Saturday, June 05, 2010

Digital Digest: The A-Team - The Complete Series DVD Review

Welcome to another edition of Digital Digest! Our normal Digital Digest blogger (skees53) is on vacation this week, so I (Pavan) will be doing the entire Digest this week! We have the latest news, upcoming releases for Tuesday, and our review of The A-Team - The Complete Series. It's another light news week, but what we do have is all positive.

DIGITAL NEWS

The first week of June was also a very slow week in terms of news releases. It was even slower than the previous week. Most of the items this week are about current series. There haven't been any "surprise announcements" again, but we did get a few release dates and some additional information. Universal Home Video officially announced The Office - Season Six (September 7), on both DVD ($59.98 MSRP) and Blu-ray ($69.98 MSRP). Bonus material and package art were also revealed, so check that out. Universal Home Video also officially announced Heroes - Season 4 (August 3), on both DVD ($59.98 MSRP) and Blu-ray ($79.98 MSRP). Bonus material and package art were also revealed, so check that out. This is the last season for the series, as NBC canceled it in May.

We also got the official package art for Grey's Anatomy - The Complete Sixth Season - More Is Better (Sept. 14, $59.98 MSRP) from ABC/Disney. View the package art. Warner Bros. officially announced The Vampire Diaries - The Complete First Season (August 31), on both DVD ($59.98 MSRP) and Blu-ray ($69.98 MSRP). Bonus material much more were also revealed, so check that out.

Last week, we gave you some info on NBC's newest series, Parenthood, now we have the package art. Stay tuned for pre-ordering information and the official announcement.

All of the other news items were not concrete information or didn't really fit our website. Hopefully next week brings us more news--especially in sitcoms!


UPCOMING WEEK PREVIEW

Tuesday (June 8) has quite a few releases in store, but again a very few that are of interest to us. In fact, only two interest us. The one of the most interest to us is Family Matters - The Complete First Season from Warner Home Video. Check out our review of this DVD, if you haven't already. Also, though not a sitcom, we have The A-Team - The Complete Series. We have a review of this set in today's Digital Digest below. And finally we have items like Curb Your Enthusiasm - The Complete 7th Season, Ghostwriter - Season 1, and Nip/Tuck - The Complete 6th and Final Season.


BLOG FEATURE REVIEW

"Ten years ago, a crack commando unit was sent to prison by a military court for a crime they didn't commit. These men promptly escaped from a maximum-security stockade to the Los Angeles underground. Today, still wanted by the government, they survive as soldiers of fortune. If you have a problem, if no one else can help, and if you can find them, maybe you can hire The A-Team."
This means The A-Team the complete series arrives on DVD in an action-packed, 25-disc set. The A-Team - The Complete Series brings us every single episode in a new packaged box set.

DVD Review: The A-Team - The Complete Series
by Pavan

The A-Team - The Complete Series (Universal, $149.98) brings us all 5 seasons on DVD once again but this time on one set! We previously got all five seasons released separately, but now we are getting them in all one set with all-new packaging! We'll cover the packaging in detail shortly. All 98 episodes are here and "I pity the fool" who doesn't watch this show. The series aired on NBC from 1983-87 and was an adrenaline-pumping adventure with Hannibal (George Peppard), Face (Dirk Benedict), Murdock (Dwight Schultz) and B.A. (Mr. T). Now that the theatrical movie is coming out next week, Universal is giving us all five seasons again--but together.

