Saturday, December 17, 2011
Welcome back to one of the last editions of Digital Digest for 2011! Don't worry, we still have two more for this year, and we'll be back every Saturday next year, so we aren't going anywhere! In these last few weeks of the year, news and releases are really starting to drop off, but we do have some news for you, as well as a review of the separate releases Growing Pains: The Movie and Growing Pains: Return of the Seavers from Warner Archive. Let's get going!
MPI is pushing forward with another release of Here's Lucy, as was speculated a few weeks ago. Now, the release date of February 28 for Here's Lucy - Season Five. The set comes at a $29.98 MSRP and can be ordered now.
In Growing Pains: The Movie, we begin as Jason Seaver begins to catch fans up with what has happened in the past eight years while he is writing his latest book. At the same time, he is also preparing a big surprise for his 30th wedding anniversary, by reuniting the entire Seaver family, which doesn't seem to happen as often as the family has grown up. But in the midst of all of this, Maggie gets a very nasty surprise as she is fired as a staffer for the Congressman in the Seaver's district in Long Island. Unsure of where to head in life now, one of Mike and Kate's kids (they are now married, by the way) makes a suggestion that she run for Congress against the man who just fired her. The entire family works together for nearly a year to put together a campaign and see that she becomes Congresswoman Maggie Malone (using her maiden name, as she often did in the series). The runtime of this movie is 1:27:00.
Growing Pains: Return of the Seavers picks up four years after the original reunion movie, and is set in 2004. In this movie, everybody has gotten older, but in particular, Jason and Maggie have aged and are ready to retire. Part of the problem is trying to decide exactly what to do with their retirement, as Jason and Maggie have completely opposite ideas as to what they want. The situation only gets further complicated with the fact that they plan to sell their home, something that Mike and Carol are completely against. On top of all of that, all of the kids seem to be having problems that they can only turn to their parents to solve. The runtime of this movie is 1:29:00.
Both DVDs come in very standard packaging, but the artwork on the packaging is very professional, and even matches up with the artwork used on the season sets that Warner has released in the past. On the cover of each case, we have the title and a cast snapshot, along with a brief description of the movie and another cast snapshot on the back. Inside, all you will find is the disc, which has artwork similar to the cover artwork.
Both DVDs have incredibly bland and generic menus. The menus have nothing at all to do with the movies, and all we have is a picture of the Warner Bros. Studios water tower and an option of Play. There is nothing else, at all. As for chapters, they are placed every ten minutes throughout each DVD, which means that they do not necessarily correspond with the scene changes.
While neither of the movies were remastered for these DVDs, it really wasn't necessary to begin with. Both of them looked fine when they originally aired, and still look great now. It seems, though, that these were both done JUST BEFORE the beginning of the high-definition era, so they are in full-screen as opposed to widescreen. I'm pretty sure that is how they both originally aired on ABC. The audio is presented in Dolby Digital Stereo. And, while these were originally closed-captioned on ABC, they are not on these DVDs, which is unfortunate. The process for closed-captioning something for broadcast is different than it is for doing it for a DVD release, but those broadcast closed-captions would have in fact been available, and it is a shame that they couldn't find a way to use those.
There aren't any special features on the DVDs at all. What would have been nice to see would have been some behind-the-scenes footage about the production of the movies. I recall seeing plenty of this material on entertainment tabloid series such as Entertainment Tonight and Extra while they were producing the movies in Vancouver.
It is great to see both of these movies on DVD, particularly considering that I didn't think either one would ever make it to DVD. Aside from the fact that the DVDs were obviously very rushed and not a whole lot of effort was placed into them, both of these DVDs are perfectly adequate for fans. It would have been nicer if they had put both movies into one single set instead of creating two separate DVDs, though. While these reunion movies are not nearly as great as the original series was, it is still great to see them on DVD. Hopefully, these releases will spark more interest in the original series and we'll see more seasons of that released... in other words, hopefully, the "best is ready to begin!"
