(The Disneycember logo is shown, before showing clips from Buzz Lightyear of Star Command: The Adventure Begins)

Doug (vo): Ever since the movie Toy Story came out, I, as well as I'm assuming a lot of other people, really wanted a Buzz Lightyear show. Everything he described about his world just sounded so much fun, flying through space, defeating the evil Emperor Zurg, fighting aliens, blasting things, blowing them up. It sounded like a show that practically wrote itself. Well, Buzz Lightyear of Star Command was the pilot film to get that show going. And as pilot films go, it is pretty much just an hour and a half long Saturday morning cartoon. But I mean that in all the best ways.


Doug (vo): It opens with the Toy Story characters actually watching it on the TV, as if to already set up, "Hey, this is meant to be like a Saturday morning cartoon." And that's exactly how it plays out. In the movie, Buzz Lightyear, played again by Tim Allen, is off again to fight the evil Emperor Zurg. Zurg wants to get this technology known as the Uni-Mind. It's a device that the can guess what that stands for...use to communicate with one another to become the most efficient race ever. But Zurg captures the device and plans to use it for evil, turning everybody's minds as diabolical as his. So it's up to Buzz, of course, to go in and stop him, but the one downside is, they want him to have a partner. But, of course, he doesn't want a partner. Why? Because he lost his last partner, Warp, and the pain was just too near. So, of course, he turns away the others that try to come to his side: a ranger named Nova who's also a princess but doesn't like being a princess, a bumbling janitor who has dreams of adventure, and a nerdy robot who always has the clever one-liners.


Doug (vo): This setup is, of course, about as stock as you can get. But the thing is, with the way it's written, it's aware that it's stock, and it has fun with it. There's a lot of great comedic talent behind these characters, including Nicole Sullivan, Larry Miller, and Wayne Knight, who's practically unrecognizable as Zurg. I think they're distorting his voice a little bit, but whatever they're doing, they make it sound great. It's both kind of menacing, but super hilarious at the same time.

Zurg: You're telling me my plan. I already know my plan. I made up the plan. It's my plan. What I don't know is how close you are to accomplishing my plan!

Brain Pod #13: Yeah, kind of an outdoor voice there.

Doug (vo): The atmosphere gives you what you're looking for, with spacemen and women traveling through space and shooting up aliens, but it also has this clever side to it.

Buzz Lightyear: Rangers, condition status.

Mira Nova, Booster and X-R: (All looking injured) Not good.

Buzz: Excellent. Let's roll!

Doug (vo): The comedy is both mocking but kind of paying homage to these sort of 80s Saturday morning tropes, like the climax is stopping Zurg from pointing his death ray to the planet of orphans and widows. There's, like, a five-minute conversation dedicated to getting nose rings.

X-R: Why can't we have nose rings?

Buzz: Because nose rings are for punks, little mister.

Mira Nova: Well, if you can take on Zurg alone, I don't see why X-R can't get a nose ring.

X-R: I was just asking a question. I'm not the one getting a nose ring.

Doug (vo): And all these characters' egos do great in working off of each other, trying to show off, trying to be funny, and ultimately succeeding at the end, but just barely. It doesn't really have any twists or surprises, or at least, none that you can't see coming a mile away. But again, it feels like that's the intention. It's trying to give us that silly version of Transformers or Thundercats or Silver Hawks, except there's a self-awareness that makes for a lot of funny comedy.

(Several clips focusing on Booster are shown)

Doug (vo): I'd say the one nitpick I have in the entire thing is that Booster, the big janitor guy, doesn't really seem to have a point. The other cadets definitely prove their worth, but this guy just sort of acts afraid and screams and, I don't know. I get what he was there as the scaredy cat character, but I didn't really get why he was there in terms of the story.

Final thought

Doug (vo): But again, story is not the big thing here. What is big is the adventure, the comedy, the characters, and they all do great. Again, in that cheesy Saturday morning way that they're obviously going for. If I was a little kid, I would love this. This is the exact show I would want to see looking at Buzz Lightyear in Toy Story. It feels like this is the show the toy was based on. These are the adventures they made him out of. I'd say if you have even the tiniest interest in seeing this at all, you'll get your money's worth. Like I said, obviously for kids, but it has just the right amount of comedy, action and charm. Give it a watch and have fun going to infinity and beyond.

(The final scene, showing Buzz Lightyear and his new teammates flying into space, is shown)

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