One of the longest running and most popular of all television westerns, Bonanza was both an action/adventure classic and family drama. For fourteen seasons, audiences enthusiastically tuned in to see the High-Sierra advent... more »ures of the Cartwright clan. Nestled amongst the pines above the shores of Lake Tahoe is the Ponderosa ranch, the thousand-acre home of Ben Cartwrignt and his sons, Adam, Hoss and Joe (aka "Little Joe.") Plots featuring revolving cast of interesting guest players helped to set Bonanza apart from the usual gun-slinging formula Westerns of the day.« less
"I have been waiting for this box set for ages! And it has finally arrived. I wasn't around when this show first aired. But I remember my first viewing of it sometime in the 90's (I know, really late to the party) and I fell in LOVE! Ugh, there was just something about it that made me obsessed with it. For some strange reason there is a sense of tranquility that I got from that one viewing that there just doesn't seem to be on TV anymore.
From that one viewing, I started watching it religiously, it came on as a two hour block. And I watched every flippin' two dang hours, every dang day of the week. And was happy to find out that they spazzed out with marathons of it on weekends! I was in Bonanza heaven! And then the networks took it from me! No more Little Joe, Hoss - Adam! I had some serious withdrawals. And I was not only shocked but a little bit upset to find out that this classic television show was not available on DVD!
But that has been fixed. The packaging is OK. Nothing to rave about. It doesn't even come in a box! You just get two dvd cases. Would it have killed Paramount to give us loyal viewers a customized box! You do get a summary of each episode and you do get the original theme song. Yes, I find that very important. On youtube, you get some bastardized version and when I want my Bonanza I want the original. The discs look great, a bump in quality than what they usually look like on television. The extras are not mind blowing, some of them consist of: alternate pilot ending, a tribute remembering Michael Landon/Dan Blocker etc.
I don't have to recommend the show to those who love it, but for those who don't, give it a chance."
When men were men and women.... weren't.
William Smith | Fontana, CA United States | 09/17/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Bonanza of course sits at the very cradle of television itself. There really isn't much to say that fans do not already know in regards to the series. First and foremost it was the acting that brought the well rounded scripts to life. Not just the lead stars -- Bonanza had the absolute luxury of dipping into the well of every one of the greatest character, bit, and journeymen actors in the HISTORY of television.. you heard right, in the HISTORY of the medium. After all, great 'guest stars' are what separates the good shows and the classic shows. I dare you to watch even ONE episode and not think to yourself -- wait, wasn't he/she from.... and chances are they were and they were amazing in it too!
On a technical level I found the packaging to be handsome, the transfer to be nice, the extras competent (since most shows of this age have NO extras), the price though high is well worth it. A definite buy.
In light of today it's hard to even comprehend a nightly line up such as Bonanza, the Twilight Zone, and the Andy Griffith Show.. It's also hard to imagine a cast in which it is quite possible that a Michael Landon is the weakest link in the chain.. all I can say is never again. The beauty of true drama has been drained completely out of modern tv and I thank Paramount for helping us all remember when there was a right and a wrong, there was a time to fight, and a time to give thanks.. this show truly is a Bonanza in every sense of the word.
PS.. Where on Earth is Season 2 Vol 2 of the Big Valley.......????"
Worth the Wait!
M. Hughes | Sunny Florida | 09/19/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"To be completely honest, I already had the German DVDs of seasons 1-6, but I figure you just can't have too much Bonanza. I'm sorry it took so long but it's still worth the wait. The color is crystal, the picture gorgeous, the sound perfect, and the special features are terrific. I watched six episodes today and two yesterday and I bet I'll get another dozen knocked out before the weekend is over -- Bonanza never gets old. And having it on DVD with the original music, with special features, and in a format that means you don't have to plug up the region free player or watch some fuzzy public domain piece is just so special!
I grew up during Bonanza's first run -- we are the same age. I was born in July '59; the series debuted in September of that year. I still remember sitting on the floor of our little apartment in Chicago eagerly watching and learning my moral code from Bonanza and shows like it. There are worse ways to grow up. This was a great show and though I have watched it many times since, it's either been in syndication with chunks cut for more commercials, or on fuzzy public domain DVDs with hollow sound and weird music. When I bought the German DVDs, even then I found an occasional odd piece cut. And figuring out the German menus and bringing up the English soundtrack is something I could figure out, but it is wonderful not to have to! I'm loving this boxed set and eagerly awaiting season 2. Don't let it be too long, TPTB!!!"
BONANZA the Beautiful
Soapstarlett | 12/27/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I received this set for Christmas, and so far I am very, very pleased! I started watching Bonanza on TV Land as a freshman in high school- a fact which many friends have found funny. (Hey, I might be girly, but Bonanza caters to everyone. And what gal can resist those handsome Cartwright fellers?) A huge fan of classic television, I was drawn to Bonanza for some reason. It was the first western I ever watched, or caught on to. A few years later, Bonanza is at last on a REAL DVD set.
I am impressed with the quality of the episodes; wow are they pretty! No crummy commercials, no missing scenes, no gigantic banner advertisements creeping up the screen. Just beautiful Bonanza! The extras: there's a slide show of a couple of pictures I hadn't seen before, some interesting info on the cast from creator David Dortort, and the fun alternate ending of the pilot, original NBC peacock bumpers, etc.
The disks are plain, just a nice silvery hue with BONANZA Season 1 Disk 1 and so on printed on each. The main menus are very nice, with the same scene playing silently on each while the Bonanza theme plays full out. There is also a Cartwright in the corner of each. When you click an episode, if there's no bonus material, the episode will just start playing. If there is, it will take you to another menu, with a different Cartwright on it, and the options to look at the photos, play the promo (if there is one) or play the episode. I think this looks as good as it gets, folks. So glad to have these on DVD at last!
There is truly something beautiful about Bonanza. The storylines, the family values, the talented cast and guests, the unforgetable Cartwrights that stole the hearts of viewers back in September 1959 and continue to create smiles on the faces of old and new fans, the young and the young at heart alike.
Finally! The Cartwrights Are Back!
lijebeck | MA, USA | 10/15/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"After years of waiting and wondering if it ever would happen, Bonanza fans can rejoice! The first full set of uncut episodes from the original series with the original music has been released and it is terrific! Included are some enticing extras such as behind the scenes photos, original NBC peacock logo and bumpers, promos for the show, interviews with people associated with the series and the infamous clip of the Cartwrights actually singing (well, sort of) the words from the theme. For those of us who are true fans, however, just having the episodes uncut as they were meant to be is more than enough.
The only thing that could top this would be for the powers that be to continue to release additional seasons on a regular basis (quickly!) of the same high quality until diehard fans are able to own the entire 14 seasons of this classic family western. We have waited far too long already!