DJ and I were watching an episode from the DVD of Liberty's Kids that we have at home, "Give me Liberty." It has only three eps on the thing which is a criminally small number to put out on a DVD. The other thing that is irksome is that they only have, like, three or four sets of these things and they are by no means anywhere close to being in order or to being complete. I saw a complete 6 DVD set of Liberty's Kids at an educational media website, for $500.00! That's insane! The Producer of this cartoon, DIC, is probably making money hand over fist because a lot of stations (like the pass-through digital station we suddenly get on our analog set) play Liberty's Kids to satisfy their federally-mandated educational content quota for the kiddies. And what about the adults? Don't we get a federally-mandated educational content quota? Or maybe that's what American Idol and Are You Smarter Than a 5th Grader? are for.
The other thing I wanted to mention was that there were a buttload of movie stars who did voices on Liberty's Kids. For instance, Liam Neeson did the voice of John Paul Jones on the episode we watched the other night. But there are a ton of big names on this show (including the velour fog, Mr. Cronkite) like Arnold Schwarzenegger, Dustin Hoffman, Annette Benning -- Ben Stiller??? Huh? And I could go on and on. The only other show that could match that Hollywood body count is The Simpsons, and their DVDs cost less and have more eps per!
Here's a good article at Common-place about commercial fare that caters to teaching children about American History, like History Rock, a part of Schoolhouse Rock that taught a bunch of us the Preamble to the Constitution with a catchy tune. You have to scroll down a bit to read the Liberty's Kids part but the whole thing was very balanced and pleasurable to read.
Here's a so far great (I haven't read too far into it yet) online encyclopedia on cartoons that seems pretty darn complete, called Toonarific. Go there and poke around -- it is totally worth it!
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