Time Life’s Robin Williams Profile Is A “Genius” Tribute To A Legendary Entertainer

Courtesy: Time Life

Robin Williams is one of the greatest figures in the modern history of entertainment.  From his early career in the 70s in San Francisco to his later years, Williams offered smiles, laughs and even deep emotional feelings to audiences around the world.  That is why his death in 2014 is one of the greatest losses that the world has ever suffered.  Finding a way to pay tribute to such a legendary figure could not have been easy for anyone to do, but late last year, Time Life released a wonderful tribute Williams in the form of the new 22-disc collection Robin Williams: Comic Genius.  This tribute to a man who truly was a comic genius, is one that every fan of the late great entertainer will appreciate.  That is proven in part through the very content that is presented throughout the set.  It will be discussed shortly.  The program guide included with the set strengthens the foundation formed by the set’s content.  It will be discussed a little later.  The formats on which the set is available put the final touch to the set’s presentation.  Each item noted here is important in its own way to the whole of Robin Williams: Comic Genius.  All things considered, they make this collection a genius choice for any Robin Williams fan, regardless of which set said fans choose.

Time Life’s new Robin Williams profile, Comic Genius is a fitting tribute to the late, great entertainer.  That is proven in part through the set’s collective content.  The content featured in this expansive set includes performances from Williams’ earliest days in San Francisco, full-length episodes of his timeless sci-fi sitcom Mork & Mindy, appearances on Saturday Night Live, The Oprah Winfrey Show and The Tonight Show and even full-length stand-up specials and far more.  Audiences get to experience Williams’ evolution as an entertainer through all of the noted content.  It is interesting to see how nervous Williams obviously was so early in his career and how confident he eventually became in watching through the set.  That is one of the ways in which the content proves so important.  On top of that, the majority of the content is full-length content.  There are some pieces that were edited, such as one of his early San Francisco shows.  It was edited in order to focus only on his set.  The same applies with some of the SNL material.  The band performances are edited out, but that is not that much of a loss.  The full-length “Weapons of Self Destruction” performance is yet another way in which the content proves so important to the set’s presentation.  Originally recorded in 2009 in the nation’s capitol, the special finds Williams at the top of his game, sharing nonstop jokes about politics, the nation’s social state at the time and various other items.  His pacing throughout the course of the roughly 90-minute presentation is solid from start to finish, as are the transitions from one subject to the next.  It should be noted here that the noted special is not family friendly (nor are many of his appearances).  Interestingly enough, that in itself is key to discuss in examining the set’s overall content.  That is because while there is a lot of explicit content presented throughout the set, there is also some more family friendly material (I.E. the Mork & Mindy episodes).  Simply put, that contrast of his more explicit material and more family friendly content, alongside the overall profile of his personal and professional growth, makes this overall presentation one that is an expansive, in-depth presentation of who Robin Williams was.  It creates a whole new appreciation for all that he did over the course of his career to entertain the masses.  This shows overall why the content presented throughout this set is so important to the set’s presentation.  It thoroughly illustrates everything that made (and still makes) Williams a legend.  It is just one part of what makes this collection so enjoyable.  The program guide that comes with the set is just as important to the presentation as the primary content.

The program guides that are featured with Robin Williams: Comic Genius are important to the set’s whole in that they clearly outline the contents of each disc.  This allows audiences to know specifically what content is on which disc.  This saves plenty of time when trying to decide which disc a person wants to watch.  Many people discount this item, but in reality it is very important.  As if listing the general content is not enough, the guides also point out the original air date of each presentation within the bigger set.  This is nothing new from Time Life, and is just as welcome here as ever.  It gives the set a little more depth with that little history tidbit of sorts.  When this is considered along with the set’s general content, the whole of the items makes for plenty of enjoyment for audiences and plenty of reason to own either set.  While each element is critical in its own right to the overall presentation of Robin Williams: Comic Genius, they are just part of what makes this set so appealing.  Its availability on more than one platform adds to its presentation.

