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My Boys - The Complete Second and Third Seasons


TITLE: MY BOYS - THE COMPLETE SECOND AND THIRD SEASONS


Info:

DVD Release Date: July 20, 2010 (Sony Pictures Home Entertainment)
Color/2008-2009
MSRP: $39.95
Number of Discs: 2
Number of Episodes: 18
Running Time: approx. 378 minutes
Runtime of Special Features: n/a
Languages, Subtitles, Closed Captioning: English; French Subtitles; Closed-captioned
Special Features: none


Introduction:

P.J. Franklin and the gang are back and better than ever as one of the funniest comedies on TV returns for Seasons 2 and 3.

Season 2 opens with P.J. continuing her search for love, this time with best friend Stephanie on a double-date vacation in Italy. Back home in Chicago, the gang continues to experience the ups and downs of career, family and relationships. Andy settles down in the suburbs, Bobby gets engaged, Brendan reinvents himself, Kenny and Mike continue to navigate the singles scene, and Stephanie enjoys the success of a best-selling dating advice book.

Season 3 finds P.J., Stephanie and the guys experiencing big changes and new relationship dynamics within the group. A promotion for P.J., a new business venture for Brendan, a musical side project for Kenny and more than one secret romance keep this tight-knit circle of friends on their toes as they live and love in the Windy City.


Episodes:

Season two opens with "The Transitioning," in which P.J's mystery man is revealed aboard the plane to Italy but things quickly turn sour when Stephanie and Lance hit a rough patch. P.J. decides she's in a dating rut and throws a singles dinner party in "Dinner Party." The guys compete in a shirt-making competition in "The Shirt Contest." Andy enrolls in an improv vomedy class while Brendan wallows in a self-pity due to his current circumstances with his work and love life in "Spit Take." Nia Vardalos makes her first appearance as Jo. Andy's friendship with Jo continues to confuse and disconcert the gang, Kenny is dating two women, which Mike finds maddening in "Take My Work Wife... Please." Aimee Garcia guest stars as Amy. The boys host a bachelor party for Bobby in "Dudes Being Dudes." P.J. steps in to help Bobby, who is overwhelmed with wedding planning in "Opportunity Knocks." Billy Burke makes his first appearance as Jack Newman. Martin Mull appears as Dr. Clayton. The gang arrives at the Newman ranch for the big wedding in "Jack & Bobby." Christopher McDonald appears as George Newman. Mimi Rogers plays Maggie Greenmore. Jack's and Bobby's tensions come to blows, causing Jack to leave the ranch in "John, Cougar, Newman Camp." Marilu Henner guest stars as Mrs. Newman.

Season three begins with "Welcome Back, Kalla Fötter," in which Bobby gets cold feet on his wedding day, while P.J. gets caught between Bobby and his brother. The guys investigate when they suspect P.J. is secretly dating someone in "Private Eyes." Upon getting a promotion, the guys tease P.J. about being chosen for her looks father than skill in "The Boyfriend Hat." An annual board game decathalon causes strife when Bobby accuses P.J. of being too competetitve in "Decathalon: Part Deux." Brendan agrees to let P.J. make all of his decisions for one week in "Carpe Burritoem." A sudden wave of warm weather brings the gang a much-needed break from the cold, while sparking romance and adventure in "Madder of Degrees." Facebook causes drama for the gang when Bobby joins and learns more about P.J. than he anticipated in "Facebook the Past." P.J. hits it off with one of Stephanie's girlfriends, leading to a couples date in "Friends of Friends." As P.J. faces new challenges in her first trip as a columnist to the Cubs' spring training camp in Arizona, Brendan faces his own when a player's girlfriend uses him to make her boyfriend jealous in "Spring Training." Mike Fontenot from the Chicago Cubs makes a a cameo apperance as himself.

All of the episodes appear to be unedited, with running times of around 21 minutes. They are presented in their original broadcast order. The disc breakdown and runtimes are as follows:

Disc 1 - Season 2
The Transitioning (21:08)
Dinner Party (21:08)
The Shirt Contest (20:40)
Spit Take (21:08)
Take My Work Wife... Please (21:08)
Dudes Being Dudes (21:08)
Opportunity Knocks (21:08)
Jack & Bobby (21:08)
John, Cougar, Newman Camp (21:16)

Disc 2 - Season 3
Welcome Back, Kalla Fötter (20:04)
Private Eyes (21:08)
The Boyfriend Hat (21:08)
Decathalon: Part Deux (21:08)
Carpe Burritoem (21:08)
Madder of Degrees (21:08)
Facebook the Past (21:08)
Friends of Friends (21:08)
Spring Training (21:08)


