Saturday, November 28, 2009

Blog DVD Review: Perry Mason - Season 4, Volume 2 (12/8)

It is Saturday, so that must mean it is time for the blog DVD review! Today we take a look at CBS DVD's Perry Mason: Season 4, Volume 2. Perry Mason of course is the very popular law series. The series stars the great Raymond Burr. See skees53's blog DVD review of Perry Mason: Season 4, Volume 1:

The verdict is in for Perry Mason: Season 4, Volume 2 (CBS DVD, $39.98) puts a true meaning into the phrase "innocent until proven guilty," as defense attorney Perry Mason (Raymond Burr) successfully takes on twelve more cases and proves that those who appear to be guilty and headed for a life in prison (or worse) are in fact not guilty of the serious crimes that they are accused of committing. The defendants appear to have no hope of proving their innocence, but for the right price, Perry Mason can take on the woefully incompetent district attorney, Hamilton Burger (William Talman), and prove any defendant to be not guilty. It is classic courtroom drama that has an all-too-predictable ending for each and every episode.

Season 4, Volume 2 brings the final twelve episodes of the fourth season together in a three-disc set, beginning with the February 18, 1961 episode, "The Case of the Wintry Wife," where a woman maliciously destroys an invention that could make her husband millions, then mysteriously ends up dead. And you know who the top suspect is going to be. In "The Case of the Angry Dead Man," a man almost dies, but later realizes how lucrative the life insurance payout would be if he really does die. In an ironic twist of fate, he really DOES die, so who will be suspect number one? A jewel thief goes horribly wrong when the perfectly planned scheme ends with the thief getting murdered himself in "The Case of the Blind Man's Bluff." A contractor is furious when he finds he has been swindled in "The Case of the Difficult Detour," and when the man who cheated him ends up dead, the contractor finds he has one big problem: he had a motive. In "The Case of the Cowardly Lion," some bizarre happenings at the San Diego Zoo may just help Perry defend a client.

In "The Case of the Violent Vest," a man is killed after paying off his wife's debts when he agrees to do so in order to leave town with a more attractive woman, and the circumstances of the murder are definitely a little bizarre. Perry has to prove that he has what it takes to defend an old war buddy in a court-martial proceeding at an Air Force base in "The Case of the Misguided Missile." A daughter fleeing the scene where her own father was murdered makes the daughter a prime suspect, as we learn in "The Case of the Duplicate Daughter." A man gets involved in the affairs of a female in "The Case of the Grumbling Grandfather," and it proves to be a bad choice when he is accused of murdering her estranged husband. The season ends with "The Case of the Guilty Clients," where a pilot in a test aircraft dies and it just so happens to be that the ex-wife of the designer of the aircraft is also the new girlfriend of the pilot. It sounds like we have a suspect.

The set is packaged in a standard DVD case much like every other CBS DVD releases, and really does not add much to be excited about. It is just too standard and basic. The front of the case has a picture of Perry Mason on an orange background with several color courtroom photos at the top of the cover. Inside, there is a listing of all of the episodes, and a listing of where each episode can be found on each disc. There is a brief synopsis as well as the original airdate for each episode. There are three discs in the set, all having the basic gray CBS DVD artwork (with the series logo on each disc), and each disc contains exactly four episodes. The menus, similarly, are rather dull and much like other CBS DVD releases, simply listing each episode and giving a Play All option. Each episode contains chapters at all of the appropriate places.

The video and audio quality on the set is, to say the least, superb. I have never found any problems at all regarding video and audio on any of these sets, and it really goes to show that a series can be very well preserved nearly fifty years after originally airing. The picture is a clean, crisp black-and-white picture with very minimal grain and debris, and the mono audio is very loud and clear. Each episode is closed-captioned. The episodes are all unedited, running at 52 minutes each, and the set doesn't even have the standard CBS DVD disclaimer warning of potentially edited episodes. That is very nice to not have glaring at you on the packaging. Unfortunately, there are no special features on the set.

It is difficult to complain about these sets, with the great video and audio quality, but it really would be nice to see some special features and a move to full season releases. I think that is the only real issue that I even have with the set. It is clear that fans are really enjoying this series, as this is the eighth release of the series (ninth if you include the special 50th anniversary release) on DVD, and it appears that CBS DVD will continue with the series. But with a series with a fan base like this, CBS DVD really should give fans more to appreciate on DVD. Still, I think the verdict on this set is pretty clear, and it didn't even need the services of the Honorable Mr. Mason to prove it: not guilty!

-- Reviewed by skees53
(4/5 stars)

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Related links:
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Sitcoms Airing Tonight

Monday, August 26

The Neighborhood - "Welcome to the Camping Trip" (CBS, 8:00PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
When the Johnsons invite the Butlers to go camping, Dave is taken aback by Calvin’s idea of roughing it. Also, Gemma and Tina cross paths with Maynard (Jim O’Heir), a general store proprietor who may not be as friendly as he seems.

The Big Bang Theory - "The Inspiration Deprivation" (CBS, 8:30PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
The concept of what it would mean for women everywhere if Amy were to win a Nobel Prize causes Amy to have a meltdown. Also, Koothrappali and Wolowitz try to relive the good old days after Wolowitz buys a scooter that looks like the one he had years ago. Oscar-winning actress Regina King returns as Janine.

