The Adventures of Super Mario Bros. 3: The Complete Series Collector's Edition
Almost six years after Shout Factory released The Adventures of Super Mario Bros. 3: The Complete Series, NCircle Entertainment has brought back all of the content for their "Collector's Edition." This three-disc set includes all 26 episodes from the Super Mario Bros. 3 (SMB3) cartoon series, as well as a "Writers Bible" bonus feature. The menus, episode order, and bonuses are exactly the same as in the Shout Factory release.
On the embossed slipcover, the gold-foil subtitle and falling coins match the stripe running across the top, and are sure to catch your eye when you see it in person. If the front cover seems strangely familiar to you, it's because the caped Mario artwork is re-used from NCircle's Super Mario Bros. Super Show! Vol. 2 cover. The green bushes and checkerboard pattern floor background is reminiscent of the SMB3 game title screen, while the blue and white sky contrasts nicely with the dark background that wraps around the sides and back.
Whereas the Shout Factory release had one slimline case for each disc, this set's three discs come packed in a single standard-size case. Each disc has a different color and features a different character for easy identification at a glance.
Between the Super Mario Bros. Super Show and Adventures of Super Mario Bros. 3, I found the SMB3 series to be a bit more exciting. It doesn't hurt that it's based on one of my favorite Mario games. Fans of SMB3 will appreciate the many sound effects and background music remixes heard in the cartoons. Mario and Luigi often use items from the game, including the Super Leaf, Frog Suit, and Kuribo's Shoe. Speaking of the Super Leaf, even Toad and King Koopa get to use raccoon tailsa full 21 years before they first did so in a game! Additionally, the seven Koopa Kidseach with their own unique personalityand occasional trips to the "real world" keep things interesting.
As previously mentioned, this set appears to be a re-release of the Shout Factory version. This means that the flaws in "The Venice Menace / Super Koopa" are still present, unfortunately. The first skip occurs in "The Venice Menace" at the 11:13 mark. Near the beginning of "Super Koopa," at about 12:47, the audio cuts out and the screen turns gray for about a second. A few minutes later, there's another skip at 15:36, and another gray screen at the 21:36 mark.
Since all the episodes easily fit onto the first two discs, disc three is dedicated to the "Writers Bible" bonus feature, which has five different sections to explore.
"The Back Story" and "The Series" provide more information behind the cartoon series. Though these sections are short, the voice-overs and clips give an excellent introduction to the series. Also, some concept art is shown.
Using even more concept art, clips, and voice-overs, "The Characters" has brief profiles of the main characters: Mario, Luigi, Princess Toadstool, Toad, King Koopa, and the Koopa Kids.
"The World" contains concept art of the various settings from 21 episodes. Most episodes have more than one piece of artwork to view.
Finally, in "The Music," you can hear ten original songs written for the cartoons. You know, the ones with intentionally goofy singing. At least, I hope it's intentional.
This DVD set is a must-buy for fans of the Mario cartoons who missed out on the Shout Factory SMB3 DVD release. If you already own the Shout Factory set, you're only missing out on the different packaging and trailers.