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Prep & Landing/Prep & Landing: Naughty vs. Nice – Totally Tinsel Collection (a J!-ENT Children’s Blu-ray Disc Review)

November 18, 2012 by  



“Prep & Landing/Prep & Landing: Naughty vs. Nice – Totally Tinsel Collection” is an enjoyable holiday Blu-ray release that is fun, well-animated and full of Christmas spirit!  For those looking for an enjoyable holiday special for the children, that is safe, fun and very entertaining… I definitely recommend “Prep & Landing/Prep & Landing: Naughty vs. Nice – Totally Tinsel Collection”!

Images courtesy of © 2012 Disney. All Rights Reserved.

TITLE: Prep & Landing/Prep & Landing: Naughty vs. Nice – Totally Tinsel Collection

THEATRICAL RELEASE: Prep & Landing (2009), Prep & Landing: Naughty vs. Nice (2011)

DURATION: Prep & Landing (23 Minutes), Prep & Landing: Naughty vs. Nice (23 Minutes)

BLU-RAY DISC INFORMATION: 1080p High Definition (1:78:1 Aspect Ratio), English 5.1 DTS-HD MA, French 5.1 Dolby Digital, 2.0 Dolby Digital Spanish Language Track, Subtitles: English, English SDH, Chinese, French and Spanish

COMPANY: Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment

RATED:  TV G

Release Date: November 6, 2012

Prep & Landing

Written and Directed by Kevin Deters, Stevie Wermers

Story by Chris Williams

Additional Story Material by Robert L. Baird, Daniel Gerson and Reid Harrison

Executive Producer: John Lasseter and Chris Williams

Produced by Dorothy Kim

Associate Producer: Jenni Magee-Cook

Music by Michael Giacchino

Edited by William J. Caparella

Casting by Jamie Sparer Roberts

Production by Billy George

Art Direction by Andrew Edward Harkness

Prep & Landing: Naughty vs. Nice

Directed by Kevin Deters, Steve Wermers

Additional Story by Robert L. Baird, Daniel Gerson

Produced by Dorothy McKim

Executive Producer: John Lasseter

Associate Producer: Craig Sost

Music by Michael Giacchino

Edited by Jeff Draheim

Casting by Jamie Sparer Roberts

Featuring the voices of:

Prep & Landing

Betty White as Mrs. Claus

Dave Foley as Wayne

Sarah Chalke as Magee

Mason Vale Cotton as Timmy Terwelp

David DeLuise as Dancer

Peter Jacobsen as Waterkotte

Lino DiSalvo as Gristletoe Joe

Derek Richardson as Lanny

William Morgan Sheppard as The Big Guy

Nathan Greno as Dasher

Prep & Landing: Naughty vs. Nice

Dave Foley as Wayne

Sarah Chalke as Magee

Emily Alyn Lind as Grace Goodwin

Chris Parnell as Mr. Thistleton

Derek Richardson as Lanny

Rob Riggle as Noel

William Morgan Sheooard as the Big Guy

Prep & Landing is an adorable holiday story about a high-tech team of elves who ensure homes around the world are properly prepared for their visit from Santa. After working for a tireless 227 years, an elf named Wayne (voiced by Dave Foley) is upset when he doesn’t receive an expected promotion. Instead he is partnered with an idealistic rookie elf named Lanny (voiced by Derek Richardson) to execute a special Christmas Eve mission. While on their journey, Wayne and Lanny encounter unexpected challenges that push them to their limits and ultimately threaten Christmas for children around the world. But in the end, these two elves work together to guide Santa through a raging snowstorm in order to save Christmas.

Prep & Landing: Naughty vs. Nice – The outrageous yuletide adventures of Christmas elves Lanny and Wayne continue in this totally tinsel adventure that reminds us there’s room for everyone on the ‘nice’ list. Santa’s stealthiest little elves must race to recover classified North Pole technology, which has fallen into the hands of a computer-hacking naughty kid, in an effort to stop Christmas from descending into chaos. Bring the family together for a comical adventure that puts the Ho, Ho, Ho in your Holidays!

When “Glago’s Guest” writer Chris Williams had an idea of an elf Christmas story and pitched to Walt Disney Animation studios shorts program, Chief Creative Officer John Lasseter felt the idea would make a great half-hour TV special for ABC.

As the idea which would later become “Prep & Landing” was greenlighted by the network, Chris Williams was then working and co-directing the animated film “Bolt” and so “Brother Bear” writer Kevin Deters and “Brother Bear”, “Tarzan” writer Stevie Wermers were brought in to co-write and direct the 22-minute Christmas special which aired in Dec. 2009.

