CBS: Rawhide, Taxi, Petticoat Junction, and The Beverly Hillbillies Prepped for Blu-ray
Posted April 28, 2014 07:32 PM by Webmaster
Next month, CBS Home Entertainment and Paramount Media Home Distribution will bring to Blu-ray three classic TV shows: The Honeymooners, I Love Lucy: Ultimate Season 1 and The Andy Griffith Show: Season 1. All three will be available for purchase on May 6th.
While discussing with Home Media Magazine the extensive restoration work that was needed to prepare these classic shows for Blu-ray release, Ryan Adams, director of multimedia services for CBS Television Distribution, also confirmed that CBS is preparing Blu-ray releases of Gunsmoke, Rawhide, Bonanza, The Wild Wild West, Petticoat Junction, Dynasty, The Beverly Hillbillies, Taxi, and Twin Peaks (with director David Lynch involved with the restoration). According to Mr. Adams, CBS is also more than halfway through a three-year spruce-up of Star Trek: The Next Generation.
Synopsis: Few television characters have impacted family culture as much as Andy Taylor (Griffith), Barney Fife (Knotts), Opie (Howard) and the idyllic American town of Mayberry. As town sheriff and widowed father, Andy teaches his son the meaning of family, friendship, and upstanding citizenship in this all-time classic series, now in remastered HD with slick-as-a-whistle special features. Includes every episode from the first season, beautifully restored in high definition, in original night-of-broadcast form with original sponsor openings and closings.
The Danny Thomas Show: "Danny Meets Andy Griffith"
Interview: "Person To Person" with Andy Griffith (6/14/57)
Synopsis: Ralph Kramden (Jackie Gleason) is a New York bus driver who dreams of a better life. With his eccentric good friend, sewer worker Ed Norton (Art Carney), Ralph constantly tries crackpot schemes to strike it rich. All the while, his exasperated wife, Alice (Audrey Meadows), is always there to bring him down to earth or to pick him up if he beats her to it. For as much as they fight, even dunderhead Ralph knows that she is the greatest and vice versa.
60 Minutes' Jackie Gleason Profile (10/28/84)
50th Anniversary Special
35th Anniversary Special
60 Minutes' Jackie Gleason Profile: Outtakes and Bloopers
Person to Person Interview Segment featuring Jackie Gleason (2/3/56)
Official Synopsis: You've loved and laughed at Lucy, Ricky, Fred, and Ethel for years, but you've never seen I Love Lucy like this on glorious high-definition. Coming to Blu-ray in a highly collectible set with special gloss packaging that includes every episode from the first season, each one beautifully restored in high definition, in original night-of-broadcast form with original sponsor openings and closings. The set also includes a number of as yet undetailed special features, many never before released on home video.
Audio Commentary (from the Criterion Collection laserdisc)
Nine Production Featurettes:
Before and After: The Restoration
Guest Cast Profiles & Bios
Costume & Makeup Tests
On-Set Color Home Movies
Take A Bow
Behind The Scenes (audio only)
Slide Shows (audio & photos)
The Very First Show (1990 Network Special)
The Very First Show: Outtakes
Interview: Meet Marc Daniels
The Sunday Lucy Show (SD)
1951 Promo (SD)
Lucy On The Radio ("My Favorite Husband" radio broadcasts, audio only)
I'd prefer they release entire series (all seasons) in a single box set... like Dick Van Dyke. I always get nervous buying a "season one" only to discover the studio drops the ball and never releases the full series on Blu-ray.
also, I like to watch TV shows all the way through... I don't want to wait five years to get a five season catalog series into my Blu-ray collection.
Just bought the first two seasons of Petticoat Junction on DVD last week. Oh well got them cheap at least to make the double dip easier to accept.
@pEgLeG I think they were just commenting on how they are half way through bringing it to Blu-ray which is the spruce up. First season came out in 2012 so the final season should be out next year which would be three years.
In for Andy. Though, I'm also leary of series getting dropped due to low sells because, when it comes to the classics, most collectors would rather wait for a complete set on BD. A first season release is good for newcomers, who haven't been introduced to the show yet, but they might as well skip any further single season releases and go straight to a box set. At least with these types of shows, I don't think there are any cliffhangers or unresolved storylines. So each season, if not every episode, is complete self-contained.
I would love to have these pieces of television history and be able to enjoy them as best as possible. And @Hayabusa85 For Star Trek: The Next Generation Remastering Project is coming out with season 6 at the end of June and having the 7th and final season sometime late summer to early fall.
