tek's rating:

American Dragon: Jake Long, on Disney Channel
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streaming sites: Disney+; iTunes

Okay, there's this Chinese-American kid named Jake Long, who can turn into a dragon. So can his grandfather, Lao Shi, who's training him to be the protector of all the magical creatures in New York City, where they live. I guess his mom and little sister Haley can also turn into dragons, but not his dad, who is unaware of any of this. There's also a Shar-Pei named Fu Dog who can talk and stuff, and helps train Jake. And Jake has a couple of friends, Spud and Trixie, who eventually find out that he can turn into a dragon, and they help him out sometimes. And there's this guy called the Huntsman who hunts mythical creatures, and Jake often has to fight him, or at least fight his apprentice, Huntsgirl. Who is apparently Rose, this girl at school who Jake has a crush on. Though neither of them knows the other's secret identity for quite awhile. And there's a professor named Rotwood who teaches a class about mythical creatures at school, but he believes it's all real. He's a nut, despite the fact that he's actually right, though he can never prove it... and alot of his theories are wrong in detail, anyway. Another major villain was the Dark Dragon, who wanted to overthrow the world council of dragons.

So, that's the basic premise of the series. It could be kind of lame, or at least so-so, but then at other times, it could be fairly good. And some episodes (in particular, "Homecoming") were actually rather awesome. I'd definitely say that on the whole, the second season was better than the first, although the animation style changed, and I preferred the first season's style. But anyway, it could be pretty funny, especially once you got used to it. Another point of interest is that there were several voice actors in this show who also had roles in Avatar: The Last Airbender, most notably Jake (Zuko) and Rose (Katara). I should also say I'm sure I missed a number of episodes, due to the fact that Disney Channel seemed pretty inconsistent about scheduling it, which bugged me. I'm especially upset about missing, I think, a fair amount of the remainder of the series after "Homecoming." I don't even remember if I saw the final episode or not. But I'd like to rewatch the show someday. Because it definitely improved over time, and I suspect with the greater appreciation that came later, even some of the earlier stuff might seem better than it did the first time around. And I guess that's all I can think to say, for now.

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