Thursday, January 26, 2006

DVD Review - Polka Palace Party

It's finally here! I normally would have gotten this DVD from, but that didn't work out this time, so Tuesday morning I hopped over to Blockbuster and picked one of their two copies. The good thing about that is I have to return it tomorrow, so there isn't the temptation to put off writing this, like there would be with a copy from Netflix!

Polka Palace Party follows the Backyardigans DVD pattern. Four episodes, one of them previously unaired on Nick Jr. The episodes on this DVD are:

  • Polka Palace Party - Tyrone is on his way to the Cheyenne Polka Palace with Sherman the Worman, to play his Tuba at Sherman's brother's birthday party. Along the way, he picks up Uniqua, Pablo and Austin, to make the perfect polka playing band.
  • High Tea - When Tyrone, Pablo and Uniqua can't decide what to play they agree to let Tasha decide. They're not too thrilled when Tasha decides on a tea party, but she manages to make the experience as exciting as any of them could wish. Austin shows up at the end, as a meloncholy Ming emporer.
  • The Heart of the Jungle - The episode that introduced to Sherman the Worman. Austin, Pablo and Tyrone are all Tarzans, helping Uniqua to return Sherman to his worman home, in the jungle.
  • Viking Voyage - Pablo, Uniqua and Tyrone are Vikings, searching for a new land to discover. Tasha is a mermaid, determined to stop them. Is there any doubt who'll prevail?
High Tea was interesting, I thought. It had more the feeling of kids pretending together than any of the other episodes I've seen. I can remember playtimes like that when I was a kid, with one of us leading the others along in a game of make-believe. I liked it alot.

There was only one item in the Special Features section this time, apart from the previews, which was disappointing. Nickelodeon just can't seem to get this part of the Backyardigans' DVDs right. This time the special feature was a music video from Viking Voyage, Hold on Tight. It's a clip direct from the episode with no special editing. (Not that any was needed. It really is great all on its own.)

What I was really hoping was that they'd include one of the great music videos they show on Nick Jr. every so often, which I haven't seen used except to advertise the show. We do, however, have one more DVD scheduled for release (Cave Party, 3/17/06) and hopefully at least one more to come after that, so there is yet time for Nickelodeon to get this section right.

In the Previews section, a new Go, Diego, Go DVD, The Great Dinosaur Rescue is advertised, as well as three Dora the Explorer DVDs: Dora's Pirate Adventure, Fairytale Adventure and Dance to the Rescue. Blue's Clues/Blue's Room DVDs Beyond Your Wildest Dreams, It's Hug Day and Alphabet Power, are advertised as well.

To quote my last review, "You can play the DVD in English or French. You can Play All, which will play each of the episodes and then automatically restart through the entire thing, or choose one episode at a time, which will not automatically start again upon finishing. Leave it too long on the menu page (15 seconds) and it will automatically go into Play All."(Which has the potential to get the DVD looping over and over again. Which meant I had to stop it fast, after letting the girls watch it all the way through, to avoid the crying and pleas to let them watch it all just one more time? Please? We promise we won't cry next time it ends ...)

A great DVD, and right now, the only way to watch High Tea that I know of, if you're in the United States. An invaluable addition to your Backyardigans collection, if only for that one episode.


  1. Thanks for the info, hopefully we can rent that dvd at our nearby Blockbuster!