Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|The Electric Company's Greatest Hits Bits|
Actors: Luis Avalos, Jim Boyd, Joan Ganz Cooney, Bill Cosby, Morgan Freeman
Directors: David Leaf, John Scheinfeld
Genres: Kids & Family, Music Video & Concerts, Television
When The Electric Company made its television debut in October 1971, it was instantly clear that it would fulfill its mission of helping struggling and reluctant readers. With a cast that broke new ground in its diversi... more »
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Fun Look Back
drebbles | Arlington, MA USA | 03/26/2007
(4 out of 5 stars)
"First shown on PBS, "The Electric Company's Greatest Hits and Bits" is a fun look back at the 1970's TV Show. It consists of several clips from the show as well as interviews with cast members Skip Hinnant, Jim Boyd, Rita Moreno and Judy Graubart as well as contributors to the show Joan Rivers and Tom Lehrer. There is also an interview with Joan Ganz Cooney who helped create the show. The special features include deleted interviews with the cast members and an audio review with Tom Lehrer.
For the most part, "The Electric Company's Greatest Hits and Bits" is an enjoyable documentary. At the time it debuted in October 1971 it was a groundbreaking show with a fully integrated cast teaching children how to read using comedy and music. It's always fun to watch a show as an adult that you loved as a kid and catch some of the references you missed back then. Easy Reader was of course based on Easy Rider but it was interesting to hear Skip Hinnant say that he stole largely from "Get Smart" when doing Fargo North, Decoder; Jim Boyd saying J. Arthur Crank was based on Ralph Cramden; and Rita Moreno saying "Hey you guys" came from Abbott and Costello. There are plenty of clips from the show including animated ones such as "The Adventures of Letterman" and several based on Tom Lehrer's delightful songs including "Silent E" and "-ly". The live action skits include "I'm in love with a giant" and "The Super is eating his supper" which is fun to watch just to see the cast trying to keep a straight face as water pours down on them.
Since this is a documentary and not full episodes of "The Electric Company" adults will probably enjoy this DVD more than children. It does have quite a bit of praise for Morgan Freeman, currently the most famous of the then unknown actors, but it stops just short of going overboard on the praise. While it was nice to see Hinnant, Boyd, and Graubart, I hope other actors from the show such as Luis Avalos, Hattie Winston, and Lee Chamberlain show up in interviews on future DVDs. For some reason the show focuses solely on the adult members of the cast, with no mention at all of the Short Circus and the child actors, a bit surprising since Irene Cara was a member of the Short Circus for awhile.
"The Electric Company's Greatest Bits and Hits" is good nostalgic fun.
This is a Documentary
Adam Taft | 11/03/2008
(3 out of 5 stars)
"This is a documentary with interviews from the original cast and a good description of the history of the Electric Company. This is, however, not something that will be easy or as fun to watch for your children, since only a few of the Electric Company skits are actually shown between the various interviews.
Buy this if you want to learn the history of the show and watched it as a child. Don't buy this if you want your kids to enjoy it with you."
Lots of fun with an old favorite
Paraven | Hatboro PA | 11/06/2007
(4 out of 5 stars)
"This video is full of old, funny routines and cartoons from Electric Company. It also includes more recent interviews with the actors from the series. It's more of a reminiscence than an episode from the actual show."
Not what i thought
N. Newton | los angeles | 12/08/2008
(2 out of 5 stars)
"I am a kindergarten teacher and I have been using the electric company videos in classroom for a couple of years for language arts. I thought that this dvd was more shows, it turned out to be more interviews than anythings else. My students love watching the shows."