‘Peanuts’ Movies Are New Again…Sort Of

Courtesy: CBS DVD/Paramount

Courtesy: CBS DVD/Paramount

Charlie Brown, Snoopy and the rest of the Peanuts gang are coming to Blu-ray for the first time ever next week with the re-issue of two classic Peanuts movies—Peanuts: Snoopy Come Home and Peanuts: A Boy Named Charlie Brown.  The two new re-issues will be released Tuesday, September 6th in stores and online. While not the first time ever that the specials have been released to the masses (they were released on their own standalone platforms and in a pair of multi-movie sets just last year along with the full-length Peanuts movies Race For Your Life, Charlie Brown and Bon Voyage, Charlie Brown (And Don’t Come Back) ) these latest re-issues are a good fit for anyone that might not have been lucky enough to get their hands on the specials’ DVD re-issues.  That is due at least in part to each movie’s general presentation. That will be discussed shortly.  The story behind each movie is just as important to note as each movie’s presentation.  That will be discussed later.  The movies’ pricing rounds out each presentation’s most important elements.  It brings everything full circle in the movies’ overall presentation. As important as they are to note, audiences should also keep in mind that CBS Home Entertainment and Paramount will be re-issuing them again later this fall in a new Blu-ray dual movie presentation just as they were last year in DVD format.  Keeping that in mind, while these re-issues are enjoyable in their own right, audiences might be better served to wait for that upcoming re-issue and hold off on these.

CBS Home Entertainment and Paramount’s new Blu-ray presentations of Peanuts: Snoopy Come Home and Peanuts: A Boy Named Charlie Brown are enjoyable new re-issues for anyone that might not already own the movies’ DVD presentation.  That is due at least in part to the movies’ general presentations.  The movies’ new Blu-ray presentations are exactly the same as that of their DVD counterparts.  Audiences get in each movie just the movies, nothing more, nothing less.  In other words they are bare bones releases just like their DVD counterparts.  This is important to note because there are so many studios out there who make each of their titles’ re-issues different from one another in one way or another.  That isn’t the case here.  The movies’ Blu-ray presentations are mirror images of their DVD counterparts except for their platforms.  Keeping that in mind, the stories behind the movies are just as important to note as the movies’ presentations.

Courtesy:  CBS DVD/Paramount

Courtesy: CBS DVD/Paramount

The general presentation of Peanuts: Snoopy Come Home and Peanuts: A Boy Named Charlie Brown are key to note for each.  That is because each movie’s presentation is a mirror image of its DVD counterpart save for the fact that they are now on Blu-ray platform.  That means audiences both with and without the movies’ previous DVD re-issues will be on the same level in terms of what each title offers for entertainment.  Keeping that in mind, the movie’s stories are just as important to note as the presentations themselves.  Peanuts: Snoopy Come Home follows Snoopy as he suddenly packs up and leaves Charlie Brown one day without any explanation whatsoever.  At first everyone is left wondering why Snoopy left.  The final revelation as to Snoopy’s disappearance is one that will move audiences of all ages to both smiles and tears.  Peanuts: A Boy Named Charlie Brown is the first of the Peanuts movies to ever be created.  The movie follows Charlie Brown as he wins his school’s spelling bee and is sent to New York City to compete at a national level.  Meanwhile Charlie’s best friend Linus is in search of his beloved blanket after it “mysteriously” disappears.  Things seem to be going well for Charlie Brown at first.  But when the big day arrives, things don’t turn out quite as he (and his friends) had hoped.  The story still has a happy ending of sorts when it’s all said and done.  That being the case, its story is just as enjoyable as that of Peanuts: Snoopy Come Home. When the movies’ stories are set against their general presentation, the two elements join together to show even more why these new Peanuts Blu-ray re-issues are just as enjoyable as their recently released DVD counterparts.  The stories are general presentations of each movie are not the movies’ only key elements to consider.  Each movie’s pricing rounds out their most important elements.

