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Dane Cook - The Lost Pilots



DVD Release Date: August 28, 2007 (Sony Pictures Home Entertainment)
Color/2004, 2005
MSRP: $14.94
Number of Discs: 1
Number of Episodes: 2
Running Time: Approx. 47 minutes
Runnint Time of Special Features: Approx. 67 minutes
Video: Full Screen 1.33:1
Audio: English 5.1 Stereo
Languages, Subtitles, Closed Captioning: English, Closed Captions
Special Features: Gag Reels, Dane's Antics & Ad Libs, Deleted Scenes, Bonus Previews


Inventive comedian and electric performer Dane Cook stars in two different half-hour comedy pilots that showcase his unique brand of humor.

In "Cooked 1," Dane is a stand-up comedian who, after living the easy life, loses it all and schemes relentlessly to get it back. Justine Bateman (TV's "Family Ties"), Pat Finn (TV's "Ed") and Bre Blair (TV's "What About Brian") also star.

In "Cooked 2," Dane is a charismatic guy who's always looking forward to his next life experience. His best friends, Mike, the perennial cynic, and Dakota, the girl-next-door, accompany him as he tries to trade an antique electric chair for a knife-wielding Samurai monkey trained in the martial arts. Joel David Moore ("Dodgeball") and Liz Vassey (TV's "CSI") also star.

Pilot History / Guest Stars:

Dubbed a "comedian phenom and icon" by Entertainment Weekly, red-hot funnyman-turned-actor Dane Cook ("Employee of the Month," "Mr Brooks") was named a "Time 100: The The People Who Shaped Our World" by Time Magazine in 2006. Dane Cook's unique brand of humor combines witty banter and observations on human behavior with lively physical comedy, all wrapped up in the persona of an accessible guy-next door. Cook's HBO production deal resulted in the nine-part comedy documentary series, "Tourgasm," and "Vicious Circle," a feature-length stand-up event. "Retailiation," his sophomore comedy CD, debuted at #4 on hte Billboard 2000 and went double platinum, making him the highest charting comedian in 29 years. Cook will next be seen starring opposite in the feature film "Good Luck Chuck" on August 24.

"Cooked 1" was originally titled "Humor Me" and produced by Sony in 2004. It starred Dane Cook, Pat Finn, Bre Blair and Justine Bateman. Guest stars were Tony Cox as Roy, Seana Kofoed as Denise, Amy Tolsky as Real Estate Lady, Michael Loomis as Guy, Dylan King as Jack and Adair Tishler as Emma.

"Cooked 2" was originally titled "Cooked" and produced by Sony in 2005. It starred Dane Cook, Liz Vassey and Joel David Moore. Guest stars were Sam McMurray as Ernie, Kristina Anapau as Sidney, Tracey Walter as Cletus, Christopher Darga as Gregory, Mark Fite as Contractor and Crystal as Mr. Pickles.


The single disc DVD comes in a standard Amaray movie-style case. Dane Cook is on the cover with his arms in the air and his name at the top. A monkey is holding up "The Lost Pilots" sign at the bottom. On the back of the case, there is a short synopsis of each pilot. There is a large photo of Dane Cook and 2 smaller cast photos. The special features and DVD specs are listed. As you would expect, Dane Cook is on the spine of the case. Inside the case, there is a booklet that promotes some other Sony TV DVD releaes. The disc features the same steel-type logo and a photo of Dane pointing his fingers at the camera and the knife-wielding monkey on the right. The cover art and disc have a brown background.

Menu Design and Navigation:

The static anamporphic widescreen menu features the Dane Cook title in white at the top and a cropped photo of Dane and the Viking hat wearing monkey. There are options to Play Both Episodes, Cooked 1, Cooked 2, Special Features and Previews on the main menu. A light blue arrow is next to the option you choose. It turns yellow upon your selection. The bloopers menu features Joel David Moore and the monkey, while Justine Bateman and the monkey are on the deleted scenes menu. No scene selection menus are offered, but there are chapter stops within the episodes. There are no menus to choose audio options or subtitles.

