The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson: The Vault Series on DVD

Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson Vault Series

Let's take a moment to consider this: there are people today who say "Somebody else used to host The Tonight Show?"  When people my age asked that, we were learning about Jack Paar.  When people today ask that, they're talking about Johnny Carson.  He truly was the King of Late Night, and the standard by which people judged everybody else who hosted a talk show.  And yes, while the bits they have on talk shows today are cool and make for great YouTube fodder, Carson was funny just by his own self.  Granted, you could always count on an animal handler to make things interesting, but that's been the way of things since the beginning of television. 

All of this to say that you, no matter your age, need to check out Time Life's release of The Vault Series.  It's from the "Carson Vault," which if memory serves, is stored in a mine for safekeeping.  You get twelve complete shows across six DVDs which--and I love this—contain commercials as well.  We're looking here at the medium-sized release of this--the six-disc'er--since it also comes in three-disc (appetizer) and twelve-disc (entrée) form.  With this edition you get vintage appearances from the likes of David Brenner, Steve Lawrence, Tony Randall and Carl Reiner.  I picked the names you'd have to ask your parents about on purpose, kids. 

The set also comes with two hours of bonus bits, [...]

By |September 26th, 2016|Headsup|0 Comments

The Wonder Years: Season 6 on DVD

Wonder Years Season 6 on DVD

This is the season that wrapped up the iconic series that we all knew and loved--where we said goodbye to Kevin, Winnie, the Arnold family, and all the rest, leaving behind them six Emmy award-winning seasons and a lasting place in television history. This DVD set presents all 22 episodes and does so intact: Time Life did extensive work in clearing the music rights as well, so viewers can enjoy tunes from The Beach Boys, Marvin Gaye, Grateful Dead, The Rolling Stones, Percy Sledge and others the same way they would have watching back in 1992-1993.

Time Life is quite good at maximizing bonus features wherever possible, so we've got two hours-plus here. First we have "At Last: The Final Episode," in which members of the cast and crew reminisce about making the series finale (did you know that they were unaware it would be the last one as they were taping?). Next is an interview with Executive Producer Bob Brush, in which he covers everything from casting choices to challenges working with child actors to the artistic navigation of Kevin's love life. Also included is "From the Vault: Alley Mills and Bob Brush Letters," in which Alley Mills (Norma) shares a letter she wrote to Bush as the show ended (and what he wrote back).

It is worth noting this is not the only place you can snag these episodes. Does Netflix have them? Yes. If you're [...]

By |September 26th, 2016|Headsup|0 Comments

The Carol Burnett Show: The Lost Episodes Ultimate Collection on DVD

Carol Burnett Show: The Lost Episodes

Even if you've never seen it (a feat which I'm not sure how you would accomplish in today's world), you know that The Carol Burnett Show was an epic success in 1960s and 70s television. The show ran for eleven years, collecting twenty-five Emmy awards, eight Golden Globes, and wound up on more than a few Best Show of All Time lists. It also nabbed more People's Choice Awards for Carol Burnett herself than for any other actress in history. Now (yay!) out from Time Life is The Carol Burnett Show: The Lost Episodes Ultimate Collection.

The set includes episodes from the first five seasons (1967-72) that Burnett personally selected, and they haven’t been seen since their original airing over forty years ago. That means no home video, no streaming, and no syndication. In these episodes, we see the origins of what would later become much-loved staples of the show, including “The Oldest Man” with Tim Conway (in which he proved that he could be just as funny in slow motion as in hyper-motion), “Carol and Sis” with Burnett and Vicki Lawrence in the title roles, the soap opera send-up “As the Stomach Turns,” and more. In addition to the core cast, we also see many of the fabulous guest stars the show was known to attract such as Lucille Ball, Jim Nabors, Bing Crosby, Paul Lynde, Bob Newhart, Don Adams, Chita Rivera, Andy Griffith, Jonathan Winters and scads more.

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By |September 26th, 2016|Headsup|0 Comments

Plea for Sanity: STOP the Tinkering

Tinkerer

There is a plague, albeit of the First World variety, that has spread online through our technology...and it simply has to stop. I'm talking about the Tinkering.

By Tinkering, I mean screwing around with something that's working perfectly well until you've basically ruined it. I mean not leaving well enough alone. Remember when Pinterest was, you know, a good place to pin and share images? Now anytime the iPhone app is anywhere near functional, I won't update it for months. Like the very handy "You've just switched to the app with a URL in the clipboard, would you like to pin it?" feature, which works now about 7% of the time.

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By |September 17th, 2016|Stimuli|1 Comment

Because He's Michael C. Hall, Musical Clairvoyant

Did you know Michael C. Hall can do an eeriely decent vocal impersonation of David Bowie? Well, considering Bowie's musical Lazarus has been around since last year...maybe you did. I did not. So seeing that Hall was performing "Lazarus" at the Mercury Prize was just a novelty. Then the guy started singing. Nice. When the soundtrack for the show is released, I need it. And I definitely need to check out Mercury winner Skepta...because to beat out Bowie must be something special.