Robin Williams: Comic Genius is available on separate 12-disc and 22-disc sets.  The 12-disc set is spread across two discs while the 22-disc set is even more expansive, obviously.  Of course the 22-disc set is more expensive than the 12-disc set.  However, the extra money is money well-spent.  That is because it gives an even more thorough examination of Williams’ career on the big and small screen.  Regardless of which platform one chooses, audiences will still get plenty of entertainment and engagement from every disc and every presentation.  Audiences will see Williams’ roots, his late career and plenty in-between.  In other words, regardless of which set audiences purchase, audiences will have plenty to appreciate and enjoy, as has been evidenced here.  Simply put, regardless of which set one buys, audiences will agree that the set in general is a genius tribute to a comic genius.

Time Life’s recently released tribute to Robin Williams is a wonderful profile of one of the greatest entertainers in the modern history of entertainment. As noted in this review, that is due in part to the overall content presented throughout each of the set’s platforms.  The content shows Williams’ evolution as a performer while also showing his family friendly and more explicit side.  The program guides that compliment the content helps make choosing the content easy for audiences.  The fact that the set is available on two separate platforms – a 12-disc and 22-disc set – gives audiences options, and regardless of audiences’ choice, they will be ensured plenty of entertainment and engagement time and again.  Robin Williams: Comic Genius is available now.  More information on this and other titles from Time Life is available online now at:

 

 

 

Website: http://timelife.com

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

Twitter: http://twitter.com/TimeLifeUS

 

 

 

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No Joke, Time Life’s Robin Williams Retrospective Is 2018’s Top New Box Set For Grown-Ups

Courtesy: Time Life

The final hours of 2018 are upon us, and with those final hours nearing their end, so do Phil’s Picks’ annual year-ender lists.  One of this year’s final yea-enders examines the year’s top new box sets for grown-ups.

Grown-up audiences have quite a few options from which to choose this year in regards to box sets.  From the multitude of dramas turned out by CBS to the wider variety of titles released via PBS to material released via Time Life, audiences had plenty to enjoy this year.

This year’s list was actually relatively easy to develop even with the number of titles released for grown-ups.  Taking the top spot in this year’s list of best new DVD/BD Box Sets for Grown-Ups is Time Life’s Robin Williams retrospective, Comic Genius.  The multi-disc set, which spans two separate volumes, offers hours of entertainment while chronicling Williams’ evolution as a comedian.  This set is well worth the money and time.

The second spot in this year’s list goes to the second season of PBS’ British import crime drama Endeavour.  From its debut season years ago to this season, the prequel series to Inspector Morse has proven to be so infectious and head and shoulders above its American counteraprts.  That is thanks to its strong writing.

The bronze in this year’s list goes to the debut season of The CW’s Black Lightning.  The CW is filled out by so many superhero series today that it should re-brand itself as “The DC/Superhero Network” — note the sarcasm here — and even with all of the shows that it airs, this series stood out proudly in its first season thanks to its writing, acting and bonus material.

Along with these three titles, is a bevy of other wide-ranging titles, such as the second season of NBC’s The Good Place, the debut season of PBS’ new cooking series Milk Street and the fourth season of the network’s family history series Finding Your Roots along with Shout! Factory’s recently released Super SentaiGojin Sentai Jetman — The Complete Series and plenty of other titles.  As always, the top 10 titles on the list are just that, while the five that follow are honorable mentions, making a total of 15 titles.

Without any further ado, here for your consideration is Phil’s Picks 2018 Top 10 New Grown-Up DVD/BD Box Sets.

PHIL’S PICKS 2018 TOP 10 NEW GROWN-UP DVD/BD BOX SETS

  1. Robin WilliamsComic Genius
  2. EndeavourSeason Five
  3. Black LightningSeason One
  4. Finding Your RootsSeason Four
  5. Milk StreetSeason One
  6. The Good PlaceSeason Two
  7. Super SentaiGojin Sentai Jetman — The Complete Series
  8. The Durells in Corfu: Season Three
  9. Rowan & Martin’s LaughInThe Complete Series
  10. Star Trek DiscoverySeason One
  11. Rowan & Martin’s LaughInThe Complete Second Season
  12. Rowan & Martin’s LaughInThe Complete Third Season
  13. Rowan & Martin’s LaughInThe Complete Fourth Season
  14. Rown & Martin’s LaughInThe Complete Fifth Season
  15. Rowan & Martin’s LaughInThe Complete Sixth Season

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‘The Carol Burnett Show’ Deserved So Much More Than It Got From CBS On Its 50th Anniversary

