The Mr. Magoo Show: Complete DVD Collection includes all 130 cartoon shorts that first ran on television about 45 years ago. The series starred the nearsighted Mr. Magoo, who's refusal to wear glasses leaves him constantly oblivious to his surroundings and the trouble that he gets himself into. Each short is a series of cleverly choreographed narrowly avoided disasters in which Magoo's nearsightedness inevitably serves to save him from the trouble his inability to see got him into in the first place. Throughout it all Magoo maintains an upbeat attitude even though he's convinced that things were a lot better in the old days.
The episodes are all animated in a minimalist style that makes the Flintstones look like the work of Rembrandt, but it does reflect the artistic style of its day. They don't translate well to today's larger screens, though. The voice work is highlighted by Jim Backus' role as Magoo who expertly captures his character's delusional aplomb. It would be easy to recommend this collection for children if it were not for the fact that many of the episodes are actually pretty violent. Sure, it is cartoon violence of the classic Tom & Jerry sort, but the people around Magoo inevitably suffer the calamity that Magoo himself narrowly avoids. I'd definitely keep it away from the Dora crowd.
The collection comes in a nice collector's box set and includes four DVDs. There is also an insert that gives a bit of the history of The Magoo Show and the studio that produced it, UPA, and a comic book reprint. The shorts are collected together with the episodes in which they appeared on television, and the opening and closing sequences as well as the bump shorts are all included. You can watch an entire episode as it originally aired, sans commercials of course, or jump to any of the individual shorts. The DVDs only include the cartoon episodes and there are no extras on the discs.
If you can accept the cartoon violence and a few characters that are blatant negative stereotypes, then you'll probably find yourself enjoying the shorts in this collection. In spite of the barebones animation, the work of Jim Backus and the thought that went into creating each series of near-disasters make these cartoons fun to watch.