Ape Escape – Out now on DVD



Released: 18/2/13

Running time: 46 min

Cert: U

Based on the long running series of Playstation games, Ape Escape is a collection of 19 cartoon shorts featuring the simple simians with light bulbs on their heads. Mainly involving Specter, a monkey who is given intelligence through a mind enhancing helmet, the shorts tend to play on the same thing, him wanting something, and the apes being ‘comically’ stupid, and thwarting the plans of Specter in the process. Despite the source material being a video game dating as far back as 1999, it seems that Ape Escape’s target audience is the Disney Channel crowd. The animation is faultless and pretty standard for what you’d expect in cartoons these days, as is the voice acting, but as mentioned, this is definitely aimed at the youngsters, with irritating characters and scenarios, and very short running time for each episode.

It does seem an odd choice to wait until now to turn the franchise into a series, given how long it’s been around. Possibly it’s to move out in other directions, or possibly raise awareness in a new generation of gamers, but regardless of it’s reasons, it’s certainly not for those that were around when it started life on the Playstation. Ultimately, it just seems like the cartoons have the same central premise, just executed in different situations, and will only appeal to the kids of those who remember playing the original. There’s little appealing about Ape Escape for anyone over 13, but from that point of view, my kids enjoyed it. Despite being based on a videogame, gamers don’t appear to be the target audience. It’s best left to the kids.

Rating: ★★★☆☆☆☆☆☆☆

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