The general presentation of Peanuts: Snoopy Come Home and Peanuts: A Boy Named Charlie Brown and the movies’ stories are both key elements of the movies’ new Blu-ray re-issues.  While each element plays its own important part in the movies’ collective presentation they are not the movies’ only important elements.  The movies’ pricing in their new Blu-ray re-issues are just as important to note as the other, previously noted elements.  Each movie’s retail MSRP is a little more than $17 each in its new Blu-ray platform.  That is according to Amazon.com, where audiences can order each movie online.  Wal-Mart lists each movie at the same price online. Best Buy has each movie listed at $17.99 in its new Blu-ray platform while Target doesn’t have either one listed.  Odds are when and if Target opts to include the movies in its online listings, that price will likely be close to the same if not the same as those listed here.  One can only hope that those prices will be lower in store.  Considering that each movie is presented in exactly the same fashion as their DVD counterparts, those prices far too high.  Given the price will be high simply because they are presented in Blu-ray.  But by comparison the movies’ pricing on DVD is only about eight dollars each.  That should make the movies’ Blu-ray platforms no more than $10 or $11 at the most…maybe $15, but no more than that.  Keeping this in mind, the movies’ pricing is perhaps their only downfall.  That is especially the case being that CBS Home Entertainment and Paramount are going to re-issue them again later this fall on a double-movie Blu-ray combo set; a set that will likely be an equal price for the two together as for just one movie on Blu-ray.  All things considered, CBS Home Entertainment’s Blu-ray re-issues of Peanuts: Snoopy Come Home and Peanuts: A Boy Named Charlie Brown are both enjoyable in their own right.  But any true Peanuts fan that doesn’t already own either movie on DVD will be better served to wait for the movies’ upcoming double-movie BD re-issue or to just pick up the movies’ DVD re-issues since they are the same as these re-issues and cheaper.

CBS Home Entertainment and Paramount’s new Blu-ray re-issues of Peanuts: Snoopy Come Home and Peanuts: A Boy Named Charlie Brown are both enjoyable in their own right.  Any true Peanuts fan will agree with that.  At the same time, true Peanuts fans will also question-along with this critic—if they were even needed.  That is because the general presentation of each movie is the same here as in their 2015 DVD re-issues.  There is no more or less in these re-issues as was presented in the movie’s 2015 DVD re-issues.  And the story presented in each movie is exactly the same as before, too.  The movies’ MSRP across the board in their new Blu-ray re-issues puts the final nail in their proverbial coffin.  While the movies are enjoyable thanks to their stories and their hand-drawn animation, that pricing—and the other  previously noted elements–proves that true Peanuts fans would be better served to purchase the movies in their DVD platforms if they don’t already own them.  Those that do already own the movies have no reason to purchase them again in these latest re-issues.  All things considered, even those that don’t already own these movies on DVD would be better served to purchase them on DVD (especially in their four-movie set) unless they can’t find them on DVD.  That is about the only reason that audiences should even consider purchasing them in their new Blu-ray platforms.

More information on these and other Peanuts releases is available online now along with all of the latest Peanuts news and more at:

 

 

 

Website: http://www.PEANUTS.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/snoopy

Twitter: http://twitter.com/snoopy

 

 

 

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KT Tunstall Reveals Release Date, Specs For New LP; Announces New Tour Dates

KT Tunstall Kin Cover ArtKT Tunstall has a new album on the way this fall.

The famed pop singer recently announced that her new album Kin will be released Friday, September 9th via Caroline Records.  The announcement of the 11-song record’s upcoming release comes not long after she announced that she will hit the road this fall for a series of live performances.  That tour launches September 14th at Lincoln Theatre in Washington, D.C.  It runs through October 3rd in Los Angeles, California.  Tickets can be purchased for each date online here.  The full tour schedule is noted below.

 

US Tour Dates:

 

September 14 Lincoln Theatre Washington, DC
September 15 Danforth Music Hall Toronto, ONT
September 17 Royale Boston, MA
September 18 Theatre of Living Arts Philadelphia, PA
September 19 Irving Plaza New York, NY
September 21 House of Blues Chicago, IL
September 22 The Vogue Indianapolis, IN
September 23 Barrymore Theatre Madison, WI
September 24 Fine Line Music Cafe Minneapolis, MN
September 27 The Crocodile Seattle, WA
September 28 Wonder Ballroom Portland, OR
September 29 Commodore Ballroom Vancouver, BC
October 2 House of Blues San Diego, CA
October 3 The Fonda Theatre Los Angeles, CA

 

Tunstall was very candid in discussing her new album in a recent interview, noting that Kin almost didn’t happen.  That was because she was in a place only a few years ago that saw her step away from music.  “As an artist I feel like I died,” she says. “I stopped. I gave up. I didn’t want to do it anymore,” she said.  She went on to note that Kin did happen because she had time to do some thinking, and in turn crafted Kin.  “The truth is, I’ve finally made peace with being a pop songwriter,” she said.  “This record was very much embracing my dharma as an artist, which is to write positive songs that have muscle, but also show their vulnerability.”