Courtesy: Time Life

Over the course of 11 seasons, CBS’ The Carol Burnett Show was one of the biggest hits for the one-time powerhouse network.  Its mostly family-friendly brand of sketch comedy was the type of programming that sadly has been so lost today.  Thankfully Time Life has, over the past four to five years, released so much material from that timeless series, for the show’s original fans to enjoy along with a whole new generation of fans.  Late last year, CBS paid tribute (or so it would seem) to the legacy of The Carol Burnett Show with what was marketed as a 50th Anniversary celebration that was broadcast nationwide.  That broadcast was released on DVD Sept. 18 via Time Life and while it is worth at least one watch, it sadly falls short of being a true tribute to The Carol Burnett Show and its namesake.  One of the items that makes the presentation worth at least one watch is its clips of the classic variety show.  This will be discussed shortly.  Where the clips succeed, the celebrity interview segments sadly fall very short.  They collectively do more harm than good for the show’s presentation.  This will be discussed a little later.  The bonus material thankfully makes up – at least a little bit – for the damage done by the live segments.  Together with the clips of the series’ classic moments, that combination does just enough to make this presentation worth at least one watch, although it clearly falls short of expectations.

CBS’ attempt at a 50th Anniversary tribute to The Carol Burnett Show and its namesake host is a presentation that is worth at least one watch, but sadly not much more than that.  Rather, it falls quite short as a tribute, especially to what was and is one of the most important programs in CBS’ history and the history of television.  The clips of the program’s most notable moments are, collectively, among the only reasons to watch this home release of the special broadcast.  From the famed Gone With The Wind spoof to the clips of Tim Conway’s greatest moments (including the famous firefighter skit and the dry cleaners skit) to the now infamous “The Family” skit, which saw Conway tell his story about the Siamese elephants to Bernadette Peters’ performance of ‘All That Jazz’ and more, the clips presented in this special are the crown jewel of the special.  At least in watching the clips, audiences of all ages will be entertained, and maybe even be influenced to pick up any or all of the far more worthwhile Carol Burnett Show compilations that have been released ahead of this presentation.  As much as the clips do to make the DVD worth the watch, the interview segments counter the benefits of the clips.

The interview segments, which feature Carol Burnett talking to celebrities, such as Jay Leno, Jim Carey, Kaley Cuoco, Martin Short, Maya Rudolph, Jane Lynch and Steve Martin (just to name a handful) are honestly painful to watch.  That is because it is clear from the introductions to the interviews themselves that every moment has been rehearsed multiple times.  Even the baner, that is supposed to come across as natural, is anything but.  This is especially obvious through each figure’s body language in each segment.  From the clear camera turns (some of which were jumps ahead of the cues) to the obvious reading of the prompter time and again, to the way the groups even acted, none of the interview segments felt natural.  The problem with this is that it can so easily lead one to feel like the celebs tapped to take part were just going through the motions and did not fully want to be there.  Even the approaches to various topics and the tosses to the clips felt forced throughout.  Keeping all of this in mind, the live segments that are meant to be the central point of this “tribute” are clearly not a tribute, but more just an excuse for a celebrity showcase.  That is really sad, especially considering that this program was billed as a tribute to Burnett and her show.  Of course as much damage as those live segments do to this presentation, the bonus material included in its home release couples with the show’s bevy of classic clips to give audiences a little bit more to appreciate.

The bonus material is limited in this DVD, but is still at least somewhat entertaining.  The “Red Carpet Love” segment takes audiences to the red carpet ahead of the special, showing some actually natural moments that are also light hearted in the process.  This segment even features actual comments from the celebs themselves offering their well wishes and congratulations to Burnett.  It is nice to see, considering how forced their on-stage moments feel.  The commercial break interview segments are okay at best.  Burnett’s talk with now former Dancing With The Stars host Tom Bergeron is another moment that feels entirely forced.  There is also a discussion with what turns out to be some former dancers from The Carol Burnett Show who attended the show’s taping as audience members.  Between those two moments and the celeb interview segments, the whole thing just seems even more forced.  However, there was one funny and seemingly natural moment in which Carol Burnett Show designer Bob Mackie offers a rather witty joke about the shows costumes, which will not be repeated here for those who haven’t yet watched this presentation.  Keeping in mind all of this, the bonus material included in the home release of The Carol Burnett Show 50th Anniversary Special adds a little bit to the program’s enjoyment, albeit very little.  Luckily, it offers just enough that when coupled with the classic clips featured throughout the program, the whole of those elements makes for just enough to make the special worth at least one watch, but sadly not more.

