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May 26, 2016

NEW SECTIONS TO OUR SITE...INCLUDING A GUIDE TO ALL THE BONUS CARTOONS!

Not a normal news update, but we are extremely proud to announce some long-in-the-works sections to our web site as a part of our year-long plan to update, overhaul, and enhance the Bugs Bunny Video Guide!

The big addition is something that collectors of Warner Bros. cartoons have been asking for on the Internet for...well, since the franchise's debut on DVD. It's Cartoon Special: Looney Tunes as Bonus Shorts, an exhaustive, complete, and definitive guide to all of the (usually unremastered) Looney Tunes and Merrie Melodies that have been used as special features on random Warner Home Video DVDs and Blu-rays. Everything was newly researched just for our guide, and because we know how fans and collectors are, we've also tracked down and noted every edit and alteration that slipped through the cracks and made it onto disc.

A new companion piece to the Cartoon Special page is That's Still Not All, Folks.... After all of the Golden Collection boxed sets, Platinum Collection releases, Looney Tunes Super Stars discs, and bonus shorts scattered around everywhere, this new guide lists what's left in the Looney Tunes series to release on DVD. We may or may not institute a call-to-arms hashtag to use on social media in the future to try to get the rest of the library out there, if fans are willing to do something.

We showed these two new sections to followers on our Facebook page the other day (yet another reason to "like" our page!), and so far the feedback has been great. A few friends have even offered some additions, and we thank them profusely for the help.

The other new, but less vital, section is a new catch-all page called Marvin's Miscellany, indexing all the various FAQs, lists, and extra guides found throughout our site. Just click on the Marvin graphic anywhere on our site and you'll be there!

We have a few more tricks up our sleeves this year that we hope everyone will like, so stay tuned!


March 7, 2016

Jerry Beck on Stu's Show this Wednesday

The latest news (if any) of Looney Tunes on home video!

Has it already been three months (and then some)? This upcoming Wednesday, March 9, cartoon historian extraordinaire Jerry Beck will be making his quarterlyish appearance on Stu's Show, the online radio show hosted by cartoon/pop culture/television nut and home video pioneer Stu Shostak. Airing at 7PM EST, the show offers a free stream for those who tune in live, but fans can hear a "rerun" of the episode for just ninety-nine cents at the show's web site: www.stusshow.com soon after.

Stu's interviews with Jerry always cover the entire gamut of animation, including the latest news on the theatrical, print, and of course home video fronts. Stu's web site indicates that they will also take time to honor the late, great voice actor Joe Alaskey.

You can send questions via the web site linked above, and Stu may or may not read them to Jerry during the show. And as always, please don't bug them with "When will this cartoon come out on DVD?" questions. Any news that Jerry is allowed to reveal will come up during the show.

And as we always say, please remember that Jerry only works as a consultant for Warner Home Video on select projects. He does not control or have final say on programming or release matters; he can only try to comment on situations as best as he can...and even then, he is sometimes contractually required to not say anything about certain upcoming releases. The information he gives is never meant to be inferred as any sort of official statement from the studio and that the studio can and does change its plans on a whim without telling him.

If there is any specific relevant DVD or Blu-ray news, we will of course report it here after the show...IF. And we do plan on posting live updates as they happen (or rather, if they happen) on our Facebook page.

Be sure to check out Stu's Show this Wednesday!


January 21, 2016

Looney Tunes Video History Update

Not a normal news update, but we are now formally and officially announcing a major and much-needed update to a part of our site, a complete and up-to-date overhaul of our video history section, now retitled Wideo Wabbit: The Complete, Illustrated History of the Warner Bros. Cartoons...on Home Video.

The new title represents the scope of the updated pages. In the past, the history section was extremely Bugs-focused, mainly covering video releases from the perspective of a Bugs collector. But since our entire site has grown to cover not only Bugs but also Daffy, Road Runner and Wile E. Coyote, and even Pepe--not to mention our all-encompassing news page--it was necessary to rethink how we presented everything. And we do mean everything is covered, including not only every single Warner Home Video or MGM compilation but also releases of the television specials, compilation movies, sing-alongs, TV shows, and whatever the heck those oddball Baby Looney Tunes puppet shows were! And yes, the history pages have finally been brought up to the current century--it's unbelievable to think how the old section had predated the first Looney Tunes DVD!

Every single item was thoroughly researched anew for these pages. We were not only able to uncover some extremely hard-to-find minute details like release dates for some of the earliest Warner releases (or, at the very least, narrowing it down to a month and year) but we also came upon a lot of very rare, very cool promotional items from the video labels concerning specific titles. It had been a fun journey through the entire history of home video, one we hope we were able to convey a little bit as the Looney Tunes characters were brought along for the ride.

We added bigger and better images to the pages this time, including a few little neat odds and ends, including all the images from Warner Home Video's 2003 online survey that pitched several potential Looney Tunes DVD packages to consumers--not exactly rare images but historically vital nevertheless. Also, we attempted to be a little more objective in our writing this time, removing a lot of the outraged bluster of old and saving emotions and fan opinions for topics that definitely required them (excessive double-dipping, DVNR, widescreen cropping, etc.).

The old pages are now gone for good, and any links going to the old section should automatically take you to the new history. Followers on our Facebook page were given a sneak preview at the first of the year (yet another reason to follow us--two thousand fans can't be wrong!), and we were able to tweak some details based on their great feedback.

Since it's likely we will be facing a very light year in the world of Looney Tunes on home video, we do hope to use the time to remodel and update various parts of our site, and this new history section will hopefully be the first of many upgrades to come. Some long-promised changes and additions will hopefully be coming soon, including one new area that Looney Tunes fans have been asking for since...well, let's just say since the very first cartoon ever randomly showed up on DVD (hint, hint).

And of course, it's also about that time when we will be moving last year's news updates away from this page, creating a new "2015 Archive" page linked to at the bottom. So if you've linked to any our updates in the past year, be prepared to update any links to go to the new archive page.

We'll hopefully have a fun year here, so stay tuned!


January 5, 2016

Sylvester and Friends Vol. 1 DVD Now In Stores

Repeated material from The Sylvester and Tweety Mysteries

Sylvester and Friends Cover It's the first Looney Tunes DVD of the new year, and it's not much of one! Warner Home Video has released the budget DVD Sylvester and Friends Vol. 1, which is now available in stores and online.

