TITLE: ACCORDING TO JIM - THE COMPLETE SECOND SEASON
Release Date: May 4, 2010 (Lionsgate/ABC Studios)
Number of Discs: 4
Number of Episodes: 28
Running Time: 595 minutes
Running Time of Features: approx. 32 minutes (not counting audio commentaries)
Audio: English 5.1 Dolby Digital and Spanish 2.0 Dolby Digital
Subtitles and Captioning: No subtitles, Closed-Captioned.
* Two Audio Commentaries on Episodes from Jim Belushi and Larry Joe Campbell
* Season 2 According to Jim
* “Acting Out Behind Camera”
After about a year and a half, we finally get the second season of According to Jim on DVD from Lionsgate and ABC Studios. We get all 28 episodes of the second season on a nice 4-disc set! In this Primetime Emmy-nominated family comedy, Jim (Jim Belushi) is the macho "everyman" who challenges his gorgeous and feisty wife, Cheryl (Courtney Thorne-Smith), with his stubborn manliness but contagious charm. Tagging along with this duo of happily married opposites are their three precocious kids and Cheryl’s brother (Larry Joe Campbell) and sister (Kimberly Williams-Paisley).
The series stars Jim Belushi as Jim, Courtney Thorne-Smith as Cheryl, Kimberly Williams-Paisley as Dana, Larry Joe Campbell as Andy, Taylor Atelian as Ruby, and Billi Bruno as Gracie.
This is the season when the show started to become a hit. It did very well on Tuesday nights this season, primarily at 9pm opposite Frasier on NBC. Part of ABC’s Tuesday comedy block that season with 8 Simple Rules, Life with Bonnie, and Less than Perfect, it emerged as an anchor for the night at 9pm. The series did so well that ABC ordered 28 episodes, 6 more than the previous season! Among the episodes this season is the season premiere “The Importance of Being Jim,” where Jim buys a digital camera from one of Dana's ex-boyfriends, and it comes with stored pictures of the woman he dumped Dana for. In “The Bachelor,” Dana gets selected to be on the reality show The Bachelor. In the hilarious Christmas episode, “The Christmas Party,” Jim's feud with a neighbor may also prompt one with Cheryl, who preaches peace so they'll be invited to the neighbors' Christmas party. In “The Brother-in-Law,” Eddie, a country musician who's dating Dana, comes between Jim and his brother-in-law Andy. In the one-hour episode “You Gotta Love Somebody,” Jim's old friend Danny visits him, and brings his partner in crime, Laraine, with him. In “Deal with Devlins,” Cheryl makes friends with another mom from the girls soccer team. In the one-hour season finale, “Vegas Baby,” Jim and Andy are going to Vegas on a business trip and ask Dana to join them, since they need an extra help and she happens to be their "rabbit's foot" on gambling.
Guest starring this season are Cindy Crawford, Mike Ditka, Robert Belushi, Doug Savant, Trista Rehn, Chris Elliot, Stephen Root, Brad Paisley, Dan Akroyd, Laraine Newman, Crystal Bernard, Kevin Sorbo, Bo Diddley, Tim Bagley, Cynthia Stevenson, Wayne Newton and Jennifer Coolidge.
Here are the runtimes for each episode and disc-by-disc breakdown:
“The Importance of Being Jim” (21:30)
“Cars & Chicks” (21:30)
“The Baby Monitor” (21:30)
“The Pizza Boy” (21:30)
“The Closet” (21:30)
“Punch and Ruby” (20:00)
“The Bachelor” (21:30)
“Father Disfigure” (21:30)
“Thanksgiving Confidential” (21:30)
“The Christmas Party” (21:30)
“The Brother-in-Law” (21:30)
“Moral Dilemma” (21:30)
“You Gotta Love Somebody, Part 1” (21:20)
“You Gotta Love Somebody, Part 1” (21:28)
“The Smell of Success” (21:25)
“Slumber Party” (21:30)
“The Ring” (20:57)
“Wonder Woman” (21:00)
“The Pass” (21:28)
“Dana Gets Fired” (21:30)
“Bo Diddley” (21:30)
“Deal with the Devlins” (21:31)
“The Helmet” (20:15)
“No Harm, No Fowl” (19:38)
“About a Girl” (21:00)
“Mom’s Boyfriend” (20:16)
“Vegas, Baby, Part 1” (20:57)
“Vegas, Baby, Part 2” (21:24)
The packaging for this set is a simple keep case. Season 1 had an outer box with a digipak case inside, so a bit different. The front has a shot Jim with the three kids sitting inside a shopping cart with Cheryl pushing! There are two watermelons on the bottom of the cart, with a white and red color scheme. The show logo also appears, with The Complete Second Season line on the top and Comedy Begins at Home on the bottom. The back has a full cast photo with Jim and the kids inside the shopping cart and Andy, Cheryl, and Dana around the cart. We have a watermelon crate where special features details are listed (titled Today’s Special Features).
