As a Mama to two girlies under three, one of my Olympic hurdles is getting through children's entertainment. I know it isn't geared towards me, but everyone knows the parents sit through the stuff almost as much as the kidlets do! If the kidlets like it, we are going to watch it over and over and over and(you get the drift, you know I am right!)
I basically cope by not letting my Cupcake Girls listen to or watch anything I don't want to listen to or watch five bajillion times. (A bajillion, for those not familiar with my math, is more than two.)
I got two "Flizbins" DVDs from Chicago Street Studios to look over and review. I chose The Flizbins "Pirates and Cupcakes" because my chicks like both pirates and cupcakes a lot. They are both dressing as pirates (in black tutus and eye patches...yup...preshups, I know) for Halloween and we just enjoyed a MASSIVE 'Cupcake Fail' this week so I thought it was perfect.
I have to say the DVD was cute and I really liked the music. At first I struggled with the green screen festival and computer graphic back drops, but once I got into the story and characters it didn't bother me. (I am an old Sesame Street girl, ya know? They used a real street. Right? No? Ugh.)
"Pirates and Cupcakes" is a fable within a story "A tale of loving on purpose" and had a useful message about being kind to your enemy and standing up for yourself.
There is a (Elmo-esque) puppet named Finley who seeks out support and wisdom from "The Band" which is made up of four live people using their real live names: Charity, David, Shenyel and Tim. They are upbeat happy folks I liked right away(Instead of wanting to gouge my eyes out: Hello, Wiggles! Sorry we haven't watched in a while!)
Finley comes to the band upset about how a neighbor kid is treating him. The band tells Finley a story fable style about some pirates with a shipload of cupcakes who come across The Dread Pirate Bob who is notorious for stealing and consuming entire boatloads of cupcakes. (Sounds like my kinda guy, really) Pirate Bob is stranded on an island and every ship is passing him by without helping him due to his reputation and past behavior. Our hero, Finley as guest on deck, gets to witness the Pirate Captain choosing to help his sworn enemy and that enemy being humbled and grateful in return. The Flizbins "Pirates and Cupcakes" offers a great message of bravery, character and being kind to people who are not kind to you. Don't we all need that message?
The music was pop style and danceable (For kids. That wasn't my foot tapping...). The lyrics were easy to sing along with right away and they did stick with you...ummmm for a long time. But they were positive lyrics and I will be happy to hear my daughters repeat 'em. "Your Love is a Song"(that I can sing....) was one of my favs.
There were several extra features on the DVD including a Talk Show "Howie Live" with a funny host puppet and the band members doing an interview to recap the fable, a cooking segment that is funnier than useful and a dance step. My daughter has NEVER gotten off the couch to dance with a kids TV show but she hopped right up and danced with this one! The blooper reel was fun and the making of was very interesting.
FUNNY NOTE: My daughter who watched with me didn't realize Finley and the others were puppets until we watched the extra features and saw how they made the show!
As soon as the video was over, my sweet daughter said, "I like those guys. I wanna watch again!" I have to say, she is the more valuable critic here and I like the positive messages in The Flizbins "Pirates and Cupcakes"....so our conclusion: WE LIKED IT!
NOTE: In the interest of full disclosure, I am now helping them coordinate an AWESOME GIVEAWAY called the "100 Blogger Project" where they are selecting 100 Bloggers to review one of the shows and offer a giveaway of The Flizbins Fun Packs and a few Ipad 2's just in time for Christmas. (C/mon y'all, you have seen Target all decked out, it is unavoidable. Just go with it.) I do not get to enter the contest but am being paid to assist in the project.