Saturday, December 08, 2012

Digital Digest: Veep - The Complete First Season Coming to Blu-ray and DVD March 26; Perry Mason - Season 8, Volume 1 DVD Review

Welcome to Digital Digest! We're only a few weeks away from the new year. We have some news on upcoming releases, a preview of Tuesday's releases, and a review of Perry Mason - Season 8, Volume 1. Let's get going!

HBO has announced that Veep - The Complete First Season will be coming to Blu-ray and DVD on March 26. Award winner Julia Louis-Dreyfus (Seinfeld) stars in Veep, the new HBO comedy series created by Oscar nominee Armando Iannucci (In the Loop). A 3-disc Blu-ray/DVD combo will have a MSRP of $49.99. The 2-disc DVD version will have a MSRP of $39.98. Special features on both releases include 12 audio commentaries by the cast and crew, outtakes and deleted scenes, 2 featurettes ("The Making of Veep," and "Veep: Misspoke"), and a "Veep: Obesity" PSA.

Package art has been posted for Lionsgate Entertainment's Cougar Town - The Complete Third Season. The 2-disc set will have a MSRP of $19.98 and is scheduled to be released on February 5. There's currently no listing for it on yet, but it should be available for pre-order soon. Lionsgate is also re-releasing the first two seasons at the same price on the same day, with the same cover art as the previous sets. As we previously mentioned, Cougar Town is returning for a fourth season on TBS starting Tuesday, January 8, 2013.

Before Lynda Carter took over the role, Cathy Lee Crosby starred in the 1974 pilot of Wonder Woman. Warner Archive Collection is releasing it this Tuesday, December 11. The single-disc set has a running time of 73 minutes and will cost $14.95 at Ricardo Montalban plays the laconic lothario who lurks at the top of a conspiracy to make off with ultra-secret code books, leading Agent Prince to discover an Amazon sister-in-exile (Anitra Ford).

VEI's In Search of... - The Complete Series has apparently started shipping directly from their store (update: the set was received December 10). It's also available at and, but there's no guarantee when it will be shipping. Your best bet would probably be to order it directly from VEI via their store. We'll keep you posted on any additional details. We plan on reviewing it soon in Digital Digest. Read's post on the delays for VEI's complete series sets.

Warner Archive is releasing Police Academy: The Animated Series - Volume One this Tuesday, December 11. The 1988-1989 animated spin-off ran for 2 seasons and 64 (or 65) episodes. The Volume One release will contain 30 episodes on 3 discs. It will be available as a MOD release.

Finally, Shout! Factory will be releasing Quincy, M.E. - Season 4 on Tuesday, December 18. They've already announced that Season 5 will be available on March 19. The 6-disc set will have a MSRP of $39.97.


Tuesday (December 11) has a nice mix of releases from various genres. 20th Century Fox has Futurama - Volume 7 on Blu-ray and DVD. HBO releases the critically acclaimed Girls - The Complete First Season in a Blu-ray/DVD combo and on DVD. Shout! Factory gives us Hazel - The Complete Fourth Season. Look for our review of that set soon. VEI brings us In Search of... - The Complete Series, the 1976-1982 documentary series narrated by Leonard Nimoy. CBS DVD/Paramount releases Mission: Impossible - The Complete Series in a 56-disc set. Warner Archive has Police Academy: The Animated Series - Volume One and the 1974 Wonder Woman pilot (starring Cathy Lee Crosby) as MOD releases.


Blog DVD Review: Perry Mason - Season 8, Volume 1 (CBS DVD, $49.99)
by skees53 

America's best defense attorney, Perry Mason (Raymond Burr) is back to prove the accused innocent and crush the dreams of more overzealous prosecutors (or really, just one) 15 more times in Perry Mason - Season 8, Volume 1! By now, you know the story (and formula) of the series: a person is accused of a crime that he or she "very clearly" committed based upon evidence, and Perry must go out of his way to show that his defendant not only did not commit the crime, but in many cases, is able to show who actually did. And in every single episode of the series, he always won. Always.
In the first episode of the season, "The Case of the Missing Button," blackmail during a divorce case accidentally leads to murder. Politics turns fatal in "The Case of the Paper Bullets." In "The Case of the Scandalous Sculptor," a woman is accused of killing the model whom her husband (an artist) is sculpting. A man turns up dead after he catches his niece stealing money from him in "The Case of the Sleepy Slayer." In "The Case of the Betrayed Bride," things don't go so well when a recently widowed aunt returns to town with a new husband, whom the family suspects is a gold-digging gigolo. An uncle ends up dead after his nephew suspects him of shady dealings in "The Nautical Knot." In "The Case of the Bullied Bowler," a conflict about a bowling alley that a woman is determined to get shut down turns in to much, much more when it actually is shut down. A trip to Switzerland is no vacation at all for Perry in "The Case of a Place Called Midnight."

