Cartoon Network: Classic Ben 10 Season 1 (DVD)
Ben Tennyson was just an average 10-year-old kid until he discovered a strange alien watch in a crashed meteorite. Called the Omnitrix, this watch gives Ben the ability to transform into any of 10 alien heroes, all the while keeping his 10-year-old personality.
Average kid Ben Tennyson becomes a host of alien-fighting superheroes with the help of an extraterrestrial device in Ben 10
, an engaging and kid-friendly animated series that arrives on DVD with a smattering of extras for series devotees. Ben 10
's basic premise resembles the 1960s and 1980s DC Comic title Dial H for Hero
, with affable teen Ben discovering an alien device called the Omnitrix after it crashes on Earth. The Omnitrix gives Ben the power to transform into ten different and powerful alien heroes, each with their own specific super powers. Ben's discovery of the device attracts the attention of evil space warrior Vilgax, who wants it for his own universe-conquering purposes. Episodes are divided between Ben tangling with Vilgax and his crew of monstrous henchmen, and Ben's struggles to fight crime with the Omnitrix, which occasionally malfunctions and summons the wrong hero at the wrong time. Episode highlights include "Washington B.C.," in which scientist Dr. Amino mutates animals (including dinosaurs) into powerful monsters; "Hunted," with Ben battling a trio of interstellar bounty hunters sent by Vilgax; and "Kevin 11," about a maladjusted kid whose powers of energy absorption threaten to steal away the powers of the Omnitrix.
All 13 episodes of the 2005-2006 debut season of Ben 10are included on this double-disc set; fans also get a lesson on how to draw Ben from artist Scooter Tidwell, and there's a commentary track on "Secrets" from creators/Man of Action members Duncan Rouleau, Joe Casey, Joe Kelly, and writers Tramm Wigzell and Thomas Pugsley. Several of the commentary participants also contribute to a brief sneak preview of an upcoming season. -- Paul Gaita