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My Boys - The Complete First Season


TITLE: MY BOYS - THE COMPLETE FIRST SEASON


Info:

DVD Release Date: June 10, 2008 (Sony Pictures Home Entertainment)
Color / 2006-07
MSRP: $39.98
Number of Discs: 3
Number of Episodes: 22
Running Time: Approx. 488 minutes
Running Time of Special Features: Approx. 47 minutes
Languages, Subtitles, Closed Captioning: English 5.1 (Dolby Digital); French; Closed captioned
Special Features:

  • Life in the Press Box - Behind the Scenes Featurette
  • Sports Quiz Featurette with Cast and Crew
  • Favorites in Sports Featurette with Cast and Crew
  • P.J.'s Rules for Sports and Dating Featurette
  • No Crying in Baseball - Outtakes and Bloopers
  • Riding the Pine - Deleted Scenes
  • Minisodes - "Silver Spoons": Me and Mr. T; "Diff'rent Strokes": Mr. T and mr. t
  • Previews


    Introduction:

    In this new comedy, a twenty-something tomboy sports-writer P.J. Franklin (Jordana Spiro) discovers her no-nonsense, sports-oriented approach to dating doesn't play or pay - especially when her boys (Kyle Howard, Reid Scott, Michael Bunin, Jamie Kaler and Jim Gaffigan) decide to help her out. Don't miss a single episode of the entire first season - on DVD for the first time!


    Show History / Episodes Included / Notable Guest Stars:

    My Boys debuted on TBS on November 28, 2006. From executive producers Betsy Thomas, Gavin Polone (TV's "Curb Your Enthusiasm") and Jamie Tarses, this quirky comedy features Spiro as P.J. Franklin, a twenty-something tomboy who finds her masculine, no-nonsense, sports-oriented dating approach does not always have the effect she's hoped for with potential suitors. When the men in her life - her brother, an ex-byofriend, her best friend and a sportswriter from the rival newspaper - decide to help her out, the game plan goes out the window and all bets are off, with comic consequences. In her quest to define herself, P.J. learns it doesn't always pay to be one of the boys. My Boys stars Jordana Spiro ("Must Love Dogs") as P.J. Franklin, Kyle Howard (TV's "8 Simple Rules" and "Related") as Bobby Newman, Reid Scott (TV's "American Dreams") as Brendan Dorff, Michael Bunin (TV's "Scrubs") as Kenny Morittori, Jamier Kaler ("The Family Stone") as Mike Callahan, Jim Gaffigan (TV's "Ed" and "Three Kings") and Kellee Stewart ("Guess Who?") as Stephanie. My Boys quickly scored high ratings and critical acclaim. It ended the year as ad-supported cable's #1 original sitcom among key adult demos, households and viewers. It also scored well on TBS' Laugh Lab broadband player at TBS.com, delivering nearly 3 million video views. An 8-episode second season will premiere on June 12.

    Memorable episodes included "The Slump," in which P.J. learns the boys are in a dating slump and are planning to go out to try to meet women without her. P.J. lies to Hank so she can hang out with the guys, making her question her feelings for him in "Free Agent." Trouty arranges to get everyone admitted to an exclusive new nightclub, whose owner has eyes for P.J. in "Take One for the Team." Andy's wife decides to throw Andy a surprise party at the gang's regular handout, P.J. and her "team" take Andy for an eventful trip to Wrigley Field in "Baseball Myths." P.J. makes her television debut as a guest on the Turk Vardell Show in "Off Day." When P.J.'s former editor visits from New York, things don't go the way she planned in "Douchebag in the City."

    Notable guest stars included Eddie McClintock as Hank in "The Slump," "Clubhouse Cancer" and "Free Agent." Johnny Galecki appeared as Trouty in "Clubhouse Cancer," "Take One for the Team," and "Ethics." Pat Finn played Charlie in "Managers" and "Off Day." Neil Flynn guest starred as Danny Finn and Laurie Metcalf was Aunt Phyllis in "When Heroes Fall From Grace." Nicole Sullivan appeared as Kimmie in "The Promise of a New Season" and "Off Day." Ian Gomez was Turk Vardell in "Off Day." Jeremy Sisto played Thorn in "Second Chances" and "Rome If You Want It." Ryan Reynolds guest starred as Hams in "Douchebag in the City." Nancy Lenehan appeared as Eileen in "The Estates of Hoffman."