The special which was budgeted for $14 million would go on to to be nominated for five Emmy Awards (winning four for “Outstanding Animated Program”, “Outstanding Individual Achievement in Animation” for Art Director, Storyboard Artist and Background Key design) and nine Annie Awards (winning “Best Animated Television Production”, “Character Design in a Television Production and “Production Design in a Television Production”).

In 2011, Walt Disney Animation Studios followed up with the sequel “Prep & Landing: Naughty vs. Nice” directed by Kevin Deters and Stevie Wermers-Skelton and aired on ABC in Dec. 2011.  Similar to the first animated feature, “Naughty vs. Nice” would be nominated for eleven Annie Awards by the International Animated Film Association and would win four awards including an award for “Character Animation in a Television Production” by Tony Smeed,  “Character Design in a Television Production”, “Music in a Television Production” and “Storyboarding in Television Production for Brian Kesinger.

Now both “Prep & Landing” Christmas specials will be presented on Blu-ray courtesy of Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment in November 2012.

“Prep & Landing” revolves around a Christmas elf named Wayne.  Wayne is a member of “Prep & Landing”, a job in which these specially trained elves prepare homes for Santa Claus’ visit on Christmas day.

But having worked for 227 years as a Christmas elf, Wayne believes that he will be promoted for a major job and can’t wait to leave his current job.  So, as Wayne says is confident that he has gotten the job, unfortunately he is told that the job has went to his partner that he trained.

Wayne is then introduced to his new partner, a rookie named Lanny who has looked up to Wayne’s work when he was younger and is excited to be teamed up with his idol.  But Wayne is quite bitter for not getting the promotion and he’s not so interested in giving 100% to his job this year.

So, while visiting a home, Wayne makes Lanny do all the work but unfortunately, it ends up in disaster and the boy Timmy living at the house is awaken and finds the two elves.  And because Wayne has broke protocol and did not prepare the home for Santa, Wayne has to cancel Santa’s visit.  Lanny is upset that Wayne has become so bitter but now he may have prevented the innocent Timmy from receiving a present from Santa.

When Wayne hears Timmy talking in his sleep and thanking him for his Christmas present, Wayne is now determined to make sure Santa is re-routed and that he gets his toy delivery in time for Christmas.

For “Prep & Landing: Naughty vs. Nice”,  the special involves the Coal Elf Brigade, the special unit of Christmas elves that are responsible for delivering lumps of coal to children who are bad, but at the same time leaving notes of encouragement to try to be good for the following year.

Meanwhile, Wayne and Lanny are trying to recover classified North Pole technology which has fallen into the hands of a hacker known as “jinglesmell1337”. Worried that the hacker can cause problems on Christmas, Wayne needs the help of a naughty kid expert, but that expert is his estranged brother Noel of the Coal Elf Brigade.  But because Wayne doesn’t wan tto be around Noel, Wayne knows he needs the expertise of his brother to solve this case.

So, Wayne and Noel  must work together on a mission in figuring out who is responsible for stealing the classified technology.  But because of Wayne’s bitter attitude towards his brother, will he be able to work with him before the hacker causes any more problems?

VIDEO:

“Prep & Landing/Prep & Landing: Naughty vs. Nice” is presented in 1080p High Definition (1:78:1 aspect ratio). Before I do my review, it’s important to remember that this is not a film, it’s a Christmas half-hour TV special.  So, in some way, I was expecting CG quality that was somewhat good, but not as detailed.  But I was definitely wrong.  Both specials are quite detailed and look great!

The CG animation for this “Prep & Landing” is fantastic!  In fact, the overall look of the film is what makes me enjoy this TV special so much is because there was a lot of production value put into it.  I’m not just talking about characters but also objects, scenery.  The CG for this special is absolutely wonderful, especially when compared to the previous 2011 DVD release of the first special.

But as the first “Prep & Landing” looks impressive on Blu-ray, the second special “Naughty vs. Nice” features much more detail when it comes to objects, especially wooden objects and hair.  The amount of detail that can be seen on Blu-ray is quite impressive.  And definitely an improvement from the previous special.

There is a little banding but nothing that sticks out unless you really look for it.  For the most part, parents looking for a Christmas release to keep the children occupied during the holidays, will definitely want to check out this Blu-ray release!

