Winter WonderlandIt’s starting to get cold and the kids are looking for something fun to watch. Luckily, Hit Entertainment has gathered six of their most popular characters together for a winter special.

Starting off with a Barney episode simply titled “Winter,” kids get into the season by learning how to make a snowflake out of paper and waiting with Baby Bop for the first snow. There are a few song and dance numbers and the general loving message Barney is known for. Next up is that old stalwart Bob the Builder, in an episode entitled “Bob of the North” that has Bob clearing the snow-covered streets and repairing Farmer Pickle’s roof. Wendy’s sister Jenny is visiting and attempts to teach Bob to ski.

Thomas & Friends checks in with “Keeping Up With James,” an episode about being careful in icy weather. As the trains compete to deliver the gift shipment, James learns that faster isn’t always better. Fireman Sam is fourth in the most engaging episode, “Let it Snow,” in which the roads are shut down due to a snowstorm and Norman gets trapped in an icy cave. Clearly Sam has his work cut out for him.

The last two episodes are the simplest and most artistic of the set. “Snowy Day” stars Kipper the dog and his friend Tiger playing in the snow, making snow angels, snow balls and even a snowdog. The simple white landscape is pleasant and the dog’s friendly conversations are entertaining. The final episode, “Pingu’s Balloon,” is new to DVD and shows the hilarious and sight-gag-filled antics that ensue when a family of penguins works together to try to blow up a balloon.

While most of the shows make use of claymation or animation, Barney, the only live-action show, does feel a little out of place.  Regardless, if kids like all of these characters, and it’s snowing outside, they’re going to love this DVD collection of winter episodes. Sometimes themed DVDs feel forced, but that’s not the case with this preschool-oriented set of shows. The episodes are all different, but the winter landscapes and positive attitudes help them all blend together successfully.

Zach’s Rating: B+
Perfect For: A snowy winter day trapped inside with the kids
Stay Away if: You’re only interested in a few of the characters

For more information on HIT Entertainment characters, visit their homepage
To purchase Winter Wonderland (out 11/20/07) and other DVDs visit the Hit Shop

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