Saturday, September 15, 2012
Digital Digest: Modern Family - The Complete First Season (Blu-ray) and Family Guy - Volume 10 Contests; Body of Proof - The Complete Second Season DVD Review
OK, so we're human... which means that sometimes, we may miss news on releases that are of interest to our readers. This can particularly happen when a smaller (and typically lower budget) studio which doesn't really have much of a website and doesn't put out press releases (at least not that we can find) decides to release some DVDs. Apparently, some time ago, MGM made a sub-licensed some of their properties to TGG, a studio which has typically been known for releasing public domain products. Somehow, out of this, we missed two releases back in July. The studio quietly released In the Heat of the Night - The First Season and Return to Green Acres! Unfortunately, this sort of comes with a catch. If you click on those links, you'll find that the products are out of stock on amazon.com, and apparently, TGG products never have a stable stock anywhere. In fact, the only place anybody has reported actually finding these DVDs is in the $5 discount bin at Walmart stores... but if you've ever seen these bins, you'll know that finding anything in them is like looking for a needle in a haystack (you may not find them at all in your local store). But at the very least, it seems that there is some movement here, and hopefully these titles will eventually become even more readily available.
Another story that we missed is another reunion movie of a series related to Green Acres (indirectly). Last month, an unknown studio released The Return of the Beverly Hillbillies as an Amazon CreateSpace title! The 1981 film features most of the original cast, along with Imogene Coca and Heather Locklear, as the Clampetts join forces with Miss Jane to help solve the nation's energy crisis. Personally, I've never seen the movie... the Clampetts we all knew (except for Granny) have jumped into the cliches of the '80s! It appears to be a low budget release, so we can't say much about how great the quality is... but it is very nice to see this actually make it to DVD.
We're all excited for the November 13 release of The Dick Van Dyke Show - The Complete Series (Blu-ray), but now TVShowsOnDVD.com has obtained more information about the special features on this forthcoming release. Not surprisingly, it is rather extensive, and will include some of the old ones and some new ones, such as commentaries, interviews, commercials, the original pilot, and more. You can check out the full list of special features here.
Finally, we wanted to make a slight clarification on a story we presented last week. We announced that Shout! Factory would be releasing Quincy, M.E. - Season 4 on December 18. This is, in fact, the title of the release, but there has always been a bit of confusion on the season numbering of this due to the fact that what is considered by the DVD season numbering to be the first two seasons was actually ONE season. The series began in 1976 as one of the rotating NBC Mystery Movies, but it became so popular that NBC decided to spin it off into a regular weekly series in the middle of the season. There is disagreement on whether this spinning off constitutes a new season, new series, or neither of those, but by convention used by the DVD producers (at least the original ones at Universal), "two" seasons aired in the 1976-1977 TV season. To avoid any confusion here (if you aren't confused already!), we'll just be clear on this matter: the release coming out on December 18 will include episodes from the 1978-1979 season.
As we mentioned in our introduction, we have two contests for our fans this weekend. So if you're feeling lucky... or even if you aren't... let's take a look are the potential home media prizes that you could win this weekend!
Family Guy - Volume 10 - The Griffin family is back for more fun and hilarity with 14 more episodes of the Fox animated comedy on DVD! The three-disc set follows the family as Peter needs a new kidney, Lois becomes a boxing champ, Chris finds a new hobby, and Brian and Stewie are on a mission to save the entire universe! The new release hits store shelves on September 25. In our contest, you could win one of two copies of this release on DVD!
So, are you interested? We knew you would be! Now here's how it works: if you want to win one of these home media releases, you have to enter our contest! You should head here for details on how to enter to win Modern Family - The Complete First Season on Blu-ray, and head here for details on how to enter to win Family Guy - Volume 10 on DVD. The rules are very simple, but you have to read them to know how to enter! The contest begins Saturday, September 15, 1:00 PM ET and runs through Sunday, September 23 11:59PM ET. So go ahead and get those entries in now!
