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The Cosby Show - 25th Anniversary Commemorative Edition - All 8 Seasons


TITLE: THE COSBY SHOW - 25TH ANNIVERSARY COMMEMORATIVE EDITION - ALL 8 SEASONS


Info:

Release Date: November 11, 2008 (First Look Entertainment)
Color/1984-1992
MSRP: $124.98
Number of Discs: 26
Number of Episodes: 201 half-hours
Running Time: Over 76 hours!
Languages, Subtitles: English; Closed Captioned
Special Features: New ones are Exclusive All-New Two-Part Interview with Dr. Cosby, Photo Gallery Slide Show, Cosby Show Blooper Special from 1990, 25th Anniversary Hard Cover Commemorative Book Featuring the Script from The Pilot, Commemorative Bill Cosby Photo and Personal Letter, plus all the other extras from the season sets!


Introduction:

The Huxtables are back on DVD all in one complete set with every single episode...unedited (even season one)! One of the most popular shows in the history of television is now available in one amazing box set from First Look Entertainment. Relive all your favorite moments from the show that almost single-handedly revived the sitcom in 1984. The Cosby Show regularly appears in lists of the greatest shows of all time, yet it remains as vibrant today as one of Cliff Huxtable's sweaters!

From their brownstone house in Brooklyn, Cliff and Clair Huxtable watched over their family with style, wit and wisdom, not to mention a whole lot of laughs. The values they represented clearly struck a nerve with the public as the show was an instant success - never out of the top 20 in ratings, and one of only two shows to hold TV's #1 spot for five years in a row. The new collection brings together every original network episode for its legendary eight-year run. Take a look back at the stellar cast along with the many all-star guest appearances: Stevie Wonder, Sammy Davis, Jr., Betty Carter, B.B. King, Adam Sandler, John Ritter and many more.

The series stars Dr. Bill Cosby as Dr. Heathcliff Huxtable, Phylicia Rashad as Clair Huxtable, Sabrina Le Beauf as Sondra Huxtable, Lisa Bonet as Denise Huxtable, Malcolm-Jamal Warner as Theo Huxtable, Tempest Bledsoe as Vanessa Huxtable, Geoffrey Owens as Elvin Tibideaux, Joseph C. Phillips as Martin Kendall, Erika Alexander as Pam Tucker, with Raven Symone as Olivia Kendall, and Keshia Knight Pulliam as Rudy Huxtable.


Memorable Episodes / Notable Guest Stars:

We get every single episode on this set! So it is hard to pick memorable episodes from the entire series’ run. Since we did individual season reviews for each season already and stated our memorable episodes from each season and memorable guest stars for each season, let our hard work from the past be of essence:

Season 1 / Season 2 / Season 3 / Season 4 / Season 5 / Season 6 / Season 7 / Season 8


Packaging:

The packaging is all-new and very cool! Everything has changed...the box, cases, and disc art. It all matches with each other. Let’s start with the box. The box is pretty big but is perfect. The color scheme is black. On the front of the box is the show logo in red, with a reflection and an image of Bill Cosby in his trademark sweater! The top says 25th Anniversary Commemorative Edition in grey lettering and on the bottom it says All 8 Seasons in grey lettering also. The back of the box also is in black of course. It has a smaller show logo in red, followed by a nice long synopsis of the series and set in grey lettering. Below that we have a list of Special Features, both new and ones we got already before. There is another image of Bill Cosby in his sweater, this time holding his cheeks. On the bottom, we get square screenshots of the rest of the family. The cases are inside; to get to them, you open the box like you would a book! On the left side we have black background, and full credits in grey lettering...cast, executive producers, creators, and more. On the right side we see a pocket holding the cases and on top of that we get a nice colorful image of Bill Cosby.

