Saturday, November 01, 2008
JAG - The Complete Seventh Season (CBS, $55.98) ) is coming to DVD for the first time on November 4 - Election Day! This long running Donald Bellisario classic series continues onto its seventh season to be released onto DVD. I have to be honest, as I feel I'm failing you otherwise if I'm not – in the series original run I'd lost the majority of my interest in the series by this point, preferring other ways to spent my evenings. By 2001-02, the television season in which the seventh season aired, I was watching other programs on other networks. This isn't to say that the 7th season was poor in any way; I simply had moved on. The resolution to the season-ending cliffhanger leads off season seven, with a resolution that would have ramifications on down the line. The season follows a fairly straightforward pattern, and there are no real stinker episodes. To be perfectly honest, I'm much more enthusiastic about the hopeful release of the EIGHTH season, as it contains the two-part pilot for NCIS - one of my absolute favorite series on TV. The seventh season features a few guest stars – Ian Ziering, of the original Beverly Hills 90210, appears in the episode Ambush. Corbin Bernsen (LA Law) appears in the episode Tribunal. Country singer Trisha Yearwood appears in the episode "In Country."
Moving to the technical side, packaging is, still VERY thankfully, the traditional outer box and slim cases; they haven't gotten around to tinkering with this one yet. Many CBS DVD titles are moving to those horrible translucent plastic cases with the fragile disc holders. Luckily, the slimcases-in-box setup is the ideal arrangement for sets with, say, 5+ discs - so hour-long dramas such as JAG stand the best chance of continuing to use this preferred packaging type. Video is presented nice and clear in anamorphic widescreen. The video, being from this decade, was filmed in HD and has no defects that I can detect. Obviously there's a little loss in the transition from HD masters to the somewhat limited DVD standard, but it's so extremely difficult to notice that it's largely irrelevant. Audio is great - and may I just state once more for the record that I feel JAG has one of THE best theme songs – it's simple, but so very effective and really captures the style of the show. The CBS DVD boilerplate disclaimer about edits does appear on the back of the box, indicating possible edits, but if there are any I can’t find them. The episodes generally run in the ballpark of 43:30 to 44:30, but the first episode of the season, "Adrift (Part 2)" runs a mere 40:38 – something there is CLEARLY not kosher - that's three minutes shorter than neighboring episodes!
The shortness of the "Adrift" two-parter finale clearly troubles me, but I don't have an original broadcast copy for comparison. Still, I strongly urge you to purchase this TV series if only for my own selfish reason - I really want the eighth season on DVD and low sales numbers won't accomplish this. If edits are a deal-breaker for you, you may be in for a disappointment here, but if you're a fan of NCIS and want that pilot two-parter in a few months, you need to buy this.
-- Reviewed by Seth Thrasher
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New on DVD/Blu-ray (December/January)
12/06 - Family Guy - Season Fourteen
12/13 - American Dad! - Volume 11
12/13 - Newhart - The Complete Seventh Season
01/03 - Girls - The Complete Fifth Season (Blu-ray)
01/10 - Broad City - Season 3
01/17 - I Love Lucy - Superstar Special #2 (Colorized)
01/17 - The Love Boat - Season Three - Volume One
01/17 - The Love Boat - Season Three - Volume Two
01/24 - Hooperman - Season One / Review
01/24 - Hooperman - Season Two / Review
01/31 - Ballers - The Complete Second Season (Blu-ray)
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Sitcoms Airing Tonight
Tuesday, January 24
The Middle - "A Tough Pill to Swallow" (ABC, 8:00PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
When a devastated Sue discovers that she has been kicked out of college because she forgot to renew her financial aid, Mike tries to come to her rescue and convince a tough college bursar to reinstate her. Meanwhile, having only taken oral liquid medication all of his life, a frustrated Frankie does everything in her power to teach Brick how to swallow a pill when he gets an ear infection; and Hutch becomes angry with Axl after he keeps driving the Winnebago without permission to Orson to visit new girlfriend April – leaving Hutch without any means of transportation to get to class.
American Housewife - "Art Show" (ABC, 8:30PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
When Anna-Kat draws a super plus-sized portrait of Katie for the school art show, Katie sets out to retrieve it by any means necessary. Meanwhile, with Katie away, Doris is left in charge of Oliver and Taylor. She’s determined to whip them into shape with her Tiger Mom skills, but she may have met her match.
Fresh Off the Boat - "Coming From America" (ABC, 9:00PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
Louis flies the entire family to Taiwan in an effort to make things right with Gene (Ken Jeong). Upon meeting Gene’s beautiful fiancé, Margaret, and seeing the wonderful life he has built for himself, Louis questions whether his life in Orlando is just as great as it could be in Taiwan. Meanwhile, Jessica takes Eddie, Emery and Evan to her favorite childhood locales, including Dihua Street and Shilin Night Market.
The Real O'Neals - "The Real Match" (ABC, 9:30PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
When Jimmy recruits a reluctant Kenny to join his wrestling team for a one-time match, a surprise victory gives him the confidence to join the team full time to become the first, openly gay athlete at St. Barklays. Kenny’s newfound stardom makes Jimmy feel a bit replaced, but when an opponent refuses to wrestle his brother, Jimmy puts his feelings aside and rallies the team around Kenny. Meanwhile, Pat injures his back trying to help Eileen prepare for a weekend getaway, but things only get worse when she tries to be the perfect caregiver to impress VP Murray but fails miserably.
New Girl - "The Hike" (Fox, 8:00PM ET/PT)
While on a day hike, Jess and Robby (guest star Nelson Franklin) discover something unexpected about their relationship. Also, Winston throws a surprise welcome home party for Aly (guest star Nasim Pedrad). Meanwhile, Schmidt and Cece fail to impress their new neighbors.
The Mick - "The Master" (Fox, 8:30PM ET/PT)
All hell breaks loose, as the kids fight over who will take the master bedroom. Also, Mickey pursues a wealthy businessman who quickly discovers that she is not the prize he thought she was.
Teachers - "Stranger Danger" (TV Land, 10:00PM ET/PT)
There’s a trespasser at Fillmore and a new security guard is hired. Ms. Snap and Ms. Bennigan hold a “Women Empowering Women” workshop, Mrs. Adler takes stranger danger too far, and Ms. Watson purchases a male safety dummy.
Tuesday, January 24
- Retta (Parks and Recreation) - Catch Retta on Late Night with Seth Meyers at 12:36am on NBC. She will also be on the AOL Build Show at 3pm.
- Claudia O'Doherty (Love) - Claudia is a guest on @midnight on Comedy Central at midnight.
- John Goodman (Roseanne/Normal, Ohio) - John talks about Patriots Day on LIVE! with Kelly, so check your listings.
- Yvette Nicole Brown (The Odd Couple/Community) - Yvette visits Harry, so check your local listings.
- Jennifer Esposito (Samantha Who?/Spin City) - Jennifer appears on NBC's Today in the 10am hour. She will also be on the AOL Build Show at 1pm.
- Justina Machado (One Day at a Time) - Justina talks about the new Netflix series One Day at a Time on the AOL Build Show at 12pm.