01/07/2008 0 By Administratus Prime

They bring the toys to me, and I can’t transform them either. My boys then look at me like I’m broken.

The Transformer books on shelves at our house are another irritant. The books relate the inelegant Transformer myth that’s overloaded with Decepticon, Megatron, Energon, an Allspark cube and other words that clog the mouth and fog the brain. As a story, the Transformer tale is about as riveting and has as much relation to English as a computer manual.

But after we were able to somehow keep our oldest son away from the 2007 Transformers movie, it seemed that Optimus Prime and his pals fell in the back of the line behind Spiderman and Matchbox race cars. The toys fell to the bottom of the toy box. And that was great.


Now the Cartoon Network is pumping up this Hasbro franchise with the DVD release Transformers Animated: Transform and Roll Out ($ 16. 99 ). It took all of one viewing in our house for the Transformers to shoot back to the top of the Greatest Thing Ever List. One son pretty much wanted to be shut in his room with the DVD on endless repeat.

Since we’re only marginally bad parents, we didn’t let him do that. But the animated series is understandably cool. Huge robots that turn into Camaros ? And they fight and shoot each other with lasers ? That might as well be a blueprint for a boy’s brain.

As candy-colored animation, the Transformers don’t seem as menacing or scary even though the war between the bad and good bots is still on. Unfortunately, Transformers Animated is loaded with the same kind of sarcastic talk that pollutes practically everything your children might be interested in, with the exception of Sesame Street.

But it is either robots or princesses. And parents with boys know that there’s no point in trying to fight the machines. But our suggestion to make life easier is to perhaps lose those Transformer toys for just a little while — say, five or six years.

Notable DVD releases on Tuesday The Closer: Season Three, Warner, $ 39. 98 for four-disc set — The third season arrives for the incredibly popular cable series. The rest of us can’t quite make it past Kyra Sedgwick’s harsh accent.

The Royal Diaries, Genius Products, $ 14. 95 — Documentaries, based on the Scholastic book series, of three teenage princesses: “Cleopatra VII: Daughter of the Nile, Egypt, 57 B. C.,” “ Isabel: Jewel of Castilla, Spain, 1466 ” and “Elizabeth I: Red Rose of the House of Tudor, England, 1544.” The 2007 Newport Music Festival Connoisseur’s Collection, Acorn, $ 124. 99 for 10-disc set — The mansions of Newport, Rhode Island are the setting for an annual classical-music festival. The box set has full concerts and highlights including the debut of American pianist Adam Golka.

Walker Texas Ranger: The Fifth Season, Pa ra mount, $ 54. 99 for seven-disc set — Chuck Norris was so close — so close ! — to being Mike Huckabee’s vice president. Or Minister of Cool Action Guy. Or something.

Source: NWA News