Released as part of Warner's recent-ish And Friends series of reissues, the single-disc title is merely the second disc from 2008's The Sylvester and Tweety Mysteries: The Complete First Season set. For anyone out there hoping for a cartoon compilation, there is no classic material on this release whatsoever.

Sylvester and Friends Vol. 1 includes the following episodes....

The Maltese Canary
It Happened One Night Before Christmas
Outback Down Under
It's a Plaid, Plaid, Plaid, Plaid World
Go Fig

Obviously, since it's all repeated material, there is no need to pick this up. If you are a fan of The Sylvester and Tweety Mysteries (and hey, it was a fun show!), it would be ridiculous to not just go ahead and pick up the normal two-disc set of the first season.

This is sadly the only Looney Tunes-related release on the horizon right now. But, it's not too late to turn things around for Looney Tunes fans in the new year. If you're a Twitter user, feel free to send Warner Home Video a tweet asking them to release more classic material on DVD and Blu-ray. The label needs to know that there are consumers out there waiting for more remastered Looney Tunes on disc.

Sylvester and Friends Vol. 1 is now in stores on DVD only and retails for $5.98. Order it now on Amazon.


November 27, 2015

Jerry Beck on Stu's Show this Wednesday

The latest news (if any) of Looney Tunes on home video!

It's that time once again! This upcoming Wednesday, December 2, the one and only Jerry Beck will be discussing all things cartoons on Stu's Show, the online radio show hosted by cartoon/pop culture/television nut and home video pioneer Stu Shostak. Airing at 7PM EST, the show offers a free stream for those who tune in live, but fans can hear a "rerun" of the episode for just ninety-nine cents at the show's web site: www.stusshow.com soon after.

Stu and Jerry will no doubt talk about the number of animated movies coming out this season and next year, along with any books and interesting television cartoons on the horizon. And of course, Jerry will be on hand to discuss the state of animation on home video, including any release news he may have to share.

You can send questions via the web site linked above, and Stu may or may not read them to Jerry during the show. PLEASE, don't bug Stu and Jerry with "When will this cartoon come out on DVD?" questions. Any news that Jerry has will come up during the show, and everything else is simply out of his hands. He isn't going to sit on DVD news in case someone randomly asks him.

And like we always say beforehand and afterward, please remember that Jerry only works as a consultant for Warner Home Video on select projects. He does not control or have final say on programming or release matters; he can only try to comment on situations as best as he can...and even then, he is sometimes contractually required to not say anything about certain upcoming releases. The information he gives is never meant to be inferred as any sort of official statement from the studio and that the studio can and does change its plans on a whim without telling him.

If there is any specific relevant DVD or Blu-ray news, we will of course report it here after the show...IF. And as we usually do, we hope to be posting live updates as they happen on our Facebook page...but of course, you should tune in and give the show a listen for yourself.

Be sure to check out Stu's Show this Wednesday!


November 19, 2015

Sylvester and Friends Vol. 1 DVD Announced

Repeated material from The Sylvester and Tweety Mysteries

Sylvester and Friends Cover

Sylvester and Friends Back Cover

This week, after a very long period of no news whatsoever, Warner Home Video has announced the first Looney Tunes home video release of 2016. The one-disc Sylvester and Friends Vol. 1 will be released on DVD only on January 5.

Unlike previous And Friends that have featured the Looney Tunes characters--and unlike the original UK "Big Face" DVDs that inspired them--this will not be recycled compilation of classic cartoons...or have classic cartoons on it at all, for that matter. Instead, it will feature five episodes from The Sylvester and Tweety Mysteries, essentially repeating the second disc from that series's first-season DVD set. The addition of "Volume 1" to this new release's title suggests that the first disc from that set will eventually find its way in the And Friends line as well.

Sylvester and Friends Vol. 1 includes the following episodes....

The Maltese Canary
It Happened One Night Before Christmas
Outback Down Under
It's a Plaid, Plaid, Plaid, Plaid World
Go Fig

The text on the DVD's back cover reads as follows....

Everyone's favorite cat-and-bird duo takes its hilarious hijinks around the world in these action-packed episodes from the hit TV show! It's mysteries and mayhem with sneaky Sylvester and lovable Tweety - and globe-trotting Granny - in this crazy collection full of crooks, comedy [comma needed] and fwustwated puddy tats!

There is absolutely no need to purchase this title, especially when the entire first season of The Sylvester and Tweety Mysteries is readily available on DVD, making this new release yet another pointless retread.

Nevertheless, Sylvester and Friends Vol. 1 is scheduled to be released on January 5 and will retail for $5.98. Pre-order it now on Amazon.


November 19, 2015

Private Snafu Golden Classics Blu-ray Now Available

Newest release by Thunderbean Animation

Private Snafu DVD Cover The long wait is finally over! Steve Stanchfield and his Thunderbean Animation label are now shipping their brand new Private Snafu Golden Classics Blu-ray. Pre-orders will be sent out by the end of this week, with remaining stock being offered through Amazon.

Steve has been posting updates on the disc's progress over on Jerry Beck's Cartoon Research web site. His columns have truly been an intriguing look into the kind of effort needed to properly remaster classic animation--especially considering all of this work was being independently by Steve and not by Warner Home Video.

The Blu-ray's main program will include all existing Private Snafu shorts produced by Leon Schlesinger....

Coming!! Snafu (1943)
Gripes (1943)
Spies (1943)
The Goldbrick (1943)
The Infantry Blues (1943)
Fighting Tools (1943)
The Home Front (1943)
Rumors (1943)
Booby Traps (1944)
Snafuperman (1944)
Private Snafu vs. Malaria Mike (1944)
A Lecture on Camouflage (1944)
Gas (1944)
Going Home (1944)
The Chow Hound (1944)
Censored (1944)
Outpost (1944)
Payday (1944)
Target: Snafu (1944)
Three Brothers (1944)
In the Aleutions (1945)
It's Murder She Says... (1945)
Hot Spot (1945)
Operation: Snafu (1945)
No Buddy Atoll (1945)

Special features include commentaries and a collection of non-Schlesinger Snafu animation.

With no noteworthy releases this year (or on the horizon) from Warner Home Video, this is an essential purchase for fans of Looney Tunes and classic animation in general. This release nicely fills a gap that Warner had more or less left abandoned.

Private Snafu Golden Classics is now available on Blu-ray and retails for $15.95. Order it now on Amazon.


