Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|St Elsewhere - Season 1|
Actors: Ed Flanders, David Birney, G.W. Bailey, Ed Begley Jr., Terence Knox
Directors: Allan Arkush, Bruce Paltrow, Kevin Hooks, Mark Tinker, Thomas Carter
Genres: Drama, Television
Over its six-season run, the ground-breaking, critically acclaimed St. Elsewhere was nominated for over 60 Emmy Awards, winning 13 of them! This remarkable series, with its unique blend of intense medical drama, off-beat h... more »
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Michel D. (michelann) from WALNUT GROVE, MO
Reviewed on 9/26/2015...
St Elsewhere has always been a favorite in my house! The acting talent was and still is among the best and story lines were as imaginative and enjoyable as would be expected from the excellent writers behind it. The medical issues presented are timeless and always played out in an informative manner. Imagine rattling off those medical terms in rapid-fire dialog as many on the shows had to do! Had to be a nightmare when rehearsed!
One of the best TV shows ever deserves better DVD treatment
Traveler | New England | 12/08/2006
(4 out of 5 stars)
"St. Elsewhere is viewed by critics as one of the best TV shows ever produced. The accolades are deserved. All the shows since - ER, Grey's Anatomy, Chicago Hope and others - have roots in St. Elsewhere, the show that set the standard for combining hospital drama and comedy.
As a teenager I came late to the table and was only able to view about two thirds of the original shows. However, I was able to record on VHS almost all of the shows I did see. I was excited when I heard they were going to (finally!) release the show on DVD and I could, at last, watch all the early episodes I had missed.
So here we have one of the most acclaimed shows ever and what we get is a flimsy slip case, double sided DVDs (that easily become scratched), and minimal extras. This is the treatment they give shows like Different Strokes or Emergency. St. Elsewhere, of any of the 80s shows, deserved the kind of treatment they give The Simpsons or CSI.
Imagine what they could have done if they'd packaged the entire show like they did the complete West Wing. Imagine a first aid box with the St. Elsewhere logo. Inside would have been a DVD set for each season. Single sided DVDs with images of the cast on each one. The extras would have included interviews with all the cast members, background on the St. Elsewhere theme song, a documentary on where they shot St. Elsewhere (and where exterior shots were filmed in Boston), a where are they now documentary on the cast, and lots lots more.
Intead we get this. I bought this set. And I'll buy the others when they get released. But what a rip-off. St. Elsewhere - and its fans - deserved better than this."
One of the best shows EVER!
RMurray847 | Albuquerque, NM United States | 10/24/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"It's hard to say how well this show will stand up to the test of time. It's been a long time since I've seen an episode, and I know that dramas in particular don't always hold up well a generation later. I LOVE LUCY, MASH, THE HONEYMOONERS can still make us laugh and appreciate their brilliance. Dramas like HILL STREET BLUES often are more nostalgic than actually still engrossing.
I have high hopes for ST. ELSEWHERE because 1) it was head and shoulders above the rest when it aired, 2) it had a brilliant cast...and not just Denzel Washington, David Morse or Alfre Woodard (who all went on to more famous film careers), but pretty much every other person in the show was at the top of their games.
I remember how cutting-edge they were, particularly in dealing with AIDS. First regular TV show I can remember where a patient had AIDS. And I remember how freaked out everyone was by him. First show in which a major character (Mark Hamill) died from AIDS. And remember how there was a rapist running around the hospital as well? And remember that it turned out to be a major character? Not many shows will go down that road today.
I remember lots of humor, and lots of pathos. I'm sure it doesn't have the blinding pace of ER...but ER would not have existed without ST. ELSEWHERE. (And ER's pace isn't always a good thing...sometimes I can't understand what everyone is saying on that show!) But it told interesting stories, and it had recurring characters you CARED about. In so many dramas with large casts today...you don't find yourself investing much concern in what happens to the characters...you're just trying to keep up with them all. ST. ELSEWHERE managed to juggle so many people, and yet they were all flesh and blood. This was due to great writing, cutting edge topics and BRILLIANT ACTING.
So I'll be placing my order for this trip down memory lane. With all the lousy shows that have been released on DVD...it's more than high time to visit St. Eligius!!"
The Return of St. Eligius Hospital
R. Fox | Chicago, IL | 09/14/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"A number of years ago I wrote an Amazon review of the box VHS set, "The Best of St. Elsewhere." In that videotape collection all of the contemporary or period music had been replaced by an awful, high-static overdub of generic, muzak-style tunes. Obviously rights for all of the popular and pre-recorded songs could not be obtained and the set was released anyway. Only the theme song and background score composed specifically for the show remained as originally intended. Unfortunately, the new dubbing ruined many of the best episodes and even the actors' original dialogue tracks were barely audible over the `new' score.
[UPDATE: I have purchased the DVD since writing this review several weeks ago. Fox Home Entertainment has done a terrific job with the extras and remastering. Producer/co-creator/director Mark Tinker mentions in the audio commentary for the 'Cora & Arnie' episode that even at the time of production they frequently had to use very convincing 'sound-alikes' for period music because the original artists' recordings were prohibitively expensive. The one exception to this was the ZZ Top song 'Legs,' which the producers did buy and may be heard in a later episode/season. Despite this, the earlier VHS collection I referenced still has terrible overdubs and does not contain the original broadcast selections - sound-alike or not. I am happy to report that at least for the Season 1 DVD all of the original music seems to be intact.]
I am very glad that the series is at long last being released on DVD, but am wondering if the music rights were ever obtained. This issue has held up many other releases, most notably `Miami Vice,' which was scored almost entirely with hit songs from the 80s.
I will purchase the first season and hope for the best. If you are just coming to `St. Elsewhere' you are in for a wonderful treat. TV Guide once named it the best drama series of all time. Despite its relatively low ratings it was beloved by critics and boasted a loyal fan base. The writing has yet to be matched anywhere and the ensemble (consisting mostly of acclaimed stage actors) rounds out one of the largest and most versatile casts ever assembled for television.
No series has ever matched St. Elsewhere and I don't think anything ever will - it will make you laugh; it will make you cry; it will show you how great television can be. Hooray for this release!"