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October 10, 2015

The Twelve Days of Festivus: Ten shows on DVD

by Nick Zaino, posted Dec 14th 2009 11:29AM
House, M.D. Season FiveOn the tenth day of Festivus, TV gave to me... Ten shows on DVD.

There are plenty of great TV collections being released all the time now, bringing back classic TV, shows that had short runs, and current favorites. You know about most of the big shows, so here's a mix of more popular and some maybe less-heralded collections.

House, M.D.: Season Five: This was a breakout season for the show, where the secondary characters really came to life and House broke down and finally had to face his addictions and personal failings. Season five may wind up being a pinnacle for the series as a whole.

Black Adder Remastered: The Ultimate Edition: Just about every inch of film ever spent on Rowan Atikinson's masterpiece of a series, from the four series themselves to several one-off specials and DVD extras. A perfect DVD set.

Fraggle Rock The Complete Series Collection: You know you miss your Feaggles, Doozers, and Gorgs. Now you have 20 discs of Fraggle Rock on this recently-released collection that covers all four seasons of the series, plus the requisite behind-the-scenes features, and a "Great Hall of Silly Characters."

Andy Barker PI: The Complete Series: This series was criminally neglected. A strong cast, a fun premise, and good writing, this might get more attention on DVD than it ever did on a network schedule.

The Dana Carvey Show: Another lost gem that deserves another look. Only seven of the eight shows in the series were ever broadcast for the show's 1996 run, but those episodes featured Steve Carell and Stephen Colbert in front of the camera, Louis C.K., Charlie Kaufman, and Dino Stamatopoulos behind the camera, and Robert Smigel both on and off camera. Plus, "The Ambiguously Gay Duo"!

South Park The Complete 12th Season: Some good examples of why South Park is still one of the funniest shows on television. No one is as ridiculously offensive - see the "Major Boobage" episode parodying Heavy Metal (and the accompanying behind-the-scenes feature about it on the DVD), the "Pandemic" episodes where giant guinea pigs rip the town to shreds, or "Elementary School Musical," an on-target a lampooning of school peer pressure.

Patton Oswalt: My Weakness Is Strong: This is my lone representative of stand-up specials, since this list focuses mainly on television series. Oswalt shared George Carlin's love for language (though they are vastly different comedians), and a well-built phrase is a joke within a joke (see "Sad Boy," in particular, for an example). (Honorable mentions for stand-up specials on DVD: Jim Gaffigan - King Baby, Katt Williams - Pimpadelic)

Battlestar Galactica: Between Season 4, Season 4.5, The Complete Series, The Plan, and Caprica, I'd be remiss if I didn't mention Battlestar Galactica. This was a good year to be a fan of the show and its specials and spin-offs.

Mystery Science Theater 3000 Vol XIV: There were three MST boxed set releases this year, including Vol. XV and Vol. XVI, but this is the one that features the Joe Estevez vehicle Soultaker (that's right, I said "Joe Estevez vehicle") and Joe Don Baker's Final Justice, which finds him fighting the mob in Italy. Baker's character is Texas Deputy Sheriff Thomas Jefferson Geronimo. It practically writes itself.

The Steve Coogan Collection: I reviewed this earlier for TV Squad, but with ten discs of material, this goes so far beyond Alan Partridge (which is enough in itself) it deserves another mention. Saxondale is a stand-out, a wonderfully realized character and a nuanced storyline in a series with which most people probably aren't familiar.

Twelve shows a stinkin'
Eleven babes worth watchin'

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lol, the typo for "feaggles" had me rolling. But that boxed set is at the top of my list this year!!

December 14 2009 at 3:10 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I was thinking about Andy Barker P.I. or the Dana Carvey show as a present for my best friend.

However I came across the entire Kids in the Hall series megaset for almost 60% off its original price ($99.99 marked down to $42).

He's a huge KitH fan, and with the upcoming reunion in January, there is no better time. The dollar-to-laughs ratio on this one is completely off the charts. In fact the only package I ever bought that had a better dollar-to-laugh ratio may have been the entire Arrested Development series for $31 last year.

December 14 2009 at 2:22 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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