Friday, August 31, 2007

The season of TV on DVD

Every fall I resolve to watch at least two or three new shows, but far too often just fail to do so.

It's not there's nothing good on TV. Sure, there's a heck of a lot of crap, but there's still some good stuff (even on network TV!) The main reason I don't tune in like I should is that I'm now so completely conditioned to watching TV on DVD that I'm willing to wait just for the ease of watching them on my own schedule from Netflix.

This week we have two shows that I certainly should have stuck with, "Heroes" and "Friday Night Lights."

I think my appetite for "Heroes" waned simultaneously with my interest in "Studio 60," which came right after it on NBC. Once I had missed a few episodes of "Heroes," I knew there was no way I could catch up, so I simply didn't.

The pilot episode of "Friday Night Lights" is simply pure "Rudy"-esque schmaltz, but in all the right ways. After the pilot, however, I stopped watching because it was on directly opposite the dwindling "Gilmore Girls," and not yet having Tivo I had to make a choice. I'm gonna start with "Lights" on DVD, then "Heroes," and once again resolve to watch them both when they return for their new seasons.

Here, courtesy of the great site, are some more upcoming TV releases to put on your calendar:

Sept. 4
"The Office" - season three and "30 Rock" - season one: I'm fairly certain I've seen all the episodes of the third season of "The Office," but I'll still buy it on DVD because there's simply nothing funnier on network TV right now. And, though I never tuned into "30 Rock" because it just looked far too silly, so many people have since sung its praises that the first season is at least worth Netflixing.

Sept. 11
"Fraggle Rock" - third season: Jim Henson's puppets and crazy, cool songs. 'Nuff said.
"Prime Suspect 7: The Final Act": I've already been sent this one and can tell you Dame Mirren is as good as ever as this sublime limey cop serial finally winds to a close. I can't recommend this one high enough.

Sept. 18
"Family Guy" - volume 5: Seth McFarlane's antics are finally starting to grow old to me, but I still might add this one to my queue.
"Upright Citizen's Brigade" - second season: I'm probably remembering this crazy comedy troupe through rose-colored glasses, but when they were on Comedy Central I thought they were great.

Sept. 25
"My Name is Earl" - second season: Jason Lee's narration just continues to annoy me more each time I watch this NBC sitcom, but he, Ethan Suplee, Jamie Pressly and the Crabman are still very funny in small doses.

Oct. 2
"How I Met Your Mother" - season two: Season one of this CBS comedy is surprisingly strong, so I'll definitely spring for season two, of which I've already seen probably half the episodes. Willow, Doogie and Nick Andopolous, all on one show? I'm there.

Oct. 9
"Creature Comforts" - season one: I have serious doubts there will ever be any more episodes of this Aardman import updated for American viewers. I caught a couple of episodes and can confirm that it's still awfully funny, and therefore well worth a rental.

Oct. 16
"Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip" - the complete series: I can pinpoint the exact point when this Aaron Sorkin show lost me: When those two dudes were caught plagiarizing but weren't fired. Simply ludicrous. I might eventually Netflix this to see it ever recovered.

Oct. 23
"Veronica Mars" - season three: Ah, Veronica, I miss you so much already. Kristen Bell will be on "Heroes" (not "Lost," as I mistakenly posted earlier) this fall and will be the narrator for the CW's "Gossip Girl," but she'll probably never again get to star in a show as good as this one.
"The Sopranos" - season six, part two: I'm glad the frenzy over David Chase's limbo ending of this great series has died down. I, for one, loved it, and will enjoy dissecting it again on DVD too.

Oct. 30
"Scrubs" - sixth season: I know Zach Braff rubs many people the wrong way, and I concede he can be very annoying, but he still makes me laugh on "Scrubs," and I don't ask for much more than that from TV.
"My So-Called Life" - complete series: The folks at Shout/Factory do a nice job of putting together DVD sets of TV shows, so if Claire Danes is your cup of angst, this would be well worth buying.
"Twin Peaks" - definite gold box edition: I still have to get around to watching "Inland Empire" before I return to this wild and too-short David Lynch TV foray.

Nov. 6
"Seinfeld" Vol. 8: season 9 or the complete series: Possibly the most quotable show in TV history finally completes its run on DVD.
"X-Files" - complete collector's edition: You know what this is, of course.

Nov. 20
"Gilmore Girls" - seventh season: The final season of this beloved (at least by me) show was often a bitter pill to swallow, but I thought the second half was really starting to pick up. See how it all ended and say goodbye to the Gilmores once and for all.

Nov. 27
"Futurama: Bender's Big Score": New episodes of this Matt Groening/David X. Cohen gem will eventually be coming to Comedy Central, but in the meantime I'd definitely recommend buying this movie to tide you over.