The series aired Tuesdays at 10PM on ABC once again in season two. The series stars Dana Delany stars as Dr. Megan Hunt, Jeri Ryan as Dr. Kate Murphey, John Carroll Lynch as Detective Bud Morris, Nicholas Bishop as Peter Dunlop, Sonja Sohn as Detective Samantha Baker, Geoffrey Arend as Dr. Ethan Gross, Windell D. Middlebrooks as Dr. Curtis Brumfield and Mary Mouser as Lacey Fleming. Recurring is Nathalie Kelley as Dani Alvarez, Jeffrey Nordling as Todd Fleming and Joanna Cassidy as Joan Hunt.
Guest stars include Rick Fox, Cliff Curtis, Crystal Bowersox, Marcia Gay Harden, Rita Wilson, Jamie Bamber, Jason Beghe, Sean Kingston, Cody Christian, Steven Culp, Rebecca Field, and Luke Perry.
The series really took off in the second season, especially midway. There were four leftover episodes from season one and sixteen actual episodes from season two, so that is how we have 20 in this second season. The series will return for a third season in early 2013 in mid-season with some cast changes, which we will get into a bit later. Anyway, as for the second season, it starts off with the season premiere "Love They Neighbor" where when a car careens out of control over an embankment, killing a middle-aged man in the driver's seat, Megan learns that all is not well on a pretty suburban cul-de-sac, so she and her team are startled by the many lives spinning out of control beyond the perfect picket fences, providing an ever-changing suspect roster. In "Lazarus Man," a man who is presumed dead walks off Ethan's examination table, leading the team to a shocking discovery. In "Occupational Hazards," after a car accident reveals a body in the trunk, the team is led to another, leaving them with two cases to solve, while Megan is reconnected with an acquaintance and Kate's job is threatened. In the best episode to date, the two-part episode "Going Viral," when scores of people start dying from similar symptoms, the team is faced with a city-wide outbreak of an unknown virus and no one is safe - including Megan and her team, so Center for Disease Control (CDC) Officer Charlie Stafford takes over the case to figure out not just what caused the outbreak but who. In part two, as the death toll continues to rise, the team needs to move quickly to figure out how to treat this virus and, more importantly, who is spreading it. And on the thrilling season finale, "Mind Games," a victim's cause of death resembles the first case that Megan had regarding a serial killer who took out the brains of his victims, so in a case of twist and turns, the killer comes back to get revenge on Megan for taking three years away that he could have spent with his daughter.
The episodes run usually around 43 minutes, all unedited of course. They are very consistent. There are 7 chapter stops per episode. See the runtimes for each episode below:
1. "Love Thy Neighbor" 43:02
2. "Hunting Party" 42:58
3. "Missing" 43:09
4. "Lazarus Man" 43:02
5. "Point of Origin" 43:02
6. "Second Chances" 42:57
7. "Hard Knocks" 43:08
8. "Love Bites" 43:03
9. "Gross Anatomy" 43:02
10. "Your Number's Up" 42:45
11. "Falling For You" 42:48
12. "Shades of Blue" 42:12
13. "Sympathy For the Devil" 42:59
14. "Cold Blooded" 42:52
15. "Occupational Hazards" 42:43
16. "Home Invasion" 42:57
17. "Identity" 42:04
18. "Going Viral, Part 1" 40:46
19. "Going Viral, Part 2" 43:00
20. "Mind Games" 40:40
Packaging has a nice thing cover holding a case and has shot of Dr. Megan Hunt in a red dress. The tagline "Beauty. Brains. Bodies." appears on the front along with the show logo saying "Dana Delany, Body of Proof." The back cover has information on the series & set and has three episodic photos and another nice shot of Megan. There is also a section detailing the special features in a grey box with technical specifications in another box. Inside the box is the case. The front of the case has the same artwork as the outer box, and the same goes true for the back of the case. Opening the case, we get an insert on the left side and also a disc-by-disc breakdown and a nice cast photo that are on both panels. We don't get an episode booklet again since the episodes are listed on the panels. Disc one is in a little plastic holder that you can flip like a page in a book and disc two is on the back side of that plastic holder. Discs three and four are on a second plastic holder. The discs are in red and has artwork of the show's characters. Disc one has episodes 1-5 with artwork of Megan. Disc two has episodes 6-10 with artwork of detectives Bud and Samantha. Disc three has episodes 11-15 and has artwork of the funny duo Curtis and Ethan. And disc four has episodes 16-20 with artwork of Kate and Peter. After you remove the second disc, you see the nice cast photo on the panels itself like I mentioned...very cool.
