TITLE: THE KING OF QUEENS - THE COMPLETE FOURTH SEASON
DVD Release Date: June 14, 2005 (Sony Pictures Home Entertainment)
Number of Discs: 3
Number of Episodes: 25
Running Time: Approx 559 minutes
Audio: English Dolby Digital 2.0
Special Features: None
Season Four of The King of Queens is now on DVD!
Season Four of The King of Queens experienced a couple
of milestones this season. It finished 20th overall
in the Nielsen ratings this season, its highest
ranking to date. It also hit the 100 episode mark
this season. Season 4 stars Kevin James as Doug
Heffernan and Leah Remini as his wife Carrie. Also
starring are Jerry Stiller, as Carrie's live-in father
Arthur, as well as Victor Williams as Deacon Palmer,
Patton Oswalt as Spence, and Gary Valentine, Kevin
James' real-life brother, as Doug's brother Danny.
Memorable Episodes / Notable Guest Stars:
Most of the season four episodes are downright great.
My recommendation is honestly just to take a day,
pop the episodes in the DVD player, and watch the
season straight through. As for guest stars, this
season does have a few noteworthy ones. Comedian
Chris Elliott guest stars in episode #7, Lyin'
Hearted. Jenny O' Hara (“My Sister Sam,” “The Facts
of Life”) returns as Doug's mother Janet for a lot of
episodes this season, including #9 Veiled Threat, in
addition to # 12 Ovary Action, and #19 Screwed
Driver. Peter Scolari (“Bosom Buddies,” “Newhart”)
guests in show #16, “No Orleans”. Gavin MacLeod (“The
Love Boat”) guests in episode #18, “Hero Worship.”
Show #20, Lush Life, guests Lou Ferrigno as himself.
In show #22, "Patrons Ain’t", Marla Gibbs (“The
Jeffersons,” “227”) guest stars as Nana Louise. Eddie
Money guest stars as himself in the next episode,
appropriately titled “Eddie Money,” as does Jerry
Stiller’s daughter Amy, and Leah Remini’s sister
Nicole. Finally, Erik Per Sullivan (Later would go on
to be Dewey on Malcolm in the Middle) is in the series
finale, “Shrink Wrap.”
The packaging is, like the previous King of Queens
releases, a standard Digipak. The outside of the box
features Doug, Carrie, and Arthur beneath the King of
Queens logo. Reverse cover has various sheets of
paper with a slice of pizza and a picture of the main
three cast members, with set information on the yellow
sheet of paper in a handwriting-style font. The
interior disc holder, when unfolded, has on the back a
nice animated panorama of a street in Queens with
houses (similar to the front cover). Interestingly, a
couple of the houses look like the famed residence of
Archie & Edith on All in the Family. In front of the
street is: Doug giving Arthur a noogie in front of a
“Watch Opposing Traffic” sign on Panel 1, a simple
Wrong Way sign on the second panel, the main logo is
the 3rd panel, while Carrie arguing with Doug in front
of a Do Not Enter Sign on the last panel. The
opposite side, containing the three disc holders and
the insert holder, is a table with various pictures,
remote controls, foot, and other assorted junk on it.
Each of the three discs has various Polaroids of
various cast members. The first nine shows of season 4
are on disc one, shows 10 through 18 are on the second
disc, while 19 through 24 can be found on the third
Menu Design and Navigation:
Main Menu on all three discs is Doug attempting to
kiss an angry Carrie. All three discs' main menu does
feature a Play All button. Episode selection menus are
a still shot of the episode, with a street name sign
graphic hanging below each with the episode title.
Previews menu is nothing but plain text with a crown
appearing beside the active menu choice and the
episode selection and main menu buttons at the bottom.
Video and Audio Quality:
Video looks fine, overall. The episodes are
presented in full-frame 1.33:1 aspect ratio - the
series had yet to transition to the widescreen format
now standard in prime time. There's a minor to
moderate amount of grain in the episodes, but overall,
the episodes look fairly nice. The nine episodes
per disc on one and two start to cross the line at
which compression can become an issue. There IS minor
artifacting on some scenes on discs one and two.
Overall though, it's not enough to detract from the
viewing experience. Chapter stops are placed at the
end of the fade-to-blacks. This is fairly decent
placing with the tendency in some releases nowadays
to forego chapter stops, it's good to see well placed
ones. Audio is a Dolby Digital 2.0 track in
English. There's little to no hiss, which is good.
The audio mix is fairly well balanced among the
channels. There's nothing really distinctive to
differentiate between the audio channels. The mix is
almost completely balanced towards a center mix.
The only “special feature” is a few promotional spots
for various Sony DVD releases - Contemporary TV,
Hitch, NewsRadio, Seinfeld, and King of Queens - yes,
the same Contemporary TV release that's been on pretty
much every Sony release in the last three years.
Kevin James and Will Smith’s movie Hitch is also out
on this same date on DVD.
Ultimately, I only have two problems with the set, and
all both are common problems with Sony releases. 1)
No Special Features (other than Sony DVD previews).
It could not possibly be that hard to get some cast or
crew to come in and lay down a few commentary tracks,
or dig the vaults for various promos something.
Problem two is more of a minor nitpick than anything
else it regards the main menu. It's nothing but a
static graphic with a few bits of dynamic text for the
options. How hard would it be to get some animations
carrying clips going in the background or even just
play the show's theme in the background? For the next
set, I'd love LOVE to see the above done.
The fourth season set of King of Queens is essentially
the same as the first three season sets. If you're
new to the show, you might want to start here the
series was established, but wasn't yet at the point
where they were starting to rehash plots and ideas.
There's nothing really that amazing about the set, but
there's nothing really horrible either. The show's
great, but the DVD set is just missing something.
Final Numbers (out of 5 stars - How our point system works)
Video Quality: 3.5/5
Audio Quality: 4.5/5
Special Features: 0/5
Menu Navigation/Design: 3.5/5
-- Reviewed by Seth Thrasher on 05/26/05
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