Welcome to the Munkapedia community review series in which you are the critic! This review forum series is for the new ALVINNN!!! and The Chipmunks episodes that have aired at least in English four per forum thread. The series seeks to focus on your thoughts so avoid going too much into the plot details here.
When I first watched To Serve and Protect I was extremely frustrated by Alvin's treatment of Simon, much more than I usually am. Yes, Alvin changed his ways towards the end of the episode and made it up to Simon, but his early behavior was just wrong. I liked Simon's little arguments with himself, and, of course, it's fitting for him to lose his hair from the stress. Simon's morals are one of the reasons I like him more than the others and am glad everything worked in Simon's favor. I like that we got the most background for Miss Smith in this episode.
Kickin' It Old School was great plot considering kids these days have way too much technology. Every time I see a little kid with a cell phone or one that wants to play video games all day, I fear for the future. There is so much to do and learn in the great outdoors. Dave did good to get the boys to spend time away from technology and I love the fact that the writers chose to make Dave an Eagle Scout. I remember Alvin's comment when Dave showed Alvin the rope swing and was surprised Alvin didn't know what to do with it. Some people will criticize the farting humor in this episode. Given the plot of the episode, I think this is appropriate in this instance, more so with multiple boys. If it becomes too common place, then I'll be disappointed.
Clowning Around is probably my favorite for these four episodes. Being so scared that you turn into a zombie basically. The favorite parts in this one were "Awesometown!," Theodore's audition, and Theodore's interaction with the clown at the end.
Bully for You was one I was waiting for. I knew for a long time there would be a bullying episode and naturally it seemed Simon would be the target. It's never fun to see bullying and I liked Simon's idea to create a bodyguard who, interesting, did nothing other than be a presence. I applaud Simon for keeping his old glasses even when he gets a replacement to deal with the bully.
I completely agree with you about Alvin for To Serve and Protect, That was my least favorite episode of these four. Alvin was behaving like a jerk in this episode, this is like his most antagonstic episode. I did like that Alvin finally changed his ways at the end, but Alvin was behaving more than usual.
For Kickin' It Old School, it was a really good episode and it was realistic, how kids are using electronics all the time and not spending enough time outside. I liked that the Chipmunks finally spent some time outside, but then of course at the end, they were using their electronics again.
Clowning Around was my favorite of this four. I liked that Theodore was trying to act scary and that Dave and Simon were pretending to act scared. It was surprising and funny when Theodore got frozen in fear. This episode is my favorite, mainly due to Awesometown! That song is so awesome! (bad pun). Theodore's audition and the clown at the end was funny too.
Bully for You was a great plot for the series. It explains the struggles with being bullied and it did great being realistic. I liked how much his brothers stood up for Simon, when he was being bullied. I liked the idea of Simon creating a robot bodyguard, who intimidated the bullies. The ending was great with Simon being the bigger person with being nice to Derek. This was an awesome Simon episode.
When were the sandwiches Miss Smith was eating in "A Is For Alien" identified as mashed zucchini? I'd have sworn it was gooseberry jam, myself-- it does rather resemble green slime.
"Bully For You" is nothing really new plot-wise, and, for my money, Derek gives up his antagonism and becomes friendly to Simon much too quickly. I know from experience that real bullies do not do a one-eighty so fast--I'd rather have seen him be a recurring, if largely ineffectual, threat to the Seville boys throughout the series. And talk about a sadistic little bugger! I mean, sure, "Cupcake" was just a robot, but it seemed a bit disturbing to watch a human figure dragged along behind a bike, esp. in light of several vehicle-dragging deaths that have made the news of late. Derek's like that kid we all knew in high school, the one folks'd point to abnd say, "Watch out for that boy, he's going to grow up to kill somebody's butt" or "That dude's gonna be be in jail before he's thirty.".
The Iconoclast wrote: When were the sandwiches Miss Smith was eating in "A Is For Alien" identified as mashed zucchini?
They were never specifically stated to be mashed zucchini but were implied to be given the color comparison between what was stated to be mashed zucchini and her sandwich at the end of To Serve And Protect.
The Iconoclast wrote:
"Bully For You" is nothing really new plot-wise, and, for my money, Derek gives up his antagonism and becomes friendly to Simon much too quickly.
I'm inclined to agree. Perhaps it should have taken Simon a few more episodes to persuade Derek to change his ways and/or to determine the underlying reason(s) for his bullying.
The bathroom humor in "Kickin' It Old School" is rather tame compared to the 2007 film. I enjoyed Alvin's attitude towads the bully in "The Bully". The "power in numbers" scene, while not nessicarily badly written, is something I highly doubt would happen in real life. Maybe because they're in an elementary school? I dunno, it just seemed strange to me.
