Saturday, February 09, 2008

Mini-DVD Review: Jackie Gleason: Genius at Work; Solomon's Weekly Rant: Nick at Nite Changes; Weird ION; Barkley Needs To Go from TNT

It is Saturday, so that must mean it is time for mini-DVD reviews and Solomon's Weekly Rant! First up, are the mini-DVD reviews. Today we take a look at MPI Home Video's Jackie Gleason: Genius at Work. Jackie Gleason: Genius at Work gives viewers a look back at one of the pioneers of television, Jackie Gleason, and his popular television series, The Jackie Gleason Show. See skees53's mini-DVD review of Jackie Gleason: Genius at Work:

Jackie Gleason: Genius at Work (MPI, $19.98) gives viewers a look back at one of the pioneers of television, Jackie Gleason, and his popular television series, The Jackie Gleason Show. The documentary is a 55 minute special that was produced for public television in 2005.
Many classic TV fans tend to remember Jackie Gleason's character of Ralph Kramden and the television series, The Honeymooners, but this retrospective tells much more about Jackie Gleason's television work, and how his show was much more than just The Honeymooners. Of course, that is an important part of his work, but there is much more. This documentary isn't like most other documentaries though. Instead of getting a bunch of interviews with a few clips in between, we mostly get a bunch of clips with a few interviews in between... which allows us to actually see first hand the work of Gleason without it being totally covered with views from people that are merely fans of his work. Who actually remembers Rudy the Repairman? What about Joe the Bartender? Or Fenwick Babbitt? In this documentary, you actually get a chance to see sketches from these characters, and not just brief clips either, but instead full length sketches as they were intended to air. Jeff Garlin hosts the documentary with Marilyn Taylor Gleason (Jackie Gleason's widow) also providing her own views on her husband's show... a show that she herself performed on at times.
The DVD isn't totally without special features either. We get excerpts (too bad it isn't the full thing, we actually only get about 15 minutes total) from the episode of The Jackie Gleason Show celebrating his 25th anniversary in show business. Honestly, it was a little boring to watch (an actual episode of the series that wasn't celebrating the anniversary would have been more interesting to watch), but we get more insight on Jackie Gleason's varying characters in the excerpts that we have from this episode.
This is a great DVD that fans of Jackie Gleason are sure to appreciate, and even if you aren't that big of a fan of "the great one," it still allows you to see a side of Jackie Gleason that gets omitted in these days where we all think Jackie Gleason was nothing more than Ralph Kramden. I would have liked to have seen more from these other characters, but what we have here gives a great "sampler platter" for all those that are even slightly interested.
Also out on DVD soon, The Color Honeymooners - Volume 2. See our review.
-- Reviewed by skees53
(4/5 stars)

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Solomon's Weekly Rant
Saturday, February 9, 2008
"Nick at Nite Changes; Weird ION; Barkley Needs To Go from TNT"
By Solomon Davis

What is with all these sudden changes on the channel called Nick at Nite?? It seems like the network is becoming unpredictable in a bad way with the way the program schedule suddenly switches up without warning. Earlier this week the programming manager changed the overnight schedule while he was driving home in his car and that's why the Tanner family was on my TV screen at 3am in the morning instead of Will Smith. No heads up or anything... just a new programming schedule so someone who may have wanted to record a show at 3am while they were sleeping would have recorded Full House instead. Not only that but the original plan by Nick at Nite to launch Family Matters in March has now been moved to June right at the start of the summer season. Maybe Nick at Nite's next sudden move can be to have a preschool theme marathon with The Cosby Show and Full House airing back to back all night hosted by Raven Symone and the Olsen twins so we can see episodes featuring Olivia and Michelle Tanner. It will be like Nick Jr. at night.

ION has decided to make a change on its schedule. They will replace a sitcom with a drama? Why can't the network have a separate day for dramas and keep the weekly primetime schedule the way it is with all sitcoms? No but ION decides to replace Who's the Boss with Baywatch at 10pm starting in March when they could have easily put another 80's sitcom in that slot or a sitcom from any other decade. Baywatch is more of a Saturday evening type of program... not something that you would watch during the week in primetime. This show will not last long in that slot and maybe then ION will not make a change like this in the future. Replacing Who's the Boss with Baywatch is like TV Land replacing Sanford and Son with Hawaii Five-0. I bet in the month of April ION's next acquisition will be Beverly Hills, 90210 and it will replace Alice in the 7pm hour.

