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!

DIGITAL NEWS
 
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 Amazon.com 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 WBShop.com. 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 Amazon.com and Amazon.ca, 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 TVShowsOnDVD.com'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.


UPCOMING WEEK PREVIEW

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 FEATURE REVIEW



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)

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

Related links:
SitcomsOnline.com DVD Reviews Page
Perry Mason on TV.com

FOLLOW ME

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!


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

Friday, December 2

Last Man Standing - "Precious Snowflakes" (ABC, 8:00PM ET/PT)
Mandy chooses local-celebrity Mike as the speaker for her business school’s graduation. After learning that the school requires his speech to be PC and micro-agression free, Mike decides whether or not to play by the rules. Meanwhile, Eve’s friend Cammy (Sarah Gilman) is home from college, bragging about how fantastic her new life has been, leaving Eve feeling slightly fruitless and discouraged.

Dr. Ken - "D.K's New Girlfriend" (ABC, 8:30PM ET/PT)
When D.K. overhears Allison complain about him overstaying his welcome, he decides to move in with his girlfriend of three weeks. Meanwhile, Pat wants Dave to pretend he’s his adopted son; and Allison is convinced Molly wants to talk about something when she suggests they do a spa day, but the tables turn when Molly is the one doling out the advice.

I Love Lucy - "I Love Lucy Christmas Special" (CBS, 8:00PM ET/PT)
The I LOVE LUCY CHRISTMAS SPECIAL features “The Christmas Episode” and the newly colorized “Lucy Gets in Pictures.” Both were colorized with a vintage look, a nod to the 1950s period in which the shows were filmed. The main titles and end credits of the two episodes are seamlessly combined into one set at the beginning and end of the hour, with no interruption between the episodes.

“The Christmas Episode” finds the Ricardos and Mertzes decorating Lucy and Ricky’s Christmas tree and reminiscing about how their lives have changed since the arrival of the Ricardos’ son, Little Ricky (Keith Thibodeaux). Flashbacks recall the night Lucy tells Ricky she is pregnant, the time Lucy shows up unexpectedly as part of a barbershop quartet and the day Ricky and the Mertzes rehearse taking Lucy to the maternity ward.

“The Christmas Episode” was first broadcast on CBS in December 1956. The episode was not included in the series’ long history of rebroadcasts, first on CBS Daytime and later in syndication. Thought to be lost, CBS rediscovered the episode in 1989.

In the newly colorized “Lucy Gets in Pictures,” Lucy’s lifelong dream of appearing in a motion picture seems to have come true when Ricky arranges for her to play a showgirl in a new musical. Unfortunately, the enormous feathered headdress she is expected to wear as she descends a staircase proves to be too cumbersome. After numerous mishaps on the stairs, the musical’s frustrated director (Lou Krugman) decides to make a change.

“Lucy Gets in Pictures” was originally broadcast Feb. 21, 1955, and was an immediate favorite not only of viewers, but of Lucille Ball herself. She restaged the famous headdress scene, again with Krugman, in the 1962 CBS special, “Opening Night,” and in 1965 in a slightly modified form, this time with actor Danny Thomas, in her second CBS series, “The Lucy Show.”

Liv and Maddie: Cali Style - "Cali Christmas-a-Rooney" (Disney Channel, 8:00PM ET/PT)
Maddie gets upset that she can't be in Wisconsin for Christmas, so Liv helps cheer her up.

Girl Meets World - "Girl Meets a Christmas Maya" (Disney Channel, 8:30PM ET/PT)
As Christmas approaches, Riley gets excited to celebrate her favorite holiday, but for Maya, the holidays only bring back unhappy memories from her childhood.

Bunk'd - "How the Griff Stole Christmas" (Disney Channel, 8:00PM ET/PT)
The holidays arrive at Camp Kikiwaka with everyone in good spirits -- except for Griff.

Complete TV Listings


Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows (Week of November 28)

Friday, December 2

  • Chelsea Handler (Are You There, Chelsea?) - Watch Chelsea on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon at 11:34pm on NBC.
  • John Goodman (Roseanne/Normal, Ohio) - John appears on a repeat of Late Night with Seth Meyers at 12:36am on NBC.
  • Andrew Rannells (Girls/The New Normal) - Andrew is a guest on a repeat of Late Night with Seth Meyers at 12:36am on NBC.
  • Holland Taylor (Two and a Half Men/The Powers That Be/Bosom Buddies) - Holland chats with the ladies of The View on ABC at 11am ET/10am CT-PT.
  • Melissa Rauch (The Big Bang Theory) - Melissa appears on The Talk on CBS at 2pm ET/1pm CT-PT.
  • Busy Philipps (Vice Principals/Cougar Town) - Busy guest co-hosts LIVE! with Kelly, so check your listings.
  • Randall Park (Fresh Off the Boat) - Randall stops by LIVE! with Kelly, so check your listings.
  • Scott Patterson (Aliens in America) - Scott is a guest on Rachael Ray, so check your local listings.
  • Kevin Quinn (Bunk'd) - Kevin appears on People Now at 8:30am.
  • Miss Piggy (The Muppets) - NBC's Today catches up with Miss Piggy in the 10am hour.
  • Gaby Hoffmann (Transparent/Someone Like Me) - Gaby appears on Chelsea on Netflix.