The menu screen starts by showing us a shot of Megan Hunt before moving images are playing in the background. It is nicely designed. Background music from the show is playing in the background. On disc one before the main menu we have auto trailers for ABC TV on DVD, Castle Season 4 DVD and a trailer for the upcoming movie Frankenweenie. The options on the main menu are Play All, Episode Selection, Bonus Features, and Set Up. The Set Up section has the option of subtitles in English, French, Spanish, or Portuguese and how to register your DVD. The Bonus Features option lists the features available on each disc. The Episodes option gives us the episode number and title to choose along with a screenshot from the episode. Each submenu has music from the series playing in the background.
The video is digitally mastered and is in widescreen and looks very good! It's HD-like, even though it isn't Blu-ray. I have a DVD player that upconverts to HD, so who needs a Blu-ray player? Just kidding, I have one of those and it is great. The audio is great and sounds very good, as it is in Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround Sound. This is from the 2011-12 season, so it has to be good. We also get to hear the nice closing theme, as on ABC there are promos at the end of the episode. And as mentioned, we get 7 chapter stops.
Moving on to the bonus features. Each disc has features. Most of these seem like they were produced for abc.com as they are pretty short compared to what we had last season and other ABC Studios DVDs. The first one is on disc one and is titled "The Design of Body of Proof: Living Spaces" (2:27). This is an exciting opportunity to see the sleek design of the hit series' set, this cool special feature that gives audiences a cool inside look at the show's medical examiner's office. Interviewed are Ken Hardy (production designer), Dana Delany, and Ellen Totleben (set decorator). Next on disc one we have, "Bodies of Body of Proof" (2:38). Fans will enjoy an inside look at how the team makes dead bodies look so real. Interviewed are Sunil Nayar (executive producer), Gary Kellerman (technical advisor), Dana Delany, and Trent Cotner (SFX makeup artist). Onto disc two, we have "The Stunt Work of Body of Proof: Taking the Plunge" (5:02). This is an exclusive look at the stunt team in action, leaping off the balcony of a hotel, capturing the feeling of taking the plunge. Interviewed are Matthew Gross (executive producer), Danny Weselis (stunt coordinator), Lisa Weselis (stunt coordinator), Pat Romano (stunt rigger), Katie Eichen (stunt woman), and Richard E. White (first assistant director). Also on disc two we have, "The Stunt Work of Body of Proof: Prepping the Stunt, Part 1" (2:52). In the first of a two-part series, fans get an inside look at how the team plans and executes a major show stunt. Interviewed are Matthew Gross, Danny Weselis (stunt coordinator), Lisa Weselis (stunt coordinator), Anya Adams (first assistant director), and Jim Klever Weis (line producer). And finally on disc two we have "The Effects of Body of Proof: Playing With Fire" (3:26). Another exciting exclusive look into the work of the stunt team, this feature follows the production team's careful preparation to blow up a house to get the perfect shot. Interviewed are Matthew Gross, Bryan Oh (producer), Joseph Rossi (head special effects make-up), John Ruggieri (special effects coordinator), Jay Stone (special effects tech), Anya Adams (first assistant director), and Nic Bishop.