I like what you said. Here are my thoughts about the episodes:
To Serve and Protect- This was honestly an okay episode to me. I like the idea of Simon having to deal with Alvin breaking the field trip rules. This was the perfect situation of "doing what's right" versus "not being about to live a dream of yours" plot. I really felt bad for Simon in this episode. I'm pretty sure we've all been in a situation similar to Simon's, so we know what he is feeling. The only parts I did not like was when Alvin tried to comfort Simon after he turned in his badge. Really Alvin? You knew you were trying to get Simon into the conflict he was put into so you couldn't get into trouble, and you think telling him everything will be okay will fix his emotional mindset? I also didn't like the part afterwards where Simon was given his badge back, got to go on the trip, and Alvin got into trouble. I felt like that was just rushed, and I honestly would have like to see Dave comfort Simon and reassure him that he did nothing wrong. Oh well. Anyways, I still think this was an okay episode.
Kickin' It Old School- I was excited for this episode. I really like the idea of Dave taking the Chipmunks away from technology and out into the woods. This episode reminded me a bit of "Swiss Family Chipmunk". The idea of other things being fun besides technology is so important; especially with kids these days acting like they are so "cool" or that they think they know everything. I get so annoyed when kids act like they know everything about a TV show or otherwise that they actually know very little about. For the episode, I actually was expecting Dave to make a "Back in my days..." reference. That would have been hilarious. I especially like the parts where Dave and the Chipmunks were having trouble adjusting to their camping experience. I loved Theodore's quote where he said "You brought us to a town, full of GHOSTS?!" Classic Theodore line! Everything else was good, but I honestly felt like the moral of the episode was hit or miss. The Chipmunks had fun and liked camping with Dave, but they were WAY more excited and happy once they got their technology back. Considering that, I feel like the moral could have been portrayed slightly better, but otherwise, this was a decent episode.
Clowning Around- This was a great episode. The idea of Theodore trying to be scary but failing was good. One of my favorite parts was when Alvin listed Theodore's fears. The Brady Bunch theme song scares Theodore? I cracked up laughing at that part! I am actually surprised Theodore's number 2 fear wasn't Ghosts. That would make sense considering the ghost quote and moments in the episodes "Kickin It Old School" and "The App". Simon surprised me because when he said "Alvin, you almost gave me a heart attack! I can't imagine what you'd do to poor Theodore!", guys, I am not joking, I thought of that exact quote in my head before Simon said it. Wow. Just wow. Also when Alvin scared Theodore and said: "I got you now, you little balloon!", that shocked me. Alvin, you are SO luck you didn't say that around Dave or you would be grounded! Seriously, I think we all know the "clown horror movie" reference from Alvin's quote. Theodore freezing in fear was interesting. I have heard of that happening, but I have no idea if that is actually possible... being so scared that you freeze in fear and don't respond. The rest of the episode was great.
Bully for You- This was another great episode for me. I definitely like the idea of Simon getting bullied, and making a body guard that does nothing but scare you just by being present around you. And the robot is named "Com Kquest e dorai?" That is awesome! What does that mean? The checkerboard glasses was an interesting idea. We have rarely seen Simon wear a different style of glasses. What I did not like was the fact that Simon practically ignored Dave's advice. Why did he not go to Dave after Dave said "If you ever run into any trouble, you can come and talk to me"? Seriously, bullying isn't something you can just deal with and act like it's no big deal. Simon should have tried to talk to Dave if he had the chance. And I loved the idea of Simon wanting to help kids be nicer to one another. That is a GREAT message to kids! The rest of the episode was good, especially when Eleanor kept cheering "Strength in numbers!" That was a great Eleanor quote. What really surprised me was the ending when Simon invited Derek to join them. I think Derek was so surprised since had been bullying Simon, and to see Simon act so nice to him was what I think made Derek have a change of heart. I do agree that it could have happened after a few more episodes, but I think the realization for Derek understanding what he did wrong was just so fast, that he accepted it. And Derek apologized to Simon? Simon forgave Derek and wants to start being friends with him? Oh my gosh! We rarely see this happen in bully episodes. Guys, I think we all could learn something from that ending of the episode. Anyways, great episode.
The Chipmunks had fun and liked camping with Dave, but they were WAY more excited and happy once they got their technology back. Considering that, I feel like the moral could have been portrayed slightly better, but otherwise, this was a decent episode.
What I did not like was the fact that Simon practically ignored Dave's advice. Why did he not go to Dave after Dave said "If you ever run into any trouble, you can come and talk to me"? Seriously, bullying isn't something you can just deal with and act like it's no big deal. Simon should have tried to talk to Dave if he had the chance.
And Derek apologized to Simon? Simon forgave Derek and wants to start being friends with him? Oh my gosh! We rarely see this happen in bully episodes. Guys, I think we all could learn something from that ending of the episode. Anyways, great episode.
The ending was a joke, it wasn't meant to teach a lesson.
This is actually very realistic. Very rarely do kids tell their parents about school issues such as bullying. They're usually scared of the parents possibly making things worse, which isn't nessicarily unjustifiable. Also, I'd argue that you indeed can "just deal with bullying and act like it's no big deal". Because honestly, bullying can be just that. No big deal. It doesn't always to be some super scary depressing thing.
This rarely happens in bully episodes because this situation rarely happens in real life. This is generally not how bullying works.