Get ready to skate.

Dora’s Great Roller Skate Adventure is another themed set of episodes from the powerhouse show for little tikes, Dora the Explorer. All of the episodes tend to follow the same formula. Dora needs to go somewhere, so we ask the map. The map gives us three stops to make. At each stop (and sometimes in-between) we encounter a problem that is really a teaching moment in disguise. By utilizing counting, simple arithmetic, or learning Spanish phrases, we can solve whatever threatens to trip us up. We sing a song or two along the way and always at the end, the “We did it!” song makes an appearance.

Here are the episodes and brief synopses:

* “Dora’s Great Roller Skate Adventure”
Dora (Fatima Ptacek) is taking Boots (Koda Gursoy) to the skate park in order for him to try out his new roller skates. But a bully has chased everyone away. Can Dora get the park reopened?

* “Check-up Day”
It’s time for Dora’s check-up with her doctor. She’s very excited to take a picture for her scrapbook and get a new sticker at the end of her visit. But when some of her friends have health problems, Dora and Boots (Regan Mizrahi) decide to take them to the doctor, too.

* “School Science Fair”
Dora has made a volcano as part of her green energy science fair project. Will she be able to show it at the science fair or will Swiper (Marc Weiner) swipe it?

I appreciate the standard def 1.78:1 aspect ratio, but the video transfer does suffer from some artefacting in spots. While not something the target audience will care about, it definitely caught my attention. One thing you can definitely say about any Dora disc, though, is the consistency of the palette. The choice of bold colors, especially those for Dora herself, means it is instantly recognizable as a Dora cartoon. For a show that relies on music so much I would expect at least a Dolby 5.1 track, yet there’s only Dolby 2.0 here. While perfectly serviceable, it still sounds flat, lacking in definition.

There are no special features, but in a bit of cross-marketing appeal there are Dora and Boots skating dolls on toy shelves as DVD tie-ins. They can skate routines together or separately, depending on your level of investment.

Dora’s Great Roller Skate Adventure doesn’t earn a recommendation. At just over an hour long, it’s simply not worth the money. Without any extras on the set you lack a compelling reason to purchase. There are more comprehensive DVDs you can buy.



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