Packaging:

All 18 episodes from the second and third seasons are included in this release. The packaging is a cardboard box that holds two slim cases. The outer cardboard box features a photo of Jordana Spiro with the boys (Reid Scott, Jamie Kaler, Kyle Howard, Michael Bunin and Jim Gaffigan) at Crowley's. My Boys' logo is at the top of the box. On the back of the box, there are 6 photos in frames hanging on the wall. A synopsis of the set and the DVD specs are provided. Jordana Spiro is, once again, on the spine of the box. Two slim cases slide out from the right of the outer cardboard box. Slim case #1 has a cast photo with Jordana Spiro, the boys and Kellee Stewart at Crowley's. Slim case #2 has a photo of Jordana and the boys at a poker table. There are some pretty detailed episode summaries on the back of the cases. Inside the slim cases, there are cast credits, producing, writing and directing credits listed for each episode. Unfortunately, they don't list the original airdates or any of the guest stars. The beautiful Chicago skyline is in the background. An insert that promotes the fourth season on TBS is included. Each disc has the My Boys logo and the same cast photo that is on the individual slim cases. They probably could have included both discs in one larger slim case.


Menu Design and Navigation:

The menus are simple and easy to navigate. Disc 1 features a large photo of Jordana Spiro in the foreground, with the boys playing poker in the background. Disc 2 has the same cast photo as slim case #1 with the cast at Crowley's. There are options for Play All Episodes, Episode Selections and Subtitles in a blue bar towards the bottom of the screen. There is a yellow rectangular box next to the option you highlight that turns light blue upon your selection. The Episode Selections menus have some blue-tinted photos (Kellee Stewart is on the second disc) from the episodes. Episode titles are listed vertically in white text. Reid Scott, Jordana Spiro and Jim Gaffigan are featured in a blue-tinted photo on the subitles menu. There is a promo for the fourth season when you first insert Disc 1 that you can play or skip. A previews menu features a blue-tinted photo of Jamie Kaler and Jim Gaffigan. There are previews for Drop Dead Diva, HawthoRNe, The Back-Up Plan and Dawson's Creek. Chapter stops are placed at the appropriate places within the episodes, but there are no separate scene selection menus.


Video and Audio Quality:

As you would probably expect from such a recent show, the episodes look and sound outstanding. They are in their original anamorphic widescreen 1.78:1 format and mastered in high definition. 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 many second unit establishing shots of Chicago used. Unfortuntately, I don't think they actually filmed any of the scenes for seasons 2 and 3 in Chicago. They did film the season three finale, "Spring Training," at the Chicago Cubs' spring training facility (HoHoKam Park) and at a nearby hotel in Mesa, Arizona. 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.


Special Features:

After having about 45 minutes of special features that included interviews with all of the main cast members, deleted scenes, a blooper reel and other featurettes on the first season set, there are no extras included on this release. This set could have been enhanced with some new cast and crew interviews, deleted scenes, bloopers and audio commentaries. There are quite a few video clips, games and quizzes on the official TBS site. I'm surprised that they just didn't transfer a few of them on the DVDs.


Final Comments:

It has been quite a long wait of over 2 years between DVD releases of My Boys. I'm not sure why they didn't release the second season before the start of the third season. I really liked the first season, but I haven't found the second and third seasons quite as enjoyable. There seems to be less baseball and Chicago references. Unfortunately, they didn't film any episodes in Chicago for seasons 2 and 3. The seasons are also much shorter with only 9 episodes per season. The storylines feel a bit rushed due to the limited amount of episodes. It was nice to see the third season finale shot in Arizona and feature a few members of my beloved Chicago Cubs.

This is a decent set for just the episodes, but I'm sure fans would have enjoyed some special features to add value to this release. It seems like all video clips and behind-the-scenes featurettes and interviews are online these days on the official show sites. It would have been nice to see some of them carry over to the DVDs or have some new interviews or audio commentaries to improve this release. Season 4 premiered on TBS on July 25th. This will be another short 9 episode season. There aren't many new sitcoms during this summer, so this will provide some fresh entertainment over the next 6+ weeks. Unfortunately, the always funny Jim Gaffigan has left the series. Rachael Harris will be joining the cast sometime later in the season. Catch all-new episodes Sundays on TBS at 10/9c!


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

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

-- Reviewed by Todd Fuller on 07/30/10

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

http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/B002OOWLEI/ref=nosim/happydaysonline4-20

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

http://www.sitcomsonline.com/boards/showthread.php?t=270528


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