Courtesy:  Carolina Records

Courtesy: Carolina Records

Tunstall also has a new EP titled Golden State that is available now.  It is available online via Barnes & Noble Booksellers’ online storeKin, meanwhile, is available now for pre-order here.  A limited number of signed copies of Kin will be available online via Amazon.  And Barnes & Noble will also have the album available as an exclusive, limited edition colored vinyl.  Kin’s full track listing is noted below.

 

 

 

 

KIN full track listing:
1. Hard Girls
2. Turned A Light On
3. Maybe It’s A Good Thing
4. Evil Eye
5. It Took Me So Long To Get Here, But Here I Am
6. On My Star
7. Two Way
8. Run On Home
9. KIN
10. Everything Has Its Shape
11. Love Is An Ocean

 

More information on Kin is available online now along with all of KT Tunstall’s latest news and more at:

 

 

 

Website: http://kttunstall.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/kttunstall

Twitter: http://twitter.com/kttunstall

 

 

 

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Virgil Films To Release New ‘Back To The Future’ Documentary Next Month

Courtesy: Virgil Films

Courtesy: Virgil Films

Universal’s Back To The Future trilogy is one of the most famous and beloved franchises in Hollywood’s history.  More than thirty years after the trilogy’s first film debuted, the BTTF franchise is still beloved among audiences of all ages.  It has been released and re-issued on home video and digital platforms more than once, and even spawned a short-lived animated series, which itself finally received the home video treatment for the first time ever in 2015.  Some audiences have even tried to recreate the series’ iconic time traveling auto, a Delorean as part of their fandom.  One would think that with the popularity of the franchise, and the iconic car at the center of the series, that the car would always have its own special place in the halls of Hollywood’s auto history.  Sadly that wasn’t originally the case.  And in Virgil Films’ new documentary OUTATIME: Saving The Delorean Time Machine, audiences will discover the story of the “timeless” car and the efforts to save it for themselves.

OUTATIME: Saving The Delorean Time Machine will be released on DVD, Blu-ray, and digital platforms Tuesday, July 19th.  It follows the efforts by Universal Studios and Back To The Future co-creator and producer Bob Gale to bring Doc Brown’s (Christopher Lloyd) famed four-wheeled time machine back to its one-time glory.  Directed by Steve Concotelli, the documentary is presented in the vein of Top Gear, Counting Cars, and American Chopper.  It  includes full-length commentary by Concotelli and Joe Walser, who headed up the Delorean’s restoration as a special bonus feature along with deleted scenes, footage from the documentary’s world premiere, a restoration photo gallery, and much more.  Audiences can order OUTATIME: Saving The Delorean Time Machine now via Amazon.  More information on this and other titles from Virgil Films is available online now at:

 

 

Website: http://www.virgilfilmsent.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/VirgilFilms

Twitter: http://twitter.com/virgilfilms

 

 

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Michael Franti And Spearhead Premiere Latest LP’s Lead Single

Courtesy: Fantasy Records

Courtesy: Fantasy Records

Michael Franti and Spearhead will release their latest full-length studio recording this summer.  The album, Soulrocker, is currently scheduled to be released Friday, June 3rd in stores and online.  Ahead of the album’s release the duo debuted one of the album’s songs over the weekend.

‘We Are All Earthlings’ was debuted this past Friday in honor of Earth Day.  The song, Franti explains, is a tribute to all of the people of the planet and to the planet itself.  “I believe in making music for one reason, which is, I care about people and the planet,” he said.  ‘We Are All Earthlings’ is a song that honors the beauty and importance of every single living thing on this Earth; a reminder that we are ALL Earthlings and we are in this together.”  Audiences can stream the song online now via Soundcloud.  The song was released in partnership with the Earth Day Network.  Earth Day Network representative Tim McHugh discussed the song’s premiere and its importance in spreading the message of concer for the Earth to more people.  “Earth Day is the single largest worldwide environmental event each year,” McHugh said.  And each year something special happens to set it apart and move our cause just a little bit further down the road. This year we are glad to be able to partner with Michael Franti and his incredible new song ‘We Are All Earthlings.’ It will help us reach out and communicate to new groups of people and make our common concern for the earth just that much more vital and powerful.”

Along with the song’s stream Franti also recently released a mini-documentary titled Why I Make Music.  The presentation backs up Franti’s words, proving that he not only talks the talk but walks the walk, too.  Audiences can view the program now online via Franti’s official YouTube channel.

