks he has gone over the hill. (Sorry for saying that so much) and finds it odd that all of the residents on the other side of the hill look like his friends. Pooh Bear is surprised by this and confused, but again that is easy for Pooh. As I said up top this is my one of my biggest problems with the the episode. It just feels like I've seen it before. This isn't the first show to use this idea and it more than likely won't be the last. For example an episode of Spongebob had a plot very similar to this one involving aliens. It's not extremely bad but it just feels generic.
Mr. Narrator - Unlisted
Mr. Narrator was all right, even if he did feel like a bit of a hand holder. Now this isn't a bad thing for a show aimed for younger children such as this one and I did like how he sometimes had interaction with the characters. Also I do like the fact that he only popped up when needed and didn't cut into the story.
Now I'll be breaking this down into Main, & Supporting but like with other episodes, the supporting characters are more like background characters. I have had the oddest luck with these episodes where the supporting characters are important but not at important as one would think.
Pooh voiced by Jim Cummings
I have no complaints against the voice work here as it is Jim Cummings playing Pooh and he is excellent as Pooh and he was great here. Really, the characters were great but the story dragged them down. Now as for the look of Pooh, I must admit I'm a fan of the puppet designs in this show as they do actually look like the characters jumped out of the book into our world as observed in this scene from the Video collection, Stories From The Heart where I found this episode through YouTube. In my opinion, the look of the characters is a highlight and they even look huggable. A bit off-topic but I just have to laugh at the fact that it took this long for an episode review where Pooh was the main character. Ah, well.
Pooh's Friends voiced by Jim Cummings, John Fielder, Peter Cullen, Ken Sansom, Andre Stojka & Stephanie D'Abruzzo
Now seeing as the fact that most of the characters in this episode were again just background, I decided to group them together. Now they didn't play a big role but the episode didn't really require them to as this was a Pooh-centric episode. It was odd but it doesn't surprise me that they also got confused by Pooh by thinking they were different people than who they are save for Piglet. That's about it really but I do have say I'm so looking forward to the films as it'll give me to talk about with the characters than just relegating them to being background characters.
My Final Thoughts
Is this bad? No, not bad but rather just boring and feels familiar but not in a good way. I think my biggest problem with this episode is that it shows that this show is not one for all ages unlike The New Adventures of Winnie The Pooh and I'd even argue that of Welcome To Pooh Corner but that does seem to be a problem with the newer Pooh shows in that it feels that it panders and only has it's target set on the preschool crowd and I don't believe adults would not get much enjoyment out of this. This is a trend that I hope does not continue and only time will tell but join me next time for my final Pooh TV article as I delve into my thoughts on the upcoming new Pooh show, Tales of Friendship with Winnie The Pooh.