Come fly with me!

Independent startups always intrigue me. Maybe because one of my life to-dos is invent something amazing or start an amazing something or, well, do anything that is amazing and actually useful and hopefully not hurting dolphins. But most independent products have the appearance of something, well, made in someone's garage. (Though Mr. Dub just informed me that Google was started in a garage, but it's harder to judge someone's cyberness.)

As a result, I wasn't expecting much when I was asked to review
Andy's Airplanes, a new 3D animated DVD series. But then I spoke to its creator, Jon Pierre Francia - who is also an aviation flight instructor and TV producer - and felt his sheer enthusiasm for the project, which in turn raised my expectations. And I wasn't disappointed.

I literally blown away by the animation on "Andy Meets the Blue Angels." Not only were the graphics cool, but the storyline was interesting and engaging. Miss Dub, who typically doesn't respond to any show that doesn't involve puppets, was mesmerized by Andy and his adventure, which involves performing with the legendary Blue Angels and learning about the naval tradition.

One thing I really liked is that while Andy is a curious kid, he's also kind and respectful. Jon Pierre
- yes, I like any excuse to use his Frenchy name - made sure to let me know that he's not interested in adding a bratty character, as is the norm on most kid's cartoons these days, because he wants the entire episodes to be filled with good examples and respectful fun. Merci, Jon, for that!

Anyway, the episodes are a nice blend of fun and info. Kids will learn a lot about planes, including a live-action segment at the end where two kids talk more about the specific plane featured. I even laughed at a few of the jokes.
(No clue if that's a comment on the high level of humor featured or my lowered standards after months of Teletubbies.)

Finally, there's a fan club that kids can join that includes cool stuff like stickers and a passport and all kind of other goodies you can see here.

The only negative to Andy's Airplanes is that the animation and content really is still too old for Miss Dub to understand. And, to be honest, I think boys will dig these DVDs more than girls because boys and airplanes just seem more natural for some reason. But I could be wrong.

But if you are going to support an independent startup, support this one. You can buy the DVDs here. And then you can act all cool and say things like, "Oh, Jon Pierre, pass me the French fries." Or whatever.

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