Before they became the musical powerhouses that adolescents have grown to love and adore as part of the entertainment landscape, it’s common knowledge that Britney Spears, Justin Timberlake and Christina Aguilera all appeared on Disney’s “Mickey Mouse Club” show in the early ‘90s. But what you may not have known is just how many other semi-recognizable names appeared in the show during its run. Not only was another boy band musician on the show (JC Chasez), but you also had quality acting talents i… Keri Russell (Felicity) and Ryan Gosling (The Notebook). If you look at the noteworthy names that came out of this show, this is probably the 1983 NFL Draft, when it comes to teen acting, singing and dancing talent.
The shows weren’t too bad, but in the ‘90s version, while the audience is mainly composed of pre-teens, there was a mix of teen topics that were covered too, including a segment on depression and suicide, with a teenage boy who talked about being gay. Now, I’m all for putting your peepee someplace warm, wherever that may be, but in an audience that has a sizable chunk of kids who couldn’t have been more than 8 or 9 years old, thoughts should have been considered to age the audience by 2 or 3 years so that it’s not as confusing to them. Just my thoughts. On the upside though, segments that focused on kids who were starting grassroots programs to eradicate hunger or poverty were featured also and were encouraging. There were also some cheesy segments with the kids acting, and even an animal segment or two thrown in.
But the main focus in the 5 episodes that are here, are the kids who are featured prominently in the title. There are segments with each as they show you around their hometowns (or in Christina’s case, adopted hometown of Orlando, as perhaps there weren’t enough things in Pittsburgh to spend 4 minutes showing). Among the things I didn’t know were that Mr. Timberlake likes to golf, and has (or had) a pretty decent swing for a kid. He also hails from Memphis, which I was also not aware of, but it does explain his modest appreciation for Elvis and Johnny Cash. And Britney shows everyone Louisiana, and it’s a little strange to hear someone talk about starting to dance when they were 3 years old, but it’s also kinda funny to see her work around her Grandmother’s seafood store, along with her talent of sucking out crawfish brains. The latter thing may have helped her show business career, but who knows? Singing and dancing segments with the three are included also, and it was pretty amazing to hear Aguilera belt out a Whitney Houston song for her age, and it leads me to wonder just what happened to her?
Dolby Digital 2.0, much like your usual run of TV shows. Though for some reason, the sound mix on this seemed a little emptier and more in the center channel than anything else. So call it slightly below average.
Full screen 1.33:1 video, and much like the audio, not really as good as I was expecting it to be. If this is as good as is was in 1993, it really is impressive to see the leaps in quality from even that point to TV shows now.
Nothing really. There are highlights of each episode, and trailers for various Disney releases, including the upcoming Cinderella DVD.
Fans of these performers will be interested in viewing their work from earlier years, and fans of kid shows may actually consider picking this up also, as the themes discussed seem to hold up to the issues that today’s kids are having too. Hopefully more Mickey Mouse Club sets will come from Disney soon.