“Thieves, bums, winos, girls who can’t keep an address and men who don’t care!” (Joe Friday’s opinion of the suits at Universal!)
Oh man, this is THE classic Dragnet that we baby boomers grew to and know love. Jack Webb teamed this go around with Harry Morgan as Officer Bill Gannon. From Blue Boy to Officer Gidion C. Dengle, Friday, Gannon and a host of repetitive actors, many back from the 1950′s run, provide a gritty and sometime humorous look from the police officers view. Sometimes very stiff with corny acting, (intentional by director Webb) this entire series provides entertainment for all with many episodes done extremely well and on point. Kudos to Universal Home Video for finally bringing the ’70′s’ Dragnet to DVD. Please don’t make us wait too long for Seasons 2, 3 & 4.
Update – 06/08/05
I take my kudos to Universal Home Video back. It is great to see these classic episodes again, but do you think they could have cleaned the prints up just a bit? They look as if they mastered them off of TV Land! Disc 1 is cluttered with Side A having playable issues; my original purchase went back to the vendor 3 times for a playable replacement. Disc 2 is sparse with only 3 episodes and a blank Side B. I DO have an older player but I don’t have any problem playing any of the other ‘modern’ DVD purchases lately as another reviewer suggested. It seems that this is a “UNIVERSAL” Studios problem as I have no problems with Image Entertainment and Paramount Studios TV series sets. And I agree; they should have included the 1966 movie as they kindly did with EMERGENCY!.
I’m starting to think that “Thieves, bums, & winos” and even Don Negler himself mastered this mess. I subtract 2 stars for this dismal atrocity from Universal!
It appears??? that Universal Studios has resolved the DVD manufacturing defects with the Season 2 release of EMERGENCY! I say to Universal bring on the rest of Webb TV; as in the rest of Dragnet, EMERGENCY!, and Adam-12.
It appears that Universal Studios and others are farming out distribution of TV season sets on DVD. Shout! Factory will be releasing season 2 of Adam-12 in September. Could the rest of Dragnet, Adam-12, Emergency and even other WEBB TV projects be making their way to our DVD players? Cross your fingers!!!
Hey, crossing my fingers worked; at least for Dragnet! Way to go SHOUT! Factory. Woo Hoo!!!!!!
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At first glance, seeing the three slimline cases of this DVD set, the buyer is ready for hours of entertainment. However, upon opening this set, the illusion is soon exposed. The first two-sided DVD of the set contains fourteen episodes. While the transfers are decent (some dirt still shows on certain episodes), it soon becomes apparent that this first disk is primarily what the buyer just paid 30-plus dollars for. The second two-sided (?) disk contains only 3 episodes, and has one completely blank side!!!! The third disk is simply an audio recording of ONE of the episodes of the old radio show.
With all this available space, where are the extras? The television movie, the network promos….maybe even the Dragnet routine with Jack Webb from “The Tonight Show” or some full episodes from the 50′s series? As for the audio disk, the “I Love Lucy” sets contain a full program on EACH of the DVD disks!
Add to that the programming of the disks themselves….the user is required to skip over promos each time the disk starts. At the beginning of each episode, the viewer must watch the new “www.universalstudios.com” logo. It cannot be skipped over, as there is no chapter stop at the end of it. And the end of each episode, while including the “Mark VII” sequence, has had the Universal Television sequence removed.
But, of course, none of this matters if the DVD’s don’t play all the way through without skipping. And, in usual Universal Studio form, these skip like crazy.
Univeral is KNOWN for putting out junk DVD’s and these are no exception. (If you don’t believe me, read all the reviews about the Abbott and Costello collections, the Dracula collection, the Frankenstein collection, Kojak, The Munsters, the Airport collection….etc., etc.
I love Dragnet….but this set is, without a doubt, a huge ripoff!!!!
Dragnet is one of my favorite television shows of all time. I will agree, the transfer is not the best and there are no extras worth mentioning. I still love the set and don’t mind having a second rate product as long as I have the episodes. (I did not experience any “freezing” in my collection.)
If you like Dragnet this set is a must have. My question is are they going to release the remaining seasons? It is a true
kick in the teeth to fans when a company releases a DVD set and does not follow up with the entire series. I believe that if they are going to realease a DVD set, they should commit to realeasing the entire collection! (The same thing is going on with Adam-12!) Thankfully, Universal saw it fit to release Emergency Season 2.
Universal, you baited us with Dragnet and Adam-12 Season One.
Maybe sales were not up to your standards, however, the die hard fans bought them. Please don’t let us down.