Saturday, September 25, 2010

Digital Digest: C.S.I. - The Tenth Season DVD Review; EXCLUSIVE "Community 101 Pop Quiz"

Fall has arrived, and while that certainly does mean that the temperatures are cooling down and the trees are starting to lose their leaves, it also means that the new fall season has officially started on all of the major networks. We've got some more news for you this week (though the news is still slow on the home media front, as it has been for the past few months) and a review of C.S.I. - The Tenth Season this week. But wait! We also have a very special treat for you in this week's Digital Digest! School is back in full swing too for the fall, and today we will be taking you back to school for an exclusive "Community 101 Pop Quiz," where we will give you a brief multiple-choice quiz where you'll be quizzed over the NBC series Community. Answer all of the questions correctly and email them to us by Monday morning at midnight EDT (details will be explained a bit later in this edition of Digital Digest) and you will be entered into a drawing where one lucky winner will receive a copy of Community - The Complete First Season!


DIGITAL NEWS


The fall season may have just started, but some pre-order links are already showing up on amazon.com for some of the most popular TV series that have already returned! Of interest to sitcom fans are the pre-order listings for Two and a Half Men - The Complete Eighth Season and The Big Bang Theory - The Complete Fourth Season (and Blu-ray as well)! Of course, no details are known about either of these sets right now, and it seems very strange to us that they would even list these titles already!

Lucille Ball fans will be pleased to know that the third season of The Lucy Show is going to hit shelves before Christmas. According to TVShowsOnDVD.com, The Lucy Show - The Official Third Season should be released on November 30. No other details are known at this time.

As we mentioned a few months ago, MPI is planning a release of The Honeymooners Christmas Special, and now it is on the schedule for December 14. It will come at a $14.98 MSRP and will include an exclusive behind-the-scenes featurette. On an unrelated sidenote, MPI is releasing the fourth season of the British comedy hit that almost made it to America on NBC (but didn't), The IT Crowd, on the same day at a $24.98 MSRP.

Going outside of the sitcom realm, we have some news about the classic TV series Ironside. According to their weekly newsletter, Shout! Factory is preparing season 4 as a Shout! Select title with a date to be determined. It is good to see that this show hasn't been abandoned as many fans believed it was!

We conclude our news this week with some formative rumors and gossip from Shout! Factory's Brian Ward. Of course, as we all know, he is a producer for many of their DVDs and the hints and information that he drops is always accurate, just not set in stone, so we have no idea what will actually happen. Earlier this week, he hinted on his Twitter feed that he is working on a complete series set that will be announced in a few weeks! Of course, that is very ambiguous, and it could be literally anything, so we won't speculate on what exactly it could be. Brian Ward has also mentioned that the quality of the Father Knows Best reunion movies is being reviewed for the release of the sixth (and final) season of the series, so it is possible that we could see that released sometime in the future. But bear in mind, this is all speculative at this time, and no release is scheduled YET, but it appears that something will be coming eventually.

UPCOMING WEEK PREVIEW

Tuesday (September 28) brings us the final chapter for Scrubs, with both Scrubs - The Complete Ninth Season and Scrubs - The Complete Series on DVD. Unfortunately, the ninth season isn't being released on Blu-ray yet, so hopefully a release of that is forthcoming so that both of the seasons that aired in high-definition will be on Blu-ray.

Fox will be releasing The Cleveland Show - Season One on Tuesday, as well a separate single episode Family Guy release of the banned-from-air episode "Partial Terms of Endearment." Also on the animation front, we have Comedy Central DVD's South Park - A Little Box of Butters, featuring 13 of the best episodes of one of the funniest characters on the series.

Finally, Shout! Factory is releasing single disc "best-of" releases of Rhoda and Designing Women. If you already own the season sets of either of these shows, then you probably won't be interested in these releases, but if you are a casual fan and want just a few episodes, then these releases are perfect for you.

Unfortunately, we don't have reviews of any of these yet (the studios have been slacking on getting releases to us on time lately), but when we do, they will be on Digital Digest or on our reviews page!

COMMUNITY 101 POP QUIZ CONTEST

Community - The Complete First Season

As we mentioned earlier in today's Digital Digest, we have a special contest this week! We have five multiple choice questions for you about Community, and if you get all of the answers correct, then you could win your own copy of Community - The Complete First Season, now available on DVD from Sony Pictures Home Entertainment!