August 4, 2015

Looney Tunes: Rabbits Run Now In Stores

Special features include CGI theatrical shorts

Rabbits Run Cover Because Run, Lola, Run was already taken? Today's the day, as Warner Home Video has released the direct-to-video Looney Tunes movie Looney Tunes: Rabbits Run. Based on Cartoon Network's The Looney Tunes Show, the single-disc DVD is available in stores and online.

The DVD had already been available at Walmart stores nationwide, as the retailer had a one-month exclusive window that began on July 7. Rabbits Run is being sold there for $14.88, but now the movie can be purchased everywhere.

In addition to the Looney Tunes Show episode "Best Friends," the DVD's special features include four of the recent theatrically released CGI shorts. All three CGI Road Runner cartoons--Coyote Falls, Fur of Flying, and Rabid Rider--are featured (all three of which are also available on numerous other titles such as Road Runner & Wile E. Coyote: Supergenius Hijinks), as is I Tawt I Taw a Puddy Tat, the CGI Tweety and Sylvester short that utilizes Mel Blanc's classic Capitol Records recording of the same name (and previously only available on Happy Feet Two).

Looney Tunes: Rabbits Run is now in stores on DVD only and retails for $19.98. Order it now on Amazon.


August 2, 2015

Jerry Beck on Stu's Show this Wednesday

The latest news (if any) of Looney Tunes on home video!

Hold onto your hats, folks, here we go again! This upcoming Wednesday, August 5, Jerry Beck will be making one of his recurring appearances on Stu's Show, the online radio show hosted by cartoon/pop culture/television nut and home video pioneer Stu Shostak. Airing at 7PM EST, the show offers a free stream for those who tune in live, but fans can hear a "rerun" of the episode for a mere ninety-nine cents at the show's web site: www.stusshow.com soon after.

With a number of major animated feature films coming out this year, Stu and Jerry will no doubt have a lot to talk about, debate, and complain about. There's even talk of a special surprise guest this time out. And as always, Jerry will have the latest news on any upcoming home video releases.

You can send questions via the web site linked above, and Stu may or may not convey them to Jerry during the show. Stu usually says this during the show, but we'll remind everyone now: please don't e-mail Stu or Jerry "When will this cartoon come out on DVD?" type of questions. Any news that Jerry has will come up during the show, and everything else is simply out of his hands.

And like we always say beforehand and afterward, please remember that Jerry only works as a consultant for Warner Home Video on select projects. He does not control or have final say on programming or release matters; he can only try to comment on situations as best as he can...and even then, he is sometimes contractually required to not say anything about certain upcoming releases. The information he gives is never meant to be inferred as any sort of official statement from the studio and that the studio can and does change its plans on a whim without telling him.

If there is any specific relevant DVD or Blu-ray news, we will of course report it here after the show...IF. And as we usually do, we hope to be posting live updates as they happen on our Facebook page...but of course, you should tune in and give the show a listen, too. Hey, it's free!

Be sure to check out Stu's Show this Wednesday!


May 27, 2015

Looney Tunes: Rabbits Run Back Cover, Bonuses Revealed

Special features include CGI theatrical shorts

Rabbits Run Cover

Rabbits Run Back Cover

Not even a month after the title's initial announcement, Warner Home Video has revealed the back cover artwork (and a high-resolution version of the front cover) for its upcoming direct-to-video Looney Tunes movie Looney Tunes: Rabbits Run. The single-disc title is still scheduled to be released on DVD only on August 4*.

Some good news comes in the way of the revealed special features. Although it would have been great if the DVD included some classic Looney Tunes, we nevertheless still get four of the recent CGI theatrical shorts. The DVD will include all three CGI Road Runner cartoons--Coyote Falls, Fur of Flying, and Rabid Rider--that have been released numerous times such as on Road Runner & Wile E. Coyote: Supergenius Hijinks, but it will also include I Tawt I Taw a Puddy Tat, the CGI Tweety and Sylvester short that utilizes Mel Blanc's classic Capitol Records recording of the same name. I Tawt I Taw a Puddy Tat had only previously been available as a bonus on Happy Feet Two, making this DVD its debut on a Looney Tunes-centric release.

The only other special feature on the DVD will be "Best Friends," the debut episode of The Looney Tunes Show in which Bugs and Daffy compete on a game show and have a falling out over their friendship.

The text on the DVD's back cover is more detailed than the synopsis the studio released earlier this month, though the storyline still comes off like a convoluted piece of fan fiction. The text reads as follows....

Looney Tunes are back in this all-new animated adventure! The chase begins with a very rare flower that can turn anything invisible! When beautiful, bumbling perfume salesgirl Lola Bunny receives the flower as a gift (unaware of its power), she adds the magical ingredient to her latest perfume creation. With hopes that she has crafted the next big scent, Lola hails crazed cabbies Bugs Bunny and Daffy Duck for a hasty trip - destination, Paris! In hot pursuit is a host of Looney Tunes all-stars, all seeking the invisibility spray! Foghorn Leghorn, Elmer Fudd [comma needed] and Yosemite Sam are but a few fan favorites, stretching out in all-new roles. Marvin the Martian may have the most devious plan for the portion: to erase the planet Earth - oh, dear! So spring into this globe-trotting, globe-threatening frenzy and see who wins out in this fun-packed Looney Tunes romp!

Surprisingly (or maybe not so much), considering the movie's focus on Lola Bunny, the one name found nowhere on the packaging is that of comedian Kristen Wiig, who voiced the character during the run of The Looney Tunes Show. Instead, Lola will be voiced by series writer Rachel Ramras, who also served as one of the movie's voice directors. Most likely Ramras laid down what was initially hoped to just be a scratch track for the artists to animate to, while the eventual decision to recast was probably made later on when movie-star Wiig became either unavailable or uninterested or too expensive to return to the role.

Looney Tunes: Rabbits Run is scheduled to be released on August 4* and will retail for $19.98. Pre-order it now on Amazon.

*Warner Home Video's retailer information is also listing a July 7 street date in addition to the announced August 4 date, which may suggest an exclusive early-release window somewhere.


May 26, 2015

Looney Tunes Musical Masterpieces Now In Stores

All repeats...avoid!

Musical Masterpieces Cover We're quickly heading toward the halfway mark of 2015 and we're just now seeing the first classic Looney Tunes compilation of the year, as today Warner Home Video has released Looney Tunes Musical Masterpieces. Consisting entirely of previously released material, the single-disc DVD is available in stores and online.