All 98 episodes are on this set. So I suggest you read our individual reviews for each season. The DVDs were released between 2004-2006 and sold very well. Some memorable episodes from each season include the premiere "Mexican Slayride," where desperate, but ambitious newspaper reporter, Amy Allen, wants to prove the existence of the A-Team, four ex-GIs that help people in need and when she finds them she hires them, because her co-worker Al Massey is missing in Mexico. The season two episode "Recipe for Heavy Bread," where Face runs into an old friend from the POW camp the A-Team used to be in and the friend was the cook there who helped them to flee and now needs their help, when he gets involved in a drug deal of former camp members, especially the former Vietnamese commander. The season three two-hour episode, "Bend in the River," where Tawnia asks the A-Team to find her fiancé, an archaeologist last seen on an Amazon expedition that was attacked by a pirate, but she doesn't tell the A-Team that they are searching her fiancé, but more importantly the A-Team has to get new Malaria drugs before they can fly to the Brazilian rain forests. The season four episode "Wheel of Fortune," where Murdock's fortunes rise and fall as he uses Face's system to win big on Wheel of Fortune and he wins a trip to Hawaii, but then is kidnapped by people who claim to be CIA, but turn out to be criminals. And finally the season five episode, "Without Reservation," the final episode, where Frankie and Face visit Murdock (strangely completely sane) at his job in a restaurant, and all three become hostages of mobsters out to kill a patron, the US Attorney General, Hannibal and B.A. have to save the others, but things heat up when Face is shot and needs immediate medical attention.
Now these are just five episodes out of 98, read our full reviews of each season from the individual releases for more:
Season 1 / Season 2 / Season 3 / Season 4 / Season 5

Let's now move on to the packaging. This is the ONLY new part of this set that differs from the season sets that were already released. It is really neat looking, as we get the famous A-Team black GMC Vandura van with that red stripe. So far so good and we love it when a plan comes together, as Hannibal would say! The roof of the van says "The A-Team The Compete Series" in red and black. We see B.A. in the driver's seat and Hannibal in the passenger's seat. We see two shots of them actually, one on each window and both of them can be seen towards the windshield window. All four wheels say "The A-Team The Complete Series" in white lettering. The bottom of the van has info on the series and set, saying "Pity the Fool That Doesn't Own Every Adventure." Images of each season's packaging is shown along with a box listing the bonus features (which were released on the individual sets).

So how do we get to the cases? Well, we have to pull that red cardboard strip on the roof of the van. But be very careful so you don't rip the cardboard because I did a little! When you pull the red strip, we see five cases inside the van. Lots of cardboard is holding it. It's pretty cheap, but it works. There is nothing else inside the van, just the cases. It would have been cool if there was a button to push that would either play The A-Team theme song or some gunshots being fired. The Knight Rider complete series set had a button when we push would play the theme song. The cases are different from the season sets. The first case holds season one episodes. The cover of the case features B.A. with three squares on the left of the other team members: Hannibal, Face, and Murdock. The back of the case is the same as the back of the box from the original season one set. Disc art is also the same as the original season one set. The discs overlap though inside the case. The second case holds season two episodes. The cover of the case features Face with three squares on the left of the other team members: Murdock, Hannibal, and B.A. The back of the case is the same as the back of the box from the original season two set. Now disc art this time is in lime green, as the original set were double-sided discs. So this is a plus to have single-sided discs! The discs overlap though inside the case. The third case holds season three episodes. The cover of the case features Hannibal with three squares on the left of the other team members: B.A., Murdock, and Face. The back of the case is the same as the back of the box from the original season three set. Now disc art this time is in red, as the original set were double-sided discs. So this is a plus to have single-sided discs! The discs overlap though inside the case. The fourth case holds season four episodes. The cover of the case features Murdock with three squares on the left of the other team members: Face, B.A. and Hannibal The back of the case is the same as the back of the box from the original season four set. Now disc art this time is in blue, as the original set were double-sided discs. So this is a plus to have single-sided discs! The discs overlap though inside the case. And finally, the fifth case holds season five episodes. The cover of the case features shots of all four team members: Murdock, Hannibal, Face and B.A. The back of the case is the same as the back of the box from the original season five set. Disc art is also the same as the original season five set, as the discs were single-sided. Discs two & three overlap though inside the case.