All you have to do to enter is to email us at communitydvd@sitcomsonline.com with the letters that correspond to the correct answer (no Scantron forms!) by midnight on September 27, 2010. You must have all answers correct in order to have a chance to win. Be sure to check out our complete rules at the end of the quiz.

Oh, and before we get started on the quiz, we want this to feel like a real community college quiz, so we're even going to give you a free cheat sheet to help you with this quiz, so that you can cheat your way through college just like Jeff Winger! Here we go with the quiz!

1. In "Spanish 101," which classmate does Jeff get paired with for the Spanish project?
a. Britta
b. Shirley
c. Pierce
d. Annie

2. What is the name of Troy's comic book?
a. Kickpuncher
b. Britta the Warrior
c. Justice Fighter
d. Women of Troy

3. Which food item was there a shortage of at Greendale Community College?
a. pizza
b. chicken fingers
c. hot dogs
d. tacos

4. What subject did the instructor who was found to not have his college degree teach?
a. religious studies
b. statistics
c. Spanish
d. home economics

5. Which of the following is a real member of the study group?
a. Monique
b. Abed
c. Amanda
d. Cara

Contest Rules:
  1. Limit only "one" entry per e-mail address and household. All entries must be submitted to communitydvd@sitcomsonline.com.
  2. US and Canadian residents only.
  3. The contest begins Saturday, September 25th and ends at 12:00 AM EDT on Monday, September 27th (Sunday night/Monday morning).
  4. No purchase necessary.
  5. One entry will be selected at random and the entrant will be notified by e-mail if they have answered the questions correctly; otherwise another entry will be selected at random until an entry with all correct answers has been chosen. Winners must respond within 48 hours of being notified with their mailing address or another winner will be contacted. Odds of winning depend on the number of eligible entries received.
  6. Employees of SitcomsOnline.com (that includes the DVD Review Team - Moderators can enter the contest), its parents, its affiliates, subsidiaries, advertising and promotional agencies and the immediate family members of said employees are not eligible.

BLOG FEATURE REVIEW

CSI: Crime Scene Investigation - The Tenth Season

DVD Review: CSI: Crime Scene Investigation - The Tenth Season (CBS DVD/Paramount Home Video, $79.99)
by Todd Fuller

In CSI's exciting, must-own Season 10, Dr. Ray Langston (Tony winner, Emmy winner and Academy Award nominee Laurence Fishburne) uncovers clues in a conspiracy so vast, it takes him to New York. This segment of the CSI Trilogy crossover event is just one reason to savor this superb collection, which features new episodes guest-starring Jorja Fox as Sara Sidle. The team, which also stars Emmy winner Marg Helgenberger and George Eads, digs into the seamy underbelly of Las Vegas to solve murders of a rising ingenue and two beautiful scam artists. Meanwhile, a menacing new serial killer known only as Dr. Jekyll shows his sadistic side, while the specter of the team's old nemesis, Paul Millander, arises anew. In this landmark tenth season of the Emmy and People's Choice Award-winning series, the legendary forensics unit proves once again that there's no shortage of sin in Sin City.

This 7-disc set contains all 23 episodes (plus 2 crossover CSI: Miami and CSI: NY episodes) from the tenth (2009-10) season of the long-running crime drama. The episodes are presented in anamorphic widescreen enhanced for 16:9 TVs with English Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround Stereo audio (Spanish Stereo is also available). It has a total running time of approximately 16 hours, 47 minutes. The attractive packaging has photos of Marg Helgenberger, Laurence Fishburne and George Eads on the front cover, with the Las Vegas skyline in the background. There is an embossed CSI: Crime Scene Investigation logo at the top of the box. After using Digipak packaging for the previous seasons, they've switched to a cardboard box that holds a snapcase. Marg Helgenberger, George Eads, Eric Szmanda, Laurence Fisburne, Robert David Hall and Paul Guilfoyle are pictured on the back of the box. A short synopsis of the set, a listing of the special features and the DVD specs are given. There is a clear plastic snapcase that slides out from the right of the outer cardboard box. The snapcase has the same cover art, photos and information as the cardboard box. Opening up the snapcase, there is a content locator which lists the episodes and the special features on the inside cover. Discs 1-6 are held back-to-back in plastic trays, while Disc 7 is an embedded holder in the back of the case. The discs have a portion of a casino sign and list the episodes and special features. Unfortunately, they didn't include the Crime Scene: Do Not Cross tape around the packaging this time around.