You can snag Blackstar from Amazon here. Or it's on Spotify here.

By |September 17th, 2016|Stimuli|0 Comments

Headsup: Empire Season Two on DVD

Empire Season 2 on DVD

Now out from 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment is Empire: The Complete Second Season, which navigates all the post-arrest drama as Lucious and Cookie struggle to keep their grip on Empire Entertainment Records amidst personal problems, feuding sons, and threats of an outside takeover.

There are two things fans love most about Empire—the look and the sound.  With the 53 minutes of extras added to all 18 episodes of the second season, this DVD set definitely takes those two loves into consideration.  Special features include a Freda Gatz music video, four uncut music performances, six studio sessions, and four mini specials that focus on the striking visuals of the show.  Also in the mix is a behind-the-scenes look at the USO Tour that members of the cast participated in recently (did you know that Taraji P. Henson worked as a receptionist at the Pentagon years ago?)

This set sells on Amazon for $19.99 (about $1.11 per episode, superior pricing to Amazon’s per-episode price of $1.99 for streaming).  Hulu customers also have access to the series as part of their subscription.  It is not (nor will it be) available on Netflix. [Read More...]

By |September 16th, 2016|Headsup|0 Comments

A Little Family Talk About Person of Interest

Person of Interest

Kim, Tuffley & Bryan convene to discuss the series Person of Interest while at DragonCon 2016. Recorded in front of a mostly live studio audience.

BTW, you iTunes subscriber types can nab our overall podcast feed here. If you like us, why not rate us? We don't bite. Mostly. Or if you want to do something else with it, the feed feed is here.

To download this episode directly, A Little Family Talk About Person of Interest, then do that thing.

By |September 14th, 2016|Podcasts|0 Comments

Headsup: Supernatural Season 11 on Blu-ray

supernatural-season-11

Warner Brothers Home Entertainment provided me with a free copy of the Blu-ray set I featured in this blog post. The opinions I share are my own.

I find that Supernatural viewers fall into three categories: they hardcore love it, hardcore hate it, or feel betrayed because they used to hardcore love it for the first half of the run and have since become very disappointed with the show's direction.

Season 11 was especially polarizing among these groups as it explored the pre-biblical spiritual arena-- viewers saw the aftermath following the release of the Darkness, the introduction of the Rabids and Amara into the storyline, the cliffhanger of Sam's unknown fate, and more.

This set includes all twenty-three episodes of season 11 on Blu-ray along with over four episodes of bonus material and a digital HD copy for instant download and streaming. Special features include:

5 Featurettes:

  • Jensen Ackles on Directing "The Bad Seed"
  • On Set with SPN: The Real Fan Contest
  • The Winchester Mythology: Shedding Light on the Darkness
  • Digital Magic: Enhancing the Sets with VFX
  • 2015 Comic-Con Panel

 

  • Audio Commentaries
  • Deleted Scenes
  • Gag Reel

 

For hardcore "love it" fans, the featurettes are an additional opportunity to explore the new areas the show has entered, both in front of the camera and behind. The specials on Jensen Ackles directing Episode 3 - "The Bad Seed," the Winchester Mythology, and the use of VFX aren't amazingly groundbreaking or anything, but they are interesting and give some additional [...]

By |September 6th, 2016|Headsup|1 Comment

Word-A-Week Vocabulary Vlog Catch-Up #52 - #54

Aaron Poole's Word-a-Week!

Well, Widge here. I manipulate Aaron's Patreon to get a third season of Word-A-Week and things fall on me again. I suck. Did you hear the one about the three-foot king snake that came into my office? I'll tell you later. Right now, it's a triple feature of Aaron Fever at his verbalistic best. He's the man who can sell vocabulary to the already verbose, such is his power. So without further adieu, here's three more words that Aaron has hand-selected to bestow upon you. Accept no substitutes! These are words you can use! In conversation! You can even use them on Twitter and Facebook! And the best part is: these words are free for you to use and share! It is guaranteed DRM-free.

More of Aaron's shenanigans can be found at aaronfever.com.
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By |August 1st, 2016|Word-a-Week|1 Comment

Your Mental Sorbet: Hugo De Groot

Hugo De Groot:  Ze Nemen Me Eindelijk Mee

When we find something worthy, we like to offer it to you as a starter for your week of inevitable weirdness. This time I have found something special.

Many of you are aware of the Doctor Demento staple, "They're Coming to Take Me Away Ha Ha!" by Napoleon XIV. It's a release that have given this, one of the greatest excerpts of a review I've ever seen. From Billboard:

Against a clomp-clomp tambourine beat, Napoleon spoke-chanted his manic-depressive tale of failed romance, the vocals suddenly speeding up into an unsettlingly cheerful giddiness as sirens revved up in the background. Not a single note of music was played or sung throughout the track, which zoomed up to number three in the summer of 1966, as the necessary counterpoint to Barry Sadler's insipid, similarly off-the-wall smash that year, "The Ballad of the Green Berets."

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By |August 1st, 2016|Mental Sorbet|0 Comments