Read our full reviews of each season from the individual releases to read about the original packaging:
Season 1 / Season 2 / Season 3 / Season 4 / Season 5

The content inside the discs is exactly the same as the individual season sets. So we have the same menus, audio/video quality, and special features! Once again, I suggest you read our previous reviews to look at the Menu Design and Navigation section, Video and Audio Quality, and Special Features section:
Season 1 / Season 2 / Season 3 / Season 4 / Season 5

If you don't have the individual season sets, then you REALLY need to get this set. The packaging is better and won't take as much space on your shelf as the season sets would. I highly do recommend this set for any die-hard A-Team fan just for the A-Team van packaging! But that really is the only thing new here. The special features are all the same as the previous season sets. So basically a Knight Rider season two episode, the season five episode of A-Team "Point of No Return" on the season four set, and an interview with Stephen J. Cannell titled "Rumors of Soldiers of Fortune." I think Universal is releasing this set just to cash in on the theatrical movie coming out Friday starring Liam Neeson, Bradley Cooper, Sharlto Copley, and Quinton "Rampage" Jackson as B.A. Jessica Biel also stars as Capt. Carissa Sosa along with Gerald McRaney as General Morrison. It would have been cool if there was a free movie ticket with this set, but 20th Century Fox is doing the movie and not Universal. Die-hards get this set for sure and newbies or casual fans who don't have any of the previous DVDs, then get this set. Anyway, if you have a problem, if no one else can help and if you can find them, maybe you can hire: The A-Team.

-- Reviewed by Pavan
(4/5 stars)

To purchase this DVD, click below and help support SitcomsOnline.com:
Amazon.com



LOOKING AHEAD

Next week we have a busy slate of reviews coming up both on the blog and on our regular reviews, so you won't want to miss any of those. Regular reviews will include American Dad!, Family Guy, Here's Lucy, Leave it to Beaver, and My Three Sons! We'll have a review of something right here next week, along with a special feature story that we do every now and then on Digital Digest. Until next time, keep it digital!


New on DVD/Blu-ray (October/November/December)

2 Broke Girls - The Complete Third Season Two and a Half Men - The Complete Eleventh Season WKRP in Cincinnati - The Complete Series Hot in Cleveland - Season Five Sgt. Bilko - The Phil Silvers Show - The Complete Series
Family Ties - The Complete Series Happy Days - The Sixth Season The Jeffersons - The Complete Series Mister Ed - The Complete Series Mork & Mindy - The Complete Series

10/07 - The Dick Van Dyke Show - Classic Christmas Episodes
10/07 - The Flying Nun - The Complete First and Second Seasons (Mill Creek)
10/07 - The Middle - The Complete Fifth Season (Warner Archive)
10/07 - The Office - The Complete Series
10/07 - The Wonders Years - Season One
10/10 - The Wonder Years - The Complete Series - Read Our Review / The Signature Edition / Seasons 1-3
10/14 - 2 Broke Girls - The Complete Third Season
10/14 - Two and a Half Men - The Complete Eleventh Season
10/21 - Married with Children - Seasons 5 and 6 (Mill Crek)
10/21 - The Soul Man - The Complete Second Season
10/21 - Square Pegs - The Complete Series (Mill Creek)
10/28 - WKRP in Cincinnati - The Complete Series / Read Our Review
11/04 - The Exes - Seasons 1 & 2
11/04 - Hot in Cleveland - Season Five
11/04 - Napoleon Dynamite - The Complete Animated Series
11/04 - Sgt. Bilko (The Phil Silvers Show) - The Complete Series / Read Our Review
11/06 - Kenan & Kel - The Best of Seasons 3 & 4
11/11 - Dads - The Complete Series
11/11 - Dharma & Greg - The Complete Season 2
11/11 - Family Ties - The Complete Series
11/11 - My Favorite Martian - Best of Collection
11/11 - Taxi - The Complete Series
11/11 - Wings - The Complete Series (Mill Creek)
11/18 - King of the Hill - The Complete Seventh Season / The Complete Eighth Season
11/25 - Better Off Ted - The Complete Second Season
12/02 - Broad City - Season 1
12/02 - Happy Days - The Sixth Season
12/02 - The Simpsons - The Seventeenth Season (Blu-ray)
12/09 - Barney Miller - The Complete Sixth Season
12/09 - Family Guy - Volume 13
12/09 - The Jeffersons - The Complete Series
12/09 - Mister Ed - The Complete Series
12/09 - Mork & Mindy - The Fourth Season / The Complete Series
12/16 - The Many Loves of Dobie Gillis - The Final (Fourth) Season
12/23 - My Favorite Martian - Season Two - Collector's Edition
More TV DVD Releases / DVD Reviews Archive / SitcomsOnline Digest