Michael Franti and Spearhead recently wrapped the first leg of their tour in support of Soulrocker and is taking some time off before heading back out on the road on Friday, May 27th in Napa, California. The duo’s upcoming tour currently runs through Sunday, August 28th in Santa Fe, New Mexico.  The pair’s current tour schedule is noted below.

 

CATCH MICHAEL FRANTI & SPEARHEAD ON TOUR:
 
^ w/ Chali 2na & The Funk Hunters
* w/ G. Love & Special Sauce
** w/ Zella Day
 
DATE                          CITY                                       VENUE
Fri
4/22
New Orleans, LA
Nolafunk Jazzfest Series @ Republic
Sat
4/23
Oxford, MS
Double Decker Arts Festival
Sun
4/24
Atlanta, GA
Sweetwater 420 Festival
Fri
5/27
Napa, CA
BottleRock Music Festival
Sun
5/29
Monterey, CA
California Roots Music and Arts Festival
Thu
6/2
Jim Thorpe, PA
Penn’s Peak
Fri
6/3
Pittsburgh, PA
Three Rivers Festival
Sun
6/5
Hunter, NY
Mountain Jam
Sun
6/12
Russell Township, OH
LaurelLive
^Wed
6/15
Portland, ME
Thompson’s Point
^Thu
6/16
Boston, MA
House of Blues
^Fri
6/17
Silver Spring, MD
The Fillmore
Sat
6/18
Stratton, VT
Wanderlust Festival
^Sun
6/19
Philadelphia, PA
The Fillmore
^Tue
6/21
Ann Arbor, MI
Ann Arbor Summer Festival
^Wed
6/22
Grand Rapids, MI
Meijer Gardens
Fri
6/24
Des Moines, IA
Simon Estes Amphitheater
Sat
6/25
St. Paul, MN
Twin Cities Jazz Fest
^Sun
6/26
Bayfield, WI
Lake Superior Big Top Chautauqua
^Tue
6/28
Chicago, IL
Concord Music Hall
Thu
6/30
Milwaukee, WI
Summerfest
Sat
7/2
Ottawa, ON
Ottawa Jazz Festival
Fri
7/29
Kaslo, BC
Kaslo Jazz Festival
Wed
8/3
Costa Mesa, CA
Pacific Amphitheatre*
Thu
8/4
Mammoth Lakes, CA
Mammoth Festival**
Fri
8/5
Flagstaff, AZ
Pepsi Amphitheater**
Sat
8/6
Durango, CO
Three Springs**
Sun
8/7
Morrison, CO
Red Rocks Amphitheatre**
Tue
8/9
Salt Lake City, UT
Red Butte Garden
Thu
8/11
Bend, OR
Les Schwab Amphitheater**
Fri
8/12
Troutdale, OR
Edgefield**
Sat
8/13
Tamarack, ID
The Huckleberry Jam
Tue
8/16
Missoula, MT
Big Sky Brewing Company**
Wed
8/17
Spokane, WA
Knitting Factory Concert House**
Fri
8/19
Lake Tahoe, NV
MontBleu Resort & Casino**
Sat
8/20
Lincoln, CA
Thundervibes
Thu
8/25
San Luis Obispo, CA
Avila Beach Resorts**
Fri
8/26
Las Vegas, NV
Brooklyn Bowl**
Sat
8/27
Tucson, AZ
The Rialto Theatre**
Sun
8/28
Santa Fe, NM
The Santa Fe Opera House**

 

Soulrocker will be available in stores and online on Friday, Jun e 3rd.  It can be pre-ordered now via iTunes, Amazon, and Michael Franti’s official online store.  It is available in a variety of bundles at Franti’s store.  Those that pre-order the album now via iTunes and Amazon will get an instant download of ‘We Are All Earthlings.’  More information on Soulrocker is available online now along with all of the latest news on Michael Franti and Spearhead’s tour, the duo’s latest news and more at:

 

Website: http://www.michaelfranti.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/michaelfranti

Twitter: http://twitter.com/michaelfranti

 

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Soilwork Announces Upcoming Dates With Arch Enemy

Courtesy:  Nuclear Blast Records

Courtesy: Nuclear Blast Records

Soilwork has announced a handful of new live dates for this summer.