The menus are stylish and easy to navigate. There is a series of previews for some other CBS DVD/Paramount TV DVD releases and the CSI: Fatal Conspiracy game which you can play or skip. The main menu opens with some aerial views of Las Vegas that lead to a montage of video clips from the show. A great instrumental cue by composer John M. Keane plays in the background and then the sequence loops. Options are available for Episode Selection, Set Up, Previews (only on Disc 1) and the various special features by disc. You can choose either English 5.1 Surround or
EspaƱol audio on the Set Up Menu. Closed captioning is available for all of the episodes, but some of the special features are not rated any may not be closed captioned. As you would expect from such a recent show, the video and audio quality is outstanding. They do a lot of nighttime shooting and make the show look dark and like a theatrical film. There is no disclaimer on the back of the box about any of the episodes possibly being edited. Episodes are presented in their original broadcast order and numbered by the production number, which was the same order for this season. Running times are between 42-44 minutes in length. It doesn't appear that they are releasing the tenth season on Blu-ray at this time.

Here is the episode breakdown by disc, including the runtimes:

Disc 1
Episode 1001 "Family Affair" (44:22)
Episode 1002 "Ghost Town" (44:13)
Episode 1003 "Working Stiffs" (44:13)

Disc 2
Episode 1004 "Coupe De Grace" (43:52)
Episode 1005 "Bloodsport" (44:12)
Episode 1006 "Death and the Maiden" (43:53)

Disc 3
CSI: Miami 807 "Bone Voyage" (43:51)
CSI: NY 607 "Hammer Down" (41:44)
Episode 1008 "The Lost Girls" (44:13)
Episode 1007 "Lover's Lane" (44:03)

Disc 4
Episode 1009 "Appendictement" (44:22)
Episode 1010 "Better Off Dead" (42:02)
Episode 1011 "Sin City Blue" (44:13)
Episode 1012 "Long Ball" (43:12)

Disc 5
Episode 1013 "Internal Combustion" (42:43)
Episode 1014 "Unshockable" (44:23)
Episode 1015 "Neverland" (43:02)
Episode 1016 "The Panty Sniffer" (44:22)

Disc 6
Episode 1017 "Irradiator" (44:22)
Episode 1018 "Field Mice" (44:22)
Episode 1019 "World's End" (43:51)
Episode 1020 "Take My Life, Please!" (43:52)

Disc 7
Episode 1021 "Lost & Found" (42:32)
Episode 1022 "Doctor Who" (42:21)
Episode 1023 "Meat Jekyll" (44:01)

A decent number of special features are spread out over the 7 discs. Once again, there are only 2 audio commentaries on this set like last season. They have really cut back on the number of them from previous seasons for all of the CSI franchise shows. No deleted scenes are included on this release. The 5 features run about 90 minutes total in length. Here is the breakdown by disc:

Disc 1
Frozen in Time: CSI's Season Opener (12:21) - This featurette includes interviews with Executive Producer Carol Mendelsohn, Executive Producer Naren Shankar, Director/Supervising Producer Kenneth Fink, Co-Producer Brad Tannebaum, Jorja Fox, Robert David Hall, Director of Photography Christian Sebaldt, Visual Effects Supervisor/Zoic Studios Rik Shorten,
They discuss in detail the motion control shooting and the digital effects for the season premiere. It took them 2 months to complete the scene.

Disc 3
Leaving Las Vegas: Langston Heads East (23:28) - This featurette details the triple crossover event. It started out in Miami, moved to New York and finished in Las Vegas. Inteviews include Executive Producer Carol Mendelsohn, Executive Producer Naren Shankar, Executive Producer (CSI: NY) Peter M. Lenkov, Laurence Fishburne, Co-Executive Producer (CSI: Miami) Mark Dube, Director/Producer (CSI: Miami) Sam Hill, David Caruso, Omar Benson Miller, Executive Producer (CSI: Miami) Barry O'Brien, Christian Clemenson, Emily Procter, Executive Producer (CSI: NY) Pam Veasey, Melina Kanakaredes and Gary Sinise.