CBS’ classic variety series The Carol Burnett Show is one of the greatest series to ever grace the airwaves.  It is also one of the elite series that made CBS a powerhouse in the network’s heyday.  Considering this, one would have thought that when the 50th anniversary of the series’ debut rolled around last year, the series would have gotten a huge tribute.  What was presented in its place was anything but entertaining.  Rather, as the recently released DVD presentation shows that it was little more than an opportunity for a celebrity showcase.  At least the program offers plenty of entertaining clips and a little bit of entertainment from the bonus material included in the DVD.  Considering all of this, the home release of The Carol Burnett Show 50th Anniversary Special proves to be worth at least one watch, but hardly a fitting tribute for a landmark series that deserved far more from CBS.  It is available now.  More information on this and other titles from Time Life is available online now at:

 

 

 

Website: http://timelife.com

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

Twitter: http://twitter.com/TimeLifeUS

 

 

 

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Time Life To Release Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame Concerts Collection Next Month

Courtesy: Time Life

Time Life Entertainment announced today that it will release a special new collection of live performances from the Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame next month.

Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in ConcertEncore is scheduled to be released September 21 on Blu-ray and DVD.  The collection features 44 performances and presentations from Hall of Fame ceremonies between 2010 and 2013.  The performances come from the likes of Rush, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Heart, Dr. John, Public Enemy, Alice Cooper and Rob Zombie and many others.

Along with the performances, induction speeches from Don Henley — as he inducts Randy Newman — Neil Young inducting Tom Waits and many others are also included in the recording’s overall presentation.

Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in ConcertEncore runs a total of 481 minutes (just over 8 hours). It will be presented separately on a four-disc DVD set and two-disc Blu-ray platform.  The DVD will retail for MSRP of $34.99 and the Blu-ray for $39.99.  It is part of a much bigger 25-disc set that can be ordered online direct via Time Life’s official store.

More information on this and other titles from Time Life is available online now at:

 

Website: http://timelife.com

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

Twitter: http://twitter.com/TimeLifeUS

 

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Time Life Gives Audiences The “Time Of Their Lives” Again With Fourth Season Of ‘Laugh-In’

Courtesy: Time Life Entertainment

The world is in a perilous state today.  People once perhaps friends have been divided by unscrupulous political and media heads.  The threat of war, economic strife and all kinds of other issues are way too prominent around the world, so it goes without saying that the world certainly could use a good laugh.  Enter Time Life and the fourth season of NBC’s classic variety comedy series Rowan & Martin’s Laugh-In.  Time Life will release the fourth season of the classic series next Tuesday, May 8.  It goes without saying that regardless of one’s familiarity with the series, this latest installment is another welcome watch for anyone looking for that good laugh.  The collective work of the series’ writers and cast prove that with ease.  The set’s bonus material offers its own interest, too.  It will be discussed later. The set’s companion episode guide enhances its presentation even more and will be discussed a bit later.  Each element is important in its own way to the collection’s presentation, and will be proven through this review.  All things considered, they make the fourth season of Rowan & Martin’s Laugh-In a welcome laugh riot.

The fourth season of NBC’s classic variety series Rowan & Martin’s Laugh-In is another welcome addition to the home collection of anyone looking for a fun escape from all of the tension and drama filling everyday life.  That includes the most devout Laugh-In fans and the least seasoned of its viewers.  This is proven in part through the collective work of the series’ writers and cast.  The rapid fire jokes (and their scenes) are products of their time, obviously.  But somehow, they are still so funny.  On a side note, one can’t deny the seeming influence of that approach on CBS’ similarly formatted show Hee-Haw.  That’s especially the case considering that Laugh-In ended in 1973, only two years after Hee-Haw had gotten its start.  Getting back on topic, there are jokes in this season of Laugh-In about the media, random skits involving an orchestra director, a meter maid, and more.  That’s just on the set’s lead disc.  The other discs feature equally fast-paced bits with jokes about literature, the Federal Communications Commission, world events and much more.  It all happens so fast that audiences are basically forced to pay attention in order to catch the jokes.  That’s the case in every bit.  What’s more, even though the jokes and skits are products of their time, they are still somehow so funny even now, decades later thanks to their delivery by the show’s cast.  Whether it’s hosts Dan Rowan and Dick Martin delivering jokes about politicians of the time, cast members Ann Elders and Arte Johnson delivering wild, random bits and more, the cast’s work on camera with each segment makes every line so funny.  Speaking of Johnson, the bonus interview with Johnson adds its own interest to the collection.  Alongside the interview with Lily Tomlin, the two interviews prove to be just as important to this set’s presentation as its jokes, skits and acting.