A woman is determined to discredit a big-time movie producer whom she believes ruined her father's life in "The Case of the Tragic Trophy." In "The Case of the Reckless Rockhound," a woman is accused of killing her husband's ex-business partner. A probation officer is charged with murder in "The Case of the Latent Lover." A money exchange involving Confederate money turns to murder in "The Case of the Wooden Nickels." A woman hoping to represent a new fashion line is charged with murder in "The Case of the Blonde Bonanza" after the promoter of the fashion line turns up dead. When the boss of a young engineer turns up dead in "The Case of the Ruinous Road," Perry finds a lot of scandal everywhere. An aspiring singer is accused of murdering a shady agent in "The Case of the Frustrated Folk Singer."

The episodes seem to be unedited (as usual), with the following runtimes:

Disc 1:
1. "The Case of the Missing Button" (51:37)
2. "The Case of the Paper Bullets" (51:38)
3. "The Case of the Scandalous Sculptor" (51:37)
4. "The Case of the Sleepy Slayer" (51:39)

Disc 2:
5. "The Case of the Betrayed Bride" (51:37)
6. "The Case of the Nautical Knot" (51:38)
7. "The Case of the Bullied Bowler" (51:39)
8. "The Case of a Place Called Midnight" (51:37)

Disc 3:
9. "The Case of the Tragic Trophy" (51:37)
10. "The Case of the Reckless Rockhound" (51:37)
11. "The Case of the Latent Lover" (51:44)
12. "The Case of the Wooden Nickels" (51:38)

Disc 4:
13. "The Case of the Blonde Bonanza" (51:34)
14. "The Case of the Ruinous Road" (51:35)
15. "The Case of the Frustrated Folk Singer" (51:32)

CBS hasn't really bothered changing packaging much on these releases over the past few seasons, and this one is no different. The set comes packaged in a Viva case, with a large color photo of Perry on the front, and photos of other cast members above him. On the back, there are some black and white cast photos, along with a description of the set. Inside the case, you'll find a listing of all of the episodes, airdates, and descriptions, and of course the four discs. The first three discs contain four episodes each, while the fourth disc contains just three episodes. As in the past, the artwork for each disc is the standard CBS gray standard, with the series logo (not the actual one, but the one created for the DVD sets) and a listing of the episodes printed in gray on each disc.

If you've seen any of the previous fourteen releases of this series, it should be no surprise that the menus are very plain (but clean). Each menu has a listing of episodes, an option of Play All, and an option of Subtitles. There is a still photo of Perry on the side of the menu. And as in the past, chapters and menus are placed throughout each episode.
There has never been a video and audio quality issue with any of these sets, and this is no exception. It has consistently been very well cleaned up, with just a small amount of grain and debris and a little crackle in the audio... but it still looks much better than reruns aired on TV (and to be honest, even those look pretty good). Each episode contains English subtitles.

There are no special features on this set (once again), although it is worth mentioning that Volume 2 will have some "Law Day" promo one when it comes out. Still, we don't expect that to be too much, and it is likely that neither of the season 9 sets will have a lot either.

Much like the series itself, the DVDs have remained very consistent, and fans should be satisfied once again. I enjoy watching these episodes even more on DVD than I do on TV (although I have to admit, I'm nowhere near being caught up on all of them on DVD... there are just so many!), and even though you know exactly how every episode will end, it still doesn't take the fun out of the series. It is nice to know that the second half of this season is already scheduled in just a little over a month, which means we'll likely get the final two releases of this series very shortly after that. But until then, enjoy these 15 episodes, and pick up the older releases if you haven't already!

(4/5 stars)

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Perry Mason on


Who to Follow: Tom Bergeron (Twitter), TV Host (DWTS & AFV), Author, Recovering Mime.
Claim to Fame: Host of Dancing with the Stars, America's Funniest Videos, Hollywood Squares (1998-2004)
Why You Should Follow Him: Tom is our pick for the best host on television. He hosted Hollywood Squares for 6 seasons and won a Daytime Emmy Award in 2000 for Outstanding Game Show Host. He began hosting America's Funniest Videos in 2001. Since 2005, he has hosted ABC's Dancing with the Stars. He won a well-earned Primetime Emmy Award in 2012 for Best Reality Host.
Besides being a great host, he's also a super nice guy. He took the time to meet and take a photo with our very own Pavan backstage on the set of Dr. Oz yesterday. He also signed a copy of his book, I'm Hosting as Fast as I Can!: Zen and the Art of Staying Sane in Hollywood.
Mr. Bergeron has over 145,000 Twitter followers. His account is very active, with many hilarious one-liners. Fans are kept updated on his latest media appearances. He also has his very own bobblehead for sale in the ABC Store! He cautions that it WILL frighten children.
Pick of the Tweets: "1 1/2 of the original 2 1/2 men have slammed the show. Which, with apologies to Tim Allen, makes @MrJonCryer the real Last Man Standing." (November 27, 2012)

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

Sitcoms Airing Tonight

Wednesday, March 21

The Goldbergs - "The Scrunchie Rule" (ABC, 8:00PM ET/PT)
When Beverly gets a glimpse into a soon-to-be empty nest, she replaces her kids with the Mellor brothers, nursing Coach Mellor back to health after falling off the rope climb. Meanwhile, Erica and her college roommate get on each other’s nerves in their dorm room, especially when Valley Erica puts a scrunchie on the door and kicks Erica out.