    Packaging:

    The packaging is a carboard box that holds two slim cases. The outer cardboard features a large photo of Jordana Spiro in the foreground and her boys (Reid Scott, Jamie Kaler, Kyle Howard, Michael Bunin and Jim Gaffigan) to the left of her. The My Boys logo is in light blue at the top and part of the Chicago skyline is at the bottom. On the back of the box, there is a photo of Spiro sitting in a baseball chair (I need to get one of those) and three different photos of the boys in cards. A synopsis of the set, listing of the special features and the DVD specs are given. Jordana Spiro is on the spine of the box. Two slim cases slide out from the right of the outer cardboard box. Slim case #1 has a publicity photo of the case that includes Kellee Stewart. Slim case #2 has a photo from the same shoot that doesn't include her. There are some pretty detailed episode summaries listed on the back of the slim cases. Four photos are featured on the back of slim case #2. Inside the slim cases, there are more cast, writing and directing credits listed. The only things missing are the original airdates and guest stars. The background is sky blue with the beautiful Chicago skyline. There is an insert that promotes the second season premieres of My Boys and The Bill Engvall Show and a Sony TV on DVD booklet. Each disc has the My Boys logo and a different photo of the cast at the poker table. The embedded plastic holders are pretty sturdy, so they shouldn't break.


    Menu Design and Navigation:

    The anamorphic widescreen menus are colorful and easy to navigate. The main menu features the same photo of the boys as the cover art but a different photo of Jordana Spiro. At the top of the screen, the My Boys logo is in light blue and the season and disc number is in red. Each disc has a different colored background and theme. Disc is light blue, Disc 2 is green and Disc 3 is purple. Below the logo, there are options for "Play All Episodes," "Subtitles" and "Episode Selections." There are additional options for Deleted Scenes on Disc 2 and "Special Features" and "Previews" on Disc 3. When you choose "Episode Selections," it takes you to a sub-menu where there are four episodes listed per screen. There is a screenshot from each episode. The episode you highlight has a red border that turns light blue upon your selection. Michael Bunin and Kyle Howard are featured on the Subtitles menu. You can turn on the French subtitles there. Jim Gaffigan is on the deleted scenes menu. Jamie Kaler and Reid Scott are on the featurettes menu and there is a photo of a baseball glove used on several screens. There are chapter stops within the episodes but no separate scene selection menus.


    Video and Audio Quality:

    These episodes are from 2006-07, so they look outstanding as you might expect. They are in their original anamorphic widescreen 1.78:1 format and mastered in high definitinon. My Boys is a single camera comedy shot without a studio audience. The picture is very sharp and the colors are vivid. They have some pretty elaborate sets and the lighting is good on all of them. While almost all of the principal filming is done in Los Angeles, there are many second unit establishing shots of Chicago used. They even went to Wrigley Field for the filming of one episode. Eight episodes on discs 1 and 2 seem like a little much. I would have preferred the episodes spread out a bit more on 4 discs. All of the episodes appear to be unedited, with running times of around 22 minutes. The pilot ran a bit longer at 23:37. They are presented in their original broadcast order as TBS aired them. For the closing logo enthusiasts, there are logos for Pariah and 2 Out Rally Productions followed by one for Sony Pictures Television.

    The audio is an English 5.1 Dolby Digital track. That is pretty much overkill for a show that is mostly dialogue. The dialogue is at a good volume level and easy to understand. Since they shoot without a studio audience, there is no audience reaction and no added laugh track. They have a nice bluesy instrumental opening and ending theme and some nice score by composer Ed Alton. French subtitles are available. Closed captioning is available on all of the episodes. The special features may not be subtitled or closed captioned.

    Here is the episode breakdown by disc, including the running times:

    Disc 1
    ---------
    1. Pilot (23:37)
    2. Mixed Signals (22:08)
    3. Team Chemistry (21:53)
    4. The Slump (22:08)
    5. The Show (22:07)
    6. Clubhouse Cancer (22:08)
    7. Free Agent (22:04)
    8. Superstar Treatment (22:08)

    Disc 2
    ---------
    9. Managers (22:08)
    10. Take One For the Team (22:08)
    11. When Heroes Fall (22:08)
    12. Released (22:08)
    13. Baseball Myths (22:48)
    14. Promise of a New Season (22:10)
    15. Off Day (22:10)
    16. Ethics (22:10)

    Disc 3
    ---------
    17. Dirty Little Secrets (22:10)
    18. Second Chances (22:10)
    19. Douchebag in the City (22:04)
    20. The Estates of Hoffman (22:08)
    21. 110% Solution (22:09)
    22. Rome If You Want It (22:10)


    Special Features:

    We are treated to a little over 45 minutes of special features on Discs 2 and 3. All of the main cast members are interviewed and some of the crew. There's a pretty good mix of featurettes focusing on the show with some others having the cast members talking about sports.

