Saturday, December 13, 2008
Mr. Bean - The Ultimate Collection (A&E, $69.95) brings us everything Mr. Bean! This is the ultimate fan collection, as we get every episode of the hit TV series, both feature films, the animated series and all the bonus features we have gotten in the past all in one complete collection!
Based on a character developed by Rowan Atkinson at university, the series followed the exploits of Mr. Bean, in solving various problems presented by everyday tasks and often causing disruption in the process. The series lasted five seasons in the United Kingdom and is one of the most famous British series known worldwide. Mr. Bean didn't as a regular series in the UK, it aired as a series of stand-along specials, lasting 14 episodes in five years.
Mr. Bean: The Movie is a 1997 feature film based on the television series Mr. Bean. It stars Rowan Atkinson, as Mr. Bean of course, and also Peter MacNicol. The movie was about Mr. Bean coming to America, as he conquers Los Angeles by storm.
The second feature film, Mr. Bean's Holiday, came out 10 years later in 2007. The film is about Bean taking a holiday to France.
And finally we get two volumes of the animated series. For some reason we are not getting all 26 episodes of the animated series, which doesn't make sense. We get 9 of the 26. Characters from the original live action series included Mr. Bean, Irma Gobb, Mr. Bean's teddy bear, and the mysterious driver of the Reliant Supervan, with the addition of Mrs. Wicket, Bean's landlady, and her evil cat Scrapper. The series aired in 2002-2003 in the United Kingdom.
Packaging has a nice box holding seven slimcases. The cover of the box is yellow-orange color with five different shots of Mr. Bean. My his facial expressions were priceless! A New York Times quote is also on the box art. On the back of the box we have a series description and info on the set along with credits for every series/movie. We also have a box listing all of the bonus features.
Menus are the same as how they were on the original sets for the series and animated series. Now, A&E has never released the two movies, but Universal Home Video has. So I don't have those movies from Universal, so I cannot compare.
As with the menus, audio and video are the same as the individual releases. The video is OK at best, but it could be better. The movies look way better obviously. And the animated series might be just as good in terms of audio and video. The original series might be the worst looking, but of course it is the oldest, too. The original series usually had episodes around 25 minutes or so, while the animated series is around 22...so nothing is edited. The movies are about 90 minutes each.
Special features are all over the place! Though, there is nothing actually new, since these sets have all came out individually before, but I will list them all for you. For the original series, everything is on the third slimcase (Volume 3), we have "The Story of Mr. Bean," a 40-minute documentary giving us the inside scoop on the series and how it was born. Then we have "never before seen on TV" sketches titled "Bus Stop" (approx. 6 min.) and "Library" (approx. 9 min.) Funny stuff! Then we have two sketches from the UK series "Comic Relief" titled "Blind Date" (approx. 14 min.) and "Torvill & Bean" (approx. 7 min.). Then we have a trailer for the animated series, just like on the third volume when it was released originally. We also have a nice text biography and filmography of Rowan Atkinson.
For Bean: The Movie, we get the music video "I Love L.A." running about 3 minutes. We also have more biographies, this time the entire main cast of the movie.
For Mr. Bean's Holiday, we have a lot of extras. We have lots of deleted scenes totaling about a quarter of an hour! We also have some behind the scenes features, "French Bean" (about 11 min.), "Bean in Cannes" (about 6 min.), and "The Human Bean" (about 6 min. also). We learn a lot from these three features. You can watch this movie in French, too.
Finally, the last two discs are for the animated series. Once again I will reiterate, we do NOT have every episode of this series. Just the first 9 of the 26 for some reason. As far as extras go, the first disc for the animated series has trailers for the animated series and some photos in a photo gallery. The second disc is much better and has a nice 20 minute or so documentary about this animated series. We find out really how and why Mr. Bean was brought back, but this time in animation.
This is a wonderful set. Any fan of Mr. Bean will want this. I never got a chance to get or review "The Whole Bean" DVD, but this set is good. The only major fault for this set is that there are not every episode of the animated series. Not even half, but oh well. I personally liked the series and movies WAY better, especially the series. A&E did a good job by acquiring the two movies for this set, as those were Universal products. Well, we are nearing Christmas, and what better way to spend Christmas with Mr. Bean. He is perfect to watch with the family, especially during the holidays. So get your teddy bear out and get into your pajamas and watch BEAN! I'm Bean!