Disc 4
Audio Commentary by George Eads, Eric Szmanda, Wallace Langham & Jon Wellner on "Appendicitement"

Disc 5
Audio Commentary Rascal Flatts (Jay DeMarcus, JoeDon Rooney and Gary LeVox) , Writer Michael Frost Beckner and Executive Producer/Director Kenneth Fink

Disc 6
Lab Rats: The Saga Continues (15:31) - This featurette chronicles the 4th annual Lab Rats episode. Liz Vassey and Wallace Langham helped write this episode. Unfortunately, they didn't include an audio commentary to supplement this featurette. Interviews include Liz Vassey, Wallace Langham, Executive Producer Naren Shankar, Paul Guilfoyle, David Berman, Robert David Hall, Director Bran Tanenbaum, Sheeri Rappaport and Jon Wellner.

Disc 7
CSI: The Experience (15:38) - Eric Szmanda profiles and gives a tour of the CSI: The Experience traveling interactive exhibit. Clips of Gil Grissom, Greg Sanders, Nick Stokes, Catherine Willows, and Al Robbins speaking to the visitors are shown. Creator and Executive Producer Anthony E. Zuiker, Ron Rohovit, Firearm and Toolmark Examiner Jamie Becker, and Arthur Eisenberg, Ph.D. are interviewed.

KillerTales: Season 10 of CSI (23:17) - This featurette highlights some of the key developments and moments of the tenth season. They talk about the addition of Laurence Fishburne to the cast, Catherine's and Nick's characters this season, the return of of Jorja Fox as Sara Sidle, the characters of Greg Sanders and Jim Brass, the panty sniffer episode, the stakeout of a casino episode, Rascal Flatts, their favorite episode of the season, and the serial killer story arc of Dr. Jekyll. Interviews include Executive Producer Carol Mendelsohn, Executive Producer Naren Shankar, Laurence Fishburne, Marg Helgenbrger, Jorja Fox, George Eads, Robert David Hall, David Berman, Eric Szmanda, Paul Guilfoyle, Director/Co-Executive PRoducer Louis Shaw Milito, Co-Producer Jacqueline Hoyt,

This season started out with a great opening sequence and ended with a thrilling cliffhanger. This was Laurence Fishburn's first full season as Langston and he has fit in the show nicely. They really gave him a chance to shine in the 3-part crossover event. It was also great to see the return of Jorja Fox as Sara Sidle. She has been missed. This is another nicely produced set. A number of entertaining featurettes and a couple of audio commentaries are included. Amazon.com has it priced at $71.99 at the moment. That seems ridiculously high. Hopefully that price will come down. You can probably find it much cheaper at other online retailers and in stores.

-- Reviewed by Todd Fuller

(4/5 stars)

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

Related links:
SitcomsOnline.com Full DVD Reviews Page
CSI: Crime Scene Investigation CBS.com Official Site
CSI: Crime Scene Investigation TV.com Page

LOOKING AHEAD

Before I wrap things up this week, I want to say that it is good to be back on the blog this week, and I should be back to doing the Digital Digest regularly from now. Many great features are planned for upcoming blog entries, and we hope that you'll keep checking with us every week, even if things have been very slow on the news front lately! Remember, keep it digital!


Sitcoms Airing Tonight

Sunday, July 27

American Dad - "The Longest Distance Relationship" (Fox, 7:00PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
A year after Jeff’s (guest voice Jeff Fischer) abduction, Hayley is still heartbroken, until she meets millionaire Matt Davis (guest voice Pete Holmes), who may be able to help her move forward. Things are going great, until Steve and Snot (guest voice Curtis Armstrong) catch a signal on a CB radio – Jeff’s alive in space and trying to make it back to Hayley.

Bob's Burgers - "Two for Tina" (Fox, 7:30PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
Jimmy Jr. is threatened when Tina starts dating a ballet dancer named Josh and the two boys get into an epic dance-off for her heart.

The Simpsons - "Yellow Badge of Cowardge" (Fox, 8:00PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
Bart is plagued with guilt when he wins the annual “Race Around the School,” with an assist from Nelson, who beats up frontrunner Milhouse. Meanwhile, Homer tries to bring back the annual 4th of July fireworks display after it’s canceled for budget reasons. Guest voice Glenn Close returns as Mona Simpson and Olympian Edwin Moses guest-voices as himself.

