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The Andy Griffith Show - The Complete Third Season



DVD Release Date: August 16, 2005 (Paramount Home Video)
black & white, approx. 13 hours, 28 minutes
MSRP: $38.99
Number of Discs: 5
Number of Episodes: 32
Language and Subtitles: English, closed captioning available
Special Features: Original Sponsor Spots


Come and re-visit everybody's favorite small town of Mayberry in the third season of The Andy Griffith Show, featuring the debut of Jim Nabors as the affable Gomer Pyle. Harkening back to a time when things were simpler, The Andy Griffith Show has endured as one of television's best-loved classics. Watch as widower sheriff Andy Taylor (Andy Griffith) does his best to hold the town together, despite the best efforts of his bumbling deputy Barney (Don Knotts) and the pressures of raising his young son Opie (Ron Howard). Helping him as ever is the indomitable Aunt Bee (Frances Bavier), who through everything could always be counted on to raise everyone's spirits with a slice of hot apple pie and a smile. Now own all 32 classic episodes of The Andy Griffith Show Season 3 and remember a time when all you needed to enjoy a lazy Sunday afternoon was your best fishing pole.

Memorable Episodes / Notable Guest Stars:

The Andy Griffith Show finished in 6th place with a 29.7 rating for season 3. Jim Nabors joined the cast as Gomer Pyle. Gomer left the show after a year and a half to join the marines on the series Gomer Pyle, U.S.M.C. This season also saw appearances by Helen Crump, Mayor Roy Stoner, The Darlings, Ernest T. Bass, Malcolm Merrieweather, the Fun Girls, and Peggy McMillan. There were so many classic episodes from this season. Barney loses his self-confidence when two unlawful bullies laugh off his attempt to run them out of town in "Lawman Barney." Barney and Floyd stumble upon a cabin in the woods where three dangerous female convicts are hiding out in "Convicts-At-Large." In "The Bank Job," Barney becomes convinced the Mayberry Bank is ripe for a robbery and tries to prove his point by staging a fake one. A family of musicians who live in the mountains descend on Mayberry to await the arrival of their daughter Charlene's fiancee in "The Darlings Are Coming." This was the first appearance by The Darlings. Barney learns that the car he's spent his life savings on is a lemon, and the little old lady he bought it from may have put one over on him in "Barney's First Car."

There were a number of memorable guest stars. Joanna Moore appeared in 4 episodes as Andy's girlfriend, Peggy McMillan. Allan Melvin, who appeared in many episodes as different characters, guest starred as Neil in "Lawman Barney." Legendary character actor Burt Mustin appeared as Jubal in "The Mayberry Band." He was also in quite a few other episodes as various characters. Dabbs Geer played the Store Clerk in "The Bed Jacket." Kim Tyler (Please Don't Eat the Daisies) appeared as Billy Gray in "One-Punch Opie." Dub Taylor played Billy Ray in "High Noon in Mayberry." Bernard Fox appeared as Malcolm Merrieweather in "Andy's English Valet." Ellen Corby played Myrt in "Barney's First Car." George Kennedy was the Detective in "The Big House."


All 32 episodes from the third season (1962-63) are included in this 5-disc set. The DVD cover art features a colorized photo/drawing of Barney, Andy, and Gomer Pyle. The back of the box gives a short summary of the set, with small photos of Gomer, Opie, Andy, Barney, and Aunt Bee. Each episode title is listed by disc on the back. There are 3 slim cases that slide out from the outer box. Sepia-colored photos are featured on the front of each slimcase. There is a huge tire in the background of the photos. A sheet for Wally's Filling Station of Mayberry, NC is on the back of each slim case where the episode titles are listed. The inside of the cases have wrenches and pliers, with a light blue background. Case #1 pictures Opie, Andy, and Barney and holds the first 2 discs. Case #2 holds discs 3-4 and has a photo of Andy holding a goat with Barney looking on in disbelief. Case #3 has disc 5 and has a photo of Gomer and Barney. I'm not a fan of these cases that hold two discs in each. These discs can pop out of the holders so easily and be scratched. When you lift up the discs from the holders, the episodes are listed with pretty detailed summaries and original airdates. Some episodes are marked as a "Top 10 Favorite Andy Griffith Show Episode." Their selections seem kind of random to me. I've seen many other fan favorites list, and some of these episodes weren't selected. The actual discs maintain the filling station theme as they are black and white and designed to look like tires. The episode breakdown by disc is as follows: Disc 1 - 7 episodes, Disc 2 - 7 episodes, Disc 3 - 6 episodes, Disc 4 - 6 episodes, and Disc 5 - 6 episodes.

