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Walt Disney Treasures: The Mickey Mouse Club Presents Annette - 1957-1958 Season - family and children's DVD / classic Disney review
WALT DISNEY TREASURES: THE MICKEY MOUSE CLUB PRESENTS ANNETTE - 1957-1958 SEASON Not rated by the Motion Picture Association of America curledupdvd.com rating: 4 stars
Featuring: Annette Funicello, Richard Deacon, Sylvia Field, Tim Considine, Rudy Lee, Roberta Shore
  Distributor: Walt Disney Video
DVD release: 11 November 2008   Runtime: 240 minutes
(2 discs)
Format: Color, DVD-Video, Widescreen, NTSC
DVD features: Audio tracks (English, Dolby Digital 2.0), Subtitles (English for the Hearing Impaired), 20 Annette serial episodes, "Musically Yours, Annette" (mini-documentary), "To Annette, With Love" tribute, First and last episodes of The Mickey Mouse Club

I used to watch reruns of The Mickey Mouse Club back in my television-centered youth in the '70s. To this day, Wednesday is "Anything Can Happen Day." The MMC (as the kids call it nowadays) ran serials starring some Mousketeers: Spin and Marty and The Hardy Boys; Adventures in Dairyland was another. A favorite featured in the '57-'58 season was Annette, starring Annette Funicello. She was a favorite Mousketeer (though I liked Karen) and a natural if reluctant star.

Annette played a 15-year-old from Beaver Junction, Nebraska, who moves to southern California to live with her Uncle Archie (Richard Deacon) and Aunt Lila (Sylvia Field). They don't know she's coming, so when she shows up on their doorstep, dressed perhaps as Scarlett O'Hara might for a trip to the city, they are surprised. They briefly consider sending her off to boarding school but think better of it. She's so out of her element that she doesn't even know which is her grapefruit spoon! Imagine!

When Aunt Lila takes her out to shop for school clothes, she gets invited to a party with the in-crowd. Here she's exposed to a whole bunch of swell kids. Steve (Tim Considine) is the coolest, most good-looking kid in school. He's just the most! Olmstead Ware (Rudy Lee) is a hyperactive metabolism attached to a short kid who's big on personality. Call him Steady. Laura (Roberta Shore) is the good-looking natural counterpart to Steve. Problem is she can't stand to not be the center of attention. When Annette shows up on the scene, Laura gets jealous. Whenever Steve shows Annette some attention, Roberta gets nasty. When Roberta's necklace goes missing at the party during a non-kissing game of Spin-the-Bottle, things get tense. This provides the major conflict for the serial.

Annette is a sweet show, and it models a 1950s America that probably never existed - but boy, wouldn't it be nice if it did. The children were polite and good-looking, the adults were smart and pleasant. What a delight!
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reviewed by Eric Renshaw
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