|Warner Archive / Released September 25, 2012|
“I first discovered Captain Ortega’s logbook in a monastery that overlooks the sea. On the morning of February 13, 1634, Captain Ortega anchored his ship behind a barrier reef. That night, they were attacked by pirates. The ship, set afire, sank into the lagoon. Ten days later, the captain was found, delirious, still clutching his logbook. He described a world of tiny, underwater creatures no bigger than his thumb. No one believed him, but you know, there’s something about Captain Ortega’s story…that makes me believe it’s true!”
It’s true, all right – just ask the Snorks! In their steam-powered city carved out of coral, these multi-colored denizens of the deep have whale-sized hearts and are up for any challenge – or party – the ocean might send their way. So come along with Allstar, Casey, Daffney, Dimmy, Junior and Tooter as they explore life within – and sometimes beyond – the limits!
Over the years Hanna Barbera has produced series after series that tend to follow the same set up, a hidden civilization filled with magical creatures of some sort; from the Smurfs to the Trollkins to Shirt Tales to Paw Paws to Foorfurs. Finally, one of the most beloved one of these series, Snorks arrives via the Warner Archive, collecting the premiere season on DVD for the first time.
I have vague memories of watching Snorks back in the day, but wasn’t surprised that it wasn’t particularly memorable. Like most cartoons of the period it’s heavy on morals and lessons strung throughout a fairly standard plotline. In other words, dull. Don’t get me wrong, it’s not awful, it’s just one of the many animated series that delivers to a certain age demographic, kids. This one is not for adults by any stretch of the imagination. If anything, it’s a pretty blatant rip-off of the Smurfs (substituting “snork” for “smurf” in much of the cringe inducing dialogue; “what the snork is that?”).
One of the saving graces is the fantastic voice work, utilizing a cast that included Michael Bell, Frank Welker, Nancy Cartwright, Clive Revill, B.J. Ward and Brian Cummings.
Picture quality is pretty rough and like most Archive releases there are no extras. Snorks might be an attractive purchase for fans nostalgiac enough to revisit, but it’s truly intended for a younger audience and for them, it delivers.