18 June 2013

TV DVD Review: "Flight 29 Down": Volume One

Rated: TV-Y7
Starring: Corbin Bleu, Hallee Hirsh, and Kristy Wu
Released: October 1 to November 5, 2005 (TV premiere) / June 5, 2007 (DVD)
Synopsis: When their plane crashes on a remote island while en route to Micronesia, these L.A. high school students get a crash course in survival! However, working together isn't going to be easy with this cast of characters: Boy Scout know-it-all Nathan (Corbin Bleu, High School Musical), flighty blonde Taylor, spoiled Eric, level-headed Melissa, quiet Jackson, bossy boots Daley (Hallee Hirsh, Disney Channel's The Ultimate Christmas Present), and her brainiac younger brother Lex.  Will they ever learn to cooperate?  Created by Stan Rogow (Lizzie McGuire) and written by D. J. MacHale, author of the Pendragon series.

Review: I had high hopes for this series.  Being the Disney Channel and Nickelodeon fan that I am, live-action "kiddie" shows like this always pique my interest, especially when people from one or both of those networks are involved.  Unfortunately, this first "volume"--which is nothing more than the first four episodes edited into a movie--falls flat.  Though the acting and production values are great and the story is interesting enough, it just doesn't have that attention-grabbing factor that I've seen with other television shows intended for the younger set.  If you're an avid fan of the show, you probably already have all the DVDs; if you've never watched it, but really want to, get this first volume from the library before plunking down hard-earned cash on an entire season set.

Content Concerns: Some of the girls wear low-cut tops and/or short shorts; one girl is seen in a bikini twice.  Shirtless guys are also seen.  Violent content involves a plane crashing--obviously--and a kid getting hurt after a bad landing. (He recovers.) The scene where a girl gets leeches on her legs could freak some kids out.  A lack of closed captions or any sort of subtitles or dubbing makes this inaccessible for those who are hard-of-hearing or don't speak English.

Score: 2/5

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