The bonus interviews that come with this season of Laugh-In are so important to note because of the insight that they offer into life off camera for the cast.  Case in point Arte Johnson’s sit down.  Johnson notes in his discussion, how well the cast worked together in regards to meting out lines and the general chemistry among the cast.  There is also note in his discussion about his own influence – one Peter Sellers – and the comparisons of today’s shock comedy to simple comedy.  His discussion makes clear that he was not happy with what has become of comedy in this era.  It’s eye-opening in its own right.  Tomlin’s interview is just as insightful as that of Johnson.  She talks in-depth about the evolution of her Edit Ann character, and how that character almost didn’t happen.  There’s also discussion on Suzy Sorority that connects the two together and so much more.  What’s really nice here is that unlike with Johnson’s interview, each topic is separated by its own slate.  That makes it easier to follow the discussions, thus ensuring even more viewers’ engagement and entertainment.  What’s really great here is that whereas Johnson’s interview is very straight forward, Tomlin’s interview offers its own share of laughs.  The one interesting theme that connects the two is the mention of how families would be able to come together to watch Laugh-In and how that is not the case anymore today.  It’s a simple statement, yet says so much.  It is a statement, once again, of how far from grace television has fallen since the days of Laugh-In and even similar shows like Hee-Haw, The Carol Burnett Show and others.  Thank goodness Time Life has resurrected now four seasons of this comedy standard.  Now having said of all of this, the interviews that come with this season of Laugh-In are still not the last of its most important elements.  Its companion episode guide is important in its own right.

An episode guide might not seem like much on the surface, but as this critic has pointed out many times with other releases, its value is more than just aesthetic.  The episode guide here, as with the series’ previous seasons, gives brief but concise descriptions of what audiences have to expect with each episode.  That makes it easier for viewers to decide on which episode(s) to watch, thus taking far less time in the overall process.  Having to go through disc after disc with no guide can get tedious to say the very least.  That tediousness can wear on viewers very quickly and easily.  What’s more, the episode guide even provides each episode’s original air date and the episodes’ guest stars.  To that end, not only is the episode guide an episode guide, but it’s also the starting point for a history lesson of sorts.  That history lesson can then lead to an even deeper appreciation of the show and – in the bigger picture – an appreciation of where television once was in comparison to where it is today.  Keeping this in mind, it should become clear why the set’s companion booklet proves to be its own important part of the set’s presentation.  When it is joined with the work of the series’ writers and cast and the bonus interviews, all three elements – discussed in whole – show clearly why this latest season of Laugh-In another laugh riot and such a wonderful watch.

Rowan & Martin’s Laugh-In: The Complete Fourth Season is another wonderful addition to any classic TV lover’s library.  It is just as welcome for those looking for an alternative to all of the sex and violence currently polluting television today, and a great way to get away from the tension in the news.  That is evidenced in part – as discussed – through the collective work of the show’s writers and cast.  While the jokes and skits are products of their time, there is something about the way in which they were written that still makes them funny to this day.  The same can be said of the cast’s execution of each bit’s script.  Regardless of viewers’ familiarity with the series, the cast’s execution of the scripts makes every joke so funny.  It shows the power of performance.  The bonus interviews with Lily Tomlin and Arte Johnson offer their own share of insight and entertainment.  They are the set’s only bonus materials, but are still entertaining in their own right.  The companion booklet that comes with the set proves to be more than just an episode guide.  It offers a starting point on a history lesson on the show and on television history.  Each element proves critical in its own right to this set.  All things considered, they make the fourth season of Laugh-In another entertaining entry from a timeless classis series.  It will be available next Tuesday, May 8.  More information on this and other titles from Time Life is available online now at:

 

 

 

Website: http://timelife.com

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

Twitter: http://twitter.com/TimeLifeUS

 

 

 

To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment reviews and news, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment reviews and news in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.

