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The Love Boat - Season One, Volume One



DVD Release Date: March 4, 2008 (CBS DVD)
MSRP: $36.98
Number of Discs: 3
Number of Episodes: 12
Running Time: approx. 600 minutes
Running Time of Special Features: 0:30 promos for each episode (over 6 minutes)
Languages, Subtitles, Closed Captioning: English, Espanol; English, Espanol subtitles
Special Features: Episodic Promos


For the first time ever, get ready to set sail the sea on your favorite boat, The Love Boat! The classic romantic series is now on DVD from CBS DVD and it features the first 12 episodes from the first season! The show aired originally on ABC from 1977-1986 and featured nearly everyone in Hollywood who was a star at the time. It was like an all-star show with recognizable faces in every episode. The show also had a regular cast of course...Captain Stubing (Gavin MacLeod), Doc (Bernie Kopell), Gopher (Fred Grandy), Issac the Bartender (Ted Lange), and Julie, your Cruise Director (Lauren Tewes).

Memorable Episodes / Notable Guest Stars:

We get the first 12 episodes from the first season. The first season had 25 episodes. I wish we could have had them all on one set, but guess not. In addition, the three pilot movies are NOT on this set. They would have been nice as extras, especially since they split up the season in two volumes. Each Love Boat episode had three plotlines in each episode. Usually the guest stars in each plotline did not meet the other guest stars in the other plotlines. I always wished they did. Such as, it would have been nice to see John Ritter bump into Jaclyn Smith or Sherman Hemsley in the second episode. Among the memorable episodes are “The Captain and the Lady/One if by Land/Centerfold,” this is the first episode of the regular series, in which Captain Stubing and his ex-wife have to face the realities of a badly resolved separation when they find themselves trapped on the same cruise. John Ritter is a jilted boyfriend desperately trying to win back the woman who left him, but the only cabin left on the ship is a double -- with a woman, so, he dresses in drag in “Oh, Dale!/A Tasteful Affair/The Main Event.” A crotchety old man and a teenage runaway form an unlikely friendship in “The Old Man and the Runaway/A Fine Romance/The Painters.”

This show had the most memorable guest stars of all-time. We get a big name in every episode and in some cases like five big names in an episode. Here are just some of the guests you will see on the first 12 episodes: Meredith Baxter, Bonnie Franklin, Suzanne Somers, Jimmie Walker, John Ritter, Jaclyn Smith, Sherman Hemsley, LaWanda Page, Scott Baio, Robert Reed, Richard Mulligan, Loretta Swit, Kristy McNichol, Bill Bixby, Charo, Milton Berle, Audra Lindley, and that is disc one. On disc two, some of the big names you will see are Diahann Carroll, Jim Nabors, Maureen McComick, Patty Duke Astin, Diana Canova, Steve Allen, Polly Bergen, Sandy Duncan, and Loni Anderson. On disc three, we see Jane Curtin, Phil Silvers, Joanna Kerns, Eva Gabor, Al Molinaro, Leslie Nielsen, Bob Urich, Florence Henderson, Donna Mills, Dick Sargent, Tom Poston, Pat Morita and Anson Williams.


The packaging is a simple case holding discs inside. If you are familiar with recent CBS DVD packaging (Family Ties, Girlfriends, etc), then you will know exactly what I mean. The front of the case has The Love Boat logo with a nice cast photo of the main five cast members. It is in the style of the show, with a nice sky blue color scheme with the ship’s deck and the sea in the background. Season One, Volume One mention is on the bottom on a raft. On the back of the case we get the famous words “Love, Exciting And New” on the top with again the five main cast members, but this time they each have a headshot in nice colorful circles. In the middle, we get a nice blue circle and the show information in that. We get a nice background of the sea as well. Special Features gets its own little square box.

When we open the case, on the left side there is an insert for Princess Cruises with details on that and how to win a free cruise! When we remove the insert, we get a disc-by-disc breakdown of each disc. We get the episode title, original airdate and each guest star on the episode. It is very handy. On the top it says, “Episodic Promos On All Episodes.” We will have more on that below. On the right side of the case, we get the discs. It is very similar to other CBS DVD sets. A little white plastic thing holds discs one and two. Disc 1 is on the front of that thing and disc 2 is on the back. Disc 3 is actually on the case. When we remove disc three, we get cool trivia questions. The answers are on the bottom...let’s see how many you can get correct! As for the disc art, it is again very similar to past CBS DVD sets. It is very generic looking with the show logo on the top, the mention of Season One, Volume One, and what disc number it is. The color for each is silver. Four episodes each are on each disc.

