Go...go...Ghostwriter! While the title of this review is what you'll hear at the beginning of every episode (seeing as the second half of the statement serves as the focal point of the learning that goes on in this television series), the first sentence in this paragraph/review is what you'll hear at the conclusion of every episode, following the credits (both declarations are sung by actress Blaze Berdahl who plays singer/songwriter Ghostwriter team member Lenni Frazier on the show). This is one of THE GREATEST, MOST EDUCATIONAL children's television series ever to hit the big screen! Now, 15 years after it went off the air on PBS, Season 1 has been preserved on DVD! Yeah, baby! This series has it all--reading- and writing-based education, teamwork among kids both academically and socially, morals right and left, and, yes, it knows how to be hip. Even though this premiere season was made nearly 20 years ago (1992-1993), it can reach Middle School/Junior High- and even late Elementary School-aged children on an internal as well as external level today. The fact that these young actors and actresses not only play local Brooklyn neighborhood residents (with well-rounded cultural appeal to viewers), but students as well, shows how important and worthy sharing knowledge with your peers can be. To top it off, THE DVD CASE IS SHAPED EXACTLY LIKE THE CASEBOOKS USED BY EACH MEMBER OF THE GHOSTWRITER TEAM ON THE SHOW ITSELF! Ha; top that!
Here is how each episode breaks down. The fact that this is a mystery series means that every story contains multiple chapters (almost like a book), which are divided into 4-5 episodes. This opening season has 8 stories, each containing 4 parts (one story bears a fifth). Multiply 8 x4, +1, and you get a total of 33 episodes. (I am not quite sure what the bonus features hold [according to Amazon, it states "Ghostwriter Casebook"], so I'll have to wait until I receive my own copy of the DVD to verify its content) Except for the final episode of each story, viewers are presented with cliffhanger endings so as to be held in suspense, and adequately prepared for what seemingly lies ahead. I recall watching Ghostwriter every Sunday night for three years (the length of the entire series) on my local PBS station, and it prepared me for what lay ahead academically at my school. In fact, I must say my desire to (continue to learn how to) read and write on a daily basis was heavily inspired by this t.v. show! Therefore, I recommend it for ANYBODY in school--student, teacher, administrator, parent. This series defines learning in the utmost form! Go grab your own personal copy on Tuesday, June 8, 2010--right in time for summer!