Here is the main content. Shorts that have already been released on DVD are noted....

A Corny Concerto (1943) (Golden Collection Volume Two)
Rabbit of Seville (1950) (Golden Collection Volume One)
One Froggy Evening (1955) (Golden Collection Volume Two)
Rhapsody Rabbit (1946) (Golden Collection Volume Two)
What's Opera, Doc? (1957) (Golden Collection Volume Two)
Hillbilly Hare (1950) (Golden Collection Volume Three)
Pizzicato Pussycat (1955) (Golden Collection Volume Four)
Nelly's Folly (1961) (Platinum Collection Volume Three)
I Love to Singa (1936) (Golden Collection Volume Two)
Page Miss Glory (1936) (Golden Collection Volume Six)
Katnip Kollege (1938) (Golden Collection Volume Two)
High Note (1960) (Platinum Collection Volume Three)
Pigs in a Polka (1943) (Golden Collection Volume Three)
Three Little Bops (1957) (Golden Collection Volume Two)
Rhapsody in Rivets (1941) (Platinum Collection Volume Three)
Back Alley Oproar (1948) (Golden Collection Volume Two)
Holiday for Shoestrings (1946) (Golden Collection Volume Five)
Lights Fantastic (1942) (Golden Collection Volume Six)

The bonus features are also all recycled from Golden Collection volumes, as they are Behind the Tunes featurettes focusing primarily on specific titles in the collection. The segments included are Merrie Melodies: Carl Stalling and Cartoon Music, It Hopped One Night, Wagnerian Wabbit, and Sing-a-Song of Looney Tunes.

If one has already been collecting the bigger, better boxed sets such as the Golden or Platinum Collection volumes, then obviously there is no reason to purchase this title. But, if a more casual fan was looking for a good single-disc "starter" Looney Tunes DVD, this is actually a fine collection--and they'd get some quality special features as well.

And once again, we just wanted to stress that this collection is different from the 1999 Columbia House mail-order VHS of the same name, which features a slightly different mix of shorts. For those wondering what didn't make the cut onto this DVD: Baton Bunny and Long-Haired Hare were both included on Golden Collection Volume One; How Do I Know It's Sunday? was included unremastered as a bonus cartoon on Golden Collection Volume Six; and Mouse Mazurka appeared unremastered on Looney Tunes Mouse Chronicles: Chuck Jones Collection. Only the black-and-white Porky Pig classic Notes to You remains unreleased on DVD, so if you still need the Musical Masterpieces VHS you might be able to score a copy through Amazon's seller marketplace.

Looney Tunes Musical Masterpieces is now in stores on DVD only and retails for $19.97. Order it now on Amazon.


May 8, 2015

4 Kid Favorites: Looney Tunes Collection Multi-Disc Set Announced

All repeated material and cropped shorts...AVOID!

4 Kid Favorites Cover

4 Kid Favorites Back Cover

As if the week couldn't have enough out-of-left-field announcements, Warner Home Video has announced a new multi-disc Looney Tunes DVD set. Composed entirely of previously released material, the four-disc 4 Kid Favorites: Looney Tunes Collection will be released on DVD only on June 23.

The set will be made up of four previously released Looney Tunes-related DVDs, specifically the direct-to-video movie Tweety's High-Flying Adventure, the Looney Tunes Unleashed and The Best of Bugs Bunny budget compilations, and the theatrical movie Daffy Duck's Quackbusters.

Although there had previously been a Baby Looney Tunes volume, this release marks the first authentic Looney Tunes edition of Warner's 4 Kid Favorites series, itself an off-shoot of the label's extremely popular 4 Film Favorites series of multi-packs.

Considering the number of single-disc DVDs to choose from--such as volumes of the Looney Tunes Super Stars series or the various TV-special DVDs--it's curious that two of the four discs in this set are the oddball Looney Tunes Unleashed and The Best of Bugs Bunny collections. Each compilation only contains three cartoons, and the cartoons of any importance were released on better collections.

Looney Tunes Unleashed contains Apes of Wrath, Stork Naked, and Bad Ol' Putty Tat; while The Best of Bugs Bunny contains The Million Hare, Napoleon Bunny-Part, and Knighty Knight Bugs. Knighty Knight Bugs was previously released on the Golden Collection Volume Four and Bad Ol' Putty Tat was first seen on Golden Collection Volume Two. The other four cartoons were among those cropped into the fake "widescreen" format in the initial wave of Looney Tunes Super Stars DVDs, and those marred versions appear here as well.

The only other shorts that will appear on this entire set are found as special features on Daffy Duck's Quackbusters, which includes the latter-day cartoons Superior Duck, Little Go Beep, and Duck Dodgers and the Return of the 24 1/2th Century (the short version). And really, if that was all one was after, then it would simply be a better idea to purchase Quackbusters on its own.

The text on the back cover reads as follows....

Tweety's High-Flying Adventure: When Col. Rimfire announces, at the Looney Club, his belief that cats are the most intelligent animals, Granny, hoping to raise enough to save a nearby children's park, makes a wager that her Tweety can fly around the world in 80 days, collecting the pawprints of 80 cats in the process. Sylvester, still hoping to make Tweety his personal snack, is incensed at the thought of some other cat getting the little bird first and vows to follow Tweety around the world so he can catch the canary himself.

Looney Tunes: Unleashed: This compilation of fun-filled episodes features some of the wackiest Looney Tunes gang moments! Looney Tunes: Unleashed includes Apes of Wrath, Stork Naked [comma needed] and Bad Ol' Putty Tat.

Looney Tunes: The Best of Bugs Bunny: This compilation of fun-filled episodes stars everyone's favorite bunny: Bugs! Looney Tunes: The Best of Bugs Bunny includes The Million-Hare, Napoleon Bunny-Part [comma needed] and Knighty Knight Bugs.

Looney Tunes Presents Daffy Duck's Quackbusters: After he inherits a million dollars from the estate of J.B. Cubish, Daffy, along with his pals, opens up a ghost-busting service to stop Cubish's ghost from reclaiming the money.

As we said back when Looney Tunes Unleashed and The Best of Bugs Bunny were first released in 2012, we will not be recommending this release due to the widescreen cartoons, nor will this upcoming set count as a release for the affected shorts. As always, we urge fans to contact Warner Home Video through Twitter or Facebook to ask them to finally correct this travesty.

