Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Dragons: Riders of Berk

Did you watch the one-hour premiere last night of Dragons: Riders of Berk on the Cartoon Network? If not, here's the teaser for it (from io9).
This weekly animated series follows the continuing adventures of Hiccup and his dragon Toothless on the island of Berk, along with the band of dragon trainers, all of whom now have dragons of their own! Through their training, the kids are finding out the cool things dragons can do. Not only will they learn more about their dragons, they'll also discover new ones and battle against enemies as they explore worlds they never dreamed existed. In addition, the talented cast from the feature film - Jay Baruchel (Hiccup), America Ferrera (Astrid), Christopher Mitz-Plasse (Fishlegs) and T.J. Miller (Tuffnut) - will lend their voices to the series.
Cartoon Network is doing what Fox did with "Touch." That is, they are airing just this one episode, letting it percolate with the viewers for a while, and then launching into more episodes of the series this Fall.
So what did I think? Well how could you go wrong with an episode title like, "How to start your own Dragon Academy?" LOL All the voices are back. Astrid, Hiccup and crew start off with a flying competition and of course, Hiccup and Toothless steal the show. And dragons are still being dragons. Which in this show means they are "adorable" yet "destructive".

But you can't have a story without conflict. One concerned villager shows up with a fat sheep under one arm and complains about the dragons. Hiccup tells his dad, "I'm the best man to take care of the dragons." His dad responds, "You're not a man yet." And that kind of sets things up as a coming of age story. It's time for Hiccup to grow up and become the man he's supposed to be. And he's going to start by helping humans to coincide peacefully with the dragons.
Behold the face of the ORIGINAL dragon trainer!
At first it doesn't work so well, and all the teenagers are in danger of losing their beloved dragons. But one annoying villager lets drop the precious knowledge that a tiger never changes its stripes, and a dragon will never go against its nature. So Hiccup comes up with a plan to use the dragon's nature to aid the village, by terrifying fish into the fishing nets, by scaring wild boars out of the forest and into the slaughter houses of the villagers, and by raining dragon poop onto fields to fertilize them.

Overall, I really enjoyed the episode. The animation wasn't quite as good as in the movie but *almost there. I can't wait to catch more episodes later this year.

31 comments:

  1. Didn't catch it last night. I am looking forward to the next movie though.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Oh wow that's so awesome! I'd love to watch it, but sadly it will be years before it *might* show in South Africa.

    :-)

    ReplyDelete
  3. I finally saw the movie on HBO on vacation. It was OK but predictable. You do realize that before 9pm Cartoon Network is for kids, right? Not 40-year-old single guys.

    ReplyDelete
  4. I suspected that the animation would not quite hit the same high standard seen in the movie. But I'm at least glad they used the same voice actors.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Oh my goodness. Email me next time. I needed something for my kids. I was down with a virus and sore throat trying to find something to keep my kids busy. That would have been perfect. :)

    ReplyDelete
  6. thanks for the reminder! I completely forgot they were turning the movie into a tv show :)

    ReplyDelete
  7. @Alex: I think you would have liked it.

    @Misha: Oh, is SA in a media blackout?

    @P.T. I missed that memo. I also missed the one that said that only straight people have the right to marriage. I also missed the one that said all men who wear turbans are Muslim. I guess I just don't read from the same crusty old book of life that you read from. But maybe that was outside a comic book shop.

    @Michael: I was too.

    @Ciara: Okay. I'll try and remind you. I bet you can watch it streaming on Cartoon Network's website.

    @Monkey: You're welcome!

    ReplyDelete
  8. A dear friend of mine told me I *had* to watch this movie, and I'm so glad I did! It's adorable! And I haven't even heard of the episodes... that's why I follow your blog! You always keep me up to date with the important stuff ;)

    ReplyDelete
  9. I'm sure we'll be watching it once it's available on DVD.

    ReplyDelete
  10. AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH! I love this movie! I can't wait for it to come out!

    ReplyDelete
  11. Dammit. I can't believe I missed this.

    ReplyDelete
  12. Didn't see the show. Probably won't see it until/if it shows up on Netflix.

    But I LOVED the movie, took my son to see it twice and have probably watched the DVD upwards of a dozen times.

    Hope the show is successful. It's good to see GOOD movies get syndicated for shows.

    ReplyDelete
  13. Sounds like a fun series. Doubt if it ever makes it here, not sure whether the movie was screened.
    Why do all these animated kids kinda look alike?

    ReplyDelete
  14. It sounds like something my son will enjoy. I'll let him have a look at this later.

    ReplyDelete
  15. By the time I saw your tweet, it was too late. I went right to Cartoon Network, but alas, I couldn't find it. Ah well.

    ReplyDelete
  16. seems delightful, I don't have that channel so I haven't watched it, but the film was the best one that year! Dragon poop sounds precious :)

    ReplyDelete
  17. Missed it. Looks entertaining.

    ReplyDelete
  18. How to Train your Dragon is one of my all time favorite movies. I wish I could have seen the premiere.

    ReplyDelete
  19. I wish I could've watched that. I loved the movie--the series sounds awesome!

    ReplyDelete
  20. Cartoon Network must've improved a lot since the last time I watched it. (My kids lost interest in it years ago). But this looks good.

    ReplyDelete
  21. I noticed the animation wasn't as great as the movie too, but I enjoyed myself. An hour well spent.

    Thanks for reminding me it was on!

    ReplyDelete
  22. That clip got me a little verklempt. :-)

    ReplyDelete
  23. I hadn't heard about this. I enjoyed the original movie, and so did my kids. I'll have to watch this later. Right now--Olympics.

    ReplyDelete
  24. Bummed I missed this. I loved the movie. Would love to catch some episodes.

    ReplyDelete
  25. You are so freaking prolific, it is impossible to keep up. I swear, I look away for two minutes and there are NINE new posts from you in my reader. Maybe I'm getting old...

    I hadn't heard about this, but I adored the movie :)

    ReplyDelete
  26. Looks excellent... loved the movie...

    ReplyDelete
  27. Ahem...I still haven't seen the movie. I know. I will.

    ReplyDelete
  28. Sounds like it will be a wonderful show.

    ReplyDelete
  29. I really enjoyed how to train your dragon, so I'll definitely give this a go :)

    ReplyDelete
  30. Cartoons certainly look different and more beautiful than years ago. This looks terrific.

    ReplyDelete