AUDIO & SUBTITLES:

“Prep & Landing/Prep & Landing: Naughty vs. Nice” is presented in English 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio, French Dolby Digital 5.1, Spanish Dolby Digital 2.0.  I have to admit that I wasn’t really expect so much from its lossless soundtrack because these are TV specials.  But with the amount of action featured, there is good use of the surround channels and also LFE.  Dialogue is crystal clear and overall, lossless soundtrack for both specials were much better than I expected.

Subtitles are in in English SDH, French and Spanish.

SPECIAL FEATURES

“Prep & Landing/Prep & Landing: Naughty vs. Nice – Totally Tinsel Collection” comes with the following special features:

  • Operation Secret Santa – (6:53) Mrs. Claus hires Wayne and Lanny to find a mystery box in Santa’s office.
  • Tiny’s Big Adventure – (1:09) Tiny needs to make coffee but the coffee can is too high.
  • Kringle Academy Training Videos: – Featuring three animated training videos: Welcome to Kringle Academy (1:27) , Equipment Training (1:50), Do’s and Dont’s (1:33).
  • North Pole News – (1:28) Newsreel with big stories for the tiniest elf!
  • North Pole Commercials – (1:40) 3 Hilarious Ads Straight from the North Pole
  • Behind the Jingle with Grace Potter – (2:09) Grace Potter talks about her dream of writing a song for a Disney film and voicing a character for a Disney film.
  • Promotional Pieces – (20:08) Featuring several featurettes that can be played separately or via play all: The recording process (4:16) – The cast talk about recording their voices for the animated TV episodes, the animation process (5:46) – A featurette on creating the animation for “Prep & Landing”, the characters (3:10) – The cast talk about their character, Christmas Unwrapped (3:38) – Kevin Deters and Stevie Wermers-Skelton talking about the voice talent they had in mind plus interviews with the voice talent, Prep and Landing: Behind the Scenes (3:03) – John Lasseter and directors talk about the behind-the-scenes of making an ABC Christmas special.

EXTRAS:

“Prep & Landing/Prep & Landing: Naughty vs. Nice” comes with the Blu-ray plus a DVD containing both animated episodes and special features plus the Blu-ray release comes with a cardboard cover case.

Wonderful CG animation, enjoyable holiday story…The award-winning Disney/ABC TV special “Prep & Landing/Prep & Landing: Naughty vs. Nice – Totally Tinsel Collection” finally gets released on Blu-ray!

In Dec. 2009, “Prep & Landing” aired on television and I was blown away by the CG animation but also how entertaining the TV special and literally, me and my young son wanted more!  And while I was waiting hoping for a home video release in 2010, it never was released.  But with the characters of “Prep & Landing” returning for a new TV special in 2011 titled “Prep & Landing: Naughty vs. Nice” for Dec. 2011, I thought there would be a double-feature release.  That also didn’t happen, but a DVD release of the first special “Prep & Landing” was released.

So, here we are in 2012, and now, both specials are being released on Blu-ray.  And while these two Christmas episodes are around 22-minutes each, there is definitely an improvement when it comes to seeing the details of this series in HD, especially with the hair, the background details, everything looks much better, especially if you compare the first special on Blu-ray vs. last year’s DVD release.  Images are crisper and well-detailed and with the newer “Naughty and Nice”, definitely a step up in detail from the first special.

For the most part, both stories are very easy to follow and both Christmas episodes will attract viewers of all ages.  In fact, for adults, there are a lot of in-jokes in this holiday special.  Magee has a Christmas Tree ala “A Charlie Brown Christmas”, “Mickey’s Christmas Carol” is shown on Timmy’s TV set at their house and also little Disney additions that fans may pick up on!

And while the Blu-ray featuring both episodes look and sound great on Blu-ray, fortunately the Blu-ray release also includes the “Prep & Landing” shorts, “Operation Santa Claus” (which features Betty White as the voice of Mrs. Claus) and “Tiny’s Big Adventure”.   In addition, there are other animated special features included on the Blu-ray such as cast and crew interviews and more.

And last, thank goodness that the Blu-ray release also includes a DVD in addition to the Blu-ray, so if you are a parent planning to travel by car during the holidays, for those who own a DVD player in their vehicle, can definitely keep the children entertained with the included DVD (featuring both specials and also includes the special features).

Overall, “Prep & Landing/Prep & Landing: Naughty vs. Nice – Totally Tinsel Collection” is an enjoyable holiday Blu-ray release that is fun, well-animated and full of Christmas spirit!

For those looking for an enjoyable holiday special for the children, that is safe, fun and very entertaining… I definitely recommend “Prep & Landing/Prep & Landing: Naughty vs. Nice – Totally Tinsel Collection”!

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