Created by Dan Povenmire (The Family Guy) and Jeff “Swampy” Marsh, Phineas and Ferb is about two step-brothers and their incredible adventures in the family’s backyard during their summer vacation. The two step-brothers, Phineas Flynn (Vincent Martella) and Ferb Fletcher (Thomas Sangster), live with their older sister Candace Flynn (Ashley Tisdale), and their parents Linda Flynn (Caroline Rhea), and Lawrence Fletcher (Richard O’Brien), in Danville, Illinois. The two brothers find themselves bored with the status quo, so they decide to pull off unbelievable and often outlandish stunts (i.e. building a rocket, fighting a mummy, climbing the Eiffel tower, discovering something that doesn’t exist, giving a monkey a shower, constructing a giant roller-coaster, just to name a few), in order to make their summer more exciting and fun. Unfortunately for the boys, their sister Candace is aware of their activities, and does everything she can to put an end to their fun.
Candace always goes and tells their mom what the boys are up to, but by the time mom arrives, it’s always too late to see her sons in action. The boys are aided in hiding their shenanigans with the indirect help of Dr. Heinz Doofenshmirtz (aka Dr. Doofus), and the family’s pet Perry the Platypus, who is really a secret agent going by the name “Agent P.”
If the series’ concept sounds a bit weird, it is. However, it’s also one of the most smartly written cartoons I’ve seen come down the pike in quite a while. The ideas presented in each episode are fresh, inventive and fun. Povenmire and Marsh have created characters that aren’t afraid to explore their creative and imaginative side. It seems to me that so many cartoons today are strictly one dimensional. By that, I mean they go for the kind of action kids expect–guns, gore, robots–while Phineas and Ferb presents a new idea with each episode. In their minds, nothing is impossible. In some of these episodes, for example, they erect a haunted house to cure the hiccups of their friend Isabella (Alyson Stoner), they construct a complete beach just outside their fenced-in backyard, and they become one-hit wonders just to get a taste of the music business. These kids believe in themselves.
Of course, these step-brothers are kids, so they take great pride in pulling a fast one on their parents. While the boys are having all kinds of fun, they are completely unaware that the family platypus is a secret agent, who quietly saves the world each episode. Perry the Platypus (“Agent P”), has one staunch nemesis he has to continually overcome. Dr. Heinz Doofenshmirtz (Dan Povenmire) became the mad scientist that he is he was forced by his German father to stand for hours and days at a time in their garden to replace the family’s stolen garden gnome. “Agent P” simply does his work and then returns to his position as the family pet.
As an adult, I really enjoyed watching this Phineas and Ferb DVD, and I think it is one that the whole family can enjoy. Adults will likely enjoy the irreverent style, reminiscent of the old Adventures of Rocky and Bullwinkle and kids will enjoy watching Phineas and Ferb create their own adventures.
Here is a list of the episodes included on the DVD:
“One Good Scare Ought to Do It!” Pts. 1&2
In this never seen before episode, the boys go to great lengths to build a scary haunted house/theme park with roller coaster, in an effort to get rid of Isabella’s hiccups.
“The Fast and the Phineas”/”Lawn Gnome Beach Party of Terror”
Phineas and Ferb enter the family car in an auto race. Meanwhile, Perry must stop Doofenshmirtz from deflating every inflatable in the world. In “Lawn Gnome Beach Party of Terror,” Phineas and Ferb’s newest backyard project is to create a tropical beach paradise. Meanwhile, Perry tries to stop Dr. Doofenshmirtz’s plan to steal all the garden lawn gnomes
“Are You My Mummy?”/”FlopStarz”
Inspired by a movie, the boys try to get a mummy, but it’s Candace who ends up being wrapped in toilet paper, while Doofenshmirtz’s latest scheme to flood the city by destroying a beaver dam, all to make his own property “beachfront.” In “FlopStarz,” Phineas and Ferb decide to become a one hit wonder, Phineas and the Ferb-Tones and Candace wins the chance to sing with them. Meanwhile, Perry must stop Doofinshmirtz’s giant robot – disguised as a temp.
“Raging Bully”/”Lights, Candace, Action!”
Phineas enters a thumb-wrestling competition with a local bully, while Doofenshmirtz creates a hypnotic device to control people’s minds so they will sing him Happy Birthday. In “Lights, Candace, Action!,” Candace is delighted to star in “The Princess Sensibilities” until the new directors (Phineas and Ferb) decide to go a different direction, like “The Curse of the Princess Monster.” Doofenshmirtz creates an Age Acceleratorinator, first to more quickly make cheese, but then to try to age Agent P.
“It’s about Time!” Pts. 1&2
Phineas and Ferb find a time machine at a museum and travel back to the Jurassic Age. Meanwhile, Perry is sad when Doofenshmirtz replaces him with a new nemesis, Peter the Panda, so he confides in a relationship talk-show host.
The video on this DVD is remarkably good. The colrs are gorgeous and each detail is well defined. The audio is a Dolby Digital Surround Sound.
The DVD has a couple of extras. Adults will enjoy the original pitch by Dan Povenmire that was used to sell Disney on the idea of the series, with Povenmire doing all the voices and narration. They liked the show enough to give him a contract, and they liked his Doofenshmirtz voice enough to allow him to cast himself.
For kids, there’s Phineas & Ferb’s Homemade Tree Shade Arcade, a game section that includes four different activities. There’s a Whack-a-Gnome game, a driving game where you use the left-right arrows to navigate, a matching game where you consider the situation that Perry finds himself in and click on the disguise that will enable him to blend in, and finally a pair of parental marionettes in which kids use arrow keys to keep them dancing.