Menu Design and Navigation:

The menu screen is decent but very generic. First, disc one starts off with auto trailers for items such as Beverly Hills, 90210/Melrose Place; Happy Days/Laverne & Shirley/Mork & Mindy; and a CBS DVD promo featuring many titles. Then we finally get to the main menu. Disc one’s main menu has a nice sky blue background with nearly the same cast photo as the cover art. There is no music in the background, unfortunately. Disc 2 has a color scheme of pink and has another cast photo, while disc three has a color scheme of purple and another cast photo. At least they changed it up a bit. The options are Episodes and Set Up. In Set Up, we can choose to have audio in English or Espanol, and the same goes for subtitles. In Episodes, we get to the episodes menu where it says Play Promos and then it has the list of episodes. When we choose an episode, it gives us another box saying to Play Episode or Play Episode with Promo. I usually like playing it with the promo, but the promo does not really help. They are just clips with no announcer.

Video and Audio Quality:

The video and audio are very good. I was really impressed with the video, as CBS DVD tends to do some bad work on some of its older DVDs. I do not know if they are remastered or not, but it sure looks good. We have the first 12 episodes of 25-episode first season on this set. I really don’t understand why they didn’t give us the whole season because this show lasted nine seasons...would it make sense to have 18 sets? I do not think so. Moreover, to further elaborate, we are paying $36.98 MSRP for 12 episodes. It would have been better if they had included the three pilot movies, or at least one of them on here. We also get episodic promos for each episode. The quality on these promos is terrible compared to the actual episodes on the DVD. You can tell a difference right away, but they are watchable. As I stated before, the promos are very bland, just clips of what we will see in the episode with no announcer. The promos run generally 0:32 or so. They are nice to have for sure, though.

On the back of the box there is a very small disclaimer stating, “Some episodes may be edited from their original network versions.” In general, the 12 episodes to me look unedited, but I think a few might have a few seconds edited out for some reason. I am sure a die-hard Love Boat fan will know for sure. Here are the runtimes:

Disc 1:
1. The Captain and the Lady/One if by Land/Centerfold (49:58)
2. Oh, Dale!/A Tasteful Affair/The Main Event (50:05)
3. Ex Plus Y/Graham and Kelly/Goldenagers (50:06)
4. Message for Maureen/The Acapulco Connection/Gotcha (50:04)

Disc 2:
5. Help, Murder/Isaac the Groupie/Mr. Popularity (50:04)
6. The Joker is Mild/First Time Out/Take My Granddaughter, Please (50:04)
7. Identical Problem/Julie's Old Flame/The Jinx (50:04)
8. Lost and Found/The Understudy/Married Singles (50:06)

Disc 3:
9. The Captain's Captain/Hounded/Romance Roulette (49:52)
10. Dear Beverly/The Strike/Special Delivery (50:04)
11. Lonely at the Top/Divorce Me, Please/Silent Night (50:05)
12. The Old Man and the Runaway/A Fine Romance/The Painters (49:38)

Therefore, if I were to guess, #9 and #12 could have some minor edits as they run shorter than the rest. At least if anything is edited out, it is not major since these are not syndicated prints. The new CBS Television Distribution logo is after the closing credits.

Special Features:

Well the only special feature on this set is that we get episode promos for each episode. The promos are like 32 or 33 seconds each. So multiply that by 12 episodes and we get a bit over 6 minutes of promos. As I said many times already, I wish they included the pilot movies on here as a bonus. I’m sure Kopell , Lange, and the other cast members would love to do interviews and commentaries on episode. You know what else could be cool? They could have guest star interviews or even have some commentate on actual episodes. I hope CBS DVD listens to this and could do this on future sets!

Final Comments:

Love, Exciting and New...Come aboard! We’re expecting you! Yes, we’re expecting you to buy this set. I had some gripes on it, and mentioned it in this review, but the episodes look great and it nice to have them on DVD finally! I am hoping after the first season is finished, CBS DVD can give us each season on one set rather than two. They could even bump up the price to like 49.99 or 59.99, but 36.98 for 12 episodes is ludicrous. You can find a better deal however, such as when you click on the link we give below. Will Love Boat soon be making another run? That all depends on you buying this set. So set sail and set a course for adventure with the Love Boat because it is an open smile on a friendly shore! It’s LOOOOOOOOOOOOOOVE!

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

Video Quality: 4.5/5
Audio Quality: 4/5
Special Features: 0.5/5
Menu Design/Navigation: 4/5
Overall: 4/5

-- Reviewed by pavanbadal on 03/01/08

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