Speechless - "N-O-- NOMINEE" (ABC, 8:30PM ET/PT)
JJ travels to a film festival where he’s been nominated for an award but is upset when he learns the real reason he’s being honored. Jimmy stays home and struggles to protect Dylan from the truth about an impending eviction. And Ray takes an unlikely and painful route to basketball stardom in hopes of winning back Taylor.

Modern Family - "Wine Weekend" (ABC, 9:00PM ET/PT)
The family goes on a wine tasting trip and stays in Haley’s new boss’ country house where the only rule is: Don’t touch the tiara! Meanwhile, Gloria and Mitch are invited to a party at Oprah’s house but can’t bring anyone else.

American Housewife - "It's Hard to Say Goodbye" (ABC, 9:30PM ET/PT)
Katie and Greg struggle to help the kids accept loss as a family friend suddenly passes away and as their pet pig, Hans Gruber, must be returned to his natural habitat.

Schitt's Creek - "The Gesture" (Pop, 8:00PM ET/PT)
David looks for a way to reconcile with Patrick after spending time away from him; Moira pitches the idea of a singles week event.

grown-ish - "Crew Love" (Freeform, 8:00PM ET/PT)
The crew prepares for Freshman Formal; Jazz revels in a new relationship.

Alone Together - "Property Management" (Freeform, 8:30PM ET/PT)
Benji and Esther get swept up in the allure of retirement life.

Complete TV Listings

Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows (Week of March 19)

Wednesday, March 21

  • Charlie Day (It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia/Luis) - Watch Charlie on Jimmy Kimmel Live! at 11:35pm on ABC.
  • Henry Winkler (Happy Days/Monty/Out of Practice/Arrested Development) - Henry appears on Jimmy Kimmel Live! at 11:35pm on ABC.
  • Sabrina Carpenter (Girl Meets World) - Sabrina is a musical guest on Jimmy Kimmel Live! at 11:35pm on ABC.
  • Keri Russell (Running Wilde) - Keri visits The Late Show with Stephen Colbert at 11:35pm on CBS.
  • Drew Barrymore (Santa Clarita Diet) - Drew appears on The Late Late Show with James Corden at 12:37am on CBS.
  • Kim Matula (LA to Vegas) - Kim stops by Last Call with Carson Daly at 1:35am on NBC.
  • Krysten Ritter (Don't Trust the B---- in Apartment 23) - Krysten appears on Conan at 11pm on TBS.
  • Jay Pharoah (White Famous) - Jay drops by LIVE! with Kelly and Ryan, so check your listings. He will also be on New York Live on WNBC in New York at 11:30am ET.
  • Bella Thorne (Shake It Up) - Bella is a guest on LIVE! with Kelly and Ryan, so check your listings.
  • Mila Kunis (That '70s Show/Family Guy) - Mila appears The Ellen DeGeneres Show, so check your local listings.
  • Jenna Fischer (Splitting Up Together/The Office) and Oliver Hudson (Splitting Up Together/Rules of Engagement) - Jenna and Oliver are guests on The Ellen DeGeneres Show, so check your local listings.
  • Jussie Smollett (On Our Own) - Jussie visits The Wendy Williams Show and Steve, so check your local listings.
  • Jason Jones and Natalie Zea (The Detour) - Jason and Natalie are guests on a repeat of Harry, so check your local listings.
  • Eric Christian Olsen (The Loop) - Eric appears on Steve, so check your local listings.
  • Louie Anderson (Baskets/The Louie Show/Life with Louie) - Louie opens up about his alcoholic father's rough childhood – and why he doesn't hold anything against him today on People Now at 8:30am.
  • Jason George (Eve) - Jason talks about Station 19 on ABC's Good Morning America sometime between 7-9am and the BUILD Series at 1pm.
  • Kyle MacLachlan (Sex and the City) - Kyle talks about Portlandia on NBC's Today in the 10am hour.
  • Dove Cameron (Liv and Maddie) - Dove talks about Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. on the BUILD Series at 12pm.
  • Liv Hewson (Santa Clarita Diet) - Liv talks about Santa Clarita Diet on the BUILD Series at 4pm.