The Big Bang Theory - "The Decision Reverberation" (CBS, 9:00PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
Koothrappali is worried people won’t take him seriously in his own field after publishing a paper that suggests he may have discovered alien life. Also, Leonard wants to be the principal investigator on a plasma physics study.

Mom - "Flamingos and a Dance-Based Exercise Class" (CBS, 9:30PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
Bonnie and the ladies help Tammy prepare for her first date since getting out of prison. Also, in order to take the edge off, Christy revisits one of her old vices. French Stewart returns as Chef Rudy.

I Ship It - "Superfans" (The CW, 9:30PM ET/PT)
Ella continues her job as a writer's PA on "Superstition," and Sasha is given an opportunity by being cast as a new character on the show; Winnie asks Ella for the latest details on "Superstition."

In The Cut - "Raging Bully" (Bounce TV, 9:00PM ET/PT)
Jay's sister visits with a new beau, who used to bully Jay; Smitty's barber's license expires, leaving him in jeopardy of losing it without Kenny's help.

Complete TV Listings


Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows (Week of August 26)

Monday, August 26

  • Julia Louis-Dreyfus (Veep/The New Adventures of Old Christine/Seinfeld) - Watch Julia on a repeat of Jimmy Kimmel Live! at 11:35pm on ABC.
  • Dakota Johnson (Ben and Kate) - Dakota appears on a repeat of The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon at 11:34pm on NBC.
  • Jon Lovitz (Mr. Box Office/NewsRadio/Foley Square) - Jon is a guest on a repeat of The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon at 11:34pm on NBC.
  • Sofia Vergara (Modern Family/The Knights of Prosperity/Hot Properties) - Sofia appears on a repeat of The Late Show with Stephen Colbert at 11:35pm on CBS.
  • David Cross (Arrested Develpment/Running Wilde/Oliver Beene) - David is a guest on a repeat of The Late Show with Stephen Colbert at 11:35pm on CBS.
  • Wanda Sykes (The New Adventures of Old Christine/Wanda at Large) - Wanda appears on a repeat of Late Night with Seth Meyers at 12:36am on NBC.
  • Jane Levy (Suburgatory) - Jane is a guest on a repeat of Last Call with Carson Daly at 1:35am on NBC.
  • Carly Craig (American Housewife/Burning Love) - Carly appears on a repeat of Last Call with Carson Daly at 1:35am on NBC.
  • Henry Winkler (Barry/Out of Practice/Monty/Happy Days) - Henry visits Conan at 11pm on TBS.
  • John Travolta (Welcome Back, Kotter) - John and his daughter Ella Bleu are guests on a repeat of The Talk on CBS at 2pm ET/1pm CT-PT.
  • Jodie Sweetin (Fuller House/Hollywood Darlings/Full House) - Jodie guest co-hosts a repeat of The Talk on CBS at 2pm ET/1pm CT-PT.
  • Portia de Rossi (Better Off Ted/Arrested Development/Nick Freno: Licensed Teacher/Too Something) - Portia appears on a repeat of The Ellen DeGeneres Show, so check your local listings.
  • Olivia Munn (Perfect Couples) - Olivia is a guest on a repeat of The Ellen DeGeneres Show, so check your local listings.
  • Finesse Mitchell (A.N.T. Farm) - Finesse appears on a repeat of The Real, so check your local listings.
  • Alysia Reiner (Better Things) - Alysia will be on New York Live on WNBC in New York at 11:30am ET.
  • Niecy Nash (Getting On/The Soul Man/Reno 911!) - Niecy talks about Black Girls Rock on ABC's Good Morning America sometime between 7-9am.
  • Christina Milian (Grandfathered) - Christina talks about Falling Inn Love on NBC's Today sometime between 7-9am.
  • Drake Bell (Drake & Josh) - Drake talks about Fuego Lento on People Now at 12pm.


New on DVD/Blu-ray (June/July/August)

The Brady Bunch - 50th Anniversary The Brady-est TV & Movie Collection Will & Grace (The Revival) - Season Two The Good Place - The Complete Third Season Life in Pieces - The Complete Fourth Season Brooklyn Nine-Nine - Season Six

06/04 - The Brady Bunch - 50th Anniversary The Brady-est Brady Bunch TV & Movie Collection
06/18 - Will & Grace (The Revival) - Season Two (Blu-ray)
07/08 - Man with a Plan - Season Two
07/09 - Broad City - Season 5
07/09 - Broad City - The Complete Series
07/09 - Life in Pieces - The Complete Fourth Season
07/09 - Speechless - The Complete Third Season
07/16 - Eight Is Enough - The Complete First Season
07/17 - The Practice (1976) - The Complete Series (WBShop.com)
07/23 - Brockmire - The Complete First Season
07/23 - What I Like About You - The Complete First Season
07/30 - The Good Place - The Complete Third Season
08/06 - Caroline in the City - The Third Season
08/06 - Caroline in the City - The Fourth Season
08/13 - I Love Lucy - Colorized Collection
08/13 - Leave it to Beaver - Seasons One and Two
08/20 - Brooklyn Nine-Nine - Season Six
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