The Mickey Mouse club: Kobal Collection
Chris Willman
July 19, 2005 AT 04:00 AM EDT

We gave it a C+

Why? Because we lick you! Er, like you! The early ’90s introduced as Mouseketeers the cherubs who would in a few years more directly impact America’s youth with songs like ”Dirrty,” ”I’m a Slave 4 U,” ”Rock Your Body,” and ”All Day Long I Dream About Sex.” Watching four shows’ worth of the formerly wholesome Spears, Timberlake, and Aguilera on Mickey Mouse Club: The Best of Britney, Justin & Christina — before the voice and chest changes, before the piercings — you realize you’re being afforded a fascinating glimpse of Satan’s own sleeper cell. Spears, especially, is every bit as scarily camera-solicitous in her pubescent years as she is on Chaotic. Fans of JC Chasez, Keri Russell, and Ryan Gosling will have to settle for seeing them sing along to the hip-hopped-up theme song. An earnest interview segment about teen depression, in which a gay lad talks about nearly being driven suicidal by mom’s rejection, further drives home the fact that this was not your Grandpa Cubby’s Club. EXTRAS An audio commentary offers the distant sound of maniacal laughter. Or maybe we just imagined that. There’s no supplement, though the menu offers quick access to at-home segments with Britney (”I eat like a horse. I eat soooo much”. . . crawfish), Justin (yes, he spoke in black patois even as a kid showing off his golf moves), and Xtina (her first horseback ride — good prep, we’re sure, for riding male dancers in many videos to come).

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