Soilwork, currently touring in support of its latest album The Ride Majestic, will open for Arch Enemy on a handful of its upcoming European dates this summer.  The band’s schedule with Arch Enemy runs from Monday, August 21st to Thursday, August 24th.  That stretch is followed by a headlining date by Soilwork on Friday, August 25th in London, England.  As noted by the band’s front man Bjorn “Speed” Strid, the tour marks the first time since Ozzfest 2005 that both bands have shared the stage.  “We are very excited to announce this UK run together with our fellow Swedes in Arch Enemy. For the first time since Ozzfest 2005, we are once again sharing the stage!,” he said.  “It will be one hell of a riff-and shred fest, ladies and gents! We’re also announcing a special one off headline show at the Underworld in London on August 25th. It’s been a long time coming… do not miss out! See you in August!”

Tickets for the upcoming shows go on sale today, April 25th, at 9am.  They can be purchased online at seetickets.com.  The complete schedule for Soilwork’s tour with Arch Enemy is listed below.

 

21st August: (Support to Arch Enemy) Norwich -Waterfront

22nd August (Support to Arch Enemy) Sheffield – Corporation

23rd August (Support to Arch Enemy) Cardiff –Tramshed

24th August (Support to Arch Enemy) Southampton – Engine Rooms

25th August: (HEADLINE) London – The Underworld (tickets)

 

The Ride Majestic is available in stores and online now.  It can be ordered online via Nuclear Blast Records’ online store, and downloaded via iTunes, Amazon, and Nuclear Blast’s digital store.  Audiences can check out the videos for two of the album’s singles—‘Death in General,’ ‘Enemies in Fidelity,’—and the lyric video for the album’s title track via Nuclear Blast’s official YouTube channel.  More information on Soilwork’s upcoming tour, album, music, and more is available online now at:

 

Website: http://www.soilwork.org

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/soilwork

Twitter: http://twitter.com/soilwork

 

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Holy Grail Announces New Headlining Tour Schedule

Holy Grail has announced a new slate of tour dates.

Courtesy:  Prosthetic Records

Courtesy: Prosthetic Records

The band has announced that it will embark on an extensive new headlining tour beginning late next month in Las Vegas, NV.  The tour currently runs through June 18th in San Diego, California.  It also includes a performance in Raleigh, North Carolina at the Maywood Tavern on Sunday, June 5th.  Also along for the ride on this tour will be Devildriver, Hemlock, Incite, and Savage Master.  While fans wait for the band’s new schedule to launch next month, they can check out the video for the song ‘Sudden Death’ online now via Prosthetic Records’ official YouTube channel at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w6Y2VY7bWGM.  The song is taken from the band’s latest album Times of Pride and Peril.  It can be purchased in stores and online via iTunes, Amazon, BandCamp, and Prosthetic Records’ online store.

 

Courtesy:  Prosthetic Records

Courtesy: Prosthetic Records

 

The band’s current tour schedule is listed below.

HOLY GRAIL TOUR DATES
4/27 Las Vegas, NV – Vinyl &
4/28 Salt Lake City, UT – Metro Bar (w/ Incite only)
4/29 Boise, ID – Knitting Factory & 
4/30 Seattle, WA – Studio Seven & 
5/1 Spokane, WA – Knitting Factory & 
5/3 Grand Junction, CO – Mesa Theatre & 
5/5 Kansas City, MO – Riot Room & 
5/6 Milwaukee, WI – The Rave &
5/8 Flint, MI – Machine Shop & 
5/9 Cincinnati, OH – Bogarts & 
5/10 Nashville, TN – Exit/In &  
5/11 Grand Rapids, MI  – The Stache & 
5/13 Tulsa, OK – Downtown Lounge
5/28 Fullerton, CA – Slidebar #
5/29 Phoenix, AZ – Pub Rock #
5/31 Austin, TX – The Dirty Dog #
6/1 Dallas, TX – The Rail Club #
6/2 Houston, TX – Walters # 
6/3 New Orleans, LA – Siberia # 
6/4 Atlanta, GA – Drunken Unicorn # 
6/5 Raleigh, NC – Maywood Tavern #
6/7 Brooklyn, NY – Saint Vitus # 
6/8 Philadelphia, PA – Kung Fu Necktie # 
6/9 Worcester, MA – Ralphs #
6/10 Clifton Park, NY – Trickshots #
6/13 Columbus, OH – Park Street Saloon & 
6/14 St. Louis, MO – Fubar & 
6/16 Albuquerque, NM – Sunshine Theater & 
6/17 Window Rock, AZ – Window Rock Sports Center & 
6/18 San Diego, CA – Brick by Brick & 
& with DevilDriver, Incite & Hemlock 
# with Savage Master 

