Although seasons 1-3 have been wonderful via SHOUTS! great dvd sets season 4 hits it out of the park from the great news on the back of the dvd box “all 33 Uncut episodes” to each of the episodes themselves. Many are excellent episodes and the rest are all very good television. A standout is MR BEAL MEETS HIS MATCH, this rarely seen episode which was never shown in the package that The Family Channel aired in the 1980′s and early 1990′s is a dark and sinister episode with a really good payoff. Another standout is the episode in which legendary actress Greer Garson guest stars. After watching the entire set you will feel sad there aren’t any more episodes left in the set. The cast is now hitting their stride and totally believable as a family, Robert Young and Jane Wyatt turn in outstanding performances week after week, Billy Gray’s perfomances were always on the mark and he could be comical and yet serious and displayed a great range as Bud as did Elinor Donahue as Betty, the entire crew are all working in tandem with the cast to turn out a show that has become along with LEAVE IT TO BEAVER a classic example of 1950′s televsion and something that all of us have wished life was really like if only for 1/2 hour a day! Print quality is clear and sound is crisp on most of the episodes if not all again especially taking into account these shows have not been restored possibly because FKB has not been in syndication in years and it took a while to figure out where the rights to broadcast and home video really belonged – and thanks must go to SHOUT! for releasing the classic show along with thanks to Robert Young’s grandson Bill Proffit, the estate of Eugene Rodney and SONY for opening ther vaults to SHOUT! so unedited episodes could be utilized!
This is a prime example of the good that can come out of all parties working together – SONY is not profiting from the video release of the series having no home video rights but they have co-operated in supplying the uncut versions instead of cut syndication versions that were out there for years going back to the 1960′s through 1990′s!
BRAVO! Bring on Season 5!
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We’ve heard from Elinor Donahue and Lauren Chapin on previous FKB releases, but not from Billy Gray (Bud). Mr. Gray wrote me an email a few months ago stating that he’d be happy to do commentary on some episodes. Apparently, he hasn’t been asked. My question for Shout Factory is: Why not??? I would love to hear Mr. Gray’s perspective and memories of the show!
This is a terrific series, not only for its entertainment value, but also for its moral and social value. If the youths of today were raised on these instead of the superficial one-track sitcoms of today, they would have something wonderful to prepare them for life in an adult world.
The casting was excellent, and I agree with other reviews, Billy Gray was great for the part of Bud. I have not seen another character like him on any program. He was unique.