But if you're some kind of "gotta catch 'em all" collector when it comes to merchandise, 4 Kid Favorites: Looney Tunes Collection is scheduled to be released on June 23 and will retail for $14.99. Pre-order it now on Amazon.


May 8, 2015

Looney Tunes: Rabbits Run Direct-to-DVD Movie Announced

Original movie coming August 4

Rabbits Run Cover In a somewhat surprising move, this week Warner Home Video announced the first new direct-to-video Looney Tunes movie in almost a decade, Looney Tunes: Rabbits Run. The all-new original movie will be released on DVD only on August 4.

And that's where the good news ends, especially for anyone hoping for something in the ballpark of the classic cartoons. Unfortunately, the "feature-length" movie (clocking in at a skimpy 72 minutes) will be brought to us by the team that worked on Cartoon Network's wildly inconsistent The Looney Tunes Show, continuing the quasi-tradition at Warner Home Video of presenting a video movie following the conclusion of a long-running animated series (Batman: Subzero, Wakko's Wish, Tweety's High-Flying Adventure, Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker, Superman: Brainiac Attacks, and the numerous Scooby-Doo and Tom and Jerry movies). Even more soul-crushing is the fact that Rabbits Run will focus in large part on Space Jam refugee Lola Bunny, seemingly in an attempt to cash-in on Kristen Wiig's newfound movie-star fame after she scored an Emmy nomination voicing the bottomlessly unlikable character.

The movie's synopsis, as provided by the studio, reads as follows....

When New York cabbie, [comma not needed] Bugs Bunny, [comma not needed] picks up the beautiful but bumbling perfume salesgirl, [comma not needed] Lola Bunny, he has no idea that he's about to go on the longest ride of his life! For unbeknownst to Bugs, Lola, in an attempt to create the next, big scent, has inadvertently created an invisibility spray, and now the whole world is on their tails!

Yawn.

There is no word yet on special features. Of course, in a perfect world we would love to see a few classic Looney Tunes shorts on this DVD--perhaps even some corrected full-frame cartoons from the Bugs and Daffy Looney Tunes Super Stars DVD--but as Warner Home Video has almost never cross-pollinated classic Looney Tunes with The Looney Tunes Show the way they have with new and old Tom and Jerry material, that's looking very unlikely.

Likewise, unless something major gets announced with this release, such as the inclusion of classic material, this isn't going to be a title we will be covering closely (not that the studio is giving us much to work with; the cover depicted at the top right is from the announcement e-mail in lieu of a high-resolution cover being available). We have never covered Looney Tunes Show releases in the past for the simple reason that the series falls too far outside of the scope of our web site. And if the teaser trailer is any indication, there won't be anything to recommend about this release in the first place.

But what is significant is that in an era of seemingly quarterly direct-to-DVD Scooby-Doo and Tom and Jerry movies, Rabbits Run will only be the third direct-to-video Looney Tunes movie ever made, following 2000's Tweety's High-Flying Adventure and 2006's Bah, Humduck! (or, if you must count it, 2003's The Baby Looney Tunes' Eggs-traordinary Adventure). Since we're constantly being told from all sides that the DVD market is currently on its deathbed, it's very hard to believe that something as random as a direct-to-video Looney Tunes Show movie can be greenlit while 500+ classic Looney Tunes cartoons are collecting dust in the vaults.

Still, if you MUST, Looney Tunes: Rabbits Run is scheduled to be released on August 4* and will retail for $19.98. Pre-order it now on Amazon.

*Warner Home Video's retailer information is also listing a July 7 street date in addition to the announced August 4 date, which may suggest an exclusive early-release window somewhere.


May 8, 2015

Looney Tunes Musical Masterpieces Back Cover Revealed

Still coming May 26; still all repeats

Musical Masterpieces Back Cover With barely two weeks to go before its release date, Warner Home Video has finally revealed the back cover artwork for the upcoming Looney Tunes Musical Masterpieces compilation. The single-disc title is still scheduled to be released on DVD only on May 26.

The text on the back is almost exactly the same as the synopsis the studio supplied when the title was first announced back in January, with one or two of the grammatical errors corrected....

Prepare for a musical experience only Looney Tunes can deliver! From the brilliant minds of maestro Carl Stalling and animation legends including Friz Freleng and Chuck Jones come 18 musical treasures. Join the likes of Bugs Bunny, Elmer Fudd [comma needed] and Porky Pig in classics including A Corny Concerto; What's Opera, Doc? [semi-colon needed] and Rabbit of Seville. Dive deeper into the vaults with gems like Three Little Bops, I Love to Singa [comma needed] and Rhapsody in Rivets. Let's go to the symphony with this must-own collection of Musical Masterpieces!

Here is the main content, which is composed entirely of previously released material. Shorts that have already been released on DVD are noted....

A Corny Concerto (1943) (Golden Collection Volume Two)
Rabbit of Seville (1950) (Golden Collection Volume One)
One Froggy Evening (1955) (Golden Collection Volume Two)
Rhapsody Rabbit (1946) (Golden Collection Volume Two)
What's Opera, Doc? (1957) (Golden Collection Volume Two)
Hillbilly Hare (1950) (Golden Collection Volume Three)
Pizzicato Pussycat (1955) (Golden Collection Volume Four)
Nelly's Folly (1961) (Platinum Collection Volume Three)
I Love to Singa (1936) (Golden Collection Volume Two)
Page Miss Glory (1936) (Golden Collection Volume Six)
Katnip Kollege (1938) (Golden Collection Volume Two)
High Note (1960) (Platinum Collection Volume Three)
Pigs in a Polka (1943) (Golden Collection Volume Three)
Three Little Bops (1957) (Golden Collection Volume Two)
Rhapsody in Rivets (1941) (Platinum Collection Volume Three)
Back Alley Oproar (1948) (Golden Collection Volume Two)
Holiday for Shoestrings (1946) (Golden Collection Volume Five)
Lights Fantastic (1942) (Golden Collection Volume Six)

As indicated back in January, the bonus features are also repeats, made up of various Behind the Tunes featurettes from Golden Collection volumes.

Looney Tunes Musical Masterpieces is scheduled to be released on May 26 and will retail for $19.97. Pre-order it now on Amazon.