Inside the pocket are the cases along with two other items...a 25th Anniversary Commemorative Edition Booklet and Bill Cosby Photo and Letter. I will detail those in the special features section. As for the cases, we get four of them, each holding two seasons each. Each case is similar to each other...they have the show logo on the front with a different cast member and on the back we get a nice cast photo and screenshots. Each case has a black background, matching the style from the box. The first case holds seasons one and two. On the front we have the show logo in purple and an image of Cliff and Claire. The back of the case has a cast photo, looks to be season one, then on the bottom we get seven different screenshots in squares. The second case holds seasons three and four. On the front we have the show logo in green and an image of Theo and Denise. The back of the case has a cast photo, looks to be season four, then on the bottom we get seven different screenshots in squares. The third case holds seasons five and six. On the front we have the show logo in pink and an image of Elvin and Sondra. The back of the case has a cast photo, looks to be season six, then on the bottom we get seven different screenshots in squares. The final case holds seasons seven and eight. On the front we have the show logo in blue and an image of Rudy and Vanessa. The back of the case has a cast photo, looks to be season seven, then on the bottom we get seven different screenshots in squares.

When we go inside the cases, we get disc-by-disc breakdowns in the matching colors of the show logo on each case. We get episode number, title, and original airdate, along with special features, if any. Then we get to the discs! Each disc has its own pocket. It is very creative...no overlapping of discs! Two discs are on each side but in two different pockets! I’ve never seen this before, but it is great. There is nothing to push to get the discs out... you just use your hands to take it out from the pocket. It is simple and it works! The disc art also match the show logo on each case. For seasons one and two, we get purple discs...but to tell them a part, season one has a purple background with the show logo in white. Season two has a white background with the show logo in purple. These two seasons have four discs each. For season one, disc one holds episodes 1-8, disc two holds episodes 9-16, disc three holds episodes 17-24, and disc four has special features. For season two, disc one holds episodes 1-8, disc two holds episodes 9-15, disc three holds episodes 16-22, and disc four holds episodes 23-25 & the special features.

For seasons three and four, we get green discs...but to tell them a part, season three has a green background with the show logo in white. Season four has a white background with the show logo in green. These two seasons have three discs each. For season three, disc one holds episodes 1-9, disc two holds episodes 10-17, and disc three holds episodes 18-25. For season four, disc one holds episodes 1-7, disc two holds episodes 8-15, and disc three holds episodes 16-23. For seasons five and six, we get pink discs...but to tell them a part, season five has a pink background with the show logo in white. Season six has a white background with the show logo in pink. These two seasons have three discs each. For season five, disc one holds episodes 1-8, disc two holds episodes 9-17, and disc three holds episodes 18-25. For season six, disc one holds episodes 1-9, disc two holds episodes 10-18, and disc three holds episodes 19-26.

For seasons seven and eight, we get blue discs...but to tell them a part, season seven has a blue background with the show logo in white. Season eight has a white background with the show logo in blue. These two seasons have three discs each. For season seven, disc one holds episodes 1-7, disc two holds episodes 8-16, and disc three holds episodes 17-25. For season eight, disc one holds episodes 1-9, disc two holds episodes 10-17, and disc three holds episodes 18-24. To view the packaging style on the season sets, check out our past review links. 


Menu Design and Navigation:

The menus are all the same as the original season sets. They are very good, like we stated on the reviews for each season. So I suggest you read each Menu Design and Navigation section on our season reviews we did so you know how they are if you don’t have the season sets:

Season 1 / Season 2 / Season 3 / Season 4 / Season 5 / Season 6 / Season 7 / Season 8


Video and Audio Quality:

The video and audio are also exactly the same as the season sets as they are the same prints...well except for season one! They redid the season one prints, which were syndicated prints, and gave us original unedited network versions of season one! Excellent fix, and makes this set a MUST BUY for fans. So now each season is unedited, as season one was the only set that had syndicated edited copies on the season sets. The video and audio on these look choppy compared to other seasons, but maybe because season one is obviously the oldest season. It is still very watchable, though. Here are the runtimes for the Season 1 episodes (production order)...unedited on this complete series set:

Disc 1:
1. “Pilot Presentation” 23:40
2. “Goodbye, Mr. Fish” 24:07
3. “Bad Dreams” 23:33
4. “You’re Not a Mother Tonight” 24:08
5. “Is That My Boy?” 24:39
6. “Breaking with Tradition” 24:39
7. “One More Time” 24:40
8. “A Shirt Story” 23:39

Disc 2:
9. “Play It Again, Vanessa” 24:38
10. “How Ugly Is He?” 24:38
11. “Bonjour, Sondra” 24:39
12. “Father’s Day” 24:37
13. “Rudy’s Sick” 24:37
14. “Independence Day” 24:37
15. “Physician of the Year” 24:10
16. “Jitterbug Break” 24:38

