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Will & Grace - Series Finale



Release Date: May 30, 2006 (Lionsgate Home Entertainment)
Number of Discs: 1
Number of Episodes: 1
Running Time: 42 Minutes, 35 Seconds
Run Time of Special Features: 37 Minutes, 9 Seconds
Audio: English 2.0
Special Features: The Final Bow Featurette; The Last Words: Interviews with the Cast

Introduction / Guest Stars:

The culmination of eight seasons ends with one series finale - will Will (Eric McCormack) and Grace (Debra Messing) raise a child together and find ultimate happiness? Will Jack (Sean Hayes) find anyone that loves him as much as he loves himself? Will Karen (Megan Mullally) find true happiness with the absence of Stan? All these questions are answered as this groundbreaking series concludes eight amazing seasons. Harry Connick, Jr., Kevin Bacon, and Bobby Cannavale guest star.

Packaging / Menu Design and Navigation:

The release is a single-disc keep case. Two separate shots of the cast appear in front of the white background. At the top are the main four standing close to each other, smiling and happy. In the middle is the Will & Grace logo with Series Finale text. The picture below that is of the 4 cast members taking a bow. Back cover has the cast, asleep, on a couch after a party. Special Features is in a tilted maroon box near the top of the picture. Above that is the teaser for the series finale. Below the picture is the standard episode and release details text. The disc is white, and features the same shot of the cast taking a bow. Below the disc hole is the W&G logo and Series Finale text. This picture is reused for the main menu. After 20 seconds, however, it changes to the picture used at the top of the front cover. It then switches back after another 20 seconds. Repeat. Choosing ďPlay Series FinaleĒ causes the screen to go first white, then pink, and then play the episode. During the color shifts, the audience ďapplauds.Ē The audience also applauds when you go to the Special Features Menu.

Video and Audio Quality:

If youíve read any internet forums, you already know EXACTLY where Iím going with THIS. The episode, as it exists on the DVD is in Full Frame. Having had access to an NBC HD affiliate for almost two years now, I can point out whatís wrong with that right off the bat: The W&G finale aired in WIDESCREEN. NBC, who provides the episodes for Lionsgate (oooh, change to the name formatting!) to distribute, apparently gave them the full frame version for the set. The folks who plunked down $5-$10 of their hard-earned money deserve an answer. I know $5-$10 isnít a comparatively large sum of money, but itís still equivalent to a meal on the table to some people. Iím relatively sure the fault does NOT lie with Lionsgate: The disc ITSELF says Widescreen, indicating they were intending as such. Something, however, went wrong, and I think the fans of this show deserve to know.

For a show that isnít the widescreen version, the video is still pretty nice. The colors are nice and sharp --≠ not too bright or dull. There appears to be a bit of graininess to the video that I canít really explain. The audio is a Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo. The audio is neither too loud nor too quiet. The music is well balanced vs. the vocals. Chapter stops at the end of each scene. Runtime: 42:35

Special Features:

The Final Bow: Curtain Call: The Last Season Featurette:
Essentially home-movie like video from the last episode. Runs 12:59. Thereís no interviews or anything, just video.

The Last Words: Because hereís the interviews. Everyone who SHOULD be interviewed IS interviewed. Videos for a read, various stuff. A nice featurette. 24:10.

Run Time of Special Features: 37:09

Final Comments:

I figured there was no possible way they could get a single-episode release wrong --≠ it was a sure thing. Watch an episode, write a quickie review, and Iím out of here. Instead, I had to dig my axe out of storage and spent a good quarter of my review on the fact that they messed the video up big-time. They essentially lopped off the sides of the screen. If you have to have this set, go ahead and buy it ≠ itís cheap. Otherwise, Iíd just wait for the eventual Season 8 release. The features will probably be seen again, and the video will almost certainly be in HD THEN. They will release season 5 on August 29. NOT RECOMMENDED.

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

Video Quality: 3.5/5
Audio Quality: 4.5/5
Special Features: 3/5
Menu Design/Navigation: 4/5
Final Score: 3/5

-- Reviewed by Seth Thrasher on 06/07/06

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