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Alice - The Complete First Season

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Old 06-15-2012, 01:10 AM   #1
TJ
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Default Alice - The Complete First Season DVD Review

"There's a new girl in town" as Alice Hyatt and the gang at Mel's Diner come to DVD from Warner Archive! In 1974, Ellen Burstyn played the role of Alice Hyatt in the Martin Scorsese directed film Alice Doesn't Live Here Anymore, the story of a recently widowed mother trying to make big changes in her life by moving across the country to revive her past singing career. But she doesn't quite make it to where she is going, and ends up stopping along the way and becoming a waitress at a diner... perhaps temporarily, perhaps not.

Upon the success of the film, Robert Getchell, the writer of that very same film, decided to go into a new direction and adapt that film into a sitcom. On August 31, 1976, the series Alice debuted on CBS, with Linda Lavin now playing the role of Alice, a widow and single mother from New Jersey on her way to Los Angeles to be a singer, until car trouble (at least as the opening credits suggest) stop her in the middle of Arizona. Alice still had her two co-workers, sharp-tongued waitress Flo and the incredibly naive waitress Vera. But just as Lavin replaced Burstyn for the TV adaptation, we had new actresses for these characters, with Polly Holliday as Flo and Beth Howland as Vera. The pilot did bring over two carryover roles from the original film, though, including diner owner Mel (Vic Tayback) and Alice's son Tommy (Alfred Lutter). However, Lutter only remained in the role of Tommy for the pilot episode, and was replaced by Philip McKeon (brother of Nancy McKeon) beginning in the second episode.

Many successful films have been turned into TV series, only to have the series turn in to a ratings disaster and complete failure not worthy of being associated with the film. Alice, however, bucked this trend, by becoming a key sitcom for nine years for CBS in the same era of hits such as All in the Family, M*A*S*H, One Day at a Time, Good Times, and of course, The Jeffersons, which was the series that Alice was most frequently paired with (after All in the Family was canceled). In fact, both The Jeffersons and Alice ended up airing their final episodes just one week apart (staying together on the same night) in the summer of 1985. Unlike many of those other series, though, Alice wasn't really out to shock people or go to the extremes as much. It was a simple sitcom about a widow and single mother going through the trials and tribulations of life as a waitress, while trying to also fulfill her own dreams.

Several years ago, Warner released a TV Favorites DVD consisting of six fan favorite episodes of the classic sitcom, and in fact, our very own readers on the message boards helped them decide which six episodes to include. That DVD is now out of print, and Warner Archive has come back to "rescue" the series on DVD, releasing the long awaited Complete First Season of the classic sitcom... and not a moment too soon.

Read our review by skees53 here:
http://www.sitcomsonline.com/aliceseason1dvdreview.html

Please post any questions or comments about this set.
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Old 06-15-2012, 01:41 AM   #2
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I never in my life purchased a DVD and there is no list of episodes. So now I have to go to TV.com?


I don't know if I;m in a big rush to buy this set. I will focus on Rhoda for now
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Old 06-15-2012, 04:14 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TVFactFan
I never in my life purchased a DVD and there is no list of episodes. So now I have to go to TV.com?


I don't know if I;m in a big rush to buy this set. I will focus on Rhoda for now

The list of episodes are on the review. Dont want to be nasty but you made a big deal about the review and hope they were unedited and now that you know youre saying you will buy Rhoda instead......really?? I mean you can buy what you want but you made a big stink about wanting a review before you purchased and now you arent...just saying
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Old 06-15-2012, 04:23 PM   #4
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Quote:
One of the major holdups for this series on DVD was allegedly issues with the video quality of the episodes. That should be no surprise, considering that the series was recorded on tape over three decades ago, although such issues have not caused complications for other series recorded on tape appearing on DVD. However, the episodes on the set really do not look so terrible, so either Warner was overestimating the problem or they did something to make the series look a bit better. The episodes do look a little dark, and it is very obvious that it was a videotaped program, but they really don't look any worse than the series has looked in syndication when it aired on networks such as E!, TNN, and Ion. The audio is the typical dull '70s sitcom mono audio which we've become accustomed to for series such as this, so although it is unimpressive, it is hardly unexpected and I doubt that fans will have any issues with it. Unfortunately, the episodes are neither closed-captioned nor subtitled.
When Alice aired on E! and TNN, it looked pretty darn good. When it aired on ION, it was blurry and horrible. Reading that it is no different than how it aired in syndication, I am hoping it looks like it did on E! and TNN, not ION. Thank you for the review. I hope season two comes out soon since I already have season one.

Why is it a show from the 70's was anticipated to have poor quality for DVD? A show like I Love Lucy, which was taped in the 50's, looks great on television and on DVD. Also, by the time the 70's came around, surely the powers that be were aware of reruns and syndication and even VHS was coming on to the scene. Couldn't they anticipate the need to make sure this series, as well as all the others, should be preserved in a manner so it could stand up with technology and be seen for years to come?

