Pros:good stories, middle of the road Thomas video
Cons:the part where James actually "goes buzz buzz" is low rent
The Bottom Line: Good but, most of the Thomas videos are better
I seem to be at the library several times per week, whether for myself, my children, or my wife. Once or twice per week we swap out a Thomas video. As a matter of fact my older daughter expects a Thomas video when she knows I have been to the library. She will ask "what did you get me?" and I am happy to say that our branch has enough videos to keep us swapping for a good long time. Most recently I brought home James Goes Buzz Buzz and it was well received (the Thomas videos always are).
Recommend this product?
James Goes Buzz Buzz is a single disc with a run time of about 40 minutes. There are six stories including;
- James Goes Buzz Buzz
- One Good Turn
- Berties Chase
- Percy, James and the Fruitful Day
- Wrong Road
In addition to the stories there is a sing along song entitled "Island Song", a James connect the dots game, and the omnipresent character gallery.
The Thomas stories only run about 6 minutes each, so I will try to be brief so as not to spoil any of them. For starters I did not care for the title episode "James Goes Buzz Buzz". As you might imagine the episodes involve bees but frankly it was handled in a very cheesy fashion. The swarm of bees looked like someone drew dots on the film and the individual bee was cheesy animation over the non animated model trains. The episode was fine but I thought the execution was bootleg. Also in this set of six episodes there are several that feature Bill and Ben. I was particularly pleased to see Bulgy, having seen his toy in the brochures but never any episodes that feature him. Bertie has been told not to race any more, but chasing is still the playbook. Also, it could hardly be considered a Thomas video if Percy didn't cause some sort of messy accident.
I suppose I would be inclined to give James Goes Buzz Buzz 4 stars if it weren't for how they handled the bees. As it is, I am deducting one but still recommending it. The view from three years old is that this is a good video and that is the audience so I have to defer there. Other than cheesy bees, James Goes Buzz Buzz is a fine example of a Thomas video. If you are looking episodes that involve Bulgy then this one has them. Beyond these points, James Goes Buzz Buzz pretty much just offers more of the same, which I consider a good thing because my daughter loves Thomas and his videos just as they are.
This is a fine video but it has little to recommend it above the other fine Thomas videos. With the exception of cheesy bees there is nothing wrong with it. I recommend James Goes Buzz Buzz but somewhat lower on the list than most other Thomas videos. I will make one exception. I often see Thomas videos with a free wooden train. For $9 to $15 you can get a video and a toy which is a great value. Most of the toys go for at least $10 alone. In that case I recommend it more highly based on the high value grade. Otherwise, it is just OK by comparison.