The Care Bears, created by American Greetings has grown far larger than ever expected; the colorful bears have become a part of our cultural tapestry. With the Bears turning 30 years old, the company behind them have decided to do something to commemorate the anniversary. The result is Care Bears: The Original Series Collection.
Care Bears: The Original Series Collection is a six-disc DVD set that brings together more than 60 episodes of the animated series that aired between 1986 and1988. This set is not the complete series, by any means, but it does contain a majority of the episodes produced, more than any other set released to date. And with a show like Care Bears, nostalgia at reliving childhood memories (over 900 minutes of them!) will far outweigh the desire to have every single installment ever made.
This DVD has many, many of the Care Bears’ most memorable moments. As they play with their cousins and friends, which include other species who are able to work and play together in peace, the Care Bears also find the time to help children and defeat some very evil villains. While many bad guys in other cartoons are harmless, not so for the Care Bear’s enemies, who present a real threat. Keeping things from getting too scary for the kids who watch the show, Care Bears still manages to make a story with high enough stakes to matter. It’s a delicate balance that the show handles very deftly.
Care Bears holds up remarkably well. The lessons they teach, on how to be a good person and help others, will never go out of style. But the fact that the animation remains pleasing and the stories are still good enough to be entertaining, even to those adults who might sit through them with the children, is no small feat. Whether you are trying to share a part of your own childhood with a new generation or just seeking nostalgia, Care Bears The Original Series Collection should deliver.
Best of all, besides the 64 episodes, the set also contains the feature length movie, Care Bears: The Nutcracker. I remember taping this on an old VHS when it originally aired, and watching it over and over again. The Care Bears add their own twist to the classic tale, crafting an adventure that is equal parts brilliant and heart-warming. For those who want more than 10 or 20 minutes of Care Bears at a time, this is the answer to that desire, providing a gateway to the other movies already available on DVD.
There are no special features on Care Bears: The Original Series Collection. That’s OK, though. The characters have such an enthralling magic to them, it could only spoil things to be taken behind the scenes of their world, learning what makes them tick. It’s much more satisfying to just buy into the fantasy presented.
Even without extras, the amount of Care Bears packed into these discs, coupled with a surprisingly low price, should be enough to make anyone happy. That’s not a sales pitch, because I have no stake in the matter. I’m just pointing out that being able to find 64 episodes and a movie for under $30 is a fantastic deal! Especially when it’s a series as good as this one. And when I find such an occurence, I get very excited to share this gem with others.
For fun, teaching great values, and quality entertainment, I definitely appreciate the Care Bears Original Series Collection, out on DVD now. I’m glad I can someday share something I enjoyed with my own kids.