Video and Audio Quality:

Both pilots feature excellent video quality and are presented in full screen 1.33:1 format. They were shot on film with a single camera and without a studio audience or added laugh track. There were many outdoor and on-location shots. The scenes all look great and the colors are vivid. They did a very good job with the lighting in the pilots. While the actual pilots are in full screen, the bloopers and ad libs are in widescreen. "Cooked 1" runs 23:30, while "Cooked 2" clocks in at 23:31. Both pilots feature the Sony Pictures Television logo at the end. The second pilot also as a logo for Hail to the Chimp Entertainment.

The audio is an English 5.1 Stereo track. There are no major problems with it. The dialogue is at a good level and easy to understand. There were no songs that I heard in either of the pilots, but there was some nice score music in both of them. Closed captioning is available on the pilots, but the special features may not be subtitled or closed captioned.

Special Features:

Thought you were getting just the two pilots? Think again. There are gags, antics, ad libs and deleted scenes offered in the special features section. Over 65 minutes of material. You know there are a lot of special features when they are longer than the actual pilots. The only thing missing here are commentaries, although I'm not sure people would want to talk about failed pilots. I hate to say this, but I found the special features more entertaining than the actual pilots.

Bloopers, Gags, Antics & Ad Libs - Cooked 1 (26:13) - These are in widescreen. There is a lot of swearing, although some of it is bleeped out. There are a lot of funny ad libs and takes here, but how many times do we need to see Dane put cereal on his face and make chocolate milk?

Bloopers, Gags, Antics & Ad Libs - Cooked 2 (35:39) - More funny bloopers, ad libs and alternate takes that didn't make the final cut. There are many takes and angles of the silly love scene between Dane Cook and the lovely Kristina Anapau. The nudity is blurred out.

Deleted Scenes (5:12) - There is a Play All button or you can play them individually. Fighting Monkey (Cooked 1 - 1:34) - Dane talks about getting a fighting monkey. An idea that they would use in the second pilot. Lines (Cooked 2 - 1:04) - Dane, Mike and Dakota are in a line and they talk about the worst last words. Benjamin (Cooked 2 - 2:19) - Dane, Mike and Dakota look for Benjamin at the grocery market. Fight to the Death (Cooked 2 - :37) - A scene in the car where they talk about who would win a fight.

Previews - Trailers for "The Benchwarmers" (2:30), Action Favorites (TV) (1:50), "Guess Who" (2:14) and "The Three Stooges" (1:39). Sony will be releasing more of "The Three Stooges" in October. Nyuk, nyuk, nyuk.

Final Comments:

If you a fan of Dane Cook or one of the actors in the pilots, you should enjoy this set. I'd say the funniest material on this set are the special features. It is interesting to see the different deleted scenes, ad libs and takes that didn't make the final cut. If they were edited differently and funnier overall, who knows if they would have been picked up or not. The first pilot had an "Arrested Development" and "The Office" type feel. The second pilot had a wackier plot and seemed similar to "My Name Is Earl" and likely had the better chance of being picked up. There were different elements of each that probably would have worked better together as one pilot.

Dane Cook is a funny and likeable guy. He obviously has a huge fan base. I'm not sure if the single camera sitcom format fits his comedic style. These pilots almost seemed like mini movies. He has the physical comedy and facial expressions down. If he ever did any more sitcom pilots, I think he would be better suited to a multi-camera sitcom that included his stand-up comedy. Something similiar to "Seinfeld" but a bit edgier. If he doesn't do any more TV pilots, he'll still have a lot to fall back on with his stand-up comedy and film work. Anyway, this DVD provides a unique opportunity for his fans to see some of his earlier, unseen work.

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

Video Quality: 5/5
Audio Quality: 4.5/5
Special Features: 2.5/5
Menu Design/Navigation: 4/5
Overall: 4/5

-- Reviewed by Todd Fuller on 08/18/07

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