    Riding the Pine: Deleted Scenes (Disc 2) - Stephanie is Trouble (:19) - A scene wtih Stephanie in a red dress. Do You Mind If I Cras Here? (2:03) - A scene with Jim Gaffigan, Michael Bunin and Jamie Kaler at Andy's apartment.

    Life in the Press Box (Disc 3 - 16:48) - This is a behind the scenes look at the show. It includes interviews with Creator Betsy Thomas, Producer Ken Ornstein, Michael Bunin, Kyle Howard, Exectuvie Producer Jamie Tarses, Reid Scott, Jim Gaggifan, Jordana Spiro, Kellee Stewart and Jamie Kaler. Betsy talks about the origin of the show and how it is based on her life and friends. The cast talks about their chracters, their natural chemistry and how men and women relate to the show. I can see how they cast Jordana Spiro as she looks and sounds similar to Betsy Thomas.

    Sports Quiz (Disc 3 - 5:34) - The cast and crew are asked some trivia questions. Some are obviously not very big sports fans. I'm looking at you Jim Gaffigan.

    Favorite Sport (Disc 3 - 5:47) - The cast and crew talk about their favorite sport, favorite team, favorite player and favorite sports moment. Michael Bunin had a nice little story about meeting Joe Torre with his father.

    P.J's Rules for Sports and Dating (Disc 3 - 8:51) - This featurette is just clips from the episodes put together in different themes like "Keep Your Signals Straight" and "Don't Mess with Team Chemistry." I guess they will never run out of sports analogies.

    Minisodes (Disc 3) - Silver Spoons - "Me and Mr. T" (4:40); Diff'rent Strokes - "Mr. T and mr. t" (4:46)

    No Crying in Baseball (Disc 3 - 7:02) - Some funny bloopers and outtakes from the show. These are high picture quality, just like the show. There are even a few bleeped-out profanities.

    Previews (Disc 3) - Trailers for My Mom's New Boyfriend (2:13), Blonde Ambition (1:43), Rescue Me (1:10), Damages (1:39), NewsRadio (1:56) and All-New My Boys on TBS (:34)


    Final Comments:

    My Boys was another one of the new, original TBS comedies that premiered awhile back that I wanted to sample, but I just never got around to watching it. The show has reminded a lot of people of "Sex and the City" because it is told from a female point of view and narrated by the female lead. I could never watch that series, but My Boys has a lot of appeal to me because it involves a lot of things I like: Chicago, baseball and the Cubs. It doesn't hurt that it has a cute, lead actress in Jordana Spiro, either. I wasn't too familiar with her before, but she is adorable on this show and perfectly cast. The supporting cast is very funny. Several of them have stand-up backgrounds and do some improv on the show. The cast just had some natural chemistry beginning with the pilot. Since the show airs on TBS, a lot of people probably haven't heard about it or watched it before. It is worth checking out because it appeals to both men and women.

    This is a pretty decent set for a first season release. Unlike fellow TBS sitcom The Bill Engvall Show, My Boys had a full season of 22 episodes. Unfortunately, the second season will be cut down to only 8 episodes. There are over 45 minutes of special features that regular watchers and new fans should enjoy. It was interesting to hear the cast talking about their characters and their sports stories. Some audio commentaries would have been great, but there is a nice mix of featurettes. The show ended the season with a major cliffhanger. Who will P.J. take on a trip to Italy? Tune in and find out on the second season premiere on Thursday, June 12, at 9:30/8:30c on TBS.


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

    Video Quality: 5/5
    Audio Quality: 5/5
    Special Features: 2.5/5
    Menu Design/Navigation: 4/5
    Overall: 4/5

    -- Reviewed by Todd Fuller on 06/09/08

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

    http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/B000ZS8GXA/ref=nosim/happydaysonline4-20

    Questions or comments about this set? Post on our message board:

    http://www.sitcomsonline.com/boards/showthread.php?t=226680


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