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All 26 episodes fromStargate Infinity’s single season (2002-03) are included in this four-disc DVD package, and although it bears only a passing resemblance to the feature film, television series, and made-for-TV movies that share its name (in fact, it apparently isn’t even considered an "official" member of theStargateuniverse), the show boasts enough good qualities of its own to make for perfectly serviceable animated entertainment. Of course, the Stargate itself, the alien device that creates "wormholes" through which characters travel to different worlds, is still front and center; indeed, the visual effects used to depict the contraption are very similar in both animation and live action. But pretty much everything else aboutInfinityis different. It takes place years after the adventures chronicled in the long-runningStargate SG-1TV show (in this world, the existence of the Stargate is now common knowledge), which means that all of that series’ familiar characters are long gone. In their place are Major Gus Bonner (a salty, irreverent leader somewhat in the mold ofSG-1main man Richard Dean Anderson) and a team that includes a couple of teenagers, a half-human, half-alien brainiac, an empathic Native American, and weird creature who may or may not be one of the highly evolved "Ancients" familiar from the live action series. The villains have changed as well: principal among them are the huge, lizard-like Tlak'kahn, whose agenda, like all bad guys of their ilk, appears to be nothing less than total domination of the cosmos.

Despite the inherent limitations of television cartoons (principally the lack of a big enough budget to animate both characters and settings convincingly), Stargate: Infinity has all of the elements designed to appeal to its young (and presumably mostly male) audience, like cool aliens (Gigantic bugs! Slimy monsters!) and constant high-energy action sequences. This being a children’s show, it also has a mandated educational element (we learn about everything from the difference between stalactites and stalagmites to the kind of arches used in Roman architecture), as well as various life lessons (believe in yourself, don’t judge others by appearance alone, etc.); to the show’s credit, the latter tend to be laid on with a trowel instead of a shovel. Bonus features include an "Animated Stargate Effects Test" and original concept art. --Sam Graham

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CastKathleen Barr, Lee Tockar, Mark Hildreth, Bettina Busch, Cusse Mankuma
DirectorWill Meugniot
Genre:  Family
DVD Release Date:  May 13, 2008
Runtime:  600 minutes
Studio:  Shout Factory
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