The Simpsons - "Labor Pains" (Fox, 8:30PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
Homer remembers his Lamaze skills when he’s forced to deliver a baby in an elevator. When the mother (guest voice Elizabeth Moss) names the child Homer Jr., he quickly develops a deep emotional bond with the kid. Meanwhile, Lisa is recruited by the cheerleaders of the local pro football team, the Springfield Atoms.

Family Guy - "Chap Stewie" (Fox, 9:00PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
When Peter and Chris interrupt Stewie’s TV time, the angry baby goes back in time to break up Peter and Lois, so he’s never conceived. But instead, he is reborn into a “Downton Abbey”-esque British household.

American Dad - "Poltergasm" (Fox, 9:30PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
Francine’s “Poltergasm” starts to haunt the Smith household when she is unsatisfied by Stan in the sack, and Roger must conjure a medium named Zelda Rubinstein to help eliminate the ghost. Meanwhile, Hayley introduces her new boy-toy, Mauricio (guest voice Diego Luna), to the family.

Liv & Maddie - "Space-Werewolf-a-Rooney" (Disney Channel, 8:00PM ET/PT)
Liv feels that she has something to prove; she insists on doing her own stunts without knowing how complicated they are.

I Didn't Do It - "Earth Boys Are Icky" (Disney Channel, 8:30PM ET/PT)
In an attempt to land herself an alien boyfriend, Delia creates a device to communicate with outer space; Logan's love life becomes complicated when he realizes his new girlfriend, Danica, is the vice principal's daughter.

Austin & Ally - "Eggs & Extraterrestrials" (Disney Channel, 9:00PM ET/PT)
Dez, Trish and Austin talk Ally into attending the Zaliens convention in Miami; the fun is over when Trish and Dez run into real Zaliens.

Complete TV Listings


Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows (Week of July 28) (All times ET unless noted)

Sunday, July 27

  • Fran Drescher (The Nanny/Happily Divorced) - Fran talks about her battle with cancer, meeting the love of her life, and her latest role on Broadway on Oprah: Where Are They Now? at 9pm on OWN.
Monday, July 28
  • Will Arnett (The Millers/Up All Night/Arrested Development) - Watch Will on a repeat of Conan at 11pm on TBS.
  • Melissa Rauch (The Big Bang Theory) - Melissa appears on a repeat of Conan at 11pm on TBS.
  • Rachelle Lefevre (Life on a Stick/Big Wolf on Campus) - Rachelle visits on The Late Show with David Letterman at 11:35pm on CBS.
  • T.J. Miller (Silicon Valley/Carpoolers) - T.J. is part of the guest panel on Chelsea Lately on E! at 11pm.
  • John Lithgow (3rd Rock from the Sun/Twenty Good Years) - John chats with the ladies of The View on ABC at 11am ET/10am CT-PT.
  • Marlon Wayans (The Wayans Bros.) - Marlon drops by The Talk on CBS at 2pm ET/1pm CT-PT.
  • Roseanne Barr (Roseanne) - Roseanne appears on a repeat of The Wendy Williams Show at 12am on BET or on your local stations.
  • Whoopi Goldberg (Whoopi/Bagdad Cafe) - Whoopi talks about Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles on NBC's Today sometime between 7-9am.
  • Keke Palmer (True Jackson, VP) - Keke interviews Queen on The Queen Latifah Show on your local station or at 3am on BET.
  • Swoosie Kurtz (Mike & Molly/Love, Sidney) - Swoosie is a guest on The Queen Latifah Show on your local station or at 3am on BET.
  • Don Rickles (C.P.O. Sharkey/Daddy Dearest) - Mr. Warmth appears on Larry King Now at 2/5pm PT/ET on Ora.tv and Hulu.
  • Anthony Anderson (black-ish/Guys with Kids/All About the Andersons) - Anthony joins the Plugged In panel on Access Hollywood Live, so check your local listings.
  • Wendi McClendon-Covey (The Goldbergs/Rules of Engagement) - Wendi is a guest on a repeat of The Better Show, so check your local listings.