And, as far as shows that have a definite release date and intrigue me, the list ends there. However ...

"The Wire: Season 4" - new hope?

Though there's still no firm word as to when the fourth season of the single greatest cop show in TV history will be released on DVD, but TVshowsonDVD did have a pic of the cover art, so it must be coming soon, right? I love the "No Corner Left Behind" tagline, and can't wait to watch McNulty on the beat in Charm City.

I know HBO wants to time this with the start of Season 5, which should come early in 2008, but I'm sure there are many more people than me out here who want to see it out ASAP. Release it already! Peace out.


Anonymous said...

FYI, Kristen Bell opted not to get Lost. She'll be doing Heroes instead. ;-p

Reel Fanatic said...

Ah! ... that's a big error on my part, which I'm gonna fix and repost before any further embarrassment .. thanks for the warning!

Stace said...

Great post. I may give Veronica a try while I wait for LOST Season 3 on DVD.

Sudiegirl said...

I haven't seen this show, but I've heard raves about it.

Are you into "Big Love" or "Weeds" at all? How about "Brotherhood" or "Dexter"?

Chalupa said...

I really enjoy My Name is Earl, but I'm also a really big Jason Lee fan from his work with Kevin Smith.

Bob said...

Ahhhh, I love TV. "Heroes" is really great. I was surprised that I gave up on "Studio 60" and stuck with "Heroes" but that's what happened. One of my friends is big into "Lights" so I plan to check that out soon. I miss "Veronica" too and "Scrubs" never fails to make me laugh.
There's been some good stuff this summer. I don't know if you've seen "Mad Men" yet but it's great and I love "Psych" too. As for new shows I haven't heard much but I want to check out "Journeyman" which will be on after "Heroes." It has Kevin McKidd from "Trainspotting" and "Rome." It might be pretty good.
In movie related news I saw "Balls of Fury" last night. I'm just about to write my review. Short version: Don't go. I know you weren't planning to anyway but I just wanted to give you some reinforcement.

Reel Fanatic said...

I appreciate any warnings I get to stay away from movies that look as bad as "Balls of Fury," Bob, and the word is certainly piling up in the negative category, so I will stay away.

And I have to confess, Sudiegirl, of the four shows you mentioned, I've only seen a few episodes of each ... "Weeds" in particular is one that my co-workers like to go on and and on about, so I'll have to add that one to the list of shows I'll have to catch up on through Netflix

Mercurie said...

I am hoping that they will get season 4 of The Wire out soon. I missed a good deal of it and I would like to get caught up before Season 5 debuts!

I really wish Miss Bell had decided to do Lost instead of Heroes. I still watch Lost, but Heroes never really sparked my interest.

renee said...

McNulty is barely in Season 4 of The Wire, just so you won't be disappointed. I think he was filming some movies at that time. In any case, it may be the finest season of television in history, even without McNulty, so I hope you get to enjoy it soon. I saw that The Wire is estimated to start airing again the first week of February, so maybe they'll release the DVDs before the holidays. And it looks like McNulty is back in in a big way for Season 5.

Reel Fanatic said...

That's very good news to hear, Renee ... I can only assume that HBO is smart enough to realize people will want Season 4 to be out in time for Christmas shopping, so I'm hoping no later than the first week of December or so, which would give me plenty of time to watch it and get caught up so I can watch Season 5 during its actual HBO run

Linda said...

The only TV I watch faithfully is the CBS Monday night lineup. My favorite is How I Met Your Mother, so I'm glad to see it in DVD....I know there are episodes I've missed. Thanks for the heads up! Happy Friday!

Jake Mabe said...

I can't believe I'm getting ready to type this, but "Friday Night Lights" is one of the best shows on television. I, too, gave up on it during its network run, but purchased the series on DVD earlier in the week. I'm freakin' hooked. Consistently engaging and well-written, it's less about football and more about growing up in -- and dealing with the strains of -- middle America.

Divinity said...

"Mad Men" is my newest obsession. I've been creating my own DVD set for friends who don't get AMC.

RC said...

as far as tv on dvd we watch house, 24 & lost.

thought about adding heroes to the mix, but not sure?

Reel Fanatic said...

I was gonna just Netflix "Friday Night Lights," Jake, but when I went to Best Buy, it was on sale for the rather insane price of 19.99, so I had to bite .. I've already watched nine episodes, and you're right, it is certainly one amazing show, and I now can't wait for season two to start

Jake Mabe said...

Yeah, I got the same deal from I've watched about the same number of episodes. I can't believe how consistently good this show is.

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