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Soap - The Complete Series



DVD Release Date: June 10, 2008 (Sony Pictures Home Entertainment)
MSRP: $59.95
Number of Discs: 12
Number of Episodes: 90
Running Time: 2161 minutes
Languages, Subtitles, Closed Captioning: English, Closed Captioned
Special Features: None


Yes, Soap already finished on DVD but it is back one final time with every single episode! Sony Pictures Home Entertainment is re-releasing all four seasons in one complete series set with new packaging that they are calling “compact packaging.” It is a space-saver set. If you have never bought this series on DVD, then you should get this set because it is very light surprisingly. I have the season sets, and I compared them side by side, and the complete series set is much smaller and does save space on your DVD shelf. Relive the comical soapy saga of the Tates and Campbells one mo’ time!

Soap stars Katherine Helmond, Robert Mandan, Richard Mulligan, Cathryn Damon, Robert Guillaume, Billy Crystal, Ted Wass, Jay Johnson, Diana Canova, Jennifer Salt, Jimmy Baio, Roscoe Lee Browne, and Arthur Peterson.

Memorable Episodes / Notable Guest Stars:

Now we have done DVD reviews for all four seasons. So there is really no point telling you which episodes are the most memorable since I already did the individual season reviews. However, this series is much serialized and each episode relies on the previous episode so I won’t give away plotlines by listing memorable episodes. This show didn’t have episode titles either; they just went by episode numbers. See our season reviews:

Season 1 / Season 2 / Season 3 / Season 4


Now here is the new part! The packaging as I said earlier is compact and is a space-saver. The cover art has a red/black color scheme with a photo of the cast in a square box. The cast photo is of Burt, Mary, Benson, Jessica and Chester (with Jody in a bubble), and is the same photo as the season one DVD cover art, but not as big. The show logo is on top of that in white lettering. Also, the show logo is transparent in the red background on the cover art. Beneath the cast photo it says “The Complete Series, All 90 Episodes.” The back of the box it has the show logo again on top followed by “The Complete Series, Seasons 1-4.” Then we have the cover art for all three seasons, which is nice, so I guess is this is geared for fans that already have these four seasons? Because why would first time buyers care what the cover art looked for the season DVDs? Anyway, below that, an overview of the series and specifications follow. When we open the box, we get a nice yellow/orange color scheme with the show logo on the left side followed by nice cover arts for each season. Season by season breakdowns are available as well with episodes by disc. Now, on the right side there is a little hole where we can pull out something. We have to remove the plastic wrap and then we see the discs. The discs are in a black spindle type of thing. The covering of the spindle is like black cardboard style. The discs are protected by a brown cardboard cover so the discs don’t get damaged by the spindle. The artwork for each disc as the artwork for the season sets, so nothing is different there. All 12 discs are stacked together...they should have made it more creative and have labels or something for each season. Very bland, come on a spindle? This is exactly the same as the What’s Happening!! complete set, also that came out on the same day.

Menu Design and Navigation:

There is nothing new here. All the menu screens are exactly the same obviously and nothing is changed content wise. I suggest you read our reviews for each individual season:

Season 1 / Season 2 / Season 3 / Season 4

We apologize for the lack of detail on the season one review, as that was one of our very first reviews and we were not detailed back then.

Video and Audio Quality:

What more can I say? The content of this complete series set is exactly the same as the individual season sets, so we get the same material. So we still get those syndicated prints that came about on a few episodes on the season one set and the terrible video and missing recaps on the season four set. Again, I urge you to read our past reviews for the individual sets to get more insight:

Season 1 / Season 2 / Season 3 / Season 4

Special Features:

This series only had any extras on the season two set, but Sony doesn’t give us anything more than that. This set would have been really worth it if a bonus disc of some sort was included. How about something creative? Sure the packaging is new, but that’s it? Are fans paying $59.95 just for the packaging? Some bloopers, or even those season recaps that aired originally on ABC before the start of each season would have been nice. Sony really should have put those on this set to make fans buy this set.

Check out our season 2 review for the details on the extras: Season 2

Final Comments:

Well the complete series set is here, but there is nothing new except the box. The boxes/cases used for the individual seasons are not here obviously as they stacked every disc in some spindle type thing. I don’t know who Sony is trying to sell here. Is it the fans who already bought the sets...or fans/newbies who have not bought the sets? As I stated before, it has to be for fans that have it already because they show us the individual cover arts on the back of the box on this complete series set. I really wish Sony gave us a bonus disc with some extras. That way, even fans who bought all three seasons would at least buy this set for a reason. CBS DVD gave us a bonus disc on their Brady Bunch complete series set, so Sony should have done the same here. It is disappointing. It would have been nice if they fixed their syndicated errors on this set, but they didn’t. I love this show and am thankful Sony is even giving us another look at this series, but they could have done so much better. How hard would it be to add a bonus disc and improve on the terrible spindle disc holder? Anyway, if you haven’t bought this series, get this complete series set because it’ll save you money at least. You’ll be hooked by the Tates and Campbells!

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

Video Quality: 4/5 (generally for seasons 1-4)
Audio Quality: 4/5 (generally for seasons 1-4)
Special Features: 1/5 (generally for seasons 1-4)
Menu Design/Navigation: 4.5/5 (generally for seasons 1-4)
Overall: 3.5/5 (for the complete series package)

-- Reviewed by pavanbadal on 06/13/08

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