Time Life’s New Bob Hope DVD Will Entertain Audiences Of Almost All Ages

Courtesy:  Time Life

Courtesy: Time Life

Bob Hope is one of the most legendary of American entertainers.  From television to movies to much more Hope entertained thousands if not millions of Americans over the course of his life and career.  And while Hope is no longer with us his legacy anything but died.  That is thanks to the advent of DVD and Blu-ray technology.  His classic films and TV appearances have been released any number of times over the years on both platforms.  And next month three of those TV performances will be available on DVD when Time Life Entertainment releases the new DVD Bob HopeEntertaining The Troops.  The single-disc DVD compilation presents three of Hope’s classic military Christmas shows.  Given, there are only three shows presented here.  Regardless they are still a collectively important part of the DVD’s presentation if not the core element of its presentation.  The specials’ look and sound in their presentation here is just as important to note as the specials themselves.  That will be discussed later.  The set’s companion booklet rounds out its presentation.  It presents a short but concise outline for each special.  This plays its own role in the DVD’s presentation and will be discussed later, too.  Each element noted here is important in its own way to the DVD’s presentation. Altogether they make the DVD one that should be in every comedy lover’s home DVD library.

Time Life’s new Bob Hope collection Bob HopeEntertaining The Troops is hardly the largest collection of Bob Hope specials to ever be released.  It only boasts three of his Christmas specials—one from 1970, another from 1971, and one more from 1951—but all three are entertaining in their own right.  Collectively they still do more good than harm to the DVD’s presentation.  That is because they are presented in whole just as they were in their original broadcasts.  This includes all of the jokes (some of which might be somewhat over younger viewers’ heads and in other cases too grown up for said viewers) and without any retouching, re-mastering or anything else.  There is even a question and answer session between famed astronaut Neil Armstrong and the troops that becomes quite tense at one moment in one of the specials.  How and why won’t be given away here.  But needless to say Armstrong lived up to his reputation of staying calm and cool even in said situation.  One of the really funny jokes that Hope pulls is presented more than once.  He jokes with a pair of beauty pageant queens (one in the 1970 special and another in the 1971 special), asking them where they were born.  The women both answer, to which Hope responds, asking “what part?”  The women then respond saying, “all of me.”  It’s a time-honored joke that’s been pulled plenty of times by other acts.  But it is no less funny in these cases.  There are also some warmer moments in which Hope connects with his military audiences, joking about the situations in which they are set.  For example in one special he jokes about the quality of the food at a mess hall, telling the troops to let him finish the joke so that they could get the punchline.  That was because his opening line got a big “boo” from the soldiers; not to his line but about the mess hall’s food.  The soldiers’ response to the punchline is classic.  Again, it won’t be revealed here.  But those that watch the moment for themselves will fully appreciate it.  Whether for that joke, the jokes with his fellow female performers, or for any of the other jokes shared throughout the specials, it can be said that the entertainment factor of this new collection is more than enough reason for audiences to check it out even if they weren’t even born at the time that they were recorded.

The entertainment factor presented in Time Life’s new Bob Hope compilation DVD is plenty of reason for audiences to check it out. It shows Bob’s ability to bring much-needed laughs to so many audiences in the most difficult situations.  They leave at least this critic wishing that there was a comic like him alive today.  Sadly none come to mind.  Audiences looking for real laughs will agree with that sentiment after watching these specials.  Of course the disc’s entertainment factor is just one part of its presentation that is worth noting.  Their look and sound in their presentation here is just as important to note.  Viewers will note in watching each special that none of the presented footage has been touched in its transfer from its masters to DVD.  There are some questionable camera movements and other slight issues here and there.  There is even a disclaimer at the front end of each special making note of the specials’ production values.  Believe it or not it is actually a good thing that the footage wasn’t cleaned up, re-worked, re-mastered, or whatever term one wants to use here.  That is because as it is, those imperfections add a certain warmth to the viewing experience so to speak.  They remind audiences not just of how far television has come.  It may sound like a stretch but even something as simple as video imperfection may trigger a sense of nostalgia for older audiences much like the static of a vinyl LP versus the crisp, clean sound of music on CD.  The sound quality of the specials is surprisingly impressive especially considering the recording tech available all those years ago.  That there was no re-mastering done in the specials’ transfer from their masters to DVD makes this even more impressive.  Audiences won’t find themselves adjusting the volume at any point to make up for any audio issues.  That in itself speaks volumes about the specials’ sound quality, no pun intended.  Both elements taken collectively into consideration, they show even more alongside the general presentation of the specials why this small collection should be in any family’s home DVD library.  These elements are not all to note of the DVD’s presentation either.  The companion booklet that is included with the DVD rounds out its positives.

