Saturday, March 14, 2009
JAG - The Eighth Season (CBS, $55.98) is coming to DVD for the first time on March 17th -- St. Patrick's Day. St. Patrick's Day is pretty much entirely unrelated to the series, but as a fan of the holiday I thought it deserved mention. Anywho, this long running Donald Bellisario classic has nearly completed its run on DVD -- this season is the show's 8th, from the 2002-03 TV season; we're in the home stretch!
My attention from the series had well already drifted by this point in the run, but a couple of episodes piqued my interest. At some point in the season, word got out that a backdoor pilot was being tried, and depending on how it played out it may well develop into a series. As a fan of backdoor pilots I was naturally curious to see what would occur. What resulted was a two-part episode that led the way to one of my favorite series, and based on the ratings, one of yours too: NCIS. The two-part episode "Ice Queen" and "Meltdown" serves as an introduction to the NCIS team, albeit one somewhat different from what you see now. The Kate character had yet to be introduced, but the episode features the rest of the season one cast -- everyone from Mark Harmon (Lt. Leroy "Jethro" Gibbs) to David McCallum (the inimitable "Ducky") to Pauley Perrette (Abby). If you like NCIS, you need to own this set, period. The season also features appearances by Quantum Leap alum Dean Stockwell in a recurring role, Gavin MacLeod, and political commentator Bill O'Reilly.
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. I know I have a tendency to repeat myself in regards to this packaging thing, but those fragile plastic cases annoy me about as much as DVD packaging can be considered annoying. Cover art is a continuation of the patriotic theme, with the background color this season being purple.
Menus, while nothing to write home about, are certainly functional and effective. As the episodes are from the HD era, video is sharp and well-defined, with few video issues. Audio is an adequate English stereo track. I was really hoping for a move towards surround audio, but you take what you can get and the stereo track is a workhorse. Runtimes are in the mid 40's, a proper time for shows from the era. The episode edits disclaimer appears, but you should be used to that by now. It's the nature of the beast. There are no special features on this set.
If you like JAG, OR NCIS, you need this DVD set as part of your collection, and I highly recommend it. For those of you unsure of the series, I know the Sleuth channel is giving it heavy airplay ever since they ripped Miami Vice and other series off the schedule, and for those without the channel you can catch it mornings on USA. Recommended.
-- Reviewed by Seth Thrasher
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New on DVD/Blu-ray (October/November)
10/04 - The Andy Griffith Show - The Christmas Special (Colorized)
10/04 - I Love Lucy - Superstar Special #1 (Colorized)
10/11 - Dr. Ken - Season One
10/11 - Mike & Molly - The Complete Sixth and Final Season
10/11 - Mike & Molly - The Complete Series
10/11 - Nurse Jackie - Seasons One and Two
10/11 - Weeds - Seasons One and Two
11/01 - Schitt's Creek - Seasons One and Two
11/08 - Family Matters - The Complete Ninth Season
11/08 - Your Family or Mine - Season One
11/15 - Community - The Complete Series
11/15 - The Lucy Show - The Complete Series
11/15 - The Mindy Project - Season Four
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Sitcoms Airing Tonight
Wednesday, December 7
The Goldbergs - "Globetrotters" (ABC, 8:00PM ET/PT)
When Adam attends a Globetrotters game, he falls in love with the “theatrics” of the team and tries doing his own tricks on the court. But when he cuts together a video that makes Barry look like he lost a game to Adam and his friends, Barry demands a rematch, culminating in an epic battle at the school gym. Meanwhile, it’s Murray’s 50th birthday, and, despite his protests, Beverly throws yet another surprise party for him but gets more than she bargained for.
Speechless - " S-L--SLED H-O--HOCKEY" (ABC, 8:30PM ET/PT)
JJ instantly wants to join a sled hockey team made up entirely of people with disabilities, but Jimmy is not thrilled and thinks it’s dangerous. Meanwhile, Maya takes a CPR class with Kenneth, and she sees how popular he is and realizes that she needs to be nicer in order to keep him as JJ’s aide.
Modern Family - "A Tale of Three Cities" (ABC, 9:00PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
After recent trips take the Dunphys to New York; Mitch, Cam and Lily to the Midwest; and Jay, Gloria, Manny and Joe to Juarez, Mexico; the Pritchett-Dunphy-Tucker clan reunites.
black-ish - "Nothing but Nepotism" (ABC, 9:30PM ET/PT)
Bow urges Dre to use his connections and secure Zoey a fellowship, but he doesn’t want his daughter relying on nepotism. When Bow finds Zoey a place at the hospital, Dre balks at the idea and successfully pulls some strings at Teen Vogue. Meanwhile, Junior loses his first job at an arcade pizza joint that the twins love after he reports their unclean practices to corporate, and they shut it down.
Younger - "Pigeons, Parrots, and Storks" (TV Land, 10:00PM ET/PT)
Liza and Josh’s future together is thrown into question after having opposing reactions to a near miss.
Impastor - "The Neighbor's Wife" (TV Land, 10:30PM ET/PT)
Buddy deals with the shocking arrival of Alexa’s husband. Dora makes a frightening discovery. Schmidt’s engagement party takes an unexpected turn.
Wednesday, December 7
- T.J. Miller (Silicon Valley/The Goodwin Games/Carpoolers) - Watch T.J on Jimmy Kimmel Live! at 11:35pm on ABC.
- Lily Tomlin (Grace and Frankie/Malibu Country) - Lily appears on The Late Late Show with James Corden at 12:37am on CBS.
- Melissa Rauch (The Big Bang Theory) - Melissa is a guest on Conan at 11pm on TBS.
- Chris Pratt (Parks and Recreation) - Chris visits ABC's Good Morning America sometime between 7-9am and LIVE! with Kelly, so check your listings.
- Jane Lynch (Angel from Hell) and Kate Flannery (The Office) - Jane and Kate give a musical performance on Home & Family on Hallmark Channel at 10am ET/PT.
- Michael Rosenbaum (Impastor/Zoe, Duncan, Jack and Jane) and Mircea Monroe (Impastor/Episodes) - Michael and Mircea are guests on Home & Family on Hallmark Channel at 10am ET/PT.
- Jennifer Aniston (Friends) - Jennifer and the cast of Office Christmas Party are guests on ABC's Good Morning America sometime between 7-9am.
- Aimee Carrero (Young & Hungry) - Aimee appears on Access Hollywood Live, so check your local listings.
- Emmanuelle Chriqui (Entourage) - Emmanuelle is a guest on NBC's Today in the 9am hour. She will be on New York Live on WNBC in New York at 12:30pm ET. She can be heard on The Morning Mash Up on SiriusXM at 10am.