More information on Holy Grail’s upcoming tour is available online now along with all of the band’s latest news and more at:

 

 

Website: http://www.holygrailofficial.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/holygrailofficial

Twitter: http://twitter.com/holygrailband

 

 

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Paramount, CBS DVD’s New Hogan’s Heroes Series Set Is Enjoyable Even Being A Re-Issue

Courtesy:  Paramount Studios Home Entertainment/CBS DVD

Courtesy: Paramount Studios Home Entertainment/CBS DVD

CBS DVD and Paramount have been on quite the roll in the past year or so.  Between April and November of 2015 the two companies partnered to turn out no fewer than nine of CBS’ classic series in their full-series sets.  A small handful of those releases were first time releases while a number of others were re-issues including: JAG: The Complete Series, I Love Lucy: The Complete Series, Walker Texas Ranger: The Complete Series, and Star Trek The Original Series just to name a handful of those titles.  There were even re-issues of all eight seasons of The Andy Griffith Show in their own standalone sets courtesy of Paramount.  As busy as Paramount and CBS DVD proved to be in 2015, one would think that the companies would pull back a little bit this year.  That apparently has not been the case.  The Andy Griffith Show was re-issued in whole this past February on DVD.  And earlier this month another classic CBS series—Hogan’s Heroes—was re-issued (again) on DVD.  It marked the third time since 2007 that the series had been released in whole on DVD.  Even despite this it is still another welcome addition to any classic TV buff’s home DVD library.

Paramount and CBS DVD’s latest re-issue of Hogan’s Heroes: The Complete Series is not the first release of the classic sitcom.  It is the third time since 2007 that the series has been released in full on DVD.  Despite this it is still a welcome addition to any classic TV buff’s home DVD library.  It is just as welcome in the library of any of the series’ fans that might perhaps not already own the series in its entirety.  For those that perhaps have never had the pleasure of enjoying Hogan’s Heroes the series’ writing behind the series is the central point of this box set’s presentation.  This applies both to the show’s premise and the stories within its episodes.  The premise presents a group of Allied POWs (led by Col. Robert Hogan), in a Nazi concentration camp that is helping the Allies defeat the Nazis.  They also help other Allied forces escape the Nazis along the way.  All the while Hogan and his band of misfits generate plenty of laughs as they outsmart Col. Klink and his bumbling head of security Sgt. Schultz in order to accomplish their missions.  All of this is important to note because over the course of its nearly six years on the air (It aired from September 17th, 1965 – April 4th, 1971.  That is just short of six years) there was nothing like it on the air.  This includes both the huge variety of sitcoms that populated television’s then limited channels and its dramas, as well.  Even more interesting is that the series, thanks to its premise, caused its own share of controversy because of its playful, lighthearted approach to the life of POWs in WWII-era Germany.  Thankfully though, that controversy has turned to appreciation over the years since the series presented Klink, Schultz, and the rest of the Germans as being rather dumb and gullible.  It is the American equivalent of the propaganda films used by the Axis forces during the war.  Sure, it came along two decades after the end of the war.  But one could argue that since it came along during the Vietnam War, it actually could have served, in its own right, to be a way for people to get escape the tragedies of one war with a comical approach to another war.  That’s probably a stretch on the part of this critic.  Regardless it was—and is—still an original premise.  For that reason alone, the premise behind the series makes it an important part of the series’ writing.  It is just one part of the writing that makes this element so important in the series’ presentation.

The premise behind Hogan’s Heroes is in itself hugely important to the series’ presentation.  That is because in comparison to other series of the time, it was just one more series that made television so great in what has become known as television’s golden age.  That is because it was unlike its counterparts at the time much in the same way that those series were unlike other series at the time.  It’s just one part of what makes the series’ writing so important to its presentation.  The stories that were crafted for each of the series’ one hundred sixty-eight episodes are just as important to the series’ presentation as the series’ premise.  Over the course of its nearly two hundred episodes, the series’ writers came up time and again with totally original stories that kept the series fresh and entertaining.  “Kommandant Schultz” (Season 6) is just one example of what makes the series’ episodes so entertaining.  This episode puts Schultz in charge of Stalag 13 for a short period of time in order to train him how to be a commanding officer.  The reason for the training is that Hitler had requested all NCOs in every camp be trained.  The end result is a story line that while tried and true, is still just as entertaining her as in any other series.  Viewers will love watching as Schultz tries to overcome his bumbling personality and become a respectable officer, only to come up short.  He still gets the last laugh in the end, though.  Viewers really can’t help but root for him here even though he is supposed to be one of the bad guys.  Of course audiences can’t really help but root for Schultz throughout the series. And that is likely linked to John Banner’s (the actor who portrayed Schultz) real life personality.  This will be discussed later.