Disc 3:
17. “Theo and the Joint” 24:36
18. “Vanessa’s New Class” 24:41
19. “Claire’s Case” 24:40
20. “Back to the Track, Jack” 24:40
21. “The Younger Woman” 24:07
22. “Slumber Party” 24:42
23. “Mr. Quiet” 23:39
24. “Cliff’s Birthday” 24:37

To see runtimes for other seasons, refer back to our season reviews. You can also view how the video and audio are for the other seasons on our reviews in the Video and Audio Quality section:

Season 1 / Season 2 / Season 3 / Season 4 / Season 5 / Season 6 / Season 7 / Season 8


Special Features:

We get new extras on this complete series set, in addition to all of the extras already on the season sets. Only seasons one and two sets had extras on the season sets though. In this section, I will only cover the new special features. First up, we get two non-visual extras. We get a 25th Anniversary Commemorative Booklet! It is like a mini book. It is hardcover but very small, like a mini book. It is in white and has the entire script for the very first episode, titled “Bill Cosby Presentation.” It is very cool. Also inside that we have nice full page color images of the cast! At the end of the script, we also get a very detailed list of guest stars, recurring stars, and a full list of awards won by the show...it is a lot! I can’t believe 2009 will mark the 25th anniversary of this show. We also get a little insert that is made of paper. It is in black cover with the show logo in red. When we open that we get two items inside. A nice letter written (typed) by Bill Cosby with his signature! A very nice note! We also get a Bill Cosby photo drawing drawn by Hirschfeld. Nice collectibles! Oh yes, one more thing...on the box we get a sticker saying “Bill Cosby Bonus...Two free music downloads at http://boxsetpromo.billcosby.com ." You type in the code given and you can listen to some of Cosby’s CD music.

The rest of the new extras are on the fourth disc of season one. We get a two-part “Interview with Dr. Cosby.” He shares lots of details and information! The first part runs 30:47 and he talks about how the show got started, each character/actor and how they got the part, and how he brings his life to this show. The second part of this interview runs 19:08 and Bill talks about his worst moment on the show, more about his bringing his real life to this show, and his favorite scenes from the series! He is very candid and talks in detail in this near 50 minute total interview! Then we have a “Photo Gallery.” It is in slide show form and has many nice images. The final new extra is labeled “Show Bloopers” and runs 22:45. This is actually a special that NBC aired in 1990 called “Outtakes from the Cosby Show.” It is hosted by Phylicia Rashad and all the kids, including Raven! I loved it and I have always wanted to see this, as I believe this has not been seen since that date or at least in reruns on NBC from back then. I always wished they included this special in the Cosby Show syndication package, but they don’t. Oh well, now we have it on DVD! Yet another reason to buy this set!

To view details on the previous extras, read our seasons one and two (the only seasons to have extras) DVD reviews:

Season 1 / Season 2 (the other sets had no extras AT ALL)


Final Comments:

This complete series set is worth the buy! First, they corrected the season one episodes to have ALL the episodes unedited and their original network versions. Second, we get nice new extras, including a Cosby interview and a “classic bloopers special.” Third, the packaging is NOT cheap like some other complete series sets (such as Saford & Son, Soap, What’s Happening!!). For fans who bought all eight seasons separately, I know you’re probably a little ticked, but if you are a die-hard...you’ll still buy this set and keep the season sets since the packaging on those is different. Any die-hard would want everything. For casual fans that don’t have the season sets, this complete series set is your best bet. It saves space on your DVD shelf as well. This is a nice ending for the Cosby Show on DVD. Everything seems complete now since season one is unedited and the blooper special from 1990 is on DVD now, too. So buy this set and enjoy the Huxtables with your own family just in time for Thanksgiving!


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

Video Quality: 4/5
Audio Quality: 4/5
Special Features: 3.5/5
Menu Navigation/Design: 5/5
Overall: 4.5/5

-- Reviewed by pavanbadal on 11/07/08

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

http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/B001CIOCHQ/ref=nosim/happydaysonline4-20

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

http://www.sitcomsonline.com/boards/showthread.php?t=235750


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