To purchase Growing Pains: The Movie, click below and help support SitcomsOnline.com:
To purchase Growing Pains: Return of the Seavers, click below and help support SitcomsOnline.com:
SitcomsOnline.com DVD Reviews Page
CLICK OF THE WEEK
The website isn't necessarily an all-inclusive website, and definitely needs more additions to the database, but that is part of the reason why we have included this as the Click of the Week. The website is not created and run by one person or a small few, but this is a website much like Wikipedia where fans can update the database to make the website better and more detailed. The basic information that is provided on the site is very good, but the open interface allows it to infinitely expand to a greater website. As an example of what the website could be with more complete information, check out the page for The Office. It certainly isn't an all-inclusive page like individual websites dedicated to a series would have, but it provides a lot of the good "essentials" in a simple, elegant, and not over-bloated fashion. Hopefully, this site will become even more complete as time goes on, and become an excellent resource for TV fans needing to find basic information quickly.
That's all for this week. Until next time, keep it digital!
New on DVD/Blu-ray (July)
07/07 - Archie Bunker's Place - Season One (Mill Creek)
07/07 - Barney Miller - The Final (Eighth) Season
07/07 - Married with Children - Season Eleven (Mill Creek)
07/07 - Married with Children - The Complete Series (Mill Creek)
07/07 - The Michael J. Fox Show - The Complete First Season
07/07 - Playing House - Season 1
07/14 - Growing Pains - The Complete Fifth Season (WBShop.com)
07/14 - WKRP in Cincinnati - The Complete Third Season
07/28 - Mama's Family - Mama's Favorites - Season 7
More TV DVD Releases / DVD Reviews Archive / SitcomsOnline Digest
Sitcoms Airing Tonight
Friday, July 31
Bunk'd - "Welcome to Camp Kikiwaka" (Disney Channel, 10:00PM ET/PT)
Upon arriving at camp, the Ross kids discover that the camp owner, Gladys, is scarier than the legendary creature haunting the grounds; Gladys' old rivalry with the kids' mom sparks her fury.
Love Thy Neighbor - "Vegas" (OWN, 9:00PM ET/PT)
Troy and Danny inevitably do something stupid in Las Vegas.
Friday, July 31
- Ed Helms (The Office) - Watch Ed on a repeat of Jimmy Kimmel Live! at 11:35pm on ABC.
- Brie Larson (United States of Tara/Raising Dad) - Brie is a guest on a repeat of Jimmy Kimmel Live! at 11:35pm on ABC.
- Carla Gugino (The Brink/Spin City) - Tune in to see Carla on a repeat of The Late Late Show with James Corden at 12:37am on CBS.
- Jim Parsons (The Big Bang Theory) - Jim appears on a repeat of The Ellen DeGeneres Show, so check your local listings.
- Bridgit Mendler (Undateable/Good Luck Charlie) - Bridgit is a guest on a repeat of The Ellen DeGeneres Show, so check your local listings.
- George Lopez (George Lopez/Saint George) - George talks about his movie Spare Parts on a repeat of The Wendy Williams Show at 12am on BET or on your local stations.
- Anne Heche (Save Me/The Michael J. Fox Show) - Anne is a guest on a repeat of The Meredith Vieira Show, so check your local listings.
- Laurence Fishburne (black-ish) - Laurence appears on a repeat of The Queen Latifah Show, so check your local listings.
- Rocky Carroll (Roc) - Rocky is a guest on a repeat of The Real, so check your local listings.
- Christina Applegate (Up All Night/Samantha Who?/Jesse/Married with Children) - Christina can be heard on The Morning Mash Up on SiriusXM Hits 1.
- David Duchovny (Californication) - David dishes on his new book, new music, and new show on a repeat of Rachael Ray, so check your local listings.
- Brooke Burns (Miss Guided/Out of the Blue) - Brooke discusses her upcoming ing Hallmark Movies & Mysteries original Gourmet Detective: A Healthy Place to Die on Home & Family on Hallmark Channel at 10am ET/PT.
- Margaret Cho (All-American Girl) - Margaret is a guest on The Boris and Nicole Show on select Fox-owned stations, so check your local listings.
- Michael Strahan (Brothers) - Michael joins the Chew Crew on ABC's The Chew at 1pm ET/12pm PT/CT.
- Denis Leary (Sex&Drugs&Rock&Roll/The Job) - Denis is a guest on Popcorn with Peter Travers on ABC News.
- Michael Rosenbaum (Impastor/Breaking In) - Michael will be on People Now.
- Damon Wayans, Jr. (New Girl/Happy Endings) - Damon appears on Good Day New York on WNYW-Fox5 in New York sometime between 7-10am.