“The Great Brinksmeyer Robbery” (Season 2) is another example of how the stories crafted for Hogan’s Heroes prove so important to the series’ presentation.  This episode is so important to note because it was one of the many times throughout the series in which the series’ writers took Hogan and company out of the confines of Stalag 13 for its story.  The story itself is just as important to note.  Hogan’s morals are tested somewhat when he is forced with the realization that he and the other men will have to rob a bank in order to purchase a map that would help the Allies’ efforts in the war.  He obviously doesn’t want to have to rob a bank.  But he reminds himself that it would be a German bank.  That in turn sets up the funny story that follows.  The episode’s bank heist story is just part of what makes the episode so entertaining.  Schultz does catch Hogan and his men as they are planning their operation.  But they turn the tables, blackmailing Schultz because he is not supposed to be away on leave.  Schultz’s reaction is timeless, especially as calm and collected as Hogan is in the moment.  It is just one of the great moments presented in this episode that make it so fun and funny.  The others will be left for audiences to discover for themselves.  The end result of the episode’s story is just as entertaining.  All things considered, the whole of this episode’s story—from the story itself to the story’s smaller elements—shows once again why it is one more example of the importance of the stories’ importance to the series’ overall presentation.  It is hardly the last example, too.  “Is There A Traitor In The House?” (Season 5) is another example of what makes the series’ stories so important to its presentation.

“Kommandant Schutlz” and “The Great Brinksmeyer Robbery” are both prime examples of what makes the stories behind Hogan’s Heroes’ episodes so important to the series’ presentation.  They are not the only episodes that can be cited in proving this argument.  ‘Is There A Traitor In The House?” This episode is a good example of the strength of the series’ writing because it shows that the series could be entertaining even when Hogan wasn’t at the center of the episodes.  This episode puts Newkirk (Richard Dawson) at the center of its story.  Newkirk has to convince Klink, Schultz, and Berlin Betty that he has turned in support of the Nazis in order to get bombing coordinates to the British.  This happens after a bombing at the camp knocks out the Allies’ radio connection to Britain.  Even more interesting is how the story is executed.  At first audiences are actually led to believe that Newkirk has turned.  Though, it is revealed soon after that he hadn’t.  At the same time Berlin Betty has her own secret (or secrets).  That will be left for audiences to discover for themselves, too.  It’s just one of the story’s elements that makes it so engaging and even somewhat moving.  Audiences will understand and appreciate this when they see this episode for themselves.  It’s just one more way in which the episodes’ stories prove so important to the series’ presentation.  And it is hardly the last story/episode combination that can be cited in making this argument, too.  There are plenty of other stories presented across the series’ six-season run that could be cited just as easily.  Those stories and the stories cited here combine to show why the episodes’ stories are just as important in the bigger picture of the series’ writing as the show’s premise.  While the show’s premise and all of its stories combine to show the importance of its writing in the series’ presentation, the writing is hardly the only element within this box set that makes the set such a welcome addition to any classic TV buff’s home DVD library.  The bonus material contained within the series’ new box set is just as important as its writing to its presentation.