Menu Design and Navigation:

The menus look very similar to those used on the Season 2 set. Each menu has a different colorized photo with the show logo in red. The menus have a green background. The episode titles are listed at the top or bottom with a photo in the other space. There is a red sheriff badge next to the episode you highlight that turns yellow when you select that episode. There is a Play All button and chapter stops within the episodes but no menus for scene selections. Disc 1 has a photo of Barney and Andy with another shot of Gomer, Disc 2 has Gomer and Andy, Disc 3 pictures Andy and Opie, Disc 4 has Andy and Barney, and Disc 5 features Opie and Aunt Bee. There are sub-menus that feature additional photos on each disc for the original sponsor spots. When you play disc 1, there are promos for some other Paramount DVD releases including Happy Days, Laverne & Shirley, Mork & Mindy, MacGyver, The Brady Bunch, and Charmed. You can't simply press 'Menu' to bypass these promos. You have to use the 'Skip' button or fast forward through them to go to the main menus. Hey Paramount, how about releasing Season 2 of Happy Days for Ron Howard fans like myself?

Video and Audio Quality:

I was impressed with the video and quality on the first two releases. These look much the same as the earlier episodes. They likely have been remastered and restored to look as good as possible. The picture is in its original 1.33:1 ratio full frame Black & White. There is a bit of grain, but these episodes look great for being over 40 years now. The episodes are well spread out over 5 discs, with no more than 7 per disc ,so there are no compression problems. The audio is your standard mono track from the 1960's. There are no major audio problems, and the volume is at a good level. These episodes all include the original opening theme song credits. Closed captioning is available on all episodes. Episodes are presented in their original airdate order.

On the back of the box and the slimcases in very small print it reads: "Some episodes may be edited from their original network versions." I timed all the episodes and the majority are around 24 1/2 to 25 1/2 minutes which seemed to be the norm in the early 1960's. These were similar times as the first two sets so I would assume those episodes are unedited. The only episode that is obviously edited and has missing footage is "The Darlings Are Coming." It runs only 22 minutes, 22 seconds. There is a good 2-3 minutes that wasn't included. My guess is that the missing scene(s) contained some music and, perhaps, an entire song was taken out of the episode. It's also possible that this episode is just a syndication print and not missing any music. The episode is still cut no matter how you look at it.

Special Features:

I was pleasantly surprised to see original sponsor spots on the season 2 set. They return on this set with 29 of the 32 episodes represented ("Andy and Opie, Bachelors," "The Darling Are Coming," and "Mountain Wedding" do not have them). The original sponsor spots were one-minute commercials for the shows sponsors such as Sanka Coffee or Jell-O Pudding, in which the cast would work a plug for the sponsors product into the storyline of that weeks episode. Andy appeared in each commercial with some combination of Barney, Opie, and Aunt Bee. A few included Mayor Stoner, Leon, Otis, Gomer, a goat, and a dog named Alvin. The spots all run around one minute or less. They are fun to watch.

Here is a breakdown of sponsor spots by disc:

Disc 1 (6 spots) - Jello-O Pudding & Pie Filling (:45), Sanka (1:00), Jell-O Lemon Pie Filling (:42), Jello-O Fudge Pudding (:52), Baker's Chocolate Chips (:45), Jell-O Chocolate Fudge Pudding (:49)
Disc 2 (7 spots) - Sanka (1:02), Jell-O Vanilla Pudding (1:00), Sanka (:52), Sanka/Jell-O/General Foods (1:02), Sanka (:58), Jell-O Chocolate Fudge Pudding (:51), Sanka (1:00)
Disc 3 (6 spots) - Jell-O Butterscotch (1:01), Sanka (1:00), Jell-O Chocolate (:58), Sanka (:46), Jell-O Lemon Pie and Dream Whip (:50), Sanka (:53)
Disc 4 (5 spots) - Jell-O Vanilla (:53), Sanka (:47), Jell-O Chocolate Fudge (:42), Sanka (:56), Sanka (:52)
Disc 5 (5 spots) - Post Toasties Corn Flakes (:44), Sanka (1:00), Post Toasties Corn Flakes (:43), Sanka (:51), Sanka (:52)

Final Comments:

What a quick turnaround! After waiting a long time for the first season to even be released, there was less than a 3-month wait between seasons 2 and 3. This is a good sign and maybe the fourth season will be released by the end of the year. Season 3 seems to be the favorite of many fans. There are so many classic episodes. Only 5 more seasons to go to complete the series.

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

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

Note: I think only one episode on this set is edited or I would have made the overall score lower. If I hear otherwise, I will edit the review accordingly.

-- Reviewed by Todd Fuller on 08/06/05

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