Judge Dawn Hunt is using this review to take over the Tri-state area.
Long-running Disney cartoon staple Phineas and Ferb has followed a trend I’m still hard-pressed to understand. Like many contemporary kids’ shows, instead of full season releases there are “theme packs”. The latest is Phineas and Ferb: The Perry Files: Animal Agents, a collection of 12 episodes featuring either Perry the Platypus aka Agent P (Dee Bradley Baker, Star Wars: The Clone Wars) or one of the other members of O.W.C.A. (Organization Without A Cool Acronym), the clandestine organization comprised of animal secret agents.
As is typical of the show, it’s Phineas (Vincent Martella, Everybody Hates Chris) and Ferb (Thomas Brodie-Sangster, Game of Thrones) who provide the setup for most of the action but it’s everyone’s favorite platypus, Perry, who steals the show. This set is a no-brainer for fans and well worth a look for newbies, as this is the rare children’s show which doesn’t rely on gross out humor, snarkiness bordering on disrespect, and wildly dysfunctional relationships. Instead, at the heart of the show is imagination, the desire to have a good time, and a love of family (including pets).
Phineas and Ferb is not a show you can put on and walk away from. Based on the near-mute states of the two brothers, it’s necessary to watch the “show don’t tell” stories or else you will miss something, which would be a shame.
The episodes included on The Perry Files: Animal Agents:
* “Journey to the Center of Candace” — Candace (Ashley Tisdale, High School Musical) accidentally eats a miniature Phineas and Ferb, who must find a way out.
* “Traffic Cam Caper” — Candace finds out the traffic cam across the street has captured every single scheme the boys have hatched.
* “Vanessasary Roughness” — Ferb’s crush, Vanessa (Olivia Olson, Adventure Time), has to try and retrieve a special element at the local megastore.
* “Isabella and the Temple of Sap” — Isabella (Alyson Stoner, Young Justice) and the Fireside Girls go hunting for a rare tree.
* “Cheer Up Cadence” — It’s up to Phineas and Ferb to cheer up their bummed-out sister.
* “Robot Rodeo” — Candace is caught between a rock and a hard place when she has to try and act mature, which means not tattling.
* “Lotsa Latkes” — A potato shortage leads to a wild adventure.
* “Agent Doof” — Doofenschmirtz (Dan Povenmire) decides to become a good guy.
* “Where’s Perry? Parts 1 and 2” — The family travels to Africa.
* “What’d I Miss?” — Phineas and the gang fill Ferb in on what happened when he was away.
* “Bowl-R-Drama” — Phineas and Ferb attempt to create the world’s largest bowling ball.
The stylized look of Phineas and Ferb holds up well on this standard def 1.78:1 anamorphic widescreen transfer. Brightly saturated without being blown out, the animation is pretty if not technically dazzling. The set offers an impressive three audio tracks (English, French, Spanish), though none surpassing the obligatory Dolby 2.0 Stereo, which is a shame because there are enough musical numbers alone to warrant a 5.1 Surround upgrade.
Bonus features include six episodes from Take Two With Phineas and Ferb in which the boys interview live-action celebrities — Cedric The Entertainer, David Beckham, Jason Segel, Shaun White, Miss Piggy, and Ben Stiller. The other feature is a spy kit, which includes binoculars and O.W.C.A. trading cards.
It’s easy to recommend a purchase of Phineas and Ferb: The Perry Files: Animal Agents, as fun-filled, action-packed, witty, and irreverent without being mean. Plus, it features a pet platypus who doubles as a secret agent. What’s not to like?