Quote:
there is no list of episodes. So now I have to go to TV.com?
You must have not read the review thoroughly. There is an episode list on each disc. It appears on screen:

Quote:
On the main menu of each disc, you'll find a "Guest Check" (i.e. a receipt) for the diner, with a listing of all of the episodes on the disc.
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Old 06-15-2012, 04:32 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ron Ron
The list of episodes are on the review. Dont want to be nasty but you made a big deal about the review and hope they were unedited and now that you know youre saying you will buy Rhoda instead......really?? I mean you can buy what you want but you made a big stink about wanting a review before you purchased and now you arent...just saying



I said I;m not in a rush to buy it because of the episode list situation. I never said I;m not buying it
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Old 06-15-2012, 04:33 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by yayaya
When Alice aired on E! and TNN, it looked pretty darn good. When it aired on ION, it was blurry and horrible. Reading that it is no different than how it aired in syndication, I am hoping it looks like it did on E! and TNN, not ION. Thank you for the review. I hope season two comes out soon since I already have season one.

Why is it a show from the 70's was anticipated to have poor quality for DVD? A show like I Love Lucy, which was taped in the 50's, looks great on television and on DVD. Also, by the time the 70's came around, surely the powers that be were aware of reruns and syndication and even VHS was coming on to the scene. Couldn't they anticipate the need to make sure this series, as well as all the others, should be preserved in a manner so it could stand up with technology and be seen for years to come?


You must have not read the review thoroughly. There is an episode list on each disc. It appears on screen:


I like the episode list to be on back of the case like how all my other DVD's are but like I said it's no a big deal I;m just not in a rush to buy right now
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Old 06-15-2012, 04:48 PM   #7
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Thanks for the review! I ordered the DVD right after I read it
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Old 06-15-2012, 05:29 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by likewow
Thanks for the review! I ordered the DVD right after I read it


Is the DVD being shipped through UPS or the United States Postal Service?
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Old 06-15-2012, 05:31 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by Ron Ron
The list of episodes are on the review. Dont want to be nasty but you made a big deal about the review and hope they were unedited and now that you know youre saying you will buy Rhoda instead......really?? I mean you can buy what you want but you made a big stink about wanting a review before you purchased and now you arent...just saying


How is the DVD being shipped? I try to avoid UPS because they like to knock on the door once and get back in the truck
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Old 06-15-2012, 06:13 PM   #10
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Mine is estimated to arrive on June 20, hopefully it'll be here before then! It's coming UPS Mail Innovations.
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Old 06-15-2012, 07:39 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by tlc38tlc38
Mine is estimated to arrive on June 20, hopefully it'll be here before then! It's coming UPS Mail Innovations.


Well that means I won't be able to get it. DAMM
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Old 06-15-2012, 09:36 PM   #12
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UPS Mail Innovations means UPS will deliver this to the US Post Office for THEM to deliver it to you.
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Old 06-15-2012, 09:45 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by Jude The Obscure
UPS Mail Innovations means UPS will deliver this to the US Post Office for THEM to deliver it to you.


Oh ok thanks. I guess might as well get the Best of DVD as a Bonus too
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Old 06-16-2012, 12:48 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TVFactFan
I like the episode list to be on back of the case like how all my other DVD's are but like I said it's no a big deal I;m just not in a rush to buy right now

Sadly, the lack of episode listings for DVD box sets is starting to become a real problem lately, and not just with Warner Archive. Sony (what little they do release), Lionsgate, and Image have been excluding them on a lot of their releases lately, and if you buy a copy of a many DVD sets which have been out for a while from studios like Fox, Buena Vista, and Sony, you'll notice that they aren't putting the inserts which were originally included in their latest rounds of pressings. Some people have gotten a nasty surprise on buying older seasons of The Simpsons in recent months, as they don't include those very nice episode booklets in them. There really should be some list of episodes somewhere on every set... and preferably, if the set originally came with an episode booklet or insert, they should be including those.
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Old 06-16-2012, 12:58 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by skees53
Sadly, the lack of episode listings for DVD box sets is starting to become a real problem lately, and not just with Warner Archive. Sony (what little they do release), Lionsgate, and Image have been excluding them on a lot of their releases lately, and if you buy a copy of a many DVD sets which have been out for a while from studios like Fox, Buena Vista, and Sony, you'll notice that they aren't putting the inserts which were originally included in their latest rounds of pressings. Some people have gotten a nasty surprise on buying older seasons of The Simpsons in recent months, as they don't include those very nice episode booklets in them. There really should be some list of episodes somewhere on every set... and preferably, if the set originally came with an episode booklet or insert, they should be including those.


I will see how it works out once I do purchase the DVD. I usually always have tv.com up on the computer anyway when I watch DVD's for the first time.
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