April 26, 2015

Private Snafu Golden Classics Blu-ray Now Available to Pre-Order

Exclusive offer includes bonus disc of additional World War II animation

Private Snafu DVD Cover It's been in the works for a while, but Steve Stanchfield's Thunderbean Animation has finally announced the upcoming release of Private Snafu Golden Classics on Blu-ray. A high-definition upgrade of the studio's already excellent 2010 DVD, according to Steve the Blu-ray will be released in "late May or early June."

As Steve explained in a recent must-read column on Jerry Beck's Cartoon Research web site, he redoubled his original 2010 efforts to try to locate any surviving master print of the original Snafu shorts, eventually borrowing a number of them from the U.S. National Archives. Every short in the series has been newly remastered in high definition, and in addition to a number of odds and ends, Steve is confident that he has located every surviving piece of Private Snafu animation.

It needs to be stressed that this amazing effort was not done by Warner Home Video themselves but by an independent producer, and the original 2010 DVD release already could stand proudly alongside the Golden Collection volumes. Though some of Steve's special features left a bit to be desired--John Kricfalusi's commentary being insipid rambling, Eric Goldberg's coming off as too cloying at times, and an individually dry audio interview and photo gallery could have been combined to form a halfway decent mini-documentary--the cartoons themselves had never looked better. Even the scant few Snafu shorts Warner included on various Looney Tunes releases were from ratty-looking prints at best, making Thunderbean's release an essential purchase.

Thunderbean is offering an exclusive pre-order offer for the Private Snafu Golden Classics Blu-ray through its web site. It will be available for $16.95 and shipping and, according to Steve, pre-orders include a "bonus Blu-ray of other rare WW2 cartoons in HD, a printed packet of rare storyboards and original art unearthed after the first set was made, and more."

The Blu-ray's main program will include all existing Private Snafu shorts produced by Leon Schlesinger....

Coming!! Snafu (1943)
Gripes (1943)
Spies (1943)
The Goldbrick (1943)
The Infantry Blues (1943)
Fighting Tools (1943)
The Home Front (1943)
Rumors (1943)
Booby Traps (1944)
Snafuperman (1944)
Private Snafu vs. Malaria Mike (1944)
A Lecture on Camouflage (1944)
Gas (1944)
Going Home (1944)
The Chow Hound (1944)
Censored (1944)
Outpost (1944)
Payday (1944)
Target: Snafu (1944)
Three Brothers (1944)
In the Aleutions (1945)
It's Murder She Says... (1945)
Hot Spot (1945)
Operation: Snafu (1945)
No Buddy Atoll (1945)

Special features include commentaries and a collection of non-Schlesinger Snafu animation.

We cannot recommend this release enough, especially as we face a dryspell of quality Looney Tunes releases from Warner Home Video.

Private Snafu Golden Classics is scheduled to be released on Blu-ray in late May or early June and is available for pre-order for $16.95. Pre-order it now through Thunderbean Animation.


April 26, 2015

42nd Street Warner Archive Blu-ray Now Available

Bonus cartoons as extras, including HD debut of Shuffle off to Buffalo

42nd Street Cover It seems like this has been the only thing we've been covering here lately, but on Tuesday Warner Archive released the Blu-ray edition of the classic 1933 musical 42nd Street. The Busby Berkeley movie is making its high-definition debut through WBShop.com and other online retailers.

The 42nd Street Blu-ray includes two 1933 Merrie Melodies Young and Healthy and Shuffle off to Buffalo. Though Young and Healthy is in standard definition and is merely an off-the-shelf, unremastered Turner transfer from the mid-90s, Shuffle off to Buffalo meanwhile is presented in 1080p high definition and is the same remastered version last seen on the Golden Collection Volume Six DVD set.

42nd Street is now available online and retails for $21.99. Order it now on Amazon.


April 10, 2015

42nd Street Blu-ray Now Available for Pre-Order

Bonus cartoons as extras; still coming April 21

42nd Street Cover With barely two weeks to go before its street date, pre-order links have finally been popping up for Warner Archive's upcoming Blu-ray release of the classic 1933 musical 42nd Street. The Busby Berkeley movie is still scheduled to make its high-definition debut on April 21.

At the moment, Amazon is the only retailer offering a pre-order for the Blu-ray, as the title has yet to even show up on WBShop.com. It's doubtful that it makes any difference, but it should probably be noted that WBShop recently had a change in management and is no longer being directly handled by Warner Bros., with an outside company named Bolder Road LLC now operating the site. The Warner Archive site has occasionally been sluggish about listing pre-orders, so there is no reason to think the lack of a 42nd Street pre-order is anything out of the ordinary.

Amazon is currently indicating that the regular retail price for 42nd Street will be $21.99, but their list prices for Warner Archive product haven't always jibed with those posted on WBShop.

The 42nd Street Blu-ray is still scheduled to include the 1933 Merrie Melodies Young and Healthy and Shuffle off to Buffalo, with the latter making its debut in 1080p high definition. Young and Healthy, meanwhile, will be unremastered and in standard definition.

42nd Street is scheduled to be released on Blu-ray on April 21 and may or may not retail for $21.99. Pre-order it now on Amazon.


March 20, 2015

42nd Street Warner Archive Blu-ray Announced

Bonus cartoons as extras, including HD debut of Shuffle off to Buffalo

42nd Street Cover Earlier this week, Warner Archive announced the Blu-ray debut of the 1933 musical 42nd Street. Continuing the Archive's sub-collection of made-to-order Blu-rays of select Warner Bros. classics, the iconic Busby Berkeley movie will be making its high-definition debut through WBShop.com and other online retailers on April 21.

Similar to Warner Archive's Blu-ray release of Yankee Doodle Dandy last year, and typical of the label's other releases on the format, 42nd Street will contain a number of special features, many of which came from the film's original DVD release. In addition to the movie's trailer, a 2006 documentary, and a selection of vintage short subjects and newsreels, the Blu-ray will also contain two Warner Bros. cartoons.

42nd Street is scheduled to include the 1933 Merrie Melodies Young and Healthy and Shuffle off to Buffalo. Interestingly, though both cartoons appeared on the same 2006 Busby Berkeley Collection boxed set as 42nd Street did--and though the actual songs "Young and Healthy" and "Shuffle off to Buffalo" both originally came from 42nd Street--neither short were actually featured on the movie's specific disc (Young and Healthy was featured alongside Footlight Parade, while Shuffle was a bonus for Gold Diggers of 1935). So, for whatever it's worth, this Blu-ray edition tries to put things back into a historic perspective.