Inside the case we do NOT have a listing of the episodes like we did last time. In fact, it is pretty bland, with no artwork on the panels. We have two disc holders that flip like a book. It is very good and works best because we get one disc on each side, so no overlapping occurs! As for disc art, each disc has a cast member, with a white background along with the watermelons. You count the number of watermelons and that will tell you what disc we are on. Disc one has artwork of Jim and one watermelon with episodes 1-7. Disc two has artwork of Cheryl and two watermelons with episodes 8-14. Disc three has artwork of Andy and three watermelons with episodes 15-21. Disc four has artwork of Dana and four watermelons with episodes 22-82 & the special features. So simple and effective, but a bit disappointing as the last set was better.
Menu Design and Navigation:
We start off the menu with the theme playing and we then go to the main menu. The main menu has a nice cast photo of them inside the shopping cart. The menu options are Play All, Episode Selection, Audio Set Up, and Special Features (disc four only). Play All obviously just plays them all at once on that particular disc. Episode Selection takes us to another menu where we see each episode listed on a watermelon crate with episode titles. If the episode has an Audio Commentary track, you can turn it on or off from here. In Audio Set Up, we can either choose English 5.1 Dolby Digital or Spanish 2.0 Dolby Digital. There are no subtitles, but we have closed-captioning. And obviously Special Features lists those, which we will get to in that section.
Video and Audio Quality:
The video is in its original widescreen form (16x9, 1.85:1)! That is very good to hear, a good job by Lionsgate and good job by ABC Studios for providing it to them. The video is widescreen and not full screen. Also, if you have a DVD player that upconverts to HD, this set looks very good! The audio is in a nice Dolby Digital 5.1 Audio...so nothing to complain about here. Each episode has about 4 chapter stops. Some info you might want to know is that both two-part episodes have the “To be continued” tag. The “Vegas, Baby” one has a “Next Time on According to Jim” preview at the end of part one. Both two-part episodes have “Previously on According to Jim” recap at the start of part two.
We actually get some good special features again! We don’t have as much as season one, but it is still good! First on disc two, we get an audio commentary track for the “The Brother-in-Law” episode from Jim Belushi and Larry Joe Campbell. They are so fun and genuine to listen to! I’m glad they did this and it seems they recorded this recently. Then the duo return on disc four for the final audio commentary track for the episode “Deal with the Devlins.” Once again they give nice tidbits and mention how much they loved this episode. Bring on more Belushi and Campbell commentaries next season! They are fun, FUN, fun!
The remaining extras are all on disc four and heavily feature Jim Belushi once again. The first one is “Season Two According to Jim,” and that runs 10:10 and is exactly what the title says. Basically Jim is talking about this second season. He gives great information and details. This was recorded recently as he is not on the set. The next extra is maybe the best one. It is titled “Acting Out Behind Camera,” and runs 8:01 and features interviews with the entire cast and how and why they each directed episodes of the show! Interviewed are Jim Belushi, Courtney Thorne-Smith, Larry Joe Campbell and Kimberly Williams-Paisley even. These interviews seem like were shot during the series finale last season (season eight).
This was a decent set. The first 4-5 seasons of this show were very fun and people have forgotten that. Ratings proved that this was a hit in those years. This second season set isn’t as good production wise as the first season set, but it is still better than any other sets Lionsgate has produced for ABC Studios. Other series like Hope & Faith and My Wife & Kids get no special features at all, so even with the quantity going on this set from the first set, it is still good. Plus, the episodes from this season are very funny and perhaps one of the best seasons for this show. I recommend you get this set because it is funny. We need shows like this on the air. Let’s hope we don’t have to wait too long for season three on DVD! But for now, don’t slip and slide like Andy when you buy this DVD!
Final Numbers (out of 5 stars - How our point system works)
Video Quality: 4/5
Audio Quality: 4.5/5
Special Features: 2/5
Menu Design/Navigation: 4/5
-- Reviewed by Pavan on 05/03/10
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