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


Last year, Rebecca Black's infamous YouTube video "Friday" has had everybody "looking forward to the weekend" since it was first seen over a year ago, but we know that has always been true here with Digital Digest! And no doubt, we're back this weekend for our summer-ending blowout, which actually brings some news about things that happened over the summer (but we shamefully missed) and much more. But what is even better is that we have our review of Body of Proof - The Complete Second Season, and two very special contests for you, where you can enter to win a copy of Modern Family - The Complete Third Season (Blu-ray) or Family Guy - Volume 10. So let's get started with the "fun, fun, fun, fun" and get into this week's Digital Digest!


DIGITAL NEWS

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.


UPCOMING WEEK PREVIEW

Tuesday (September 18) has more 2011-2012 seasons of your favorites coming to DVD. These begin with Modern Family - The Complete Third Season (DVD/Blu-ray) and Suburgatory - The Complete First Season. Shout! Factory brings an older sitcom to DVD with Get a Life - The Complete Series. Finally, Tuesday also brings Body of Proof - The Complete Second Season. We have a review of this today in Digital Digest.


DIGITAL DIGEST CONTEST

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!



Modern Family - The Complete Third Season (Blu-ray) - TV's number one family is back for 24 more episodes unpredictable family fun! In this three-disc set, you can follow along as the clan faces an uproariously unpredictable array of family vacations, holiday hassles, troublesome in-laws, and surprising secrets, they still somehow manage to thrive together as one big, loving family. The new release hits store shelves on September 18. In our contest, you could win one of two copies of this release on Blu-ray!


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!



BLOG FEATURE REVIEW

 

Blog Feature Review: Body of Proof - The Complete Second Season (ABC, $39.99)
by Pavan

Body of Proof is back on DVD with 20 riveting season two episodes on a four-disc collection! Dr. Megan Hunt (Dana Delany) may have a prickly personality, but she's a brilliant medical examiner with unique techniques for solving even the most complex crime. Relive every unique medical mystery as Megan seeks justice for each victim, while also putting her life back together and repairing her personal relationships with the living.

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:

Disc one
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

Disc two
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

Disc three
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

Disc four
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!"

(4/5 stars)

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FOLLOW ME

Who to Follow: David Krumholtz (Twitter), star of CBS's Partners (premieres September 24)
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)

That's all for this week. Until next time, keep it digital!


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

Dr. Ken - Season One Mike & Molly - The Complete Sixth and Final Season Family Matters - The Complete Ninth Season The Lucy Show - The Complete Series The Mindy Project - Season Four

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
More TV DVD Releases / DVD Reviews Archive / SitcomsOnline Digest


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.

Complete TV Listings


Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows (Week of December 5)

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.