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Eight Is Enough - The Complete Fifth Season



Release Date: March 11, 2014 (Warner Archive Collection)
MSRP: $49.95
Packaging: Viva Case
Number of Discs: 6
Number of Episodes: 22
Running Time: 1093 minutes
Running Time of Features: N/A
Audio: English Mono
Subtitles and Captioning: None
Special Features: None


Warner Archive brings back all of the laughs (as well of the drama) of life in a large family with Eight is Enough - The Complete Fifth Season. The six disc set contains all 22 episodes of the fifth (and final) season of the series that follows the oversized Bradford family, headed by father Tom (Dick Van Patten) and step-mother Abby (Betty Buckley). In the fifth season, the family gets even larger than eight as Susan has a baby, and then Abby's nephew Jeremy (Ralph Macchio, in his first TV role) comes in to the Bradford home. But if you think eight (or even ten) is enough, think again...there's more going on with this family than a growing size in this season, such as new careers, marriages possibly falling apart, and more!


Susan is about to give birth in the two-part season premiere, "And Baby Makes Nine." In "Jeremy," Abby's ill-mannered nephew comes (to stay). Abby gets a job as a school guidance counselor in "Welcome to Memorial, Dr. Bradford," but it isn't exactly the greatest school to work in. Tommy is bitten by the lovebug in "Holly." In "Maltese Airline Bag," Nicholas and a friend deliver packages for money. A strike causes financial problems at home in "Strike." In "Bradfordgate," Tom is nominated for a political post by the governor, which isn't going to be easy for anybody. Jeremy falls for a girl (and refuses to listen to Abby's advice about her) in "The Darlene Dilemma."

In "David's Rib," the renovation of an old opera house causes problems for David. Tom and Abby decide to renew their vows in "Vows," and the kids get to put it all together. Big changes are coming for everybody in "The Way We Were." In "If the Glass Slipper Fits," Nancy gets a modeling job, but it requires her to go topless. Joanie puts together a charity telethon in "The Best Little Telethon in Sacramento." Every guy in the house is out to get a girl (it seems) in "Yet Another Seven Days in February." In the two-part episode "Idolbreaker," Tommy is about to go on tour with his band...until an old girlfriend returns and gives him some news that he isn't prepared to hear. David and Janet reconcile their differences (after splitting earlier in the season) in "Starting Over." The series ends with "Father Knows Best?," where Jeremy's father returns to take him home...but Tom and Abby want to prevent that from happening.

Once again, the episodes are seemingly unedited, although I can't claim that for certain. The season premiere was originally a double length episode that was split up in to two parts for syndication, and while these episodes are shorter than most episodes on the set, they're still not exactly syndication length either. We'll let fans be the judge. Runtimes are as follows:

Disc 1:
1. "And Baby Makes Nine (Part 1)" (47:06)
2. "And Baby Makes Nine (Part 1)" (46:52)
3. "Jeremy" (49:50)

Disc 2:
4. "Welcome to Memorial, Dr. Bradford" (49:54)
5. "Generations" (49:52)
6. "Holly" (49:56)
7. "The Maltese Airline Bag" (49:54)

Disc 3:
8. "Strike" (49:53)
9. "Bradfordgate" (49:51)
10. "The Darlene Dilemma" (49:51)
11. "Second Thoughts" (49:50)

Disc 4:
12. "David's Rib" (49:55)
13. "Vows" (49:50)
14. "The Way We Were" (49:51)
15. "If the Glass Slipper Fits…" (49:53)

Disc 5:
16. "The Best Little Telethon in Sacramento" (49:50)
17. "Yet Another Seven Days in February?" (49:51)
18. "The Idolbreaker (Part 1)" (49:54)
19. "The Idolbreaker (Part 1)" (49:52)

Disc 6:
20. "Starting Over" (49:48)
21. "Goals" (49:53)
22. "Father Knows Best?" (49:52)


For this season, Warner Archive actually managed to squeeze the entire season into one case, so there aren't two "volumes." The cover art has a nice family snapshot, and on the back, there is a description of the season, along with a few episode snapshots. Inside the case, you'll find the discs, which have the series logo and episode titles printed on them. And, in keeping up with the previous releases, the DVDs on this set are all pressed DVDs, and not DVD-Rs (although they will likely switch to DVD-R once this has been out for a while). As is typical with Warner Archive releases, you won't find any episode descriptions inside the set.

Menu Design and Navigation:

The menus on this set are pretty much the same as the seasons two through four releases. The main menu has a Play All option, along with a list of episodes. The artwork from the cover art is also on the main menu. Once you select an episode, it plays immediately. Chapters are placed throughout each episode at all of the appropriate places.

Video and Audio Quality:

Once again, the video and audio quality on this set looks rather decent for a series that is nearly 35 years old. There are certainly some minor video and audio quality defects (mostly a little bit of grain and debris, and a typical audio track of the late 70s/early 80s), but there is nothing that I'd be overly concerned about. I don't think that these episodes were remastered too recently, but if I had to guess, I would say that they were remastered not too long ago. As has been the case with the previous Warner Archive releases, the episodes are not subtitled or closed-captioned.

Special Features:

There aren't any special features to be found on this set.

Final Comments:

Just three years ago, I would have never believed we would see this series on DVD. It seemed to be buried deep in the Warner vaults due to some undisclosed issue. Now, here we are in 2014, with every single episode of the series on DVD. The only thing remaining unreleased are the two post-series made-for-TV movies, Eight is Enough: A Family Reunion and An Eight is Enough Wedding. I'm hopeful that Warner will get to those, even if they weren't quite as good as the original series. For now, though, I'm happy with what Warner has given us, and particularly happy with how this series went from "not able to be released" to fast-tracked to completion so quickly.

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

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

-- Reviewed by skees53 on 03/17/14

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