Kids Today: “Drake & Josh: Best of Seasons 1 – 2”

I admit it: I’m a Drake Bell fan. It doesn’t have anything to do with his Nickelodeon sitcom, though; it’s all because of his music career. Have you heard his stuff? The guy’s so much of a Jellyfish fan that he covers “Joining a Fan Club” in concert…and does it pretty damned well, too. That’s why I requested this set to review back in August…and, yet, when it arrived, I was unable to bring myself to put it in the DVD player. When it came right down to it, I found myself asking a question that, to be fair, I probably should’ve asked before making the DVD request: is appreciating a guy’s musical output really enough of a reason to endure watching a sitcom aimed at an audience that’s about 20 years younger than I am? The answer: not really. After seeing Bell’s co-star, Josh Peck, appear in the Michael Rapaport flick, “Special,” however, I decided that the time had come to get off my old arse and get it over with.

As it happened, watching “Drake & Josh: Best of Seasons 1 – 2” wasn’t nearly as excruciating an experience as I’d feared it would be, which was certainly a nice surprise, but the most surprising thing about the experience was the fact that Peck’s photo on the cover of the DVD bears absolutely no resemblance to the actor as he appeared in the first few seasons of the series. He spent the third and fourth seasons of the show divesting himself of a fair amount of weight, as it turns out, but I guess the folks responsible for packaging this best-of set decided that offering an accurate presentation of Peck’s weight during Seasons 1 and 2 wouldn’t do as well to inspire the show’s predominant audience – teen-aged girls – to buy the set. (To be fair, they did manage to find room for a cast photo from the era on the back cover.)

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