Young and Healthy will be the same off-the-shelf mid-90s Turner transfer that appeared on the 2006 DVD (two words that Cartoon Network viewers will recognize in a heartbeat: "Dubbed version"). Meanwhile, Shuffle off to Buffalo will be the 2008 HD transfer originally restored and remastered for the Golden Collection Volume Six, this time presented in 1080p resolution for the first time. In fact, Shuffle off to Buffalo will be the disc's only special feature in high definition!

42nd Street is scheduled to be released on Blu-ray on April 21. Warner Archive has not announced a retail price yet, and a pre-order link will be posted as soon as one becomes available.


March 13, 2015

Jerry Beck on Stu's Show Recap

Something may be on the horizon through Warner Archive!

This past Wednesday, the one and only Jerry Beck made one of his regular appearances on Stu Shostak's online radio show...um, Stu's Show. Hopefully most everyone was able to listen to the episode live for free, but if you missed out on it, you can download a "rerun" for just ninety-nine cents at the show's web site: www.stusshow.com

Although a considerable amount of time was devoted to discussing home video (at least, more so than even in past appearances), there was very little major significant news. As Jerry states almost every time he appears on the program, DVD and Blu-ray animation releases intended for collectors are now just too much of a niche market for the studios to invest heavily in (even referring to the upcoming Tom and Jerry: The Gene Deitch Collection as the "last" of the Warner releases to target collectors and completists). Even Stu lamented that things weren't looking good when one minor bright spot was a DVD of a few Format Films Alvin Show episodes from the 1960s.

What did slightly reassure listeners, though, was a small tease Jerry gave during the first half of the show regarding Warner Archive.

According to Jerry, "We are working on a classic Looney Tunes project."

Absolutely no further details were offered, and the comment was made so casually that Stu had even forgotten about it when Jerry brought it up again later in the show. Jerry did, however, diffuse any possibility of the shorts appearing on the Warner Archive Instant streaming service anytime soon, as Cartoon Network currently holds the streaming rights to the library in addition to the broadcast rights.

The only other significant Looney Tunes news came not from Warner Home Video but from Thunderbean Animation, as the label's Private Snafu Golden Classics compilation will be released on Blu-ray in June. Jerry said the set will be a slight upgrade from the DVD version, as the shorts are undergoing another round of remastering to ensure that they are all in high definition.

Sadly, the good news pretty much ended there, at least as far as the major studios go. Warner properties were especially in a holding pattern. Obviously, there has been no movement on either Tom and Jerry Golden Collection Volume Two or the missed-it-by-that-much "Censored 11" collection (leading to a quick discussion about how Warner is so PC-paranoid when it comes to Looney Tunes that the "censored 11" has unofficially ballooned to something more like the "censored 111"). Meanwhile, the Tex Avery MGM shorts as a whole are simply too expensive to remaster for any kind of comprehensive release, and (at least to their credit) Warner refuses to simply release off-the-shelf copies in the era of HD television and Blu-ray.

And in related news, things aren't looking good on the Popeye front. As most fans know, the fate of the Famous Popeye shorts on home video are tied to whether or not Sony will release its long-awaited Popeye CGI movie, as Warner sees no real reason to invest in remastering the cartoons without some "event" to create awareness for the property. Unfortunately, the movie itself is hanging by a thread because it's consistently at the mercy of Sony executives who simply don't "get" Popeye and don't believe anyone would want to spend money seeing a movie about him. Jerry explained that he's tried to help the cause as much as he can, even revealing that he was partly responsible for the "leaked" test footage that made the rounds online a few months ago. So unless Sony has a serious change of heart or the movie eventually goes into turnaround and another studio takes a leap of faith and picks up the project, it's becoming less and less likely that the movie will be released. Why all of this is important to the shorts is because Warner is aware of the situation at Sony and is not going to just start proactively remastering the cartoons on the off-chance the movie eventually gets released. Once the movie is given a guaranteed release date will Warner even consider moving forward with putting the Famous shorts on Blu-ray or DVD.

Speaking of our favorite one-eyed sailor, Jerry did offer one little piece of insight when Stu asked about Warner's political correctness when it comes to classic cartoons, specifically why the studio is so protective about "controversial" Looney Tunes and Tom and Jerry shorts but had no problem releasing all of the Fleischer Popeye cartoons in all of their sexist and racist glory. Simple answer: Warner Bros. doesn't own the Popeye character, so it's no skin off their nose how the character is perceived by the public and (perhaps more importantly) how that may affect licensing.

So it seems that the Warner Archive will be the future of decent Looney Tunes releases on home video...but we've heard that before. Still, fingers crossed!


March 5, 2015

Jerry Beck on Stu's Show this Wednesday

The latest news (if any) of Looney Tunes on home video!

It's that time once again! This upcoming Wednesday, March 11, Jerry Beck will be making his semi-annual appearance on Stu's Show, the online radio show hosted by cartoon/pop culture/television nut and home video pioneer Stu Shostak. Airing at 7PM EST, the show offers a free stream for those who tune in live, but fans can hear a "rerun" of the episode for a mere ninety-nine cents at the show's web site: www.stusshow.com soon after.

Whenever Stu has Jerry on the show, the two often engage in lively discussions about all things animation. Everything under the sun comes up, from recent theatrical movies to book projects to television series...and everything else inbetween! And of course, Jerry will report on the latest news on the home video front.

And hey, since this year marks not only Bugs Bunny's 75th birthday but also the 85th anniversary of the Looney Tunes franchise, might we hear some good news from Warner Home Video? Hey, stop laughing.

You can send questions via the web site linked above, and Stu may or may not convey them to Jerry during the show.

And like we always say beforehand and afterward, please remember that Jerry only works as a consultant for Warner Home Video on select projects. He does not control or have final say on programming or release matters; he can only try to comment on situations as best as he can...and even then, he is sometimes contractually required to not say anything about certain upcoming releases. The information he gives is never meant to be inferred as any sort of official statement from the studio and that the studio can and does change its plans on a whim without telling him.

If there is any specific relevant DVD or Blu-ray news, we will of course report it here after the show...IF. And as we usually do, we hope to be posting live updates as they happen on our Facebook page...but of course, you should tune in and give the show a listen, too. Hey, it's free!

Stu just recently aired his landmark 400th episode, and the weekly topics cover everything from comic books to classic TV to movies to everything else a pop culture nut loves. You may become an addict if you listen in!