I can no longer stomach the speech of Charles Barkley on the TNT halftime show. Barkley has become a total bore when watching that show because he takes forever to get to the point when he is analyzing a game. He speaks very slow and sometimes stutters andeven the host Ernie Johnson gets impatient and wants Barkley to hurry up and get to the point he is trying to make. It's clear that Barkely just like to hear himself talk and he doesn't realize he is slowing the show down and putting the viewers to sleep. I just wish he would stop talking like he is home on the phone instead of on live TV because he is destroying the watchability of the halftime show. However, he is at least better than Emmitt Smith on ESPN. He doesn't know how to use words at all. Time to go back to speech class for him.

Agree or disagree with Solomon? Discuss it here.

DISCLAIMER: Remember, Solomon is not the voice of SitcomsOnline. He is just stating his opinions and does not reflect what SitcomsOnline says or thinks. It is just his 'View' but it is always quite entertaining.


Sitcoms Airing Tonight / Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows

Thursday, February 29

Young Sheldon - "A Strudel and a Hot American Boy Toy" (CBS, 8:00PM ET/PT)
Sheldon explores Germany behind Mary’s back, Missy attempts to pull a fast one on George Sr. and Meemaw and Dale adjust to living together.

Ghosts - "He Sees Dead People" (CBS, 8:30PM ET/PT)
When Jay’s sister, Bela (Puna Patel), and her boyfriend, Eric (Andrew Leeds), visit Woodstone Mansion, Eric reveals a major change that took place after his near-death experience there over Christmas.

The Conners - "Throwing a Christian to a Bear" (The CW, 8:00PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
The Conners struggle to accept Becky's new boyfriend, a Green Bay Packers fan; Dan tries to impress upon Mark the importance of the family's die-hard loyalty to the Bears; Ben and Darlene try to get a loan for their new magazine.

The Conners - "Mud Turtles, A Good Steak and One Man in a Tub" (The CW, 8:30PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
Becky thinks that Jackie's new friend, a restaurant supplier, is taking advantage of them; Darlene is thrilled when Harris gets into Central Illinois State, but Harris might have found a better offer; Dan finds himself in an embarrassing situation.

Son of a Critch - "Thanksgiving" (The CW, 9:00PM ET/PT)
Mark takes directing the school play too seriously and finds himself without a cast and crew; Mark stubbornly tries to perform the play alone but realizes he's not a one-man-show.

Children Ruin Everything - "Hangover" (The CW, 9:30PM ET/PT)
Astrid and James think they've planned the perfect hangover day, but the kids, the neighbors and a bad internet connection have other plans.

Complete TV Listings


Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows (Week of February 26)

Thursday, February 29

  • Eugene Levy (Schitt's Creek/Greg the Bunny/Hiller and Diller) - Catch Eugene on Jimmy Kimmel Live! at 11:35pm on ABC.
  • Fred Armisen (Los Espookys/Forever/Final Space) - Fred sits in with The 8G Band on Late Night with Seth Meyers at 12:36am on NBC.
  • Annaleigh Ashford (B Positive) - Annaleigh is a guest on Watch What Happens: Live at 11pm on Bravo.
  • Malcolm-Jamal Warner (The Cosby Show/Here and Now/Malcolm & Eddie/Listen Up!/Reed Between the Lines) - Malcolm-Jamal and his mother Pamela Warner talk about her book A Parent's Guide to Managing Showbiz Kids on Access Daily with Mario & Kit, so check your local listings.
  • Laurence Fishburne (black-ish) - Laurence chats with the ladies of The View on ABC at 11am ET/10am CT-PT.


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

Leave it to Beaver - The Complete Series (Blu-ray) Father Knows Best - The Complete Series The Odd Couple - The Complete Series (Blu-ray) Three's Company - The Official 40th Anniversary Collection Gomer Pyle, U.S.M.C. - The Complete Series (Blu-ray)

11/07 - South Park - The Complete Twenty-Sixth Season (Blu-ray) (DVD)
11/14 - Leave it to Beaver - The Complete Series (Blu-ray)
12/05 - Father Knows Best - The Complete Series
12/05 - The Odd Couple - The Complete Series (Blu-ray)
12/12 - The Dick Van Dyke Show - The Complete Series
12/12 - Looney Tunes Collector's Choice - Volume 2 (Blu-ray)
12/12 - That Girl - The Complete Series
12/15 - Letterkenny - Season 11
12/19 - The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet - The Official Restored Complete Series
12/22 - Three's Company - The Official 40th Anniversary Collection (includes The Ropers and Three's a Crowd)
01/09 - South Park - Seasons 11-15 (Blu-ray)
01/16 - Ghosts (UK) - Season Five
02/13 - Gomer Pyle, U.S.M.C. - The Complete Series (Blu-ray)
02/27 - The Really Loud House - Season One

That Girl - The Complete Series The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet - The Official Restored Complete Series

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