TITLE: MEET THE BROWNS - SEASON 3 (EPISODES 41-60)
Release Date: November 22, 2011 (Lionsgate)
Packaging: Viva Case
Number of Discs: 3
Number of Episodes: 20
Running Time: 440 minutes
Running Time of Features: N/A
Audio: Dolby Digital 5.1 English; Dolby Digital 2.0 English
Subtitles and Captioning: English and Spanish Subtitles; Closed-Captioned
Special Features: None
The Brown family is back again, under one roof, in Meet the Browns - Season 3! The three disc set includes 20 more episodes of the Tyler Perry series based upon a movie of the same name. In the series, Leroy Brown (David Mann) opens up a retirement home, following some confusion in the will of his dying father. The retirement home quickly becomes overfilled, and now, Leroy and his daughter, Cora, have to deal with chaos from everywhere imaginable.
The set begins with "Meet the Lessons," where the family discovers that Brianna is taking birth control pills. Simone almost gets raped at a frat party in "Meet the Disorderly." Joaquin's old baseball coach/almost-molester dies on Will's operating table in "Meet the Great Guy." In "Meet the Couch Potato," Will is suspended as a doctor and spends his days doing nothing but sleeping.
Rue McClanahan makes one of her last TV appearances in "Meet Mr. Wrong," as Daisy's long-lost cousin when Daisy is dealing with memory loss. Will's mentor kisses Sasha and turns to blackmail to keep her quiet in "Meet the Lovers." Tanya wins custody of Brianna and Joaquin in "Meet the Adoption."
Cora and Brown compete for the church board in "Meet the Church Board." In "Meet the Protest," Tanya makes a move on Will. Will and Sasha think that Brianna is pregnant in "Meet the Bump and Grind." In "Meet the Fake ID," Derek catches Brianna with a fake ID. The season ends with "Meet the Double Date," where Cora and Reggie set up Brown and Reggie's mother for a "play date."
The episodes appear to be unedited with very consistent runtimes (all but two are exactly 21:32). They are as follows:
1. "Meet the Lessons" (21:32)
2. "Meet the Disorderly" (21:32)
3. "Meet the Mom" (21:32)
4. "Meet the Great Guy" (21:32)
5. "Meet the Saboteurs" (21:28)
6. "Meet the Great Couch Potato" (21:32)
7. "Meet Mr. Wrong" (21:18)
8. "Meet Mom Again" (21:32)
9. "Meet the Lovers" (21:32)
10. "Meet the Tension" (21:32)
11. "Meet the Liar" (21:32)
12. "Meet the Adoption" (21:32)
13. "Meet the Consequences" (21:32)
14. "Meet the Church Board" (21:32)
15. "Meet the Test" (21:32)
16. "Meet the Protest" (21:32)
17. "Meet the Bump and Grind" (21:32)
18. "Meet the Fake ID" (21:32)
19. "Meet the Other Man" (21:32)
20. "Meet the Double Date" (21:32)
The set uses very basic packaging, with a Viva case inside of an outer cardboard sleeve (I would imagine that the outer sleeve will not be included in later pressings of the set, as is usually the case). The artwork on the sleeve and the case is the same. We have a family snapshot on the cover with a yellow background, with episode snapshots and a listing of all of the episodes on the back of the case. The discs inside have the series logo, along with a listing of the episode numbers contained on the disc. There is not an episode insert inside the case. Disc 1 contains episodes 1-6, Disc 2 contains episodes 7-13, and Disc 3 contains episodes 14-20.
Menu Design and Navigation:
The menus are very basic, with a cast snapshot on each menu screen, and options of Play All, Episode Selection, and Set Up. In the background, the closing theme music plays, along with several short video clips from the episodes. Once you select Episode Selection, you get a listing of the episodes on the disc, along with a small screenshot from the episode. Set Up allows you to choose the audio (either Dolby Digital 5.1 English or Dolby Digital 2.0 English) and the subtitles (English and Spanish). All episodes contain chapters at the appropriate place.
Video and Audio Quality:
Given the low production budget of the series, the video and audio quality isn't terrible. The episodes are presented in widescreen, which is a change from some of the earlier House of Payne releases containing episodes made in the past few years, yet still in full-screen. There aren't any real issues with the video, though. The audio, available either in Dolby Digital 5.1 (default) or Dolby Digital 2.0, sounds mostly loud and clear, but the obnoxious/overused/abused laugh track that never seems to stop makes it hard to even hear some of the dialog in the episodes. It isn't that I have a problem with laugh tracks, but they are used so often in this series that you can't even follow what is going on in the episodes. The episodes are all closed-captioned, and they also contain English and Spanish subtitles.
There isn't a single special feature on the whole set. It would have been nice to have at least seen some character profiles, short interviews, bloopers, or anything really.
This is probably a disclaimer that I should have made earlier in this review, but I'll go ahead and make it now: I have a strong bias against much of Tyler Perry's work, and the sitcoms, while they do bring back a sense of the older style of sitcoms that I typically like, I really do find obnoxious. They strongly overdo the laugh track, bring in "very special moments" at the most inappropriate times, the characters are extremely exaggerated caricatures, and in general, I just find them unwatchable. But at the same time, it is undeniable that these series have been a hit for TBS and there are plenty of fans of these series that see things the complete opposite way. In short, the Tyler Perry sitcoms are either love 'em or hate 'em, so if you are a fan of them, you'll definitely want to pick up this DVD set. These sets (along with almost all Lionsgate DVD releases, even series that have very wide appeal) are typically very nicely discounted and always worth picking up even if you are a casual fan.
As for the DVD itself, it is a decent set, but I'm not able to understand exactly how they chose these as the "Season 3" episodes, particularly when the entire season isn't here, and some episodes along the way (most notably, a Christmas episode featuring some of the House of Payne cast members) are just skipped over. My guess is that this is the third season in the production order, and the "skipped" episodes will be included in a future release... at least I hope that is the case for the sake of the completion of the series. It also seems unfortunate that the set has no special features, at all. Surely they could have found SOMETHING. Still, these issues aren't worth overlooking the DVD set if you are a fan.
Final Numbers (out of 5 stars - How our point system works)
Video Quality: 4/5
Audio Quality: 4/5
Special Features: 0/5
Menu Design/Navigation: 4/5
-- Reviewed by skees53 on 11/27/11
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