Moving on to disc three, we have "The Fashion of Body of Proof: Gearing Up Guest Stars" (2:36). This is a fascinating behind-the-scenes look at the medical examiner's costumes and the guest stars. Interviewed are Susanna Puisto (costume designer), Rita Wilson, and Marcia Gay Harden. Also on disc three we have, "The Stunt Work of Body of Proof: Collision Course, Part 2" (3:15). Fans will join the stunt team for a closer look as all of their preparation is put into action. Interviewed are Anya Adams (first assistant director), Lisa Weselis (stunt coordinator), Shawn Lane (ND stunt), Jim Klever Weis (line producer), Henry Kingi Jr. (stunt driver), Danny Weselis (stunt coordinator), Nicolas Bishop, and Sean Kingston. Onto the final disc, we have "Body of Goofs" (3:28), as fans will have a chance to join in on the laughs with a never before seen blooper reel of hilarious moments that the editors couldn't resist sharing. John Carroll Lynch is still funny. And finally we have the abc.com Outbreak: Webisodes. This series of webisodes follows WSCE investigative reporter Julie Tompkins uncovering an outbreak of an infectious disease in five parts (1:47, 1:56, 2:20, 2:36, 2:59). It's pretty good.
I highly recommend this series and to continue your collection. The season was very good and got better and better. Unfortunately, ABC will be dropping three of the characters, including Peter. I don't know about that one. Detectives Bud and Samantha are also being dropped, and to me dropping Bud is a surprise. I would keep him as recurring at the very least. The series is trying to get younger obviously with the new additions being younger. Anyway, as for season two, Dana Delay is always great and the cast around her has good chemistry, especially Windell D. Middlebrooks and Geoffrey Arend. The special features are good but I think most of these were on abc.com and was intended for that. I love that we get that on the DVD, but would have liked more longer duration special features. I would have liked some deleted scenes as well, as the final few episodes of the season were shorter than normal. It's a good show that gets better this season. We hope to see this show and Dana Delany on TV for years to come, even with the upcoming cast changes for season three! Tune in this mid-season on ABC for season three...but this set is "super duper!"
Claim to Fame: Film and television actor, best known from his role of Charlie Epps on the CBS series Numb3rs
Tweets/Status Topics: Of course, you can expect that Krumholtz is excited about his new series right now, but in general, Krumholtz is the type of person to Tweet about everything. Essentially, he embodies what the modern day actor does on Twitter... if there is something to Tweet about, do it, even if it is multiple times a day. He talks about everything from other celebrities, observations in life, frustrations with others, his personal battles with cancer, and in general, just anything. He seems to stay rather humble and likes to make his Twitter feed about his fans, not just as a way to interact with his personal associates or to make a name for himself.
Pick of the Tweets: "I wish I had gotten to work with Esther Rolle before she died. Others wish for less heavenly pleasures." (August 17, 2012)
New on DVD/Blu-ray (September)
09/06 - Coach - Season One (Mill Creek) / Season Two / Seasons One and Two
09/06 - South Park - The Complete Ninteenth Season (Blu-ray)
09/13 - The Big Bang Theory - The Complete Ninth Season (Blu-ray)
09/13 - Newhart - The Complete Sixth Season
09/20 - 2 Broke Girls - The Complete Fifth Season
09/20 - Family Matters - The Complete Eighth Season
09/20 - Modern Family - The Complete Season 7
09/20 - Veep - Season 5
09/27 - The Wonder Years - Season Six
More TV DVD Releases / DVD Reviews Archive / SitcomsOnline Digest
Sitcoms Airing Tonight
Tuesday, October 25
The Middle - "Halloween VIII: The Heckoning" (ABC, 8:00PM ET/PT)
As Halloween approaches, Frankie is taken aback when she discovers that, if the circumstances ever arose where she and Mike got divorced, the kids would all choose to live with Mike. Meanwhile, Sue tries everything in her power to get her room back from Brick, and having to be so nice around girlfriend April all of the time leads Axl to lash out at his family.