The writing behind Hogan’s Heroes is hugely important to the series’ presentation in its latest full series box set.  The bonus material included in the set is important in its own right to the set’s presentation.  The bonus material featured in this re-issue includes: a pair of original promo spots for the series, Air Force recruitment spots starring series star Bob Crane, a vintage add for Jell-o and Dream Whip starring the series’ whole cast, and behind-the-scenes movies narrated by Crane’s wife Patricia among much more.  The vintage TV spots are fun little additions to the set’s bonus material offerings.  That is because they haven’t been touched up or spit-shined for their presentation here.  They will take viewers back to another age of television in so many ways.  From cast-involved ads to direct recruiting spots, such promotion is rarely to never seen on television today.  So for television historians and classic TV buffs alike the spots are hugely important if only for their historical value.  The behind-the-scenes footage is just as important to the set’s presentation as any of the other bonuses.  In fact it could be argued that this bonus is the set’s key bonus.  That is because of the information shared by Crane’s wife Patricia.  Over the course of the “movie” audiences learn that John Banner’s portrayal of Schultz may have been rather natural.  That is because, as Crane reveals, he was considered to be very much like Santa Claus.  That is because of how much Banner loved kids and just how personable he was off camera.  Comparing Banner to Schultz, one could see how the connection could be made.  On another level viewers also learn about the proximity of the Hogan’s Heroes soundstage to that of The Andy Griffith Show and Gomer Pyle, U.S.M.C.  Sure it might not seem all that important on the surface.  But it shows just how busy Paramount’s lot was at the time of Hogan’s Heroes’ run.  It’s just one more way in which the bonus material included in this set proves to be an important part of the series’ presentation in this newly re-issued box set.  There are other bonuses not noted here that were also included in the set’s presentation.  Those extras along with the bonuses noted here make clear why the bonus material in whole is so pivotal to the set’s presentation in its own right.  They are collectively just one more part of the whole that makes this new re-issue of Hogan’s Heroes: The Complete Series so enjoyable for audiences.  The set’s packaging is just as noteworthy as its bonus material and its writing.

The writing incorporated into Hogan’s Heroes and the bonus material that accompanies the series writing are both important elements in the whole of the series’ newly re-issued DVD box set.  The writing, both in terms of the set’s premise and its stories, will keep audiences entertained and engaged from the series’ first season to its sixth.  The bonus material included in the set adds even more enjoyment to the set thanks to its historical value.  Even as entertaining and valuable as the series’ writing and bonus material prove to be in its presentation here, they are not the only important elements to examine in the set’s presentation.  The set’s packaging rounds out its overall presentation.  The set’s packaging is a little bit of a mixed bag.  The box set’s exterior packaging is much more ergonomic for audiences than owning each of the series’ standalone season sets.  However, a closer look at the packaging reveals a different picture.  The series’ first four seasons are spread across nineteen discs contained within one box.  Seasons Five and Six are presented in a separate box set.  Here’s where things get a little bit dicey.  The discs that make up the series’ first four seasons are placed one on top of the other top to bottom on either side of five connected leafs inside their box.  In other words they are packaged much in the older style of multi-disc DVD box sets.  This same method was used in Paramount and CBS DVD’s other recent DVD box set re-issues.  The problem with this style of packaging is that it greatly increases the chances of the discs becoming scratched and unusable over time.  On the other side of the proverbial coin, Seasons Five an Six are presented in the more modern style of packaging, with one disc on either side of the box’s leafs.  This is just as ergonomic if not more so.  It also serves to better protect the discs from scratching.  So while the packaging is in itself a good thing and somewhat better than that of the series’ previous DVD sets, it is also problematic in its own right.  Keeping this in mind, one can’t help but wonder what a Blu-ray box set of Hogan’s Heroes: The Complete Series would look like.  It definitely shows that a Blu-ray set would be a real positive for audiences if only for the set’s packaging.  A Blu-ray presentation could potentially even present even more bonus material.  Even if that shouldn’t happen anytime soon Paramount and CBS DVD’s new re-issue of Hogan’s Heroes: The Complete Series still proves itself to be a good addition to any classic TV buff’s home DVD library and that of any of the series’ fans.

Paramount and CBS DVD’s new re-issue of Hogan’s Heroes: The Complete Series is not the first time that this classic sitcom has been released on DVD.  Even despite that it is still a welcome addition to the home DVD library of any classic TV buff and that of the series’ fans.  That applies more so to those fans that don’t already own the series in its standalone season sets or its previous full series incarnations.  This is proven primarily through the set’s writing.  The original premise and equally original story lines will entertain audiences from beginning to end.  The bonus material included in this, the series’ most recent re-issue.  It adds even more enjoyment thanks to its overall historical value.  The set’s packaging, while at least somewhat problematic, is also more ergonomic than the series’ previous full series DVD box sets.  Though, it can be argued that the packaging alone necessitates a Blu-ray release for the series.  A blu-ray presentation would potentially be even more ergonomic than this DVD box set or any of the series’ previous full-series incarnations.  All things considered Paramount and CBS DVD’s new Hogan’s Heroes: The Complete Series re-issue is still a welcome addition to the home DVD library of any classic TV buff not already in possession of the series’ previous DVD sets and that of the show’s original fans in the same situation.  It is available now in stores and online.  It can be ordered online via Amazon at http://www.amazon.com/Hogans-Heroes-Complete-Richard-Dawson/dp/B017Q8QNJK/?tag=cbcoofsiofcb-20.

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