Meanwhile, it's also that time of year for us where we will soon be moving last year's news updates away from this page, creating a new "2014 Archive" page linked to at the bottom. So if you've linked to any our updates in the past year, be prepared to update any links to go to the new archive page. Just a heads up.

Be sure to check out Stu's Show this Wednesday!


February 17, 2015

Stranger Than Fiction and Reality Check DVD Reissues Now In Stores

NOT REAL CARTOONS! AVOID! AVOID! AVOID!

Stranger Than Fiction Cover

Reality Check Cover

Call it a bad omen, but this is what we're starting the new year with, as the 2003 webtoon compilations Looney Tunes: Stranger Than Fiction and Looney Tunes: Reality Check have been reissued by Warner Home Video. Out of print for a couple of years due to low sales and general lack of consumer interest, the single-disc DVDs are now available again in stores and online.

We cannot stress enough that these DVDs do NOT contain any classic Looney Tunes shorts. Instead, they feature unfunny, derivative Flash webtoons that were created for the Looney Tunes web site a decade and a half ago, parodying such heavily mined territory as movies and reality TV.

Stranger Than Fiction includes the following....

Sufferin' Sasquatch
Cropsy Curvy
The Bermuda Short
Who Wants to Be a Martian-aire?
Gone in 30 Minutes
Window Pains
The Taming of the Screwball
Loch Ness Mess
Twick or Tweety
El Chupacabra!
Daffy's Meet Market
Hogs & Kisses
Satellite Sam
Island of Dr. Moron
Cube Wars
Tech Suppork
Planet of the Taz
Beneath the Planet of the Taz
Enough with the Planet of the Taz

Reality Check includes the following....

Sports Blab #1
Sports Blab #2
Aluminum Chef #1
Aluminum Chef #2
Tear Factor
Junkyard Run #1
Junkyard Run #2
Junkyard Run #3
Cagey Witness
Inherit the Windbag
Fowl Play
Survival of the Dimmest
Bleach, Blanket, Bang-O
Helter Shelter
Finder's Eaters
Sandcastle Hassle
I've Misplaced My Piano
Speared, Seared and Feared
Oh My Darlin' Serpentine
Obstacles, of Course
Fowl Be Comin' Round the Mountain

As we said when these reissues were first announced, we do NOT consider these webtoons to be traditional Looney Tunes shorts, nor do (or will) any of the webtoon titles appear in the filmographies presented throughout our site. We do NOT recommend these titles at all!

Still, if you need to complete some sort of misguided character-merchandise collection, Looney Tunes: Stranger Than Fiction is now in stores on DVD only and retails for $9.97. Order it now on Amazon.

Looney Tunes: Reality Check, meanwhile, is also in stores on DVD only and also retails for $9.97. Order it now on Amazon.

DO NOT BUY THESE THINGS!


January 29, 2015

Looney Tunes Musical Masterpieces DVD Announced

In stores May 26; all repeats

Musical Masterpieces Cover It's the first bit of Looney Tunes news of the year; it's not great, but at least it's not more webtoons. Yesterday, Warner Home Video announced the first classic shorts compilation of 2015, Looney Tunes Musical Masterpieces. The single-disc title will be released on DVD only on May 26.

Those hoping for any new-to-DVD content will be disappointed, especially if one was expecting a DVD version of the 1999 Columbia House VHS of the same name. Instead, the disc is a simple hodgepodge of cartoons already released on various Golden and Platinum sets.

Here is the main content. Shorts that have already been released on DVD are noted....

A Corny Concerto (1943) (Golden Collection Volume Two)
Rabbit of Seville (1950) (Golden Collection Volume One)
One Froggy Evening (1955) (Golden Collection Volume Two)
Rhapsody Rabbit (1946) (Golden Collection Volume Two)
What's Opera, Doc? (1957) (Golden Collection Volume Two)
Hillbilly Hare (1950) (Golden Collection Volume Three)
Pizzicato Pussycat (1955) (Golden Collection Volume Four)
Nelly's Folly (1961) (Platinum Collection Volume Three)
I Love to Singa (1936) (Golden Collection Volume Two)
Page Miss Glory (1936) (Golden Collection Volume Six)
Katnip Kollege (1938) (Golden Collection Volume Two)
High Note (1960) (Platinum Collection Volume Three)
Pigs in a Polka (1943) (Golden Collection Volume Three)
Three Little Bops (1957) (Golden Collection Volume Two)
Rhapsody in Rivets (1941) (Platinum Collection Volume Three)
Back Alley Oproar (1948) (Golden Collection Volume Two)
Holiday for Shoestrings (1946) (Golden Collection Volume Five)
Lights Fantastic (1942) (Golden Collection Volume Six)

The announced bonus features are also recycled, as they are all Behind the Tunes featurettes from various Golden Collection volumes. The segments included are Merrie Melodies: Carl Stalling and Cartoon Music, It Hopped One Night, Wagnerian Wabbit, and Sing-a-Song of Looney Tunes.

The studio's official synopsis for the title reads as follows....

Prepare for a musical experience as only Looney Tunes can deliver! From the brilliant minds of maestro Carl Stalling and animation legends including Friz Freleng and Chuck Jones, [comma NOT needed, for once!] comes [sic - come] 18 musical treasures. Join the likes of Bugs Bunny, Elmer Fudd, and Porky Pig in classics including Corny Concerto, What's Opera, Doc? [comma needed] and Rabbit of Seville. Dive deeper into the vaults with gems like Three Little Bops, I Love to Singa [comma needed] and Rhapsody in Rivets. Let's go to the symphony with this must-own collection of Musical Masterpieces!

The cover art (at right) is nothing to write home about, but at least it's more than just a collage of the standard-issue shaded control art (well, except for Michigan there). The inclusion of Daffy on the cover is odd considering he doesn't appear in any of the cartoons contained on the disc (despite the persistence of some who think the nondescript black baby duck in A Corny Concerto must be Daffy, even though black is a pretty normal color for ducks).

If you already own all of the boxed sets then obviously there is no reason to purchase this DVD. But, if for some reason you needed a single-disc "best of"-style collection, this actually looks like it will be a pretty satisfying disc, perhaps more so than the similar Center Stage DVDs from last year.

Looney Tunes Musical Masterpieces is scheduled to be released on May 26 and will retail for $19.97. Pre-order it now on Amazon.


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