The following orignally appeared at the original TV Tome:
"Rise and Bloom"
It's morning-time --- really early morning. Emmy gets up to silence an alarm that's gone off at the extremely early time of 6 A.M. She then goes over to wake up Enrique --- no there's nothing trippy happening --- Enrique slept-over the night before. Enrique heads over to Max in his sleeping bag and tries to wake him up. Max must have either had a late night or really not be a morning person because he just sort of moans and complains about the time. Actually, I feel for the kid, I don't like getting up at a time like that either. Emmy manages to get him going, reminding him that he's been looking forward to seeing the bursting blossoms all year and they have to get up this early if they're going to see them. So Max, Emmy and Enrique all take the dragon scale ride with rather dreamy looks on their faces. They arrive outside what is apparently Ord's place, where Ord grabs up Emmy and Enrique in a big Ord hug and then gives one to Max too. Inside, he sets them all down for pancakes covered with dragonberries that were specially prepared by his Mom. There seems, however, to be a guest missing from the table --- Max. Max, it seems, has decided to head off to a desk and take a little doze. He says he's too tired too even eat and Zak suggests that's the exact reason he should be eating; he needs his breakfast to wake his brain. Wheezie sings her agreement and Max decides to give it a shot. He agrees afterwards that his brain feels awake, but his body definitely doesn't. Cassie suggests that they all do some stretching exercises and suddenly I feel like I'm watching JoJo's Circus. This segment is pretty nice, though --- listen to how perfectly the background music is matched with the stretches. This seems to work pretty well, but Max is still yawning a bit and that causes everyone else to yawn too. That leads to the idea of a cold splash of water on the face, so Max and Ord travel straight through a cloud! That's certainly one way to wake up. As the journey continues, the group passes over Singing Springs, where the soothing lullabyish music that's being played isn't exactly conducive to being all bright and awake. So Max, Emmy, Enrique and our dragon friends land and sing a song they all know called "Buenos Dias," which is a riff on "Freres Jacques." The singing helps them to get air in their lungs and wake them all up. Max is now fully awake and so they all go visit the bursting blossoms --- except now it's the blossoms that seem to be sleeping. So Max goes to get a watering can --- maybe the flowers just need a nice, wet spritz to wake up too. There's a priceless joke here about Zak snoring. Finally, the big moment comes and everyone gets to see the bursting flowers. Back at the playroom, Max has a great idea --- time to go wake up the 'rents!
This is pretty fun. We're definitely dealing here with material that Dragon Tales hasn't dealt with before and the advice in this story really is quite good. There are some pretty good gags in this one and it also shows nicely pretty early on that the new character Enrique can be worked into the show without having to be main focus of the plot. Nice use of Singing Springs in this story --- this is the first time that I know of with the characters interacting with it in this way. Not much else to say on this story. I'm going to give it:
Dragon Scales: 9/10
"Super Snow Day"
Enrique is dressed in shorts and a t-shirt, but Max and Emmy seem to have quite a different idea in mind. They're all dressed up in full cold-weather gear, which can only mean one thing, as Enrique's about to find out. They explain that even though it may be warm outside, they can go to Dragon Land to do some sledding. Enrique tells them that he's never been one before --- where he used to live there was never any snow and so he's only ever seen it in books and on TV. He agrees to try it out and so he gets bundled up and joins Max and Emmy on their trip to Dragon Land. Once there, Max and Emmy show him some fun things to do with the snow, like catching it with your tongue and letting it melt. Enrique comments that the snow is like a big, white blanket covering the ground. The dragons then show up, ready to go sledding. Chilly and Nippy join --- they'll be accompanying everyone on their trip to Icicle Caverns. There's just one problem, that being that Enrique is very much scared of sledding, which seems too fast for him. Things only get worse when Ord and Max have a sled race and end up crashing --- Enrique is scared stiff, despite Max's assurances that it didn't hurt at all. It's decided that Enrique might be able to get over his fear if he starts slow. So they start out by having Ord pull Enrique over a flat patch of snow and he seems to be okay with it. As they come to a small hill, Enrique decides to give it a go, joined by Max. As his little training session continues, Max ends up having to steer out of the way of Nippy the snow-dog, who was running ahead and things get wild and then they crash. Enrique happily finds that it really didn't hurt, just like Max said. He's still kind of scared, though, but is finally convinced to keep going, knowing that he's not going to be able to make it to Icicle Cavern otherwise --- it's too far away to walk and hanging obstacles prevent flying there. Once there, he and the group enjoy beautiful music from Zak and Wheezie, then sip on some hot chocolate served by Chilly. Enrique teaches them all a song about hot chocolate, or chocolate caliente in Spanish. Back in the playroom, Enrique can't wait to go sledding again. So he, Emmy and Max all hop in their sled and pretend that they're doing it right then and there.
I thought this story was decent, although straggling on the "covering old ground" territory. After all, this sort of issue was already covered in "Cowboy Max," a Dragon Tales story that admittedly most fans haven't yet seen. The highlight of this story was definitely when Zak and Wheezie played their music at the Icicle Caverns --- the instrumental music is top-notch as always. Zak and Wheezie also bring the humor in this one. The plot and advice are once again solid, if not quite as interesting as the previous story.
Dragon Scales: 8/10
Overall Analysis: This was a fairly good start to the third season, proper (following the premiere episode) Hopefully, things will continue along this general line. The show will stay strong as long as it continues to mix fresh, interesting ideas and fun, believable dialogue with the same basic concepts we've come to know and love.
Overall Dragon Scales: 8.5/10