DVD Review: PLASTIC MAN: The Complete Collection

Warner Home Video
MSRP: $44.98
Runtime: 564 minutes
Release date: October 20, 2009

Growing up, I was a fan of most superhero cartoons, including the sillier ones that seem to have gone out of style. Beyond his amazing malleability, costume, and perhaps name, the Plastic Man of the classic cartoon had nothing in common with Jack Cole’s comic book character, reformed thief Patrick “Eel” O’Brian. While this is a letdown to the purist I’ve become, back in 1979, not knowing the character’s origin, I enjoyed the show for what it was. I recommend it today as family fun.

This Plastic Man (voiced by Michael Bell) traveled the world aboard his PlastiJet, chasing down villains as zany as he (The Weed, The Clam, Computerhead, Disco Mummy, etc.), working with his blonde bombshell pilot Penny (Melendy Britt) and hapless Hawaiian sidekick Hula Hula, and under a demanding female chief. The show had a witty tone, with characters often making asides to viewers, but Plastic Man was as heroic as he was jokey.

The 35 Plastic Man cartoons presented in this 4-DVD set originally aired in a block with several other cartoons (including “Baby Plas”, “Plastic Family”, “Mighty Man and Yukk”, “Fangface and Fangpuss”, and “Rickety Rocket”) not included in the set. However, there are two notable extras: a retrospective featurette on Plastic Man and an unsold Plastic Man pilot from 2006, developed and starring the voice of Tom Kenny (a.k.a. Spongebob Squarepants).

–Gerald So