The general presentation of the specials in Time Life’s new Bob Hope holiday special collection are a big part of the collection’s presentation especially being that the collection only boasts three of his many Christmas military tribute shows.  The specials’ production values are just as important to note.  That is because even without any re-mastering they still look and sound surprisingly good.  That is especially important to note considering the age of each special’s footage.  While both elements are key to the DVD’s presentation they are not the only important elements to note.  Believe it nor not the collection’s companion booklet plays its own important part in the collection’s presentation.  Much like the companion booklets that come with so many other Time Life DVDs and Blu-rays this DVD’s companion booklet serve as complete guides for audiences.  Each special is broken down with its own segment guide, and a detailed, concise outline of the special.  That’s just the beginning for each guide.  Each special’s guide also includes a full listing of its featured performers an exact air date.  All things considered the companion booklet that comes with this DVD is more than just a companion to the collection.  It is its own standout portion of the collection’s viewing experience.  Together with the presentation of its specials and their production values, all three elements join together to make Bob Hope: Entertaining The Troops a collection that while small, will still entertain audiences of almost all ages, proving once again why it deserves a spot in any family’s home DVD library.

Bob Hope: Entertaining The Troops is a collection that while relatively small, will still entertain audiences of almost all ages today.  Younger children obviously are perhaps the only exception to that rule.  Other than that it is, again a collection that will entertain audiences of almost all ages.  That is due in large part to its featured specials.  It features three of Hope’s classic Christmas tributes to the military.  All three specials are presented in their entirety.  All three are also presented as they were in their original broadcasts in terms of their video and audio.  The video might not be HD or perfect in other technical senses.  But those imperfections make the video perfect in each special.  The audio is just as surprisingly impressive in each special, too.  Rounding out the DVD’s presentation is its companion booklet.  The booklet is not just another booklet.  Its detailed, concise summaries of the specials and equally detailed segment guides, air date, and performer lists within each special proves the booklet to be its own important part of the DVD’s presentation.  This is nothing new for Time Life.  Each one of its previous DVD and Blu-ray releases include their own equally in depth companion booklets.  All things considered Bob Hope: Entertaining The Troops proves in the end to be a collection that while small, will be a big hit with audiences of almost all ages.  It will be available Tuesday, May 10th and can be ordered online direct via Amazon.  More information on this and other titles from Time Life is available online now along with all of the latest news from Time Life Entertainment at:

 

 

Website: http://timelife.com

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

Twitter: http://twitter.com/TimeLifeUS

 

 

To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment reviews and news go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment reviews and news in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.

Time Life Takes Audiences Back To The Wonder Years Once More This Spring

 

Courtesy: Time Life/ABC

Courtesy: Time Life/ABC

This spring, ABC’s classic drama The Wonder Years returns for its fifth season courtesy of Time Life.

Time Life will release The Wonder Years: The Complete Fifth Season on Tuesday, May 24th.  Even more changes are in store for everyone throughout this season’s twenty-four total episodes.  Kevin, Paul, and Winnie are headed to high school.  Wayne and Wart decide to join the Army.  There are also love triangles, a controversial English teacher, a double date that no fan will forget, Driver’s Ed, and much more ahead for everyone this season.  As if that isn’t enough, all of the music that helped make The Wonder Years so great in its original run is here once again, too.  There are songs from Van Morrison, Percy Sedge, The Rivingtons, The Archies, Mel Torme, Patsy Cline, and many others.  The complete list of songs and acts featured in Season Five is noted below.

