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Adam-12 - Season One


TITLE: ADAM-12 - SEASON ONE


Info:

DVD Release Date: August 16, 2005 (Universal Studios Home Video)
Color
MSRP: $39.98
Number of Discs: 2 double-sided
Number of Episodes: 26
Running Time: 647 minutes
Total Run Time of Special Features: N/A
Languages, Subtitles, Closed Captioning: English and Spanish audio; English subtitles
Special Features: None


Introduction:

One Adam-12, one Adam-12, we have a DVD set being released by Universal Studios Home Entertainment. It is a two disc set that contains all 26 episodes from the first season of Adam-12. Repeat, two disc set that contains all 26 episodes from the first season.

Yes, that's right. Season One of Adam-12, the earliest show that changed the definition of the concept of the cop show, is being released on DVD. Jack Webb, already being well known for creating and even starring in the detective drama Dragnet, began production on this series in 1968. Unlike Dragnet, however, this show is about the street cops in Los Angeles, and follows two of them, Pete Malloy (Martin Milner) and Jim Reed (Kent McCord) on their daily routine of patrolling the streets of Los Angeles. They are forced to deal with a wide range of problems, whether they be a fight between two neighbors over a boat or a teen that is about to commit suicide. And also unlike Dragnet, Adam-12 took a much more serious approach to the police drama.


Memorable Episodes / Notable Guest Stars:

Just like any first season set of a show, this set begins where the series begins… the first aired episode. In this set, the first episode is "Log 1," which covers Officer Reed's first day on the job with Officer Malloy, an Officer that is about to quit the force after his former partner was killed in the line of duty. But can the rookie officer convince the veteran officer to change his mind? Cloris Leachman plays a drug-addicted mother whose kids get into her stash in "Log 141." Jimmy Mathers (brother of Jerry “The Beaver” Mathers) makes an appearance in "Log 161." Karen Black guest stars on "Log 132." Reed kills a young sniper that fired at him in "Log 33." Malloy (also a college student) faces criticism from other students at his college when he is forced to do his job in "Log 73." Reed and Malloy must do everything that they can to prevent a teenager from committing suicide in "Log 102." Barry Williams makes a brief appearance in "Log 152," where Malloy is afraid that Reed is picking up bad habits from a cop that is ignorant of procedure. Dick Sargent makes an appearance as a neighbor that is fighting over a fishing boat that the neighbors jointly in "Log 92." Harry Dean Stanton makes an appearance in "Log 22."


Packaging:

The cover art on the box of this set is very simple and to the point, with Malloy and Reed gracing the cover. And once you get inside of the box, you will discover two DVD cases that have the exact same cover art. On the back of each DVD case, there is a listing of the episodes on that disc, what side the episode is on, and a brief description of the episode. There is one thing that bothers me a little bit about the packaging though. This set uses two Amaray cases to hold the discs, which makes this set much thicker than it should be for a two disc set. Why didn't Universal use the slim cases for this set as they did with the Dragnet 1967 release that they put out in June? I have no problem with the Amaray cases, but they DO make the set unnecessarily big. The discs are double-sided, so there is no disc art. Episodes 1-7 can be found on Disc 1/Side A, 8-13 on Disc 1/Side B, 14-20 on Disc 2/Side A, 21-26 on Disc 2/Side B.


Menu Design and Navigation:

Adam-12 Season One Menu

If you are used to the sets that Universal puts out, the menus in this set will be no surprise for you. They are essentially the same as all other Universal TV-DVD sets. The main menu on each disc contains three different pictures of Reed, Malloy, and the patrol car. The options that are given are Play All, Episode Index, and Languages. Episode Index takes you to a screen where you select the episode that you want to see. There is a picture from each episode as well as the title on this screen. Additionally, the Play All option is on this screen as well as an "Episode List" option that tells you which disc you can find each episode on. When you select an episode from the Episode Index menu, you get information such as a brief synopsis (same one that is found on the DVD case itself), a picture from the episode, and the original airdate (nice touch). The options that you have include Play, Scenes, Languages, Episode Index, and Menu. Play, Episode Index, and Menu obviously take you back to those respective menus. Scene selection takes you to a menu where you can choose a scene to start at, and there are four scenes per episode, placed where commercial breaks would be placed. Also, there are chapters appropriately placed at all of these positions as well. The Languages menu is very simple, and allows you to select whether you wish to watch the episode in English or Spanish, and allows you to turn on English subtitles.


Video and Audio Quality:

The video quality on these episodes is fairly good. It appears to be very well cleaned up and looks about average for a show that is nearly 40 years old. There is a little bit of grain here and there, but it isn't serious enough to be a concern. However, there is one bad thing to report for the video quality. On a FEW episodes (not all of them, not even a majority), the video seems to be slightly out of sync with the audio. You may not even notice this unless you are paying very close attention (it even slipped past me initially). Fortunately, after the many edited DVD sets that have come by throughout the month of August, this set contains episodes that seem to be unedited, with all 26 episodes falling in the 24:48-24:56 range.

The audio quality on the set is fairly decent too, although a tad bit low. It is presented in Dolby Digital Mono. There is no closed-captioning on the set, but English subtitles ARE available. Additionally, the set even contains a foreign language audio track. All 26 episodes can be viewed in Spanish. The box for the set says that the secondary audio track is French, but that is incorrect, it is Spanish.


Special Features:

There are no special features on this set other than trailers for various Universal releases. They are on Disc 1/Side A and play as soon as you insert the disc. It is really just one long (and two shorter ones) 2 minute trailer, and includes McMillan and Wife, McCloud, Columbo, Adam-12 (oddly it shows a COMPLETELY different cover for this very set!), The Rockford Files, Murder She Wrote, Northern Exposure, and Baa Baa Black Sheep. Interviews and/or commentaries would have been nice on this set.


Final Comments:

All in all, this is a decent set. Yes, it does lack special features, but the set contains 26 great uncut episodes at a great price. I hope, though, that Universal doesn't use the bulky packaging that was used in this set on future releases. I'd like to see slim cases next time. Any fan of police dramas should pick up this set, regardless of whether or not you believe you like Adam-12. I went through years of saying that I hated the show until a few years ago when I actually watched it and realized that it is a great show. One of the great things about it is that it is one of the few police dramas that are about real police officers on the street, not just detectives. There are so many police dramas out there, but how many of them can you think of that are about the street cops? Well, there is only one proper way to end this review: over and out!


Final Numbers (out of 5 stars - How our point system works)

Video Quality: 4/5
Audio Quality: 4/5
Special Features: 0/5
Menu Navigation/Design: 4.5/5
Overall: 4/5

-- Reviewed by skees53 on 08/10/05

To purchase the DVD, click below and help support SitcomsOnline.com:

http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/B0009UC80Q/ref=nosim/happydaysonline4-20


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