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DVD Review: The Centurions – The Original Miniseries

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Once again, the folks at Warner Brothers have enabled many Generation X-ers to relive their youth by issuing another classic Saturday Morning Cartoon to DVD-R via their exclusive Warner Archive Collection lineup. In this instance, the animated series in question is The Centurions: The Original Miniseries — also known as Centurions: Power X Treme — a five-part series that was produced by American animators Joe Ruby and Ken Spears, who also produced Chuck Norris’ Karate Kommandos, the animated Police Academy series, and several shows loosely based off of popular video games of the time, such as Dragon’s Lair.

Animated by the Sunrise studios in Japan, The Centurions: The Original Miniseries originally aired in April of 1986, and was subsequently followed by a 60-episode series. The storylines here (they’re all standalone entries) find three heroic humans (the titular characters) battling the evil forces of a cyborg named Doc Terror (really), who is intent on controlling the world with the assistance of his loyal henchman, Hacker, and an army of Doom Drones that resemble Leader-1 from the GoBots.

To do so, the Centurions in question are attired in special “exo-frames” that enable them to call forth a variety of unique weaponry (depending on the situation) just by shouting “By the Power of Greysk–” er, I mean “Power Extreme!” They all bear the most appropriately-ridiculous names: there’s Max Ray, the guy in charge of the sea operations stuff (and who has the most-marvelous, manliest ‘80s moustache ever); Jack Rockwell, the land ops feller; and — are you ready for this one? — Ace McCloud, the man in charge of the air operations. Together, these three men work out of their space station, the Sky Vault, along with their “secretary,” Crystal Kane — who spends a lot of time on the orbiting platform with Jake’s dog and an orangutan (?).

Modern-day animation audiences may find The Centurions: The Original Miniseries to be a bit of a bore, as it is not as “action-packed” as the fast-paced shows that air today (and which are specifically aimed at kids who haven’t taken their Ritalin). Anyone who grew up watching these classic cartoons in the ‘80s, however, will most definitely want to add this to their collection of nostalgic goodies.

About Luigi Bastardo

Luigi Bastardo is the disgruntled alter-ego of a thirtysomething lad from Northern California who has watched so many weird movies since the tender age of 3 that a conventional life is out of the question. He currently lives in Chico, CA with four cats named Groucho, Harpo, Chico, and Margaret. Seriously.