It is kind of funny then that other TV series that actually were HD got the short end of the stick. NCIS is the most popular network drama on the air right now. No seasons on Blu-ray. It's spinoff? Season 1 and that's it.
Meanwhile, they are releasing old B&W shows. Just irony IMO.
Also that last youtube video. They're doing a 480 & 1080 comparison but the video is only in 480p... Fail.
@obriensg1, I'm all for the older shows on Blu but I swear I ask the same thing about NCIS every year. And House MD s01-05. And CSI. And so many others, like Law & Order, cause it has like 40+ combined seasons and still no Blu-ray for any of them. It's weird what's picked for Blu and what's put in a "We'll Get to it... Eventually" queue.
Oh, Don't even joke about Gilligan's Island! When that beautiful box set hits the store shelves I'll be buying 30 copies and handing them out to everyone I know. The show was a perfect example of ensemble physical comedy combined with razor-sharp writing. And the best part is, because they're stuck on an island, the show doesn't age! I've put on the show for my two young daughters and their tween friends, and I couldn't believe the strong feedback... One of them actually said. "Wow, This show is better than any of our shows!" (like Ant Farm, Suite Life, Dog With a Blog, iCarly, Jessie, etc.)... and they all agreed! Gilligan's Island came and went before I was even born, but I knew when I was watching it back in the late 70's and 80's that it had a real magic to it. Seriously, sign me up for a truckload if it ever comes out on Blu.
Wild, Wild West, YES! But it's strange that they'd prep Beverly Hillbillies already since they'd gone years between releases of Season 3 and Season 4. Wonder if they'd transition to blu for Season 5 and go from there (although that show seriously jumps the shark around that time) or go backwards. Or start from Season 1.
What the heck is meant by a "...spruce up of Next Generation?" I hope it doesn't mean that CBS expects people to buy another round of next Gen. seasons just because the picture and sound have been tweaked again. There is a limit to how many times I want to buy the same program.
And on another point. Bonanza was on NBC for its entire history. How has CBS ended up with the rights?
To echo prior comments, hopefully they will feature the original broadcast versions. The existing DVDs feature several syndicated edits, with music removed.
It'd be great to see some extras as well, since the DVDs included, let's see....zero. I own the DVDs already, but will happily double-dip for one of the all-time great sitcoms. And since Cheers was created by the same genius writers and featured some of the same actors, I hope a blu-ray announcement for that show is coming too...
I believe the article said they were making "blu-ray ready versions" for those not being released immediately. This means they are ready to release on blu-ray, not that they are actually releasing them on the blu-ray format. It all depends on their feelings based on sales of the initial three, earlier DVD sales, phase of the Moon, etc.
@Musicguy: "'Petticoat Junction, Dynasty, The Beverly Hillbillies, Taxi'
And yet they still haven't given "My Fair Lady" 70MM the proper attention it deserves on Blu-ray"
That's because "they" don't have the rights to My Fair Lady. MFL is a Warner-owned title, not a CBS/Paramount-owned title.
@Daytripper: "Could never understand how a show that airs on one network is shot on the lot of another studio. "Taxi" aired on ABC, but filmed at CBS (!?)"
Because the network and the studio are two separate entities. In order to promote fair trade practices, it was illegal for a studio to sell shows only to the network owned by the same studio. 20th Century-Fox Television may end up selling a series to FOX (the network), but they'll pitch it to all the networks first.
Anyway...several of these (plus others) I bought on DVD, and discovered that I didn't really have the time to watch them enough to make it worth the cost. That's even more true on Blu-ray. Of the three scheduled for next week, I'd only be inclined to get The Honeymooners, and even then only if I can get a serious discount on the price.
Of the ones planned for future release, Twin Peaks is the only absolutely-will-buy title, with Rawhide a most-likely title, and The Wild Wild West and Gunsmoke being "maybes".
With respect to CBS-owned properties, I'd be more inclined to want the Quinn Martin shows. Specifically The Invaders, the Untouchables, and The Fugitive.
I wish other studios would follow suit with this. Classic TV has been brutally slow to reach Blu-ray. I think most studios assume if people want to watch shows badly enough, they will either buy the DVDs or watch Netflix. But there are plenty of shows I think would do well. I personally can't wait to see Taxi remastered in HD!
Even new/newer TV needs some love when it comes to BD. I'd buy stuff like Bob's Burgers the second it BD but it hasn't even been released on DVD past season one. Lame.