Sitcoms Airing Tonight

Thursday, December 18

The Big Bang Theory - "The First Pitch Insuffiency" (CBS, 8:00PM ET/PT)
Wolowitz is nervous after NASA asks him to throw out the first pitch at a Los Angeles Angels game. Meanwhile, Leonard and Penny try to prove Sheldon wrong after he says that he and Amy are a “superior couple.">

Mom - "Free Therapy and a Dead Lady's Yard Sale" (CBS, 8:30PM ET/PT)
Family secrets come out when Christy and Bonnie are asked to join Violet's therapy session.

Two and a Half Men - "Clockwise in Back Hole Until Tight" (CBS, 9:00PM ET/PT)
alden and Alan are determined to convince Louis that Santa Claus is real.

The McCarthys - "Red Sox Swap" (CBS, 9:30PM ET/PT)
When Pam, the McCarthys’ upstairs tenant, is heartbroken over a recent breakup, Marjorie invites her to celebrate Christmas with the family and watch them play their extremely competitive annual gift exchange game. Alyson Hannigan guest stars as Pam, the upstairs tenant; Gilles Marini guest stars as Maurice, Ronny’s date.

Complete TV Listings


Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows (Week of December 15) (All times ET unless noted)

Thursday, December 18

  • Nick Offerman (Parks and Recreation) - Catch Nick on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon at 11:34pm on NBC.
  • Christine Baranski (Cybill/Welcome to New York) - Christine is a guest on Jimmy Kimmel Live! at 11:35pm on ABC.
  • Jim Parsons (The Big Bang Theory) - Jim drops by The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson at 12:37am on CBS.
  • Rosie O'Donnell (Gimme a Break!) - Rosie appears on The Late Show with David Letterman at 11:35pm on CBS.
  • Chris Rock (Everybody Hates Chris) - Chris visits Comedy Central's The Daily Show with Jon Stewart at 11pm. Charlie Rose interviews Chris on CBS This Morning sometime between 7-9am.
  • Margaret Cho (All-American Girl) - Margaret is a guest on @midnight on Comedy Central at midnight.
  • Drew Carey (The Drew Carey Show/The Good Life) - Drew will be on @midnight on Comedy Central at midnight.
  • John C. McGinley (Ground Floor/Scrubs) - John stops by Conan at 11pm on TBS.
  • Allison Janney (Mom/Mr. Sunshine) - Allison appears on The Ellen DeGeneres Show, so check your local listings.
  • Rockmond Dunbar (The Game/Girlfriends) - Rockmond is a guest on The Real, so check your local listings.
  • Pauly Shore (Pauly) - Pauly stops by SportsNation at 3pm on ESPN2.
  • Willie Garson (Sex and the City/Mr. Belvedere) - Willie discusses what to expect in the final season of White Collar on Home & Family on Hallmark Channel at 10am ET/PT.
  • Jamie Foxx (The Jamie Foxx Show) - Jamie talks about Annie on ABC's Good Morning America sometime between 7-9am.
  • Jennifer Aniston (Friends) - Jennifer's new breakout role of playing a character battling chronic pain who is addicted to prescription painkillers will be featured on The Dr. Oz Show, so check your local listings.
  • Sherri Shepherd (Less Than Perfect/Sherri) - Sherri talks about Top Five and her Gotham Comedy Club appearance on New York Live on WNBC in New York at 12:30pm ET.