-- Reviewed by Pavan
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New on DVD/Blu-ray (February/March)
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Wednesday, March 22
The Goldbergs - "O Captain! My Captain!" (ABC, 8:00PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
Beverly substitutes for Barry’s chemistry class in hopes to inspire students in the same way as Mr. Keating from “Dead Poets Society,” much to Barry’s embarrassment. When Beverly refuses to give Barry special treatment, Murray pushes Barry to work hard and prove to her that he can get a good grade.
Speechless - "R-O--ROAD T-R--TRIP" (ABC, 8:30PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
The family goes on an annual impromptu family road trip, but Ray has something in store, which angers Maya when she finds out what it is. But Maya’s relentlessness proves to be helpful when she takes control of an emergency situation involving Ray’s appendix.
Modern Family - "Ringmaster Keifth" (ABC, 9:00PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
Trying to recover from his Thanksgiving debacle, Cam decides to treat the family to a New Year’s Day feast. After realizing that Cam’s recent attempt is also a complete fail and in order to salvage their meal, Mitch uses a “concierge gift card” that he received as a Christmas gift. Cam soon discovers that the concierge who is on his way to save the day is none other than his ex-boyfriend, Keifth (Kelsey Grammar), a former circus ringmaster who left him without saying goodbye. Meanwhile, Phil’s dad, Frank (Fred Willard) arrives with his new girlfriend, who happens to be Phil’s childhood babysitter, which sets him on a confusing tailspin. Finally, Gloria and Jay have to decide who should take care of little Joe if something should ever happen to them.
black-ish - "40 Acres and a Vote" (ABC, 9:30PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
With Obama leaving office and the upcoming election, Dre finds a new candidate to believe in – Junior. Junior is running for class president and is overqualified for the job, but he just can’t seem to connect with his fellow classmates. Dre becomes his campaign manager and tries to make Junior appeal to the masses. Meanwhile, Pops, Johan and Jack discuss why they’re not voting in the upcoming election, and Bow is worried that Zoey’s college essay is not going to get her into college.
Schitt's Creek - "Stop Saying Lice!" (Pop, 8:00PM ET/PT)
Johnny tries to stop the spread of lice; Moira tries to get out of having a garden named after her.
Wednesday, March 22
- America Ferrera (Superstore) - Watch America on Jimmy Kimmel Live! at 11:35pm on ABC. She will also be on Access Hollywood Live, so check your local listings.
- Woody Harrelson (Cheers) - Woody stops by The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon at 11:34pm on NBC.
- Michael McKean (Laverne & Shirley) - Michael appears on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert at 11:35pm on CBS.
- H. Jon Benjamin (Bob's Burgers) - H. Jon is a guest on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert at 11:35pm on CBS.
- Kristen Bell (The Good Place) - Kristen visits Late Night with Seth Meyers at 12:36am on NBC.
- Josh Gad (The Comedians/1600 Penn/Back to You) - Josh drops by The Late Late Show with James Corden at 12:37am on CBS.
- Judy Greer (Married/Mad Love/Miss Guided) - Judy appears on The Late Late Show with James Corden at 12:37am on CBS.
- Greg Proops (True Jackson, VP) - Greg is a guest on @midnight on Comedy Central at midnight.
- Eugene Mirman (Bob's Burgers) - Eugene appears on @midnight on Comedy Central at midnight.
- Laura Dern (Enlightened) - Laura stops by Watch What Happens: Live at 11pm on Bravo. She also talks about Wilson and The Founder on NBC's Today in the 9am hour.
- Kate Walsh (Bad Judge/The Drew Carey Show) - Kate is a guest on Watch What Happens: Live at 11pm on Bravo.
- Mark Consuelos (Alpha House/Hope & Faith) - Mark guest co-hosts LIVE! with Kelly, so check your listings.
- Lena Dunham (Girls) - Lena is a guest on The Ellen DeGeneres Show, so check your local listings.
- Sanaa Lathan (Family Guy/The Cleveland Show/LateLine) - Sanaa joins the Chew Crew on ABC's The Chew at 1pm ET/12pm PT/CT. She will also be on the AOL Build Show at 1pm.
- Rhea Perlman (Cheers/Kirstie) - Rhea talks about Me and My Grandma on NBC's Today in the 9am hour. She will also be on the AOL Build Show at 4:30pm.