I’m going to duck and run after saying this, but keep an eye on the traffic in the final scene -- nobody stops at the intersections, and there are a couple of near misses. :) That and the animation loops around at least twice.
I thought I was going to hate this, but I didn't. Maybe it's partially because I haven't seen Arthur in a few months. I thought it was light and amusing. I think I learned my lesson about "keeping it real" too.
I remember reading that Marc Brown was a big fan of the Backstreet Boys, and that was instrumental in getting this thing made.
Did anyone else notice that 2 members of BINKY, the HOLOGRAPHIC BAND, were at the P.T.A. fundraiser?!? Somebody made a goof-up, they're not even real! They also appear several other times in fantasy sequences.
Fern apparently has gotten over her fear of being in front of crowds. That is odd. She gets right up in front of that gigantic audience and doesn't freeze up. She also was standing up to Francine like never before.
The fact that Fern imagines herself in punk costumes is interesting. I guess it matches her "Silent Night" from the Christmas CD.
Muffy's character did not annoy me this episode! Why is that?
It was awesome to see so much of Fern! I think Fern is a great character, and her voice still sounds good. She can sing, too, unlike most of the characters (I wonder if they picked the lead singer for this based on which voice actress carried the best tune).
Doubly awesome to have the special feature Molly! I think Molly was really cool in this episode. She seemed very independent here. She didn't really care about Binky's opinions, even though he is usually a leader of the Tough Customers.
Overall I was pleasantly surprised that it didn't suck and remained largely watchable throughout. Thankfully the show was not bogged down in all kinds of Backstreet Boys minutiae. In fact, their cameos seemed really brief. It was nice to see Fern elevated to star status and George used more, but where were Sue Ellen and Brain?
The best parts involved the U Stink band, in particular the "A Hard Day's Night" parody where Fern, Binky, and Francine have to stop on the sidewalk whilst being pursued.
Arthur and Buster's segments weren't particularly entertaining, and sadly, the two main characters they seemed rather pathetic and superannuated as they tried to form their own band.
The bits with D.W. and the Tibbles were okay. D.W. in particular seemed a bit shoehorned into the story, but without her Fern couldn't have said her best line, "I can't believe I have my own 'Ferb' card!"
Muffy's bits were okay, but not particularly good. The music video parody was only fair -- they could have gone much further in producing Muffy's imaginary video as a lavish production number, a la the music parodies in Spongebob Squarepants.
Finally, the Backstreet Boys appeared so little that I hardly even cared that they were in the show.
On the basis of first viewing, I give it a solid 6.5 out of 10.
The characters looked different somehow, but I can't put my finger on why. There was a lot more movement in the animation. It looked nice.
I really liked the little subplot of D.W.'s trading cards. I thought it was awfully funny when Muffy complained about the cards not being "authorized", threatening to sue over the pirated merchandise, and D.W. cheerfully telling Muffy to let her lawyers know about her great deal on cards. :)
Well, that's about all I have to say on this for now. I really, really enjoyed the special, and the BSB appearances were so brief they didn't bother me at all. And actually, they did a good job I think. Yay for this special! I hope we get more specials soon!
Ok, ok, I really did like this episode too. But two last thoughts... I won't ask why George is now incapable of writing a good song when three seasons ago, he was writing good poetryand I won't ask why the Tough Customers are now playing musical instruments when last year they were vandalizing them in Brother,Can You Spare A Clarinet?... ;)