American Housewife - "Westport Zombies" (ABC, 8:30PM ET/PT)
Katie, jealous of Taylor’s friendship with neighbor Viv (Leslie Bibb), reluctantly competes in the Westport Halloween “Zombie Run” after she finds out they’ll both be running. Meanwhile, Greg and Anna-Kat get a little too much in character for the “zombie” part of the run’s obstacle course.
Fresh Off the Boat - "Louisween" (ABC, 9:00PM ET/PT)
It’s Louis’ favorite holiday, and he makes every attempt to scare Jessica into the Halloween spirit, but she is buried in her word processor, drafting her first horror novel. Meanwhile, Emery and Evan debate costume choices, and Eddie and his crew are excited to party with high schoolers at Nicole’s house.
The Real O'Neals - "The Real Halloween" (ABC, 9:30PM ET/PT)
When Halloween arrives, or what Kenny refers to as “the gay Super Bowl,” he plans to go to Boystown to watch the festive costume parade. In an effort to prevent Kenny from attending, Eileen agrees to let him throw his own Halloween party at home. Eileen’s tolerance is ultimately tested when Kenny recruits Stuart and his gay friends to join the big party, and he makes a BIG costume change. Meanwhile, Jimmy and Shannon plan to pull off an epic Halloween prank.
Atlanta - "Junteenth" (FX, 10:00PM ET/PT)
Why my Auntie trying to make me go to one of these bougie Junteenth parties again? I don't like them sadity people and I'm gonna miss my shows. Le sigh.
Family Time - "Head of House" (Bounce TV, 9:00PM ET/PT)
When the Stallworths have an unexpected visitor, they learn of a vicious crime that took place in their home years ago.
Tuesday, October 25
- Will Forte (The Last Man on Earth) - Catch Will on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert at 11:35pm on CBS. He also chats with the ladies of The View on ABC at 11am ET/10am CT-PT.
- Matt LeBlanc (Man with a Plan/Episodes/Friends) - Matt is a guest on The Late Late Show with James Corden at 12:37am on CBS.
- Cobie Smulders (How I Met Your Mother) - Cobie appears on Last Call with Carson Daly at 1:35am on NBC.
- Skylar Astin (Ground Floor) - Skylar is a guest on Last Call with Carson Daly at 1:35am on NBC.
- Ron Howard (Happy Days/The Andy Griffith Show) - Ron drops by Conan at 11pm on TBS.
- Mary Lynn Rajskub (How to Be a Gentleman/Veronica's Closet/The Larry Sanders Show) and David Koechner (Another Period/Hank/The Office) - Mary and David are guests on @midnight on Comedy Central at midnight.
- John Lithgow (3rd Rock from the Sun/Twenty Good Years) - John appears on LIVE! with Kelly, so check your listings.
- Jamie Lee Curtis (Scream Queens/Anything But Love) - Jamie Lee is a guest on Harry, so check your local listings.
- Erinn Hayes (Kevin Can Wait/Guys with Kids/Worst Week) - Erinn plays a celeb guessing game with Rach, who’s serving up no-fail make-your-own takeout, on Rachael Ray, so check your local listings.
- Mary Steenburgen (The Last Man on Earth/Ink) - Mary joins the Chew Crew on ABC's The Chew at 1pm ET/12pm PT/CT.
- Ana Gasteyer (People of Earth/Lady Dynamite/Suburgatory) - Ana will be on New York Live on WNBC in New York at 12:30pm ET. She will also be on NBC's Today in the 10am hour.
- Cheryl Hines (Son of Zorn/Suburgatory/Curb Your Enthusiasm) - Cheryl is a guest on Home & Family on Hallmark Channel at 10am ET/PT.
- Abbi Jacobson (Broad City) - Abbi will be on ABC's Good Morning America sometime between 7-9am. She will also be on the AOL Build Show 4pm.
- Don Rickles (C.P.O. Sharkey/Daddy Dearest) - Don is a guest on NBC's Today sometime between 7-9am.
- Nico Tortorella (Younger) - Nico appears on Access Hollywood Live, so check your local listings.