Pros and Cons

  • Amazing animation
  • Great voice acting
  • Great story
  • Original characters
  • Good character development
  • Commentary on each episode
  • Good packaging
  • Good price (now that it has been out for awhile)

Futurama: Volume One (DVD)

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The beginning of one of the best animated series ever...



I have had this box set since its release and just watching recently, I felt like doing a review for the first set of this awesome series.

Volume one (season one) of Futurama has easily the best pilot episode of a cartoon. I'm sure most of you know the story of how Futurama starts out: Phillip Fry is a 25-year-old pizza delivery boy whose life is going nowhere. When he accidentally freezes himself on December 31, 1999, he wakes up 1,000 years in the future and has a chance to make a fresh start.

The show first aired March 28th, 1999 and the last episodes were aired in the summer of 2003.
The first season, like many other shows, has 13 episodes on it (72 in total in the series), and they are a good first season bundle.

Story: The story in Futurama, the base and as it gets more advanced, proves to be well thought out and planned well. It fits together and when you get to further episodes, you see so much connecting together, and how it all works out.

Animation: This is the best animation I have ever seen in a cartoon. Its got the regular 2D look like The Simpsons when they are just talking and doing the stuff with little motion, and then when the ship lifts off and its flying through space, its amazing. Sometimes I just rewind action scenes for the animation. They did such a good job of mixing the realistic and cool look of the 3D stuff with the normal 2D cartoon stuff you see in most other cartoons. The 3D feel also helps in giving it the year 3000 feel.

Voice Acting: Excellent voice acting, similar to The Simpsons, with the likes of:
Billy West, Katey Sagal, John Di Maggio, Phil LaMarr, Tress MacNeille, Lauren Tom, Maurice LaMarche, David Herman and more. If you are like me, a big fan of The Simpsons, you'll notice a lot of the same voices for smaller characters are characters done by Tress MacNeille (Mom from Futurama, the crazy cat lady from The Simpsons, you can hear the similarities). You may also notice guest voiceovers by Dan Castenella (Homer, the Genie from Aladdin, etc) as the Robot Devil.

Packaging: This is something more of a personal nature, but I like the packaging because I can go places and take just one DVD in its own separate case and not worry about damaging the outer box because I can just keep it at home where nothing will damage it. The extra artwork on the disk, box, and on the cover of the casings are all pretty sweet too. It shows the extra time and effort that Matt Groening will put into his drawing because he sure didn't have to do any of it.

Extra features as provided by Amazon.com:
Subtitles in English, Spanish
Available Audio Tracks: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround), Spanish (Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround), French (Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround)
Commentary on all episodes
Animatic, script, and storyboards for "Space Pilot 3000"
Deleted scenes from six episodes
Concept art gallery (videos and stills)

This has become one of my favorite cartoons, and that's saying a lot, because cartoons are one of my hobbies. There are jokes in the show for adults, involving TV, movies, science, math and current/past events. There are also jokes for the kids, the simple jokes that you can just laugh at and not know the story behind or anything. I like all the little details that are in the show, and I like the references to The Simpsons as well. This is the strongest first season I have even seen for a cartoon, and it well suits the rest of the 4 seasons. I would recommend this show to anyone at all, and I have done so already. If only it would be revived like Family Guy had been.

Overall, if I had to give this a rating out of 10, I would give it (the complete package, the DVDs, episodes, writing, all of that) a 9.0/10. It's a great set, and if you don't have it, I would highly suggest buying it, you'll love, especially if you like The Simpsons type of humor, and the crazy thing is, season 2 is even better.

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