 

SONGS BY EPISODE

 

 “The Lake”
  • Happy Together-The Turtles
  • I Fought the Law-Bobby Fuller Four
  • Mannish Boy-Muddy Waters
  • Jamaica Say You Will-Jackson Browne
“Day One”
  • Eight Miles High-The Byrds
“The Hardware Store”
  • Takin’ Care of Business-Bachman-Turner Overdrive
  • Pennies from Heaven-Hal Kemp & His Orchestra 
“Frank and Denise”
  • Only You (And You Alone)-The Platters
  • If I Were a Carpenter-Tim Hardin
“Full Moon Rising”
  • G.T.O.-Ronny & the Daytonas
  • Fanfare For The Common ManInstrumental
“Triangle”
  • I Got You Babe-Sonny & Cher
  • If-Bread
  • Green River-Creedence Clearwater Revival
  • I Shall Be Released-The Band
“Soccer”
  • Get Up Offa That Thing-James Brown 
“Dinner Out”
  • Happy Birthday to You-Grady Martin and the Slew Foot Five 
“Christmas Party”
  • Rockin’ around the Christmas Tree-Brenda Lee
  • White Christmas-Andy Williams
  • Rudolph, the Red-Nosed Reindeer Mambo-Billy May and His Orchestra
  • Sleigh Ride-Leroy Anderson & His “Pops” Concert Orchestra
  • The Christmas Song-Mel Torme
  • Frosty The Snowman-Instrumental
“Pfeiffers’ Pfortune”
  • The 59th Street Bridge Song (Feelin’ Groovy)-Harpers Bizarre
  • Fragrance-Palm Court Theatre Orchestra
“Road Test”
  • Poursuite-Instrumental
“Grandpa’s Car”
  • Sing, Sing, Sing (With a Swing)-Benny Goodman & His Orchestra
  • Crazy-Patsy Cline 
“Kodachrome”
  • Both Sides Now-Joni Mitchell 
“Private Butthead”
  • Forever Young-Joan Baez 
“Double Double Date”
  • You Are Everything-The Stylistics
  • Wild Thing-Instrumental
  • Run Run Run-Jo Jo Gunne
  • Sugar, Sugar-The Archies
  • When a Man Loves a Woman-Percy Sledge
“Hero”
  • Fanfare For The Common ManInstrumental
“Lunch Stories”
  • Papa-Oom-Mow-Mow-The Rivingtons
“Carnal Knowledge”
  • Walk Like a Man-The 4 Seasons 
“The Lost Weekend”
  • March from the River Kwai and Colonel Bogey-Mitch Miller & His Orchestra and Chorus
  • I Want to Take You Higher-Sly & the Family Stone
  • Judy in Disguise (With Glasses)-John Fred & His Playboy Band
“Stormy Weather”
  • Desperado-Linda Ronstadt
“The Wedding”
  • Wedding Song (There Is Love)-Paul Stookey
  • You Can All Join In-Traffic
“Back to the Lake”
  • Pressure Drop-Toots & the Maytals
  • Venus-Frankie Avalon
  • On the Road Again-Canned Heat
  • Home-Karla Bonoff 
“Broken Hearts and Burgers”
  • You’re Sixteen-Ringo Starr
  • Somewhere-Instrumental
  • Brown Eyed Girl-Van Morrison
  • Wild Heart of the Young-Karla Bonoff

Along with its engaging writing and its equally entertaining songs, The Wonder Years’ fifth season also comes complete with a handful of bonus features including the featurette “Will You Love Me Tomorrow: The Wonder Years’ Love Stories,” interviews with Olivia d’Abo (Karen Arnold) and David Schwimmer (Michael), and more.  The complete list of bonus material included in this season is noted below.

 

BONUS FEATURES
  • That’s A Wrap! Mark B. Perry’s Farewell Set Tour Season 5
  • Featurette: Will You Love Me Tomorrow: The Wonder Years’ Love Stories
  • Interviews with: Olivia d’Abo (Karen Arnold), David Schwimmer (Michael)

 

The Wonder Years: The Complete Fifth Season will be available Tuesday, May 24th in stores and online.  It will be available exclusively on DVD and will retail for MSRP of $39.95.  More information on this and other titles from Time Life is available online now at:

 

Website: http://timelife.com

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

Twitter: http://twitter.com/TimeLifeUS

 

 

To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.