Disappointing final chapter to the "Recess" series
Production shut down on ABC's "Recess" series after it reached 65 episodes, as is mandated by producer Disney. But "Recess" proved to be so popular that an additional 13 episodes were commissioned. For some reason, though, ABC never broadcast the new episodes and they were instead edited into three direct-to-video movies. This entry, comprised of three episodes loosely joined together, finds the "Recess" gang finally being promoted to the fifth grade. But it seems they've lost some of their magic with the change in grades. First of all, there are distracting problems with character voices. Courtland Mead (Gus) and Jason Davis (Mikey) don't quite sound like they usually do, and Myles Jeffrey has replaced Andrew Lawrence as TJ (Lawrence's voice was sounding pretty deep in the final episodes of the series, so this change is understandable). Jeffrey is OK, although he hasn't captured TJ's spunk the same way that Lawrence did. The real problem, though, is that the stories just seem...tired. The first, in which TJ becomes a truant to protest changes at school, is simply boring. The last one, in which Spinelli decides she is too old for Halloween, seems like a rehash of previous stories. Only the middle entry, in which the kids join a secret club, comes close to the series' standards. Fans of the series will understandably want